Formation of Carbon-enhanced Metal-poor Stars in the Presence of Far-ultraviolet Radiation

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Bovino, S.
Schleicher, D.R.G.
Latif, M.A.
(2014)
Astrophysical Journal Letters, 790, L35

Recent discoveries of carbon-enhanced metal-poor stars like SMSS J031300.36–670839.3 provide increasing observational insights into the formation conditions of the first second-generation stars in the universe, reflecting the chemical conditions after the first supernova explosion. Here, we present the first cosmological simulations with a detailed chemical network including primordial species as well as C, C+, O, O+, Si, Si+, and Si2+ following the formation of carbon-enhanced metal-poor stars. The presence of background UV flux delays the collapse from z = 21 to z = 15 and cool the gas down to the cosmic microwave background temperature for a metallicity of Z/Z = 10–3. This can potentially lead to the formation of lower-mass stars. Overall, we find that the metals have a stronger effect on the collapse than the radiation, yielding a comparable thermal structure for large variations in the radiative background. We further find that radiative backgrounds are not able to delay the collapse for Z/Z = 10–2 or a carbon abundance as in SMSS J031300.36–670839.3.