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An opaque Sun?
Regner Trampedach (Stellar Astrophysics Centre, Aarhus, Denmark/Space Science Inst., Boulder, Colorado, USA)
Last year Bailey et al. announced their measurement of iron opacity that increases the Rosseland mean at the base of the solar convection zone by 7%. I ask what happens if the absorption by other elements is also stronger than predicted: Having the increase be proportional to the number of bound electrons in the absorber (reflecting our remaining ignorance of atomic physics) gives an opacity increase for a solar model, that has the potential to solve the solar abundance problem. Conclusion: Opacities are the likely source of the solar abundance problem, and the solar abundances are likely closer to those of Asplund et al (2009) than the alternative modern set, offered by Caffau et al. (2011).