General Question

mattbrowne's avatar

Why are most stars in the Milky Way much smaller than our Sun?

Asked by mattbrowne (31719points) April 1st, 2009

A red dwarf star is a small and relatively cool star, of the main sequence, either late K or M spectral type. They constitute the vast majority of stars and have a mass of less than one-half of that of the Sun (down to about 0.075 solar masses, which are brown dwarfs) and a surface temperature of less than 3,500 K.

An orange dwarf, also called a K V star, is a main sequence (hydrogen-burning) star of spectral type K and luminosity class V. These stars are intermediate in size between red M-type main sequence stars of luminosity class V and yellow G-type main sequence stars of luminosity class V. They have masses of from 0.5 to 0.8 times the mass of the Sun and surface temperatures between 3,900 and 5,200 K.

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2 Answers

Benny's avatar

But most of the stars you observe from your backyard are giants.

mattbrowne's avatar

Yes, because red dwarfs are hard to spot.

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