The four equations of stellar structure are reformulated as two alternate pairs of variational principles. Different thermodynamic representations lead to the same hydromechanical equations, but the thermal equations require, not the entropy, but the temperature as the thermal field variable. Our treatment emphasizes the hydrostatic energy and the entropy production rate of luminosity produced and transported. The conceptual and calculational advantages of integral over differential formulations of stellar structure are discussed along with the difficulties in describing stellar chemical evolution by variational principles.
The Astrophysical Journal
- Pub Date:
- July 1997
- Stars: Interiors;
- Condensed Matter - Statistical Mechanics
- 28 pages, LaTeX, requires AASTeX, 1 PostScript figure, revisions: erratum