Astro Coffee

Suggested papers for
Tue, Jul 26, 2016 at 11:00 AM and Fri, Jul 29, 2016 at 11:00 AM

27 Jul 2016

The population of long-period transiting exoplanets

The Kepler Mission has discovered thousands of exoplanets and revolutionized our understanding of their population. This large, homogeneous catalog of discoveries has enabled rigorous studies of the occurrence rate of exoplanets and planetary systems as a function of their physical properties. However, transit surveys like Kepler are most sensitive to planets with orbital periods much shorter than the orbital periods of Jupiter and Saturn, the most massive planets in our Solar System. To addres...

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27 Jul 2016

Study of a new central compact object: The neutron star in the supernova remnant G15.9+0.2

We present our study of the central point source CXOU J181852.0-150213 in the young Galactic supernova remnant (SNR) G15.9+0.2 based on the recent ~90 ks Chandra observations. The point source was discovered in 2005 in shorter Chandra observations and was hypothesized to be a neutron star associated with the SNR. Our X-ray spectral analysis strongly supports the hypothesis of a thermally emitting neutron star associated with G15.9+0.2. We conclude that the object belongs to the class of young c...

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26 Jul 2016

A deep campaign to characterize the synchronous radio/X-ray mode switching of PSR B0943+10

We report on simultaneous X-ray and radio observations of the mode-switching pulsar PSR B0943+10 obtained with the XMM-Newton satellite and the LOFAR, LWA and Arecibo radio telescopes in November 2014. We confirm the synchronous X-ray/radio switching between a radio-bright (B) and a radio-quiet (Q) mode, in which the X-ray flux is a factor ~2.4 higher than in the B-mode. We discovered X-ray pulsations, with pulsed fraction of 38+/-5% (0.5-2 keV), during the B-mode, and confirm their presence in...

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25 Jul 2016

Upper limits on the rates of binary neutron star and neutron-star--black-hole mergers from Advanced LIGO's first observing run

We report here the non-detection of gravitational waves from the merger of binary neutron star systems and neutron-star--black-hole systems during the first observing run of Advanced LIGO. In particular we searched for gravitational wave signals from binary neutron star systems with component masses $\in [1,3] M_{\odot}$ and component dimensionless spins $< 0.05$. We also searched for neutron-star--black-hole systems with the same neutron star parameters, black hole mass $\in [2,99] M_{\odot...

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26 Jul 2016

Detecting Pulsars with Interstellar Scintillation in Variance Images

Pulsars are the only cosmic radio sources known to be sufficiently compact to show diffractive interstellar scintillations. Images of the variance of radio signals in both time and frequency can be used to detect pulsars in large-scale continuum surveys using the next generation of synthesis radio telescopes. This technique allows a search over the full field of view while avoiding the need for expensive pixel-by-pixel high time resolution searches. We investigate the sensitivity of detecting p...

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22 Jul 2016

Another one grinds the dust: Variability of the planetary debris disc at the white dwarf SDSS J104341.53+085558.2

We report nine years of optical spectroscopy of the metal-polluted white dwarf SDSS J104341.53+085558.2, which presents morphological variations of the line profiles of the 8600 \AA\ Ca II triplet emission from the gaseous component of its debris disc. Similar changes in the shape of the Ca II triplet have also been observed in two other systems that host a gaseous disc, and are likely related to the same mechanism. We report the Mg, Si, and Ca abundances of the debris detected in the photosphe...

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21 Jul 2016

Simulating the Impact of X-ray Heating during the Cosmic Dawn

Upcoming observations of the 21-cm signal from the Epoch of Reionization will soon provide us with the first direct detection of this era. This signal is influenced by many astrophysical effects, including long range X-ray heating of the intergalactic gas. During the preceding Cosmic Dawn era the impact of this heating on the 21-cm signal is particularly prominent, especially before spin temperature saturation. We present the largest-volume (244~$h^{-1}$Mpc=349\,Mpc comoving) full numerical rad...

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14 Jul 2016

X-ray Twinkles and Pop III Stars

Pop III stars are typically massive stars of primordial composition forming at the centers of the first collapsed dark matter structures. Here we estimate the optimal X-ray emission in the early universe for promoting the formation of Pop III stars. This is important in determining the number of dwarf galaxies formed before reionization and their fossils in the local universe, as well as the number of intermediate-mass seed black holes. A mean X-ray emission per source above the optimal level r...

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15 Jul 2016

The many faces of LINER-like galaxies: a WISE view

We use the SDSS and WISE surveys to investigate the real nature of galaxies defined as LINERs in the BPT diagram. After establishing a mid-infrared colour W2-W3 = 2.5 as the optimal separator between galaxies with and without star formation, we investigate the loci of different galaxy classes in the W_{Ha} versus W2-W3 space. We find that: (1) A large fraction of LINER-like galaxies are emission-line retired galaxies, i.e galaxies which have stopped forming stars and are powered by hot low-mass...

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19 Jul 2016

An Improved Distance and Mass Estimate for Sgr A* from a Multistar Orbit Analysis

We present new, more precise measurements of the mass and distance of our Galaxy's central supermassive black hole, Sgr A*. These results stem from a new analysis that more than doubles the time baseline for astrometry of faint stars orbiting Sgr A*, combining two decades of speckle imaging and adaptive optics data. Specifically, we improve our analysis of the speckle images by using information about a star's orbit from the deep adaptive optics data (2005 - 2013) to inform the search for the s...

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17 Jul 2016

The Interaction of the Fermi Bubbles with the Milky Way's Hot Gas Halo

The Fermi bubbles are two lobes filled with non-thermal particles that emit gamma rays, extend $\approx$10 kpc vertically from the Galactic center, and formed from either nuclear star formation or accretion activity on Sgr A*. Simulations predict a range of shock strengths as the bubbles expand into the surrounding hot gas halo distribution ($T_{halo} \approx 2 \times 10^6$ K), but with significant uncertainties in the energetics, age, and thermal gas structure. The bubbles should contain therm...

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15 Jul 2016

The Correlation Between Halo Mass and Stellar Mass for the Most Massive Galaxies in the Universe

We present measurements of the clustering of galaxies as a function of their stellar mass in the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey. We compare the clustering of samples using 12 different methods for estimating stellar mass, isolating the method that has the smallest scatter at fixed halo mass. In this test, the stellar mass estimate with the smallest errors yields the highest amplitude of clustering at fixed number density. We find that the PCA stellar masses of Chen etal (2012) clearly ...

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14 Jul 2016

Spin-orbit Misalignment as a Driver of the Kepler Dichotomy

During its 5 year mission, the Kepler spacecraft has uncovered a diverse population of planetary systems with orbital configurations ranging from single-transiting planets to systems of multiple planets co-transiting the parent star. By comparing the relative occurrences of multiple to single-transiting systems, recent analyses have revealed a significant over-abundance of singles. Dubbed the "Kepler Dichotomy," this feature has been interpreted as evidence for two separate populations of plane...

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Updated 2016/07/29 11:42:19

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