Recent Postings from Solar and Stellar

The Dynamical Fate of Self-Gravitating Disc Fragments After Tidal Downsizing

The gravitational instability model of planet/brown dwarf formation proposes that protostellar discs can fragment into objects with masses above a few Jupiter masses at large semimajor axis. Tidal downsizing may reduce both the object mass and semimajor axis. However, most studies of tidal downsizing end when the protostellar disc disperses, while the system is embedded in its parent star-forming region. To compare disc fragment descendants with exoplanet and brown dwarf observations, the subsequent dynamical evolution must be explored. We carry out N-Body integrations of fragment-fragment scattering in multi-object star systems, and star systems embedded in substructured clusters. In both cases, we use initial conditions generated by population synthesis models of tidal downsizing. The scattering simulations produce a wide range of eccentricities. The ejection rate is around 25%. The ejecta mass distribution is similar to that for all objects, with a velocity dispersion consistent with those produced by full hydrodynamic simulations. The semimajor axis distribution after scattering extends to parsec scales. In the cluster simulations, 13% of objects are ejected from their planetary system, and around 10% experience significant orbit modification. A small number of objects are recaptured on high eccentricity, high inclination orbits. The velocity distribution of ejecta is similar to that produced by fragment-fragment scattering. If fragment-fragment scattering and cluster stripping act together, then disc fragmentation should be efficient at producing free-floating substellar objects, and hence characterising the free-floating planet population will provide strong constraints on the frequency of disc fragmentation.

Weak Galactic halo--dwarf spheroidal connection from RR Lyrae stars

We discuss the role that dwarf galaxies may have played in the formation of the Galactic halo (Halo) using RR Lyrae stars (RRL) as tracers of their ancient stellar component. The comparison is performed using two observables (periods, luminosity amplitudes) that are reddening and distance independent. Fundamental mode RRL in six dwarf spheroidals and eleven ultra faint dwarf galaxies (1,300) show a Gaussian period distribution well peaked around a mean period of <Pab>=0.610+-0.001 days (sigma=0.03). The Halo RRL (15,000) are characterized by a broader period distribution. The fundamental mode RRL in all the dwarf spheroidals apart from Sagittarius are completely lacking in High Amplitude Short Period (HASP) variables, defined as those having P< 0.48 days and Av> 0.75mag. Such variables are not uncommon in the Halo and among the globular clusters and massive dwarf irregulars. To further interpret this evidence, we considered eighteen globulars covering a broad range in metallicity (-2.3< [Fe/H]< -1.1) and hosting more than 35 RRL each. The metallicity turns out to be the main parameter, since only globulars more metal–rich than [Fe/H] -1.5 host RRL in the HASP region. This finding suggests that dSphs similar to the surviving ones do not appear to be the major building-blocks of the Halo. Leading physical arguments suggest an extreme upper limit of 50% to their contribution. On the other hand, massive dwarfs hosting an old population with a broad metallicity distribution (Large Magellanic Cloud, Sagittarius) may have played a primary role in the formation of the Halo.

SOLIS: reconciling disk-integrated and disk-resolved spectra from the Sun

Unlike other stars, the surface of the Sun can be spatially resolved to a high degree of detail. But the Sun can also be observed as if it was a distant star. The availability of solar disk-resolved and disk-integrated spectra offers an opportunity to devise methods to derive information about the spatial distribution of solar features from Sun-as-a-star measurements. Here, we present an update on work done at the National Solar Observatory to reconcile disk-integrated and disk-resolved solar spectra from the Synoptic Optical Long-term Investigation of the Sun (SOLIS) station. The results of this work will lead to a new approach to infer the information about the spatial distribution of features on other stars, from the overall filling factor of active regions to, possibly, the latitude/longitude distribution of features.

Instability of Magnetic Equilibria in Barotropic Stars

In stably stratified stars, numerical magneto-hydrodynamics simulations have shown that arbitrary initial magnetic fields evolve into stable equilibrium configurations, usually containing nearly axisymmetric, linked poloidal and toroidal fields that stabilize each other. In this work, we test the hypothesis that stable stratification is a requirement for the existence of such stable equilibria. For this purpose, we follow numerically the evolution of magnetic fields in barotropic (and thus neutrally stable) stars, starting from two different types of initial conditions, namely random disordered magnetic fields, as well as linked poloidal-toroidal configurations resembling the previously found equilibria. With many trials, we always find a decay of the magnetic field over a few Alfv\’en times, never a stable equilibrium. This strongly suggests that there are no stable equilibria in barotropic stars, thus clearly invalidating the assumption of barotropic equations of state often imposed on the search of magnetic equilibria. It also supports the hypothesis that, as dissipative processes erode the stable stratification, they might destabilize previously stable magnetic field configurations, leading to their decay.

On the role of rotation in the outflows of the Crab pulsar

In order to study constraints imposed on kinematics of the Crab pulsar’s jet we consider motion of particles along co-rotating field lines in the magnetosphere of the Crab pulsar. It is shown that particles following the co-rotating magnetic field lines may attain velocities close to observable values. In particular, we demonstrate that if the magnetic field lines are within the light cylinder, the maximum value of the velocity component parallel to the rotation axis is limited by 0.5c. This result in the context of the X-ray observations performed by Chandra X-ray Observatory seems to be quite indicative and useful to estimate the density of field lines inside the jet. Considering the three-dimensional (3D) field lines crossing the light cylinder, we found that for explaining the force-free regime of outflows the magnetic field lines must asymptotically tend to the Archimedes’ spiral configuration. It is also shown that the 3D case may explain the observed jet velocity for appropriately chosen parameters of magnetic field lines.

Long-term variability of high-mass X-ray binaries. I.Photometry

We present photometric observations of the field around the optical counterparts of high-mass X-ray binaries. Our aim is to study the long-term photometric variability in correlation with their X-ray activity and derive a set of secondary standard stars that can be used for time series analysis. We find that the donors in Be/X-ray binaries exhibit larger amplitude changes in the magnitudes and colours than those hosting a supergiant companion. The amplitude of variability increases with wavelength in Be/X-ray binaries and remains fairly constant in supergiant systems. When time scales of years are considered, a good correlation between the X-ray and optical variability is observed. The X-rays cease when optical brightness decreases. These results reflect the fact that the circumstellar disk in Be/X-ray binaries is the main source of both optical and X-ray variability. We also derive the colour excess, E(B-V), selecting data at times when the contribution of the circumstellar disk was supposed to be at minimum, and we revisit the distance estimates.

I-Love relation for incompressible stars and realistic stars [Cross-Listing]

In spite of the diversity in the equations of state of nuclear matter, the recently discovered I-Love-Q relations [Yagi and Yunes, Science {\bf 341}, 365 (2013)], which relate the moment of inertia, tidal Love number (deformability) and the spin-induced quadrupole moment of compact stars, hold for various kinds of realistic neutron stars and quark stars. While the physical origin of such universality is still a current issue, the observation that the I-Love-Q relations of incompressible stars can well approximate those of realistic compact stars hints at a new direction to approach the problem. In this paper, by establishing recursive post-Minkowskian expansion for the moment of inertia and the tidal deformability of incompressible stars, we analytically derive the I-Love relation for incompressible stars and show that the so obtained formula can be used to accurately predict the behavior of realistic compact stars from the Newtonian limit to the maximum mass limit.

I-Love relation for incompressible stars and realistic stars

In spite of the diversity in the equations of state of nuclear matter, the recently discovered I-Love-Q relations [Yagi and Yunes, Science {\bf 341}, 365 (2013)], which relate the moment of inertia, tidal Love number (deformability) and the spin-induced quadrupole moment of compact stars, hold for various kinds of realistic neutron stars and quark stars. While the physical origin of such universality is still a current issue, the observation that the I-Love-Q relations of incompressible stars can well approximate those of realistic compact stars hints at a new direction to approach the problem. In this paper, by establishing recursive post-Minkowskian expansion for the moment of inertia and the tidal deformability of incompressible stars, we analytically derive the I-Love relation for incompressible stars and show that the so obtained formula can be used to accurately predict the behavior of realistic compact stars from the Newtonian limit to the maximum mass limit.

Where Are The Circumbinary Planets of Contact Binaries?

Up to present date, no circumbinary planet around contact binaries were discovered neither by transit method nor by the minima times variation, although they are known having third component stars around. We thus ask: where are the circumbinary planets of contact binaries? By considering the physical and geometrical parameters we simulated the light curves of contact binaries with possible transiting circumbinary jovian planets. It seems either the circumbinary jovian planets are not formed around contact binaries, probably due to dynamical effects of the binary and third component stars, or they are present but the discovery of such planets were not possible so far due to larger distortions then expected in the photometric data and in the minima times.

Protostellar Jets Enclosed by Low-velocity Outflows

A protostellar jet and outflow are calculated for \sim 270 yr following the protostar formation using a three dimensional magnetohydrodynamics simulation, in which both the protostar and its parent cloud are spatially resolved. A high-velocity (\sim100km/s) jet with good collimation is driven near the disk’s inner edge, while a low-velocity (<10km/s) outflow with a wide opening angle appears in the outer-disk region. The high-velocity jet propagates into the low-velocity outflow, forming a nested velocity structure in which a narrow high-velocity flow is enclosed by a wide low-velocity flow. The low-velocity outflow is in a nearly steady state, while the high-velocity jet appears intermittently. The time-variability of the jet is related to the episodic accretion from the disk onto the protostar, which is caused by gravitational instability and magnetic effects such as magnetic braking and magnetorotational instability. Although the high-velocity jet has a large kinetic energy, the mass and momentum of the jet are much smaller than those of the low-velocity outflow. A large fraction of the infalling gas is ejected by the low-velocity outflow. Thus, the low-velocity outflow actually has a more significant effect than the high-velocity jet in the very early phase of the star formation.

MHD Seismology of a Coronal Loop System by the First Two Modes of Standing Kink Waves

We report the observation of the first two harmonics of the horizontally polarized kink waves excited in a coronal loop system lying at south-east of AR 11719 on 2013 April 11. The detected periods of the fundamental mode ($P_1$), its first overtone ($P_2$) in the northern half, and that in the southern one are $530.2 \pm 13.3$, $300.4 \pm 27.7$, and $334.7 \pm 22.1$ s, respectively. The periods of the first overtone in the two halves are the same considering uncertainties in the measurement. We estimate the average electron density, temperature, and length of the loop system as $(5.1 \pm 0.8) \times 10^8$ cm$^{-3}$, $0.65 \pm 0.06$ MK, and $203.8 \pm 13.8$ Mm, respectively. As a zeroth order estimation, the magnetic field strength, $B = 8.2 \pm 1.0$ G, derived by the coronal seismology using the fundamental kink mode matches with that derived by a potential field model. The extrapolation model also shows the asymmetric and nonuniform distribution of the magnetic field along the coronal loop. Using the amplitude profile distributions of both the fundamental mode and its first overtone, we observe that the antinode positions of both the fundamental mode and its first overtone shift towards the weak field region along the coronal loop. The results indicate that the density stratification and the temperature difference effects are larger than the magnetic field variation effect on the period ratio. On the other hand, the magnetic field variation has a greater effect on the eigenfunction of the first overtone than the density stratification does for this case.

Discovery of Luminous Star Formation in PMN1452-5910/IRAS14482-5857: the Pterodactyl Nebula

We present sensitive 1-3 GHz ATCA radio continuum observations of the hitherto unresolved star forming region known as either IRAS14482-5857 or PMN1452-5910. At radio continuum frequencies, this source is characterised by a "filled-bubble" structure reminiscent of a classical HII region, dominated by three point sources, and surrounded by low-surface-brightness emission out to the $3′\times4′$ source extent observed at other frequencies in the literature. The infrared emission corresponds well to the radio emission, with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon emission surrounding regions of hot dust towards the radio bubbles. A bright 4.5 $\mu$m point source is seen towards the centre of the radio source, suggesting a young stellar object. There is also a linear, outflow-like structure radiating brightly at 8 and 24 $\mu$m towards the brightest peak of the radio continuum. In order to estimate the distance to this source, we have used Mopra Southern Galactic Plane CO Survey $^{12}$CO(1-0) and $^{13}$CO(1-0) molecular line emission data. Integrated-intensity, velocity at peak intensity and line-fitting of the spectra all point towards the peak centred at $v_{LSR}$=-1.1 km/s being connected to this cloud. This infers a distance to this cloud of ~12.7 kpc. Assuming this distance, we estimate a column density and mass towards IRAS14482-5857 of ~$1.5\times10^{21}$ cm$^{-2}$ and $2\times10^4$ $M_\odot$, implying that this source is a site of massive star formation. Reinforcing this conclusion, our broadband spectral fitting infers dust temperatures of 19 and 110K, emission measures for the sub-pc radio point-source of emission measure $EM\sim10^{6-7}$ pc cm$^{-6}$, electron densities of $n_e\sim10^3$ cm$^{-3}$ and photon ionisation rates of $N_{Ly}~10^{46-48}$ s$^{-1}$. The evidence strongly suggests that IRAS14482-5857 is a distant, and hence intense site of massive star-formation.

Hemispheric Coupling: Comparing Dynamo Simulations and Observations

Numerical simulations that reproduce solar-like magnetic cycles can be used to generate long-term statistics. The variations in N-S hemispheric cycle synchronicity and amplitude produced in simulations has not been widely compared to observations. The observed limits on asymmetry show that hemispheric sunspot area production is no more than 20% asymmetric for cycles 12-23 and phase lags do not exceed 20% (2 yrs) of the total cycle period. Independent studies have found a long-term trend in phase values as one hemisphere leads the other for ~four cycles. Such persistence in phase is not indicative of a stochastic phenomenon. We compare the findings to results from a numerical simulation of solar convection recently produced with the EULAG-MHD model. This simulation spans 1600 yrs and generated 40 regular, sunspot-like cycles. While the simulated cycle length is too long and the toroidal bands remain at too high of latitudes, some solar-like aspects of hemispheric asymmetry are reproduced. The model reproduces the synchrony of polarity inversions and onset of cycle as the simulated phase lags do not exceed 20% of the cycle period. Simulated amplitude variations between the N and S hemispheres are larger than observed in the Sun. The simulations show one hemisphere persistently leads the other for several successive cycles, placing an upper bound on the efficiency of transequatorial magnetic coupling mechanisms. These include magnetic diffusion, cross-equatorial mixing within elongated convective rolls and transequatorial meridional flow cells. One or more of these processes may lead to magnetic flux cancellation whereby the oppositely directed fields come in close proximity and cancel each other across the magnetic equator late in the solar cycle. We discuss the discrepancies between model and observations and the constraints they pose on possible mechanisms of hemispheric coupling.

Sub-stellar Companions and Stellar Multiplicity in the Taurus Star-Forming Region

We present results from a large, high-spatial-resolution near-infrared imaging search for stellar and sub-stellar companions in the Taurus-Auriga star-forming region. The sample covers 64 stars with masses between those of the most massive Taurus members at ~3 M_sun and low-mass stars at ~0.2 M_sun. We detected 74 companion candidates, 34 of these reported for the first time. Twenty-five companions are likely physically bound, partly confirmed by follow-up observations. Four candidate companions are likely unrelated field stars. Assuming physical association with their host star, estimated companion masses are as low as ~2 M_Jup. The inferred multiplicity frequency within our sensitivity limits between ~10-1500 AU is 26.3(+6.6/-4.9)%. Applying a completeness correction, 62(+/-14)% of all Taurus stars between 0.7 and 1.4 M_sun appear to be multiple. Higher order multiples were found in 1.8(+4.2/-1.5)% of the cases, in agreement with previous observations of the field. We estimate a sub-stellar companion frequency of ~3.5-8.8% within our sensitivity limits from the discovery of two likely bound and three other tentative very low-mass companions. This frequency appears to be in agreement with what is expected from the tail of the stellar companion mass ratio distribution, suggesting that stellar and brown dwarf companions share the same dominant formation mechanism. Further, we find evidence for possible evolution of binary parameters between two identified sub-populations in Taurus with ages of ~2 Myr and ~20 Myr, respectively.

Imaging the transition between pre-planetary and planetary nebulae: Integral Field Spectroscopy of hot post-AGB stars with NIFS

We present 2 to 2.4 micron integral field spectroscopy of a sample of hot post-AGB stars with early-B spectral types, using the NIFS instrument on Gemini North. These stars are just beginning to ionize their immediate environments and turn into planetary nebulae (PNe).We use molecular hydrogen emission lines together with hydrogen and helium recombination lines to explore the distribution of molecular and atomic gas and the extent of the developing ionized region. We see a range of evolutionary stages: IRAS 18062+2410 and IRAS 18379-1707 have recently developed compact and unresolved regions of photoionized H within axisymmetric molecular envelopes, with the former object increasing its Br-Gamma flux by a factor of 5.3 in 14 years; IRAS 22023+5249 and IRAS 20462+3416 have extended Br-Gamma nebulae and in the latter object only weak H2 emission remains; IRAS 19336-0400 is at a more advanced stage of PN formation where H2 is mostly dissociated and we see structure in both the H and He recombination line nebulae. IRAS 19200+3457 is the only object not to show the He I line at 2.058 micron and is probably the least evolved object in our sample; the H2 emission forms a ring around the star and we suggest that this object may be a rare example of a "round" pre-PN in transition to a "round" PN.

Radiative ablation with two ionizing-fronts when opacity displays a sharp absorption edge [Cross-Listing]

The interaction of a strong flux of photons with matter through an ionizing-front (I-front) is an ubiquitous phenomenon in the context of astrophysics and inertial confinement fusion (ICF) where intense sources of radiation put matter into motion. When the opacity of the irradiated material varies continuously in the radiation spectral domain, only one single I-front is formed. In contrast, as numerical simulations tend to show, when the opacity of the irradiated material presents a sharp edge in the radiation spectral domain, a second I-front (an edge-front) can form. A full description of the mechanism behind the formation of this edge-front is presented in this article. It allows to understand supernumerary shocks (edge-shocks), displayed by ICF simulations, that might affect the robustness of the design of fusion capsules in actual experiments. Moreover, it may have consequences in various domains of astrophysics where ablative flows occur.

Superfluid phases of triplet pairing and rapid cooling of the neutron star in Cassiopeia A [Cross-Listing]

In a simple model it is demonstrated that the neutron star surface temperature evolution is sensitive to the phase state of the triplet superfluid condensate. A multicomponent triplet pairing of superfluid neutrons in the core of a neutron star with participation of several magnetic quantum numbers leads to neutrino energy losses exceeding the losses from the unicomponent pairing. A phase transition of the neutron condensate into the multicomponent state triggers more rapid cooling of superfluid core in neutron stars. This makes it possible to simulate an anomalously rapid cooling of neutron stars within the minimal cooling paradigm without employing any exotic scenarios suggested earlier for rapid cooling of isolated neutron star in Cassiopeia A.

Superfluid phases of triplet pairing and rapid cooling of the neutron star in Cassiopeia A

In a simple model it is demonstrated that the neutron star surface temperature evolution is sensitive to the phase state of the triplet superfluid condensate. A multicomponent triplet pairing of superfluid neutrons in the core of a neutron star with participation of several magnetic quantum numbers leads to neutrino energy losses exceeding the losses from the unicomponent pairing. A phase transition of the neutron condensate into the multicomponent state triggers more rapid cooling of superfluid core in neutron stars. This makes it possible to simulate an anomalously rapid cooling of neutron stars within the minimal cooling paradigm without employing any exotic scenarios suggested earlier for rapid cooling of isolated neutron star in Cassiopeia A.

K2 Variable Catalogue I: A Catalogue of Variable Stars from K2 Field 0

We have searched the K2 campaign 0 data for lightcurve variations associated with stellar variability. The results of this search are presented as a catalogue, giving the identifiers of nearly 2500 variable stars in the dataset. We list the detected range of the variation, periodicity if relevant and semi-amplitude. Lightcurves are classified into strictly periodic, quasi-periodic and aperiodic groups. We do not attempt to identify the source of variability, which may arise from pulsation or stellar activity. However, we cross match the objects against variable star related guest observer proposals, specifying the variable type in many cases. At present eclipsing binary stars are not included. Future releases will address each K2 field as it is made available, and may be improved to include more detailed catalogue information and to provide detrended object lightcurves.

Gravitational Collapse and Disk Formation in Magnetized Cores

We discuss the effects of the magnetic field observed in molecular clouds on the process of star formation, concentrating on the phase of gravitational collapse of low-mass dense cores, cradles of sunlike stars. We summarize recent analytic work and numerical simulations showing that a substantial level of magnetic field diffusion at high densities has to occur in order to form rotationally supported disks. Furthermore, newly formed accretion disks are threaded by the magnetic field dragged from the parent core during the gravitational collapse. These disks are expected to rotate with a sub-Keplerian speed because they are partially supported by magnetic tension against the gravity of the central star. We discuss how sub-Keplerian rotation makes it difficult to eject disk winds and accelerates the process of planet migration. Moreover, magnetic fields modify the Toomre criterion for gravitational instability via two opposing effects: magnetic tension and pressure increase the disk local stability, but sub-Keplerian rotation makes the disk more unstable. In general, magnetized disks are more stable than their nonmagnetic counterparts; thus, they can be more massive and less prone to the formation of giant planets by gravitational instability.

On the distance of the globular cluster M4 (NGC 6121) using RR Lyrae stars: I. optical and near-infrared Period-Luminosity and Period-Wesenheit relations

We present new distance determinations to the nearby globular M4 (NGC~6121) based on accurate optical and Near Infrared (NIR) mean magnitudes for fundamental (FU) and first overtone (FO) RR Lyrae variables (RRLs), and new empirical optical and NIR Period-Luminosity (PL) and Period-Wesenheit (PW) relations. We have found that optical-NIR and NIR PL and PW relations are affected by smaller standard deviations than optical relations. The difference is the consequence of a steady decrease in the intrinsic spread of cluster RRL apparent magnitudes at fixed period as longer wavelengths are considered. The weighted mean visual apparent magnitude of 44 cluster RRLs is $\left<V\right>=13.329\pm0.001$ (standard error of the mean) $\pm$0.177 (weighted standard deviation) mag. Distances were estimated using RR Lyr itself to fix the zero-point of the empirical PL and PW relations. Using the entire sample (FU$+$FO) we found weighted mean true distance moduli of 11.35$\pm$0.03$\pm$0.05 mag and 11.32$\pm$0.02$\pm$0.07 mag. Distances were also evaluated using predicted metallicity dependent PLZ and PWZ relations. We found weighted mean true distance moduli of 11.283$\pm$0.010$\pm$0.018 mag (NIR PLZ) and 11.272$\pm$0.005$\pm$0.019 mag (optical–NIR and NIR PWZ). The above weighted mean true distance moduli agree within 1$\sigma$. The same result is found from distances based on PWZ relations in which the color index is independent of the adopted magnitude (11.272$\pm$0.004$\pm$0.013 mag). These distances agree quite well with the geometric distance provided by \citep{kaluzny2013} based on three eclipsing binaries. The available evidence indicates that this approach can provide distances to globulars hosting RRLs with a precision better than 2–3\%.

The Sun and stars: Giving light to dark matter

During the last century, with the development of modern physics in such diverse fields as thermodynamics, statistical physics, and nuclear and particle physics, the basic principles of the evolution of stars have been successfully well understood. Nowadays, a precise diagnostic of the stellar interiors is possible with the new fields of helioseismology and astroseismology. Even the measurement of solar neutrino fluxes, once a problem in particle physics, is now a powerful probe of the core of the Sun. These tools have allowed the use of stars to test new physics, in particular the properties of the hypothetical particles that constitute the dark matter of the Universe. Here we present recent results obtained using this approach.

Statistical theory of thermal evolution of neutron stars

Thermal evolution of neutron stars is known to depend on the properties of superdense matter in neutron star cores. We suggest a statistical analysis of isolated cooling middle-aged neutron stars and old transiently accreting quasi-stationary neutron stars warmed up by deep crustal heating in low-mass X-ray binaries. The method is based on simulations of the evolution of stars of different masses and on averaging the results over respective mass distributions. This gives theoretical distributions of isolated neutron stars in the surface temperature–age plane and of accreting stars in the photon thermal luminosity–mean mass accretion rate plane to be compared with observations. This approach permits to explore not only superdense matter but also the mass distributions of isolated and accreting neutron stars. We show that the observations of these stars can be reasonably well explained by assuming the presence of the powerful direct Urca process of neutrino emission in the inner cores of massive stars, introducing a slight broadening of the direct Urca threshold (for instance, by proton superfluidity), and by tuning mass distributions of isolated and accreted neutron stars.

A possible indication of momentum-dependent asymmetric dark matter in the Sun [Cross-Listing]

Broad disagreement persists between helioseismological observables and predictions of solar models computed with the latest surface abundances. Here we show that most of these problems can be solved by the presence of asymmetric dark matter coupling to nucleons as the square of the momentum $q$ exchanged in the collision. We compute neutrino fluxes, small frequency separations, surface helium abundances, sound speed profiles and convective zone depths for a number of models, showing more than a $6\sigma$ preference for $q^2$ models over others, and over the Standard Solar Model. The preferred mass (3 GeV) and reference dark matter-nucleon cross-section ($10^{-37}$ cm$^2$ at $q_0 = 40$ MeV) are within the region of parameter space allowed by both direct detection and collider searches.

A possible indication of momentum-dependent asymmetric dark matter in the Sun

Broad disagreement persists between helioseismological observables and predictions of solar models computed with the latest surface abundances. Here we show that most of these problems can be solved by the presence of asymmetric dark matter coupling to nucleons as the square of the momentum $q$ exchanged in the collision. We compute neutrino fluxes, small frequency separations, surface helium abundances, sound speed profiles and convective zone depths for a number of models, showing more than a $6\sigma$ preference for $q^2$ models over others, and over the Standard Solar Model. The preferred mass (3 GeV) and reference dark matter-nucleon cross-section ($10^{-37}$ cm$^2$ at $q_0 = 40$ MeV) are within the region of parameter space allowed by both direct detection and collider searches.

Kelvin-Helmholtz instability on coronal mass ejecta in the lower corona

We model an imaged Kelvin-Helmholtz (KH) instability on a coronal mass ejecta (CME) in the lower corona by investigating conditions under which kink ($m = 1$) and $m = -3$ magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) modes in an uniformly twisted flux tube moving along its axis become unstable. We employ the dispersion relations of MHD modes derived from the linearised magnetohydrodynamic equations. We assume real wave numbers and complex angular wave frequencies, namely complex wave phase velocities. The dispersion relations are solved numerically at fixed input parameters (taken from observational data) and various mass flow velocities. It is shown that the stability of the modes depends upon four parameters, the density contrast between the flux tube and its environment, the ratio of the background magnetic fields in the two media, the twist of the magnetic field lines inside the tube, and the value of the Alfv\’en Mach number (the ratio of the tube velocity to Alfv\’en speed inside the flux tube). For a twisted magnetic flux tube at a density contrast of $0.88$, background magnetic field ratio of $1.58$, and a normalised magnetic field twist of $0.2$, the critical speed for the kink ($m = -3$) mode (where $m$ is the azimuthal mode number) is $678$ km\,s$^{-1}$ just as it is observed. The growth rate for this harmonic at KH wavelength of $18.5$ Mm and ejecta width of $4.1$ Mm is equal to $0.037$ s$^{-1}$, in agreement with observations. KH instability of the $m = -3$ mode may also explain why the KH vortices are seen only at the one side of arising CME. The good agreement between observational and computational data shows that the imaged KH instability on CME can be explained in terms of emerging KH instability of the $m = -3$ MHD mode in twisted magnetic flux tube moving along its axis.

Hydraulic effects in a radiative atmosphere with ionization

In a paper of 1978, Eugene Parker postulated the need for hydraulic downward motion to explain magnetic flux concentrations at the solar surface. A similar process has recently also been seen in simplified (e.g., isothermal) models of flux concentrations from the negative effective magnetic pressure instability. We study the effects of partial ionization near the radiative surface on the formation of such magnetic flux concentrations. We first obtain one-dimensional (1D) equilibrium solutions using either a Kramers-like opacity or the ${\rm H}^{-}$ opacity. The resulting atmospheres are then used as initial conditions in two-dimensional (2D) models where flows are driven by an imposed gradient force resembling a localized negative pressure in the form of a blob. To isolate the effects of partial ionization and radiation, we ignore turbulence and convection. In 1D models, due to partial ionization, an unstable stratification forms always near the surface. We show that the extrema in the specific entropy profiles correspond to the extrema in degree of ionization. In the 2D models without partial ionization, flux concentrations form close to the height where the blob is placed. In models with partial ionization, such flux concentrations form at the surface much above the blob. This is due to the corresponding unstable layer in specific entropy. With ${\rm H}^{-}$ opacity, flux concentrations are weaker due to the stably stratified deeper parts. We demonstrate that, together with density stratification, the imposed source of negative pressure drives the formation of flux concentrations. We find that the inclusion of partial ionization affects entropy profiles causing the strong flux concentrations to form closer to the surface. We speculate that turbulence is needed to limit the strength of flux concentrations and homogenize the specific entropy to a more nearly marginal stratification.

Interplanetary Propagation Behavior of the Fast Coronal Mass Ejection from 23 July 2012

The fast coronal mass ejection (CME) from 23 July 2012 raised attention due to its extremely short transit time from Sun to 1 AU of less than 21 h. In-situ data from STEREO-A revealed the arrival of a fast forward shock with a speed of more than 2200 km s$^{-1}$ followed by a magnetic structure moving with almost 1900 km s$^{-1}$. We investigate the propagation behavior of the CME shock and magnetic structure with the aim to reproduce the short transit time and high impact speed as derived from in-situ data. We carefully measure the 3D kinematics of the CME using the graduated cylindrical shell model, and obtain a maximum speed of 2580$\pm$280 km s$^{-1}$ for the CME shock and of 2270$\pm$420 km s$^{-1}$ for its magnetic structure. Based on the 3D kinematics, the drag-based model (DBM) reproduces the observational data reasonably well. To successfully simulate the CME shock, we find that the ambient flow speed should be of average value close to the slow solar wind speed (450 km s$^{-1}$), and the initial shock speed at a distance of 30 $R_{\odot}$ should not exceed $\approx$2300 km s$^{-1}$, otherwise it would arrive much too early at STEREO-A. The model results indicate that an extremely low aerodynamic drag force is exerted on the shock, smaller by one order of magnitude compared to the average. As a consequence, the CME hardly decelerates in interplanetary space and maintains its high initial speed. The low aerodynamic drag can only be reproduced when reducing the density of the ambient solar wind flow, in which the massive CME propagates, to $\rho_{\rm sw}$=1-2 cm$^{-3}$ at the distance of 1 AU. This result is consistent with the preconditioning of interplanetary space owing to a previous CME.

Recent advances in neutrino astrophysics

Neutrinos are produced by a variety of sources that comprise our Sun, explosive environments such as core-collapse supernovae, the Earth and the Early Universe. The precise origin of the recently discovered ultra-high energy neutrinos is to be determined yet. These weakly interacting particles give us information on their sources, although the neutrino fluxes can be modified when neutrinos traverse an astrophysical environment. Here we highlight recent advances in neutrino astrophysics and emphasise the important progress in our understanding of neutrino flavour conversion in media.

Recent advances in neutrino astrophysics

Neutrinos are produced by a variety of sources that comprise our Sun, explosive environments such as core-collapse supernovae, the Earth and the Early Universe. The precise origin of the recently discovered ultra-high energy neutrinos is to be determined yet. These weakly interacting particles give us information on their sources, although the neutrino fluxes can be modified when neutrinos traverse an astrophysical environment. Here we highlight recent advances in neutrino astrophysics and emphasise the important progress in our understanding of neutrino flavour conversion in media.

Recent advances in neutrino astrophysics [Cross-Listing]

Neutrinos are produced by a variety of sources that comprise our Sun, explosive environments such as core-collapse supernovae, the Earth and the Early Universe. The precise origin of the recently discovered ultra-high energy neutrinos is to be determined yet. These weakly interacting particles give us information on their sources, although the neutrino fluxes can be modified when neutrinos traverse an astrophysical environment. Here we highlight recent advances in neutrino astrophysics and emphasise the important progress in our understanding of neutrino flavour conversion in media.

Near-infrared studies of V5558 Sgr: an unusually slow nova with multiple outbursts

We present near-infrared (1-2.5 $\mu$m) $JHK$ photo-spectroscopic results of the unusually slow nova V5558 Sgr (2007). V5558 Sgr showed a slow climb to maximum that lasted for about 60 days and then underwent at least five strong secondary outbursts. We have analyzed the optical light curve to derive large t${_2}$ and t${_3}$ values of 281 $\pm$ 3 and 473 $\pm$ 3 days respectively. An alternate approach is adopted to derive a distance estimate of 1.55 $\pm$ 0.25 kpc as conventional MMRD relation may not be applicable for a slow nova. In the pre-maxima stage the spectra showed narrow (FWHM $\sim$ 400 – 550 km s$^{-1}$) and strong emission lines of Paschen and Brackett series with prominent P-Cygni components. In the later phase the spectra show significant changes with the development of strong and broad ($\sim$ 1000 km s$^{-1}$) emission lines of HI, HeI, OI, and NI and some uncommon Fe II emission lines. No evidence of dust formation is seen. V5558 Sgr has been shown to be a rare hybrid nova showing a transition from He/N to Fe II type from optical spectra. However the near-infrared data do not show such a transition and we discuss this anomalous behavior. A recombination analysis of the Brackett lines allows us to constrain the electron density and emission measure during the early optically thick phase and to estimate the mass of the ejecta to be (6.0 $\pm$ 1.5) $\times$ 10$^{-4}$ M$_{\odot}$, assuming a filling factor of unity, from later observations.

Near-infrared studies of V5558 Sgr: an unusually slow nova with multiple outbursts [Replacement]

We present near-infrared (1-2.5 micron) JHK photo-spectroscopic results of the unusually slow nova V5558 Sgr (2007). V5558 Sgr showed a slow climb to maximum that lasted for about 60 days and then underwent at least five strong secondary outbursts. We have analyzed the optical light curve to derive large t2 and t3 values of 281 +/- 3 and 473 +/- 3 days respectively. An alternate approach is adopted to derive a distance estimate of 1.55 +/- 0.25 kpc as conventional MMRD relation may not be applicable for a slow nova. In the pre-maxima stage the spectra showed narrow (FWHM ~ 400 – 550 km/s and strong emission lines of Paschen and Brackett series with prominent P-Cygni components. In the later phase the spectra show significant changes with the development of strong and broad ~ 1000 km/s emission lines of HI, HeI, OI, and NI and some uncommon Fe II emission lines. No evidence of dust formation is seen. V5558 Sgr has been shown to be a rare hybrid nova showing a transition from He/N to Fe II type from optical spectra. However the near-infrared data do not show such a transition and we discuss this anomalous behavior. A recombination analysis of the Brackett lines allows us to constrain the electron density and emission measure during the early optically thick phase and to estimate the mass of the ejecta to be (6.0 +/- 1.5) x 10^(-4) Msun, assuming a filling factor of unity, from later observations.

Rotochemical heating of millisecond and classical pulsars with anisotropic and density-dependent superfluid gap models

When a rotating neutron star loses angular momentum, the progressive reduction of the centrifugal force makes it contract. This perturbs each fluid element, raising the local pressure and originating deviations from beta equilibrium, inducing reactions that release heat (rotochemical heating). This effect has previously been studied by Fern\’andez & Reisenegger (2005) for non-superfluid neutron stars and by Petrovich & Reisenegger (2010) for superfluid millisecond pulsars. Both studies found that pulsars reach a quasi-steady state in which the compression driving the matter out of beta equilibrium is balanced by the reactions trying to restore the equilibrium. We extend previous studies by considering the effect of density-dependence and anisotropy of the superfluid energy gaps, for the case in which the dominant reactions are the modified Urca processes, the protons are non-superconducting, and the neutron superfluidity is parametrized by models proposed in the literature. By comparing our predictions with the surface temperature of the millisecond pulsar PSR J0437-4715 and upper limits for twenty-one classical pulsars, we find the millisecond pulsar can be only explained by the models with the effectively largest energy gaps (type B models), the classical pulsars require with the gap models that vanish for some angle (type C) and two different envelope compositions. Thus, no single model for neutron superfluidity can simultaneously account for the thermal emission of all available observations of non-accreting neutron stars, possibly due to our neglect of proton superconductivity.

B fields in OB stars (BOB): on the detection of weak magnetic fields in the two early B-type stars beta CMa and epsilon CMa

Within the context of the "B fields in OB stars (BOB)" collaboration, we used the HARPSpol spectropolarimeter to observe the early B-type stars beta CMa (HD44743; B1 II/III) and epsilon CMa (HD52089; B1.5 II). For both stars, we consistently detected the signature of a weak (<30 G in absolute value) longitudinal magnetic field. We determined the physical parameters of both stars and characterise their X-ray spectrum. For beta CMa, our mode identification analysis led to determining a rotation period of 13.6+/-1.2 days and of an inclination angle of the rotation axis of 57.6+/-1.7 degrees, with respect to the line of sight. On the basis of these measurements and assuming a dipolar field geometry, we derived a best fitting obliquity of ~22 degrees and a dipolar magnetic field strength (Bd) of ~100 G (60<Bd<230 G within 1 sigma), below what is typically found for other magnetic massive stars. For epsilon CMa we could only determine a lower limit on the dipolar magnetic field strength of 13 G. For this star, we determine that the rotation period ranges between 1.3 and 24 days. Both stars are expected to have a dynamical magnetosphere. We also conclude that both stars are most likely core hydrogen burning and that they have spent more than 2/3 of their main sequence lifetime. A histogram of the distribution of the dipolar magnetic field strength for the magnetic massive stars known to date does not show the magnetic field "desert" observed instead for intermediate-mass stars. The biases involved in the detection of (weak) magnetic fields in massive stars with the currently available instrumentation and techniques imply that weak fields might be more common than currently observed. Our results show that, if present, even relatively weak magnetic fields are detectable in massive stars and that more observational effort is probably still needed to properly access the magnetic field incidence.

Depletion of chlorine into HCl ice in a protostellar core

The freezeout of gas-phase species onto cold dust grains can drastically alter the chemistry and the heating-cooling balance of protostellar material. In contrast to well-known species such as carbon monoxide (CO), the freezeout of various carriers of elements with abundances $<10^{-5}$ has not yet been well studied. Our aim here is to study the depletion of chlorine in the protostellar core, OMC-2 FIR 4. We observed transitions of HCl and H2Cl+ towards OMC-2 FIR 4 using the Herschel Space Observatory and Caltech Submillimeter Observatory facilities. Our analysis makes use of state of the art chlorine gas-grain chemical models and newly calculated HCl-H$_{2}$ hyperfine collisional excitation rate coefficients. A narrow emission component in the HCl lines traces the extended envelope, and a broad one traces a more compact central region. The gas-phase HCl abundance in FIR 4 is 9e-11, a factor of only 0.001 that of volatile elemental chlorine. The H2Cl+ lines are detected in absorption and trace a tenuous foreground cloud, where we find no depletion of volatile chlorine. Gas-phase HCl is the tip of the chlorine iceberg in protostellar cores. Using a gas-grain chemical model, we show that the hydrogenation of atomic chlorine on grain surfaces in the dark cloud stage sequesters at least 90% of the volatile chlorine into HCl ice, where it remains in the protostellar stage. About 10% of chlorine is in gaseous atomic form. Gas-phase HCl is a minor, but diagnostically key reservoir, with an abundance of <1e-10 in most of the protostellar core. We find the 35Cl/37Cl ratio in OMC-2 FIR 4 to be 3.2\pm0.1, consistent with the solar system value.

Kelvin--Helmholtz instability of magnetohydrodynamic waves propagating on solar surges

In the present paper, we study the evolutionary conditions for Kelvin–Helmholtz (KH) instability in a high-temperature solar surge observed in NOAA AR11271 using the Solar Dynamics Observatory data on 2011 August 25. We study the propagation of normal MHD modes in a flux tube considering the two cases, notably of untwisted magnetic flux tube and the twisted one. The numerical solution to the dispersion relation shows that the kink ($m = 1$) wave traveling in an untwisted flux tube becomes unstable if the jet speed exceeds $1060$ km\,s$^{-1}$ — a speed which is inaccessible for solar surges. A weak twist (the ratio of azimuthal to longitudinal magnetic field component) of the internal magnetic field in the range of $0.025$–$0.2$ does not change substantially the critical flow velocity. Thus, one implies that, in general, the kink mode is stable against the KH instability. It turns out, however, that the $m = -2$ and $m = -3$ MHD modes can become unstable when the twist parameter has values between $0.2$ and $0.4$. Therefore, the corresponding critical jet speed for instability onset lies in the range of $93.5$–$99.3$ km\,s$^{-1}$. The instability wave growth rate, depending on the value of the wavelength, is of the order of several dozen inverse milliseconds. It remains to be seen whether these predictions will be observationally validated in future in the coronal jet-like structures in abundant measure.

Parameters of type IIP SN 2012A and clumpiness effects

The explosion energy and the ejecta mass of a type IIP supernova (SN IIP) derived from hydrodynamic simulations are principal parameters of the explosion theory. However, the number of SNe IIP studied by hydrodynamic modeling is small. Moreover, some doubts exist in regard to the reliability of derived SN IIP parameters. The well-observed type IIP SN 2012A will be studied via hydrodynamic modeling. Their early spectra will be checked for a presence of the ejecta clumpiness. Other observational effects of clumpiness will be explored. Supernova parameters are determined by means of the standard hydrodynamic modeling. The early hydrogen Halpha and Hbeta lines are used for the clumpiness diagnostics. The modified hydrodynamic code is employed to study the clumpiness effect in the light curve and expansion kinematics. We found that SN 20012A is the result of the explosion of a red supergiant with the radius of 715 Rsun. The explosion energy is 5.25×10^50 erg, the ejecta mass is 13.1 Msun, and the total Ni-56 mass is 0.012 Msun. The estimated mass of a progenitor, a main-sequence star, is 15 Msun. The Halpha and Hbeta lines in early spectra indicate that outer ejecta are clumpy. Hydrodynamic simulations show that the clumpiness modifies the early light curve and increases the maximum velocity of the outer layers. The pre-SN 2012A was a normal red supergiant with the progenitor mass of about 15 Msun. The outer layers of ejecta indicate the clumpy structure. The clumpiness of the external layers can increase the maximum expansion velocity.

Kelvin--Helmholtz Instability in Solar Atmosphere Jets

In this article I have discussed the recent approaches in studying the Kelvin–Helmholtz (KH) instability of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) waves propagating in solar atmosphere jets. The main focus is on the modeling the KH instability developing in coronal mass ejections in view of its (instability) contribution to triggering a wave turbulence subsequently leading to an effective coronal heating. KH instability of MHD waves in coronal active regions recently observed and imaged in unprecedented detail in EUV thanks to the high cadence, high-resolution observations by \emph{SDO}/AIA instrument, and spectroscopic observations by \emph{Hinode}/EIS instrument is a challenge for modeling this event. It is shown that considering the solar mass flows of coronal mass ejections as moving cylindrical twisted magnetic flux tubes the imaged instability can be explained in terms of unstable $m = -3$ MHD mode. Obtained critical jet speeds for the instability onset as well as the linear wave growth rates are in good agreement with observational data.

Turbulence Reduces Magnetic Diffusivity in a Liquid Sodium Experiment [Cross-Listing]

The contribution of small scale turbulent fluctuations to the induction of mean magnetic field is investigated in our liquid sodium spherical Couette experiment with an imposed magnetic field. An inversion technique is applied to a large number of measurements at Rm $\approx$ 100 to obtain radial profiles of the $\alpha$ and $\beta$ effects and maps of the mean flow. It appears that the small scale turbulent fluctuations can be modeled as a strong contribution to the magnetic diffusivity that is negative in the interior region and positive close to the outer shell. Direct numerical simulations of our experiment support these results. The lowering of the effective magnetic diffusivity by small scale fluctuations implies that turbulence can actually help to achieve self-generation of large scale magnetic fields.

Probing Mass Segregation in NGC 6397

In this study, we present a detailed study of mass segregation in the globular clister NGC 6397. First, we carry out a photometric analysis of projected ESO-VLT data (between 1 and 10 arcmin from the cluster centre), presenting the luminosity function corrected by completeness. The luminosity function shows a higher density of bright stars near the central region of the data, with respect to the outer region. We calculate a deprojected model (covering the whole cluster) estimating a total number of stars of 193000 +- 19000. The shapes of the surface brightness and density-number profiles versus the radial coordinate r (instead of the projected coordinate R) lead to a decreasing luminosity for an average star, and thus of mass, up to 1 arcmin, quantifying the mass segregation. The deprojected model does not show evidence of mass segregation outside this region.

The hybrid, coronal lines nova V5588 Sgr (2011 N.2) and its six repeating secondary maxima

The outburst of Nova Sgr 2011 N.2 (=V5588 Sgr) was followed with optical and near-IR photometric and spectroscopic observations for 3.5 years, beginning shortly before the maximum. V5588 Sgr is located close to Galactic center, suffering from E(B-V)=1.56 (+/-0.1) extinction. The primary maximum was reached at V=12.37 on UT 2011 April 2.5 (+/-0.2), and the underlying smooth decline was moderately fast with t(2,V)=38 and t(3,V)=77 days. On top of an otherwise normal decline, six self-similar, fast evolving and bright secondary maxima (SdM) appeared in succession. Only very few other novae have presented so clear secondary maxima. Both the primary maximum and all SdM occurred at later times with increasing wavelengths, by amounts in agreement with expectations from fireball expansions. The radiative energy released during SdM declined following an exponential pattern, while the breadth of individual SdM and the time interval between them widened. Emission lines remained sharp (FWHM~1000 km/s) throughout the whole nova evolution, with the exception of a broad pedestal with a trapezoidal shape (extending for 3600 km/sec at the top and 4500 km/sec at the bottom) which was only seen during the advanced decline from SdM maxima and was absent in between SdM. V5588 Sgr at maximum light displayed a typical FeII-class spectrum which did not evolve into a nebular stage. About 10 days into the decline from primary maximum, a typical high-ionization He/N-class spectrum appeared and remained visible simultaneously with the FeII-class spectrum, qualifying V5588 Sgr as a rare "hybrid" nova. While the FeII-class spectrum faded into oblivion, the He/N-class spectrum developed strong [FeX] coronal lines.

New SX Phe variables in the globular cluster NGC288

We report the discovery of two new variable stars in the metal-poor globular cluster NGC 288, found by means of time-series CCD photometry. We classified the new variables as SX Phoenicis due to their characteristic fundamental mode periods (1.02 +- 0.01 and 0.69 +- 0.01 hours), and refine the period estimates for other six known variables. SX Phe stars are known to follow a well-defined Period-Luminosity (P-L) relation and, thus, can be used for determining distances; they are more numerous than RR Lyraes in NGC~288. We obtain the P-L relation for the fundamental mode M_V = (-2.59 +- 0.18) log P_0(d) + (-0.34 +- 0.24) and for the first-overtone mode M_V = (-2.59 +- 0.18) log P_1(d) + (0.50 +- 0.25). Multi-chromatic isochrone fits to our UBV color-magnitude diagrams, based on the Dartmouth Stellar Evolution Database, provide <[Fe/H]> = -1.3 +- 0.1, E(B-V) = 0.02 +- 0.01 and absolute distance modulus (m-M)0 = 14.72 +- 0.01 for NGC 288.

Oscillations Above Sunspots and Faculae: Height Stratification and Relation to Coronal Fan Structure

Oscillation properties in two sunspots and two facular regions are studied using Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) data and ground-based observations in the SiI 10827 and HeI 10830 lines. The aim is to study different-frequency spatial distribution characteristics above sunspots and faculae and their dependence on magnetic-field features and to detect the oscillations that reach the corona from the deep photosphere most effectively. We used Fast-Fourier-Transform and frequency filtration of the intensity and Doppler-velocity variations with Morlet wavelet to trace the wave propagating from the photosphere to the chromosphere and corona. Spatial distribution of low-frequency (1-2 mHz) oscillations outlines well the fan-loop structures in the corona (the Fe IX 171 line) above sunspots and faculae. High-frequency oscillations (5-7 mHz) are concentrated in fragments inside the photospheric umbra boundaries and close to facular-region centers. This implies that the upper parts of most coronal loops, which transfer low-frequency oscillations from the photosphere, sit in the Fe IX 171 line-formation layer. We used dominant frequency vs. distance from barycenter relations to estimate magnetic-tube inclination angle in the higher layers, which poses difficulties for direct magnetic-field measurements. According to our calculations, this angle is about 40 degrees in the transition region around umbra borders. Phase velocities measured in the coronal loops’ upper parts in the Fe IX 171 line-formation layer reach 100-150 km/s for sunspots and 50-100 km/s for faculae.

The Magnetic Fields at the Surface of Active Single G-K Giants

We investigate the magnetic field at the surface of 48 red giants selected as promising for detection of Stokes V Zeeman signatures in their spectral lines. We use the spectropolarimeters Narval and ESPaDOnS to detect circular polarization within the photospheric absorption lines of our targets and use the least-squares deconvolution (LSD) method. We also measure the classical S-index activity indicator, and the stellar radial velocity. To infer the evolutionary status of our giants and to interpret our results, we use state-of-the-art stellar evolutionary models with predictions of convective turnover times. We unambiguously detect magnetic fields via Zeeman signatures in 29 of the 48 red giants in our sample. Zeeman signatures are found in all but one of the 24 red giants exhibiting signs of activity, as well as 6 out of 17 bright giant stars.The majority of the magnetically detected giants are either in the first dredge up phase or at the beginning of core He burning, i.e. phases when the convective turnover time is at a maximum: this corresponds to a ‘magnetic strip’ for red giants in the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. A close study of the 16 giants with known rotational periods shows that the measured magnetic field strength is tightly correlated with the rotational properties, namely to the rotational period and to the Rossby number Ro. Our results show that the magnetic fields of these giants are produced by a dynamo. Four stars for which the magnetic field is measured to be outstandingly strong with respect to that expected from the rotational period/magnetic field relation or their evolutionary status are interpreted as being probable descendants of magnetic Ap stars. In addition to the weak-field giant Pollux, 4 bright giants (Aldebaran, Alphard, Arcturus, eta Psc) are detected with magnetic field strength at the sub-gauss level.

Magnetic fields of Be stars: preliminary results from a hybrid analysis of the MiMeS sample

In the context of the MiMeS survey of magnetism in massive stars, 85 classical Be stars were observed in circular polarization with the aim of detecting magnetic fields at their surfaces. No direct evidence of such fields is found, in contrast to the significant rate of detection (5-10\%) in non-Be B-type stars. In this paper we describe the sample properties, the methodology and the data quality. We describe a novel method, previously applied to Herbig Ae/Be stars, that allows us to infer upper limits on organized (dipolar) magnetic fields present in the photospheres of our targets. We review the characteristics and robustness of this null result, and discuss its implications.

Solar magnetic fields and terrestrial climate

Solar irradiance is considered one of the main natural factors affecting terrestrial climate, and its variations are included in most numerical models estimating the effects of natural versus anthropogenic factors for climate change. Solar wind causing geomagnetic disturbances is another solar activity agent whose role in climate change is not yet fully estimated but is a subject of intense research. For the purposes of climate modeling, it is essential to evaluate both the past and the future variations of solar irradiance and geomagnetic activity which are ultimately due to the variations of solar magnetic fields. Direct measurements of solar magnetic fields are available for a limited period, but can be reconstructed from geomagnetic activity records. Here we present a reconstruction of total solar irradiance based on geomagnetic data, and a forecast of the future irradiance and geomagnetic activity relevant for the expected climate change.

IN-SYNC II: Virial Stars from Sub-Virial Cores -- The Velocity Dispersion of Embedded Pre-Main-Sequence Stars in NGC 1333

The initial velocity dispersion of newborn stars is a major unconstrained aspect of star formation theory. Using near-infrared spectra obtained with the APOGEE spectrograph, we show that the velocity dispersion of young (1-2 Myr) stars in NGC 1333 is 0.92+/-0.12 km/s after correcting for measurement uncertainties and the effect of binaries. This velocity dispersion is consistent with the virial velocity of the region and the diffuse gas velocity dispersion, but significantly larger than the velocity dispersion of the dense, star-forming cores, which have a sub-virial velocity dispersion of 0.5 km/s. Since the NGC 1333 cluster is dynamically young and deeply embedded, this measurement provides a strong constraint on the initial velocity dispersion of newly-formed stars. We propose that the difference in velocity dispersion between stars and dense cores may be due to the influence of a 70 micro-Gauss magnetic field acting on the dense cores, or be the signature of a cluster with initial sub-structure undergoing global collapse.

Detectable close-in planets around white dwarfs through late unpacking

Although 25%-50% of white dwarfs (WDs) display evidence for remnant planetary systems, their orbital architectures and overall sizes remain unknown. Vibrant close-in (~1 Solar radius) circumstellar activity is detected at WDs spanning many Gyrs in age, suggestive of planets further away. Here we demonstrate how systems with 4 and 10 closely-packed planets that remain stable and ordered on the main sequence can become unpacked when the star evolves into a WD and experience pervasive inward planetary incursions throughout WD cooling. Our full-lifetime simulations run for the age of the Universe and adopt main sequence stellar masses of 1.5, 2.0 and 2.5 Solar masses, which correspond to the mass range occupied by the progenitors of typical present-day WDs. These results provide (i) a natural way to generate an ever-changing dynamical architecture in post-main-sequence planetary systems, (ii) an avenue for planets to achieve temporary close-in orbits that are potentially detectable by transit photometry, and (iii) a dynamical explanation for how residual asteroids might pollute particularly old WDs.

The Identification of Extreme Asymptotic Giant Branch Stars and Red Supergiants in M33 by 24 {\mu}m Variability

We present the first detection of 24 {\mu}m variability in 24 sources in the Local Group galaxy M33. These results are based on 4 epochs of MIPS observations, which are irregularly spaced over ~750 days. We find that these sources are constrained exclusively to the Holmberg radius of the galaxy, which increases their chances of being members of M33. We have constructed spectral energy distributions (SEDs) ranging from the optical to the sub-mm to investigate the nature of these objects. We find that 23 of our objects are most likely heavily self-obscured, evolved stars; while the remaining source is the Giant HII region, NGC 604. We believe that the observed variability is the intrinsic variability of the central star reprocessed through their circumstellar dust shells. Radiative transfer modeling was carried out to determine their likely chemical composition, luminosity, and dust production rate (DPR). As a sample, our modeling has determined an average luminosity of (3.8 $\pm$ 0.9) x 10$^4$ L$_\odot$ and a total DPR of (2.3 $\pm$ 0.1) x 10$^{-5}$ M$_\odot$ yr$^{-1}$. Most of the sources, given the high DPRs and short wavelength obscuration, are likely "extreme" AGB (XAGB) stars. Five of the sources are found to have luminosities above the classical AGB limit (M$_{\rm bol}$ < -7.1, L > 54,000 L$_\odot$), which classifies them as probably red supergiants (RSGs). Almost all of the sources are classified as oxygen rich. As also seen in the LMC, a significant fraction of the dust in M33 is produced by a handful of XAGB and RSG stars.

 

You need to log in to vote

The blog owner requires users to be logged in to be able to vote for this post.

Alternatively, if you do not have an account yet you can create one here.

Powered by Vote It Up

^ Return to the top of page ^