Physical collisions between stars occur frequently in dense star clusters, either via close encounters between two single stars, or during strong dynamical interactions involving binary stars. Here we study stellar collisions that occur during binary�single and binary�binary interactions, by performing numerical scattering experiments. For interactions of hard binaries containing main-sequence stars, we find that the normalized cross section for at least one collision to occur (between any two of the four stars involved) is essentially unity, and that the probability of collisions involving more than two stars is significant. We apply the results to the scenario of runaway growth of a very massive star (which may collapse to form an intermediate-mass black hole) in a dense cluster.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Massive Stars in Interactive Binaries|
|Editors||Nicole St. Louis, Anthony F J Moffat|
|Publisher||Astronomical Society of the Pacific|
|Number of pages||6|
|State||Published - 2007|
|Name||Astronomical Society of the Pacific Conference Series|