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Title: Studies of luminous stars in nearby galaxies. I. Supergiants and O stars in the Milky Way.
Authors: Humphreys, R. M.
Publication: Astrophysical Journal, Suppl. Ser., Vol. 38, p. 309-350 (1978)
Date: 12/1978
Keywords: Catalogues:O Stars; Catalogues:Supergiants; Early-Type Stars:Galaxies; Early-Type Stars:Galaxy
DOI: 10.1086/190559
ADS: 1978ApJS...38..309H  [Bibtex entry]


In this paper the fundamental properties of the brightest known stars in our Galaxy are determined for future comparison with results for the most luminous stars in other galaxies. The H-R diagrams (Mv versus spectral type and Mbol versus log Te), the luminosities of the brightest stars, and the ratios of blue to red supergiants are all discussed, and a catalog of over 1000 super- giants and 0 stars in associations and clusters is included at the end of the paper. Tile "theoretical" H-R diagram (Mbol versus log Te) reveals a group of superluminous 0 stars with Mbol between -10 and -12 mag, a lack of evolved supergiants at these very high luminosities, and an apparent upper limit to the luminosities of the later-type supergiants (>B5) near Mbol = -9.5 mag. The most luminous red supergiants have a maximum visual luminosity near Mv -8 mag, supporting the suggestion by Sandage and Tammann that they are good distance indicators. Excluding the superluminous star Cyg OB 2 No. 12 (Mv - 9.9 mag), the brightest blue stars are found at Mv -8.5 mag. The variation of the ratio of blue to red supergiants with luminosity is discussed. Tilere is also evidence for a gradient in this ratio with distance from the galactic center, although the results are limited by the incompleteness of the data. Subject headings: galaxies: Milky Way - galaxies: stellar content - stars: early-type - stars: late-type - stars: luminosities - stars: supergiants

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