hydrogen ‘burning’

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hydrogen ‘burning’ A thermonuclear process that produces energy by the combination of hydrogen nucleii, and referred to in stellar evolution as the ‘main-stage sequence’. The stage ends when the inner core of hydrogen is exhausted, causing the contraction of the inner part of the star and the expansion of the outer part to produce a red giant. See CARBON ‘BURNING’; HELIUM ‘BURNING’; SILICON ‘BURNING’; NUCLEOSYNTHESIS; and THERMONUCLEAR REACTIONS.