White dwarf cooling sequences and cosmochronology
1 Institut de Ciències de l'Espai (CSIC), Facultat de Ciències, Campus UAB, Torre C5-parell, 08193 Bellaterra, Spain
2 Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia, c/Gran Capità 2–4, Edif. Nexus 104, 08034 Barcelona, Spain
3 CRECIM, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Campus UAB, 08193 Bellaterra, Spain
4 Departament de Física Aplicada, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, c/Esteve Terrades, 5, 08860 Castelldefels, Spain
a e-mail: email@example.com
The evolution of white dwarfs is a simple gravothermal process. This means that their luminosity function, i.e. the number of white dwarfs per unit bolometric magnitude and unit volume as a function of bolometric magnitude, is a monotonically increasing function that decreases abruptly as a consequence of the finite age of the Galaxy. The precision and the accuracy of the white dwarf luminosity functions obtained with the recent large surveys together with the improved quality of the theoretical models of evolution of white dwarfs allow to feed the hope that in a near future it will be possible to reconstruct the history of the different Galactic populations.
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