Introductory Astronomy: High Mass Stars

High mass stars (greater than about 3 solar masses) have a much shorter main sequence lifetime than stars with less mass. They burn their hydrogen into helium after only a few millions of years, much more quickly than lower mass stars. After a high mass star burns through all of the hydrogen in its core, it's internal changes place it along the Super Giant branch. Eventually, the core of the star will run out of fusible material. At this point, the star looks like an onion, because it is made up of a central core surrounded by layers of different elements (like an onion). Because the star cannot fuse any other elements, it will begin to collapse. The collapse causes a Supernova to occur. After the Supernova explosion, the final state of massive stars is either a Neutron Star , a Black Hole , or nothing at all.