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Journal Article



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Astrophysical Journal





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We present the I-band luminosity function of the differentially reddened globular cluster M10. We combine photometric analysis derived from wide-field (23'×23') images that include the outer regions of the cluster and high-resolution images of the cluster core. After making corrections for incompleteness and field star contamination, we find that the relative numbers of stars on the lower giant branch and near the main-sequence turnoff are in good agreement with theoretical predictions. However, we detect significant (>6 σ) excesses of red giant branch stars above and below the red giant branch bump using a new statistic (a population ratio) for testing relative evolutionary timescales of main-sequence and red giant stars. The statistic is insensitive to assumed cluster chemical composition, age, and main-sequence mass function. The excess number of red giants cannot be explained by reasonable systematic errors in our assumed cluster chemical composition, age, or main-sequence mass function. Moreover, M10 shows excesses when compared to the cluster M12, which has nearly identical metallicity, age, and color-magnitude diagram morphology. We discuss possible reasons for this anomaly, finding that the most likely cause is a mass function slope that shows significant variations as a function of mass.



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