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Astron. Astrophys. 325, 189-194

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Strange stars: how dense can their crust be?*

Y.F. Huang1 and T. Lu2,1

1 Department of Astronomy, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, P.R. China
2 CCAST (World Laboratory) P.O. Box 8730, Beijing 100080, P.R. China

Received 17 January 1997 / Accepted 17 March 1997


The strong electric field at the surface of a strange star is discussed, and a self-consistent model is proposed to calculate its capability of supporting a ``normal'' nuclear material crust. We find that the electric field is already not able to support the crust even when the bottom density of the crust is still considerably lower than the neutron drip point, which means that it is not the neutron drip effect that limits the maximum crust density of a strange star. The maximum crust density is probably only about FORMULA g cm-3, so that a typical strange star (1.4 M FORMULA ) can not have a crust more massive than FORMULA M FORMULA . Considerable limitations are also presented for strange dwarfs.

Key words: dense matter - elementary particles - stars: interiors; neutron; white dwarfs

*This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation, the National Climbing Programme on Fundamental Researches, the Foundation of the Committee for Education of China

Send offprint requests to: Tan Lu FORMULA , Dept. of Astronomy, Nanjing University, Nanjing, 210093, China

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1997