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Fraser
2010-Sep-03, 04:20 PM
The math is simple: Star + Other star = Bigger star. While conceptually this works well, it fails to take into account the extremely vast distances between stars. Even in clusters, where the density of stars is significantly higher than in the main disk, the number of stars per unit volume is so low that [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/72720/how-to-crash-stars-together/)

Trakar
2010-Sep-03, 06:34 PM
The math is simple: Star + Other star = Bigger star. While conceptually this works well, it fails to take into account the extremely vast distances between stars. Even in clusters, where the density of stars is significantly higher than in the main disk, the number of stars per unit volume is so low that [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/72720/how-to-crash-stars-together/)

Good stuff!

Presumably, a part of the follow-up to this is recognizing the massive progeny of such collisions and mergers. But though there is a distinction in mechanism for how stars combine to form larger stars, is there any clear-cut method of distinguishing which mechanism was responsible for a given super-massive star? The result of collison(s) or merger(s)?