astro-ph coffee suggested papers for Thu, Nov 04, 2010 at 03:00:00 PM

astro-ph coffee will be held at the date and time above in the PAB 3rd-floor reading room. Some suggested papers of interest are listed below.

2 Nov 2010

This is a review of a decade-long effort to develop novel tools for exploring magnetism in cold astrophysical media and to establish a new field of molecular spectropolarimetry since Berdyugina et al. (2000). It is most directly applicable to the Sun, cool stars, substellar objects, planets and other minor bodies as well as interstellar and circumstellar matter. It is close to being a mature field with developed theoretical tools poised to uncover new insights into the magnetic structures in co...

2 Nov 2010

We present high resolution observations of an extremely metal-poor damped Lyman-alpha system, at z_abs = 2.3400972 in the spectrum of the QSO J0035-0918, exhibiting an abundance pattern consistent with model predictions for the supernova yields of Population III stars. Specifically, this DLA has [Fe/H] = -3.04, shows a clear `odd-even' effect, and is C-rich with [C/Fe] = +1.53, a factor of about 20 greater than reported in any other damped Lyman-alpha system. In analogy to the carbon-enhanced m...

2 Nov 2010

Star forming galaxies represent a valuable tracer of cosmic history. Recent observational progress with Hubble Space Telescope has led to the discovery and study of the earliest-known galaxies corresponding to a period when the Universe was only ~800 million years old. Intense ultraviolet radiation from these early galaxies probably induced a major event in cosmic history: the reionization of intergalactic hydrogen. New techniques are being developed to understand the properties of these most d...

3 Nov 2010

Radiation pressure from the absorption and scattering of starlight by dust grains may be an important feedback mechanism in regulating star-forming galaxies. We compile data from the literature on star clusters, star-forming subregions, normal star-forming galaxies, and starbursts to assess the importance of radiation pressure on dust as a feedback mechanism, by comparing the luminosity and flux of these systems to their dust Eddington limit. This exercise motivates a novel interpretation of th...

1 Nov 2010

We present Keck/NIRSPEC spectroscopic observations of three Lyman alpha emitting galaxies (LAEs) at z ~ 2.3 discovered with the HETDEX pilot survey. We detect Halpha, [OIII], and Hbeta emission from two galaxies at z = 2.29 and 2.49, designated HPS194 and HPS256, respectively, representing the first detection of multiple rest-frame optical emission lines in galaxies at high-redshift selected on the basis of their Lyman alpha emission. The redshifts of the Lyman alpha emission from these galaxie...

3 Nov 2010

We analyze a sample of galaxies with stellar masses greater than $10^{10} M_{\odot}$ and with redshifts in the range $0.025<z<0.05$ for which HI mass measurements are available from the GALEX Arecibo SDSS Survey (GASS) or from the Arecibo Legacy Fast ALFA survey (ALFALFA). At a given value of $M_*$, our sample consists primarily of galaxies that are more HI-rich than average. We constructed a series of three control samples for comparison with these HI-rich galaxies. As expected, HI-rich ...

1 Nov 2010

We present a semi-analytic model atmosphere for close-in exoplanets that captures the essential physics of phase curves: orbital and viewing geometry, advection, and re-radiation. We calibrate the model with the well-characterized transiting planet, HD 189733b, then compute light curves for seven of the most eccentric transiting planets. We present phase variations for a variety of different radiative times and wind speeds. In the limit of instant re-radiation, the light curve morphology is ent...

2 Nov 2010

We present an HI absorption survey of the central 250 pc of the Galaxy. Very Large Array (VLA) observations were made at 21 cm in the DnC and CnB configurations and have a resolution of ~15"(0.6 pc at the Galactic Center (GC) distance) and a velocity resolution of ~2.5 km/s. This study provides HI data with high spatial resolution, comparable with the many high resolution observations which have been made of GC sources over the past ten years. Here we present an overview of the HI absorption to...

2 Nov 2010

We have measured the in situ average electric field attenuation length for radio-frequency signals broadcast vertically through the Ross Ice Shelf. We chose a location, Moore Embayment, south of Minna Bluff, known for its high reflectivity at the ice-sea interface. We confirmed specular reflection and used the return pulses to measure the average attenuation length from 75-1250 MHz over the round-trip distance of 1155 m. We find the average electric field attenuation length to vary from 500 m a...

1 Nov 2010

We present a catalog of emission-line galaxies selected solely by their emission-line fluxes using a wide-field integral field spectrograph. This work is partially motivated as a pilot survey for the upcoming Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX). We describe the observations, reductions, detections, redshift classifications, line fluxes, and counterpart information for 397 emission-line galaxies detected over 169 sq.arcmin with a 3500-5800 Ang. bandpass under 5 Ang. full-width...

2 Nov 2010

Spectral features corresponding to methane and water opacity were reported based on spectroscopic observations of HD 189733b with Hubble/NICMOS. Recently, these data, and other NICMOS exoplanet spectroscopy measurements, have been reexamined in Gibson et al. 2010, who claim that the features in the transmission spectra are due to uncorrected systematic errors and not molecular opacities. We examine the methods used by the Gibson team and show that, contrary to their claim, their results for the...

Web Article:

29 Oct 2010

(Abridged) The upper atmospheres of close-in gas giant exoplanets are subjected to intense heating/tidal forces from their parent stars. Atomic/ionized hydrogen (H) layers are sufficiently rarefied that magnetic pressure may dominate gas pressure for expected planetary magnetic field strength. We examine the magnetospheric structure using a 3D isothermal magnetohydrodynamic model that includes: a static "dead zone" near the magnetic equator containing magnetically confined gas; a "wind zone" ou...

1 Nov 2010

The recent detection of the transit of very massive substellar companions (CoRoT-3b, Deleuil et al. 2008; CoRoT-15b, Bouchy et al. 2010; WASP-30b, Anderson et al. 2010; Hat-P-20b, Bakos et al. 2010) provides a strong constraint to planet and brown dwarf formation and migration mechanisms. Whether these objects are brown dwarfs originating from the gravitational collapse of a dense molecular cloud that, at the same time, gave birth to the more massive stellar companion, or whether they are plane...

Web Article:

31 Oct 2010

The radial velocity (RV) method to detect extrasolar planets has been the most successful to the date. The RV signal imprinted by a few Earth-mass planet around a cool star is at the limit of the typical single measurement uncertainty on state-of-the-art spectrographs. As a consequence, one has to rely on statistics to unearth signals buried below the noise. Observationally related issues such as unquantified systematic errors or artifacts introduced by the observing cadence can produce spuriou...

1 Nov 2010

The last several years have brought about a dynamic shift in the view of exoplanetary systems in the post-main sequence, perhaps epitomized by the evidence for surviving rocky planetary bodies at white dwarfs. Coinciding with the launch of the Spitzer Space Telescope, both space- and ground-based data have supported a picture whereby asteroid analogs persist at a significant fraction of cool white dwarfs, and are prone to tidal disruption when passing close to the compact stellar remnant. The e...

28 Oct 2010

We measure the redshift distribution of a sample of 28 giant arcs discovered as a part of the Sloan Giant Arcs Survey (SGAS). Gemini/GMOS-North spectroscopy provides precise redshifts for 24 arcs, and "redshift desert" constraints for the remaining 4. This is a direct measurement of the redshift distribution of a uniformly selected sample of bright giant arcs, which is an observable that can be used to inform efforts to predict giant arc statistics. Our primary giant arc sample has a median red...

27 Oct 2010

Neutron stars are composed of the densest form of matter known to exist in our universe, and thus provide a unique laboratory for exploring the properties of cold matter at super-nuclear density. Measurements of the masses or radii of these objects can strongly constrain the neutron-star matter equation of state, and consequently the interior composition of neutron stars. Neutron stars that are visible as millisecond radio pulsars are especially useful in this respect, as timing observations of...

astroph.py v0.91ijc based on the original astroph.py. Updated 2010/11/04 12:47:46

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