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Astron. Astrophys. 346, L13-L16 (1999)

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Letter to the Editor

On the ultimate fate of AM Her stars

F. Meyer and E. Meyer-Hofmeister

Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 1, D-85740 Garching, Germany

Received 12 April 1999 / Accepted 1 May 1999


We suggest, that the magnetic field of the white dwarf in AM Her systems loses coupling to the secondary star when the latter becomes non-magnetic at the transition from a late main sequence star to a cool degenerate brown dwarf. This leads to spin-up of the primary white dwarf. After synchronous rotation is lost the systems do not appear as AM Her stars anymore. We discuss the further evolution of such systems.

Key words: stars: novae, cataclysmic variables – stars: magnetic fields – stars: low-mass, brown dwarfs – stars: white dwarfs

Send offprint requests to: Emmi Meyer-Hofmeister

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: May 21, 1999