HD 16771: A lithium-rich giant in the red-clump stage
Reddy et al
We report the discovery of a young lithium rich giant, HD 16771, in the core-helium burning phase that does not seem to fit existing proposals of Li synthesis near the luminosity function bump or during He-core flash. We aim to understand the nature of Li enrichment in the atmosphere of HD 16771 by exploring various Li enhancement scenarios.
We have collected high-resolution echelle spectra of HD 16771 and derived stellar parameters and chemical abundances for 27 elements by either line equivalent widths or synthetic spectrum analyses.
HD 16771 is a Li-rich (log(n(Li))=+2.67+/-0.10 dex) intermediate mass giant star (M=2.4+/-0.1 Msun) with age=0.76+/-0.13 Gyr and located at the red giant clump. Kinematics and chemical compositions are consistent with HD 16771 being a member of the Galactic thin disk population. The non-detection of 6Li(less than 3%), a low carbon isotopic ratio (12C/13C=12+/-2), and the slow rotation (vsini=2.8 km/s) all suggest that lithium might have been synthesized in this star. On the contrary, HD 16771 with a mass of 2.4 Msun has no chance of encountering luminosity function bump and He-core flash where the possibility of fast deep-mixing for Li enrichment in K giants has been suggested previously.
Based of the evolutionary status of this star, we discuss the possibility that 7Li synthesis in HD 16771 is triggered by the engulfment of close-in planet(s) during the RGB phase.