Statistical confirmation of a stellar upper mass limit

@article{Clarke2005StatisticalCO,
  title={Statistical confirmation of a stellar upper mass limit},
  author={Melanie J. Clarke},
  journal={The Astrophysical Journal},
  year={2005},
  volume={620}
}
  • M. Clarke
  • Published 7 January 2005
  • Physics
  • The Astrophysical Journal
We derive the expectation value for the maximum stellar mass (mmax) in an ensemble of N stars, as a function of the initial mass function (IMF) upper mass cutoff (mup) and N. We statistically demonstrate that the upper IMF of the local massive star census observed thus far in the Milky Way and Magellanic Clouds clearly exhibits a universal upper mass cutoff around 120-200 M☉ for a Salpeter IMF, although the result is more ambiguous for a steeper IMF. 

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