On the problem of confirming ZAMS stars in the field
Received 3 April 2000 / Accepted 8 August 2000
The problem of confirming the youth of presumed zero-age main sequence (ZAMS) stars among field stars, i.e. outside of clusters and associations, is discussed within a statistical framework. A generic method to evaluate the completeness and contamination of samples is presented, criteria for the design of appropriate tests are outlined, and the performance of X-ray selection and the so-called `lithium test' is estimated. It is shown that for any test applied to this problem, the error of the second kind is far more important than the error of the first kind.
Key words: stars: pre-main sequence X-rays: stars methods: data analysis
© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000
Online publication: December 5, 2000