Glossary term: convective zone

Also known as convective envelope

Description: The convective zone is a region in a star where convection, rather than radiation is the main method of heat transportation. In the convective zone, hot material deeper in the star rises up to cooler regions where it cools, expands and then sinks back down. In the most massive main sequence stars the stellar core is convective while the outer layers are radiative. In main sequence stars similar to the Sun, the region below the atmosphere is convective while the region deeper than this is radiative. In the lowest mass stars, the entire star, from the core to just below the atmosphere, is convective.

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Term and definition status: This term and its definition is still awaiting approval

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