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Far from home: the science exploitation of the fastest Milky Way stars

The Sun and all the stars in the night sky reside in the Milky Way galaxy. In the at-rest reference frame of the Galaxy, typical stars travel with velocities of about 100-200 kilometres per second.

Evans F.A.F.
15 March 2023
Thesis in Leiden Repository

Some stars, however, can attain velocities of several hundred to several thousands of kilometres per second. Accelerating stars to such high velocities is only possible in very energetic scenarios, such as supernova explosions or dynamical interactions with a supermassive black hole. By studying these fast stars, we can improve our understanding of the violent and short-lived events that accelerate them. This dissertation uses simulated fast-star populations and compares them to real-life fast star populations. In doing so, it provides new constraints on the final stages of stellar evolution and on the stellar environment in the centre of the Galaxy.

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