Chandrasekhar limit

[ shahn-druh-sey-kahr ]
/ ˌʃɑn drəˈseɪ kɑr /
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noun Astronomy.

the mass limit above which a star has too much mass to become a white dwarf after gravitational collapse, approximately 1.44 solar masses.



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Origin of Chandrasekhar limit

First recorded in 1975–80; named after U.S. astrophysicist Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, who formulated it

Words nearby Chandrasekhar limit

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

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British Dictionary definitions for Chandrasekhar limit

Chandrasekhar limit


astronomy the upper limit to the mass of a white dwarf, equal to 1.44 solar masses. A star having a mass above this limit will continue to collapse to form a neutron star

Word Origin for Chandrasekhar limit

C20: named after S. Chandrasekhar, who calculated it
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for Chandrasekhar limit

Chandrasekhar limit

The maximum size of a stable white dwarf, approximately 3 X 1030 kg (about 1.4 times the mass of the Sun). Stars with mass higher than the Chandrasekhar limit ultimately collapse under their own weight and become neutron stars or black holes. Stars with a mass below this limit are prevented from collapsing by the degeneracy pressure of their electrons. See more at degeneracy pressure.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.