Astrophysical Opacity

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Science  07 Jan 1994:
Vol. 263, Issue 5143, pp. 50-55
DOI: 10.1126/science.263.5143.50


An array of problems in astronomy, cosmology, and particle physics is dependent on our understanding of the evolution and structure of stars. Stellar structure and evolution, in turn, depend on how the nuclear energy generated in the stellar center is transported to the surface. Energy transport by photons is a primary transfer mechanism. Recent improvements in the calculation of the radiative properties of stellar matter have helped resolve several long-standing discrepancies between observations and the predictions of theoretical models.