Recent Postings from Solar and Stellar

OGLE-2013-SN-079: a lonely supernova consistent with a helium shell detonation

We present observational data for a peculiar supernova discovered by the OGLE-IV survey and followed by the Public ESO Spectroscopic Survey for Transient Objects. The inferred redshift of z=0.07 implies an absolute magnitude in the rest-frame I-band of M$_{I}\sim-17.6$ mag. This places it in the luminosity range between normal Type Ia SNe and novae. Optical and near infrared spectroscopy reveal mostly Ti and Ca lines, and an unusually red color arising from strong depression of flux at rest wavelengths <5000 \AA. To date, this is the only reported SN showing Ti-dominated spectra. Our multi band and bolometric lightcurves, as well as the spectral evolution, are in reasonable agreement with the predictions of models for the pure detonation of a helium shell around a low-mass CO white dwarf and "double-detonation" models that include a secondary detonation of a CO core following a primary detonation in an overlying helium shell.

Particle acceleration at a reconnecting magnetic separator

While the exact acceleration mechanism of energetic particles during solar flares is (as yet) unknown, magnetic reconnection plays a key role both in the release of stored magnetic energy of the solar corona and the magnetic restructuring during a flare. Recent work has shown that special field lines, called separators, are common sites of reconnection in 3D numerical experiments. To date, 3D separator reconnection sites have received little attention as particle accelerators. We investigate the effectiveness of separator reconnection as a particle acceleration mechanism for electrons and protons. We study the particle acceleration using a relativistic guiding-centre particle code in a time-dependent kinematic model of magnetic reconnection at a separator. The effect upon particle behaviour of initial position, pitch angle and initial kinetic energy are examined in detail, both for specific (single) particle examples and for large distributions of initial conditions. The separator reconnection model contains several free parameters and we study the effect of changing these parameters upon particle acceleration, in particular in view of the final particle energy ranges which agree with observed energy spectra.

Probing the Structure of the Accretion Region in a Sample of Magnetic Herbig Ae/Be Stars

We present the results of a study of the temporal behaviour of several diagnostic lines formed in the region of the accretion-disk/star interaction in the three magnetic Herbig Ae stars HD101412, HD104237, and HD190073. More than 100 spectra acquired with the ISAAC, X-shooter, and CRIRES spectrographs installed at the VLT-8m telescope (ESO, Chile), as well as at other observatories (OHP, Crimean AO) were analyzed. The spectroscopic data were obtained in the He I lambda10830, Pa gamma and He I lambda5876 lines. We found that the temporal behaviour of the diagnostic lines in the spectra of all program stars can be widely explained by a rotational modulation of the line profiles generated by a local accretion flow. This result is in good agreement with the predictions of the magnetospheric accretion model. For the first time, the rotation period of HD104237 (P_rot = 5.37+-0.03 days), as well as the inclination angle (i = 21+-4deg) were determined. Additional analysis of the HARPSpol spectra of HD104237 and HD190073, taken from the ESO archive, with the use of the SVD method shows that the magnetic field structure of HD190073 is likely more complex than a simple dipole and contains a circumstellar component. For the first time, the magnetic field of the secondary component of the binary system HD104237 was also detected (<B_z> = 128+-10G).

Stellar parameters and chemical abundances of 223 evolved stars with and without planets

We present fundamental stellar parameters and chemical abundances for a sample of 86 evolved stars with planets and for a control sample of 137 stars without planets. The analysis was based on both high S/N and resolution echelle spectra. The goals of this work are i) to investigate chemical differences between stars with and without planets; ii) to explore potential differences between the properties of the planets around giants and subgiants; and iii) to search for possible correlations between these properties and the chemical abundances of their host stars. In agreement with previous studies, we find that subgiants with planets are, on average, more metal-rich than subgiants without planets by ~ 0.16 dex. The [Fe/H] distribution of giants with planets is centered at slightly subsolar metallicities and there is no metallicity enhancement relative to the [Fe/H] distribution of giants without planets. Furthermore, contrary to recent results, we do not find any clear difference between the metallicity distributions of stars with and without planets for giants with M > 1.5 Msun. With regard to the other chemical elements, the analysis of the [X/Fe] distributions shows differences between giants with and without planets for some elements, particularly V, Co, and Ba. Analyzing the planet properties, some interesting trends might be emerging: i) multi-planet systems around evolved stars show a slight metallicity enhancement compared with single-planet systems; ii) planets with a $\lesssim$ 0.5 AU orbit subgiants with [Fe/H] > 0 and giants hosting planets with a $\lesssim$ 1 AU have [Fe/H] < 0; iii) higher-mass planets tend to orbit more metal-poor giants with M < 1.5 Msun, whereas planets around subgiants seem to follow the planet-mass metallicity trend observed on dwarf hosts; iv) planets orbiting giants show lower orbital eccentricities than those orbiting subgiants and dwarfs.

On Magnetic Activity Band Overlap, Interaction, and the Formation of Complex Solar Active Regions

Recent work has revealed an phenomenological picture of the how the $\sim$11-year sunspot cycle of Sun arises. The production and destruction of sunspots is a consequence of the latitudinal-temporal overlap and interaction of the toroidal magnetic flux systems that belong to the 22-year magnetic activity cycle and are rooted deep in the Sun’s convective interior. We present a conceptually simple extension of this work, presenting a hypothesis on how complex active regions can form as a direct consequence of the intra- and extra-hemispheric interaction taking place in the solar interior. Furthermore, during specific portions of the sunspot cycle we anticipate that those complex active regions may be particular susceptible to profoundly catastrophic breakdown—producing flares and coronal mass ejections of most severe magnitude.

The K2-TESS Stellar Properties Catalog

We introduce a catalog of stellar properties for stars observed by the Kepler follow-on mission, K2. We base the catalog on a cross-match between the K2 Campaign target lists and the current working version of the NASA TESS target catalog. The resulting K2-TESS Stellar Properties Catalog includes value-added information from the TESS Target Catalog, including stellar colors, proper motions, and an estimated luminosity class (dwarf/subgiant versus giant) for each star based on a reduced-proper-motion criterion. Also included is the Guest Observer program identification number(s) associated with each K2 target. The K2-TESS Stellar Properties Catalog is available to the community as a freely accessible data portal on the Filtergraph system at: http://filtergraph.vanderbilt.edu/tess_k2campaigns .

Constraining the shaping mechanism of the Red Rectangle through spectro-polarimetry of its central star

We carried out high-sensitivity spectropolarimetric observations of the central star of the Red Rectangle proto-planetary nebula with the aim of constraining the mechanism that gives its biconical shape. The stellar light of the central binary system is linearly polarised since it is scattered on the dust particles of the nebula. Surprisingly, the linear polarisation in the continuum is aligned with one of the spikes of the biconical outflow. Also, the observed Balmer lines as well as the Ca II K lines are polarised. These observational constraints are used to confirm or reject current theoretical models for the shaping mechanism of the Red Rectangle. We propose that the observed polarisation is very unlikely generated by a uniform biconical stellar wind. Also, the hypothesis of a precessing jet does not completely match the observations since it will require a jet aperture larger than that of the nebula.

Pore evolution in interstellar ice analogues: simulating the effects of temperature increase

Context. The level of porosity of interstellar ices – largely comprised of amorphous solid water (ASW) – contains clues on the trapping capacity of other volatile species and determines the surface accessibility that is needed for solid state reactions to take place. Aims. Our goal is to simulate the growth of amorphous water ice at low temperature (10 K) and to characterize the evolution of the porosity (and the specific surface area) as a function of temperature (from 10 to 120 K). Methods. Kinetic Monte Carlo simulations are used to mimic the formation and the thermal evolution of pores in amorphous water ice. We follow the accretion of gas-phase water molecules as well as their migration on surfaces with different grid sizes, both at the top growing layer and within the bulk. Results. We show that the porosity characteristics change substantially in water ice as the temperature increases. The total surface of the pores decreases strongly while the total volume decreases only slightly for higher temperatures. This will decrease the overall reaction efficiency, but in parallel, small pores connect and merge, allowing trapped molecules to meet and react within the pores network, providing a pathway to increase the reaction efficiency. We introduce pore coalescence as a new solid state process that may boost the solid state formation of new molecules in space and has not been considered so far.

Nucleon self-energies and weak charged-current rates for existing relativistic supernova equations of state [Cross-Listing]

Nucleon self-energies and interaction potentials in supernova (SN) matter are investigated, that are known to have an important effect on nucleosynthesis conditions in SN ejecta. Corresponding weak charged-current interaction rates are derived that are consistent with SN equations of state (EOS) which are already being used in astrophysical simulations. The nucleon self-energies are made available online as electronic tables. The discussion is mostly restricted to relativistic mean-field models. In the first part of the article, the generic properties of this class of models at finite temperature and asymmetry are studied. It is found that the quadratic expansion of the EOS in terms of asymmetry also works well at finite temperature and that the interaction part of the symmetry energy is almost temperature independent. At low densities, the account of realistic nucleon masses requires the introduction of a linear term in the expansion. Finally, it is shown that the neutron-to-proton potential difference is given approximately by the asymmetry of the system and the interaction part of the zero-temperature symmetry energy. The results of different interactions are then compared with constraints from nuclear experiments and thereby the possible range of the potential difference is limited. In the second part, for a certain class of SN EOS models, the formation of nuclei is considered. Only moderate modifications are found for the weak interaction rates of neutrinos with unbound nucleons because in the present approach the binding energies of bound states do not contribute to the single-particle energies of unbound nucleons.

Oscillation modes in the rapidly rotating Slowly Pulsating B-type star $\bmu$ Eridani

We present results of a search for identification of modes responsible for the six most significant frequency peaks detected in the rapidly rotating SPB star $\mu$ Eridani. All published and some unpublished photometric data are used in our new analysis. The mode identification is carried out with the method developed by Daszy\’nska-Daszkiewicz et al. employing the phases and amplitudes from multi-band photometric data and relying on the traditional approximation for the treatment of oscillations in rotating stars. Models consistent with the observed mean parameters are considered. For the five frequency peaks, the candidates for the identifications are searched amongst unstable modes. In the case of the third frequency, which is an exact multiple of the orbital frequency, this condition is relaxed. The systematic search is continued up to a harmonic degree $\ell =6$. Determination of the angular numbers, $(\ell,m)$, is done simultaneously with the rotation rate, $V_{\rm rot}$, and the inclination angle, $i$, constrained by the spectroscopic data on the projected rotational velocity, $V_{\rm rot}\sin i$, which is assumed constant. All the peaks may be accounted for with g-modes of high radial orders and the degrees $\ell\le 6$. There are differences in some identifications between the models. For the two lowest–amplitude peaks the identifications are not unique. Nonetheless, the equatorial velocity is constrained to a narrow range of (135, 140) km/s. Our work presents the first application of the photometric method of mode identification in the framework of the traditional approximation and we believe that it opens a new promising direction in studies of SPB stars.

Area and Flux Distributions of Active Regions, Sunspot Groups, and Sunspots: A Multi-Database Study

In this work we take advantage of eleven different sunspot group, sunspot, and active region databases to characterize the area and flux distributions of photospheric magnetic structures. We find that, when taken separately, different databases are better fitted by different distributions (as has been reported previously in the literature). However, we find that all our databases can be reconciled by the simple application of a proportionality constant, and that, in reality, different databases are sampling different parts of a composite distribution. This composite distribution is made up by linear combination of Weibull and log-normal distributions — where a pure Weibull (log-normal) characterizes the distribution of structures with fluxes below (above) $10^{21}$Mx ($10^{22}$Mx). Additionally, we demonstrate that the Weibull distribution shows the expected linear behaviour of a power-law distribution (when extended into smaller fluxes), making our results compatible with the results of Parnell et al.\ (2009).

First detection of surface magnetic fields in Post-AGB stars : the cases of U Monocerotis and R Scuti

While several observational investigations have revealed the presence of magnetic fields in the circumstellar envelopes, jets and outflows of post-Asymptotic Giant Branch stars (PAGBs) and planetary nebulae (PNe), none has clearly demonstrated their presence at the stellar surface. The lack of information on the strength of the surface magnetic fields prevents us from performing any thorough assessment of their dynamic capability (i.e. material mixing, envelope shaping, etc). We present new high resolution spectropolarimetric (Stokes V ) observations of a sample of PAGB stars, realised with the instruments ESPaDOnS and Narval, where we searched for the presence of photospheric magnetic fields. Out of the seven targets investigated the RV Tauri stars U Mon and R Sct display a clear Zeeman signature and return a definite detection after performing a least squares deconvolution (LSD) analysis. The remaining five PAGBs show no significant detection. We derived longitudinal magnetic fields of 10.2 +/- 1.7 G for U Mon and 0.6 +/- 0.6 G for R Sct. In both cases the Stokes profiles point towards an interaction of the magnetic field with the atmosphere dynamics. This first discovery of weak magnetic fields (i.e. ~10 gauss level) at the stellar surface of PAGB stars opens the door to a better understanding of magnetism in evolved stars.

On the Anisotropic Nature of MRI-Driven Turbulence in Astrophysical Disks

The magnetorotational instability is thought to play an important role in enabling accretion in sufficiently ionized astrophysical disks. The rate at which MRI-driven turbulence transports angular momentum is related to both the strength of the amplitudes of the fluctuations on various scales and the degree of anisotropy of the underlying turbulence. This has motivated several studies of the distribution of turbulent power in spectral space. In this paper, we investigate the anisotropic nature of MRI-driven turbulence using a pseudo-spectral code and introduce novel ways to robustly characterize the underlying turbulence. We show that the general flow properties vary in a quasi-periodic way on timescales comparable to 10 inverse angular frequencies motivating the temporal analysis of its anisotropy. We introduce a 3D tensor invariant analysis to quantify and classify the evolution of the anisotropic turbulent flow. This analysis shows a continuous high level of anisotropy, with brief sporadic transitions towards two- and three-component isotropic turbulent flow. This temporal-dependent anisotropy renders standard shell-average, especially when used simultaneously with long temporal averages, inadequate for characterizing MRI-driven turbulence. We propose an alternative way to extract spectral information from the turbulent magnetized flow, whose anisotropic character depends strongly on time. This consists of stacking 1D Fourier spectra along three orthogonal directions that exhibit maximum anisotropy in Fourier space. The resulting averaged spectra show that the power along each of the three independent directions differs by several orders of magnitude over most scales, except the largest ones. Our results suggest that a first-principles theory to describe fully developed MRI-driven turbulence will likely have to consider the anisotropic nature of the flow at a fundamental level.

Whistler mode waves and the electron heat flux in the solar wind: Cluster observations

The nature of the magnetic field fluctuations in the solar wind between the ion and electron scales is still under debate. Using the Cluster/STAFF instrument, we make a survey of the power spectral density and of the polarization of these fluctuations at frequencies $f\in[1,400]$ Hz, during five years (2001-2005), when Cluster was in the free solar wind. In $\sim 10\%$ of the selected data, we observe narrow-band, right-handed, circularly polarized fluctuations, with wave vectors quasi-parallel to the mean magnetic field, superimposed on the spectrum of the permanent background turbulence. We interpret these coherent fluctuations as whistler mode waves. The life time of these waves varies between a few seconds and several hours. Here we present, for the first time, an analysis of long-lived whistler waves, i.e. lasting more than five minutes. We find several necessary (but not sufficient) conditions for the observation of whistler waves, mainly a low level of the background turbulence, a slow wind, a relatively large electron heat flux and a low electron collision frequency. When the electron parallel beta factor $\beta_{e\parallel}$ is larger than 3, the whistler waves are seen along the heat flux threshold of the whistler heat flux instability. The presence of such whistler waves confirms that the whistler heat flux instability contributes to the regulation of the solar wind heat flux, at least for $\beta_{e\parallel} \ge$ 3, in the slow wind, at 1 AU.

Suzaku Monitoring of Hard X-ray Emission from Eta Carinae over a Single Binary Orbital Cycle

The Suzaku X-ray observatory monitored the supermassive binary system Eta Carinae 10 times during the whole 5.5 year orbital cycle between 2005-2011. This series of observations presents the first long-term monitoring of this enigmatic system in the extremely hard X-ray band between 15-40 keV. During most of the orbit, the 15-25 keV emission varied similarly to the 2-10 keV emission, indicating an origin in the hard energy tail of the kT ~4 keV wind-wind collision (WWC) plasma. However, the 15-25 keV emission declined only by a factor of 3 around periastron when the 2-10 keV emission dropped by two orders of magnitude due probably to an eclipse of the WWC plasma. The observed minimum in the 15-25 keV emission occurred after the 2-10 keV flux had already recovered by a factor of ~3. This may mean that the WWC activity was strong, but hidden behind the thick primary stellar wind during the eclipse. The 25-40 keV flux was rather constant through the orbital cycle, at the level measured with INTEGRAL in 2004. This result may suggest a connection of this flux component to the gamma-ray source detected in this field. The Helium-like Fe Kalpha line complex at ~6.7 keV became strongly distorted toward periastron as seen in the previous cycle. The 5-9 keV spectra can be reproduced well with a two-component spectral model, which includes plasma in collision equilibrium (CE) and a plasma in non-equilibrium ionization (NEI) with tau ~1e11 cm-3 s-1. The NEI plasma increases in importance toward periastron.

The G+M eclipsing binary V530 Orionis: A stringent test of magnetic stellar evolution models for low-mass stars

We report extensive photometric and spectroscopic observations of the 6.1-day period, G+M-type detached double-lined eclipsing binary V530 Ori, an important new benchmark system for testing stellar evolution models for low-mass stars. We determine accurate masses and radii for the components with errors of 0.7% and 1.3%, as follows: M(A) = 1.0038 +/- 0.0066 M(sun), M(B) = 0.5955 +/- 0.0022 M(sun), R(A) = 0.980 +/- 0.013 R(sun), and R(B) = 0.5873 +/- 0.0067 R(sun). The effective temperatures are 5890 +/- 100 K (G1V) and 3880 +/- 120 K (M1V), respectively. A detailed chemical analysis probing more than 20 elements in the primary spectrum shows the system to have a slightly subsolar abundance, with [Fe/H] = -0.12 +/- 0.08. A comparison with theory reveals that standard models underpredict the radius and overpredict the temperature of the secondary, as has been found previously for other M dwarfs. On the other hand, models from the Dartmouth series incorporating magnetic fields are able to match the observations of the secondary star at the same age as the primary (3 Gyr) with a surface field strength of 2.1 +/- 0.4 kG when using a rotational dynamo prescription, or 1.3 +/- 0.4 kG with a turbulent dynamo approach, not far from our empirical estimate for this star of 0.83 +/- 0.65 kG. The observations are most consistent with magnetic fields playing only a small role in changing the global properties of the primary. The V530 Ori system thus provides an important demonstration that recent advances in modeling appear to be on the right track to explain the long-standing problem of radius inflation and temperature suppression in low-mass stars.

Prevalence of Small-scale Jets from the Networks of the Solar Transition Region and Chromosphere

As the interface between the Sun’s photosphere and corona, the chromosphere and transition region play a key role in the formation and acceleration of the solar wind. Observations from the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph reveal the prevalence of intermittent small-scale jets with speeds of 80-250 km/s from the narrow bright network lanes of this interface region. These jets have lifetimes of 20-80 seconds and widths of 300 km or less. They originate from small-scale bright regions, often preceded by footpoint brightenings and accompanied by transverse waves with ~20 km/s amplitudes. Many jets reach temperatures of at least ~100000 K and constitute an important element of the transition region structures. They are likely an intermittent but persistent source of mass and energy for the solar wind.

Statistical Survey of Type III Radio Bursts at Long Wavelengths Observed by the Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory (STEREO)/Waves Instruments: Goniopolarimetric Properties and Radio Source Locations

We have performed statistical analysis of a large number of Type III radio bursts observed by STEREO between May 2007 and February 2013. Only intense, simple, and isolated cases have been included in our data set. We have focused on the goniopolarimetric (GP, also referred to as direction-finding) properties at frequencies between $125$ kHz and $2$ MHz. The apparent source size $\gamma$ is very extended ($\approx60^\circ$) for the lowest analyzed frequencies. Observed apparent source sizes $\gamma$ expand linearly with a radial distance from the Sun at frequencies below $1$ MHz. We have shown that Type III radio bursts statistically propagate in the ecliptic plane. Calculated positions of radio sources suggest that scattering of the primary beam pattern plays an important role in the propagation of Type III radio bursts in the IP medium.

Evidence of Non-Thermal Particles in Coronal Loops Heated Impulsively by Nanoflares

The physical processes causing energy exchange between the Sun’s hot corona and its cool lower atmosphere remain poorly understood. The chromosphere and transition region (TR) form an interface region between the surface and the corona that is highly sensitive to the coronal heating mechanism. High resolution observations with the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) reveal rapid variability (about 20 to 60 seconds) of intensity and velocity on small spatial scales at the footpoints of hot dynamic coronal loops. The observations are consistent with numerical simulations of heating by beams of non-thermal electrons, which are generated in small impulsive heating events called "coronal nanoflares". The accelerated electrons deposit a sizable fraction of their energy in the chromosphere and TR. Our analysis provides tight constraints on the properties of such electron beams and new diagnostics for their presence in the nonflaring corona.

V444 Cyg X-ray and polarimetric variability: Radiative and Coriolis forces shape the wind collision region

We present results from a study of the eclipsing, colliding-wind binary V444 Cyg that uses a combination of X-ray and optical spectropolarimetric methods to describe the 3-D nature of the shock and wind structure within the system. We have created the most complete X-ray light curve of V444 Cyg to date using 40 ksec of new data from Swift, and 200 ksec of new and archived XMM-Newton observations. In addition, we have characterized the intrinsic, polarimetric phase-dependent behavior of the strongest optical emission lines using data obtained with the University of Wisconsin’s Half-Wave Spectropolarimeter. We have detected evidence of the Coriolis distortion of the wind-wind collision in the X-ray regime, which manifests itself through asymmetric behavior around the eclipses in the system’s X-ray light curves. The large opening angle of the X-ray emitting region, as well as its location (i.e. the WN wind does not collide with the O star, but rather its wind) are evidence of radiative braking/inhibition occurring within the system. Additionally, the polarimetric results show evidence of the cavity the wind-wind collision region carves out of the Wolf-Rayet star’s wind.

Polytropic models of filamentary interstellar clouds -II. Helical magnetic fields

We study the properties of magnetised cylindrical polytropes as models for interstellar filamentary clouds, extending the analysis presented in a companion paper (Toci & Galli 2014a). We formulate the general problem of magnetostatic equilibrium in the presence of a helical magnetic field, with the aim of determining the degree of support or compression resulting from the magnetisation of the cloud. We derive scale-free solutions appropriate to describe the properties of the envelopes of filaments at radii larger than the flat-density region. In these solutions, the polytropic exponent determines the radial profiles of the density and the magnetic field. The latter decreases with radius less steeply than the density, and field lines are helices twisted over cylindrical surfaces. A soft equation of state supports magnetic configurations that preferentially compress and confine the filament, whereas in the isothermal limit the field provides support. For each value of the polytropic exponent, the Lorentz force is directed outward or inward depending on whether the pitch angle is below or above some critical value which is a function of the polytropic exponent only.

Polytropic models of filamentary interstellar clouds - I. Structure and stability

The properties of filamentary interstellar clouds observed at sub-millimetre wavelengths, especially by the Herschel Space Observatory, are analysed with polytropic models in cylindrical symmetry. The observed radial density profiles are well reproduced by negative-index cylindrical polytropes with polytropic exponent $1/3\lesssim \gamma_{\rm p} \lesssim 2/3$ (polytropic index $-3\lesssim n \lesssim -3/2$), indicating either external heating or non-thermal pressure components. However, the former possibility requires unrealistically high gas temperatures at the filament’s surface and is therefore very unlikely. Non-thermal support, perhaps resulting from a superposition of small-amplitude Alfv\’en waves (corresponding to $\gamma_{\rm p}=1/2$), is a more realistic possibility, at least for the most massive filaments. If the velocity dispersion scales as the square root of the density (or column density) on the filament’s axis, as suggested by observations, then polytropic models are characterised by a uniform width. The mass per unit length of pressure-bounded cylindrical polytropes depends on the conditions at the boundary and is not limited as in the isothermal case. However, polytropic filaments can remain stable to radial collapse for values of the axis-to-surface density contrast as large as the values observed only if they are supported by a non-isentropic pressure component.

Gap interpolation by inpainting methods : Application to Ground and Space-based Asteroseismic data

In asteroseismology, the observed time series often suffers from incomplete time coverage due to gaps. The presence of periodic gaps may generate spurious peaks in the power spectrum that limit the analysis of the data. Various methods have been developed to deal with gaps in time series data. However, it is still important to improve these methods to be able to extract all the possible information contained in the data. In this paper, we propose a new approach to handle the problem, the so-called inpainting method. This technique, based on a sparsity prior, enables to judiciously fill-in the gaps in the data, preserving the asteroseismic signal, as far as possible. The impact of the observational window function is reduced and the interpretation of the power spectrum is simplified. This method is applied both on ground and space-based data. It appears that the inpainting technique improves the oscillation modes detection and estimation. Additionally, it can be used to study very long time series of many stars because its computation is very fast. For a time series of 50 days of CoRoT-like data, it allows a speed-up factor of 1000, if compared to methods of the same accuracy.

M dwarf search for pulsations within Kepler GO program

We present the analysis of four M dwarf stars -plus one M giant that seeped past our selection criteria- observed in Cycle 3 of Kepler Guest Observer program (GO3) in a search for intrinsic pulsations. Stellar oscillations in M dwarfs were theoretically predicted by Rodr\’iguez-L\’opez et al. (2012) to be in the range ~20-40 min and ~4-8 h, depending on the age and the excitation mechanism. We requested Kepler short cadence observations to have an adequate sampling of the oscillations. The targets were chosen on the basis of detectable rotation in the initial Kepler results, biasing towards youth.The analysis reveals no oscillations attributable to pulsations at a detection limit of several parts per million, showing that either the driving mechanisms are not efficient in developing the oscillations to observable amplitudes, or that if pulsations are driven, the amplitudes are very low. The size of the sample, and the possibility that the instability strip is not pure, allowing the coexistence of pulsators and non-pulsators, prevent us from deriving definite conclusions. Inmediate plans include more M dwarfs photometric observations of similar precision with Kepler K2 mission and spectroscopic searches already underway within the Cool Tiny Beats Project (Anglada-Escud\’e et al. 2014, Berdi\~nas et al. 2014) with the high-resolution spectrographs HARPS and HARPS-N.

Relationship between Solar Energetic Particles and Properties of Flares and CMEs: Statistical Analysis of Solar Cycle 23 Events

A statistical analysis of the relationship between solar energetic particles (SEPs) and properties of solar flares and coronal mass ejections (CMEs) is presented. SEP events during solar cycle 23 are selected which are associated with solar flares originating on the visible hemisphere of the Sun and at least of magnitude M1. Taking into account all flares and CMEs that occurred during this period, the probability for the occurrence of an SEP event near Earth is determined. A strong rise of this probability is observed for increasing flare intensities, more western locations, larger CME speeds and halo CMEs. The correlations between the proton peak flux and these solar parameters are derived for a low (>10 MeV) and high (>60 MeV) energy range excluding any flux enhancement due to the passage of fast interplanetary shocks. The obtained correlation coefficients are: 0.55+-0.07 (0.63+-0.06) with flare intensity and 0.56+-0.08 (0.40+-0.09) with the CME speed for E>10 MeV (E>60 MeV). For both energy ranges, the correlations with flare longitude and CME width are very small or non-existent. Furthermore, the occurrence probabilities, correlation coefficients and mean peak fluxes are derived in multi-dimensional bins combining the aforementioned solar parameters. The correlation coefficients are also determined in different proton energy channels ranging from 5 to 200 MeV. The results show that the correlation between the proton peak flux and the CME speed decreases with energy, while the correlation with the flare intensity shows the opposite behavior. Furthermore, the correlation with the CME speed is stronger than the correlation with the flare intensity below 15 MeV and becomes weaker above 20 MeV. Excluding the flux enhancements due to interplanetary shocks, only a small but not very significant change is observed in the correlation between the peak flux below 7 MeV and the CME speed.

Atmospheres of Brown Dwarfs

Brown Dwarfs are the coolest class of stellar objects known to date. Our present perception is that Brown Dwarfs follow the principles of star formation, and that Brown Dwarfs share many characteristics with planets. Being the darkest and lowest mass stars known makes Brown Dwarfs also the coolest stars known. This has profound implication for their spectral fingerprints. Brown Dwarfs cover a range of effective temperatures which cause brown dwarfs atmospheres to be a sequence that gradually changes from a M-dwarf-like spectrum into a planet-like spectrum. This further implies that below an effective temperature of < 2800K, clouds form already in atmospheres of objects marking the boundary between M-Dwarfs and brown dwarfs. Recent developments have sparked the interest in plasma processes in such very cool atmospheres: sporadic and quiescent radio emission has been observed in combination with decaying Xray-activity indicators across the fully convective boundary.

Hierarchical analysis of the quiet Sun magnetism

Standard statistical analysis of the magnetic properties of the quiet Sun rely on simple histograms of quantities inferred from maximum-likelihood estimations. Because of the inherent degeneracies, either intrinsic or induced by the noise, this approach is not optimal and can lead to highly biased results. We carry out a meta-analysis of the magnetism of the quiet Sun from Hinode observations using a hierarchical probabilistic method. This model allows us to infer the statistical properties of the magnetic field vector over the observed field-of-view consistently taking into account the uncertainties in each pixel due to noise and degeneracies. Our results point out that the magnetic fields are very weak, below 275 G with 95% credibility, with a slight preference for horizontal fields, although the distribution is not far from a quasi-isotropic distribution.

A Substellar-Mass Protostar and its Outflow of IRAS 15398-3359 Revealed by Subarcsecond-Resolution Observations of H$_2$CO and CCH

Sub-arcsecond ($0.^{\prime\prime}5$) images of H$_2$CO and CCH line emission have been obtained in the $0.8$ mm band toward the low-mass protostar IRAS 15398-3359 in the Lupus 1 cloud as one of the Cycle 0 projects of the Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array. We have detected a compact component concentrated in the vicinity of the protostar and a well-collimated outflow cavity extending along the northeast-southwest axis. The inclination angle of the outflow is found to be about $20^\circ$, or almost edge-on, based on the kinematic structure of the outflow cavity. This is in contrast to previous suggestions of a more pole-on geometry. The centrally concentrated component is interpreted by use of a model of the infalling rotating envelope with the estimated inclination angle, and the mass of the protostar is estimated to be less than $0.09\ M_\odot$. Higher spatial resolution data are needed to infer the presence of a rotationally supported disk for this source, hinted at by a weak high-velocity H$_2$CO emission associated with the protostar.

Detailed ROSAT X-ray Analysis of the AM Her Cataclysmic Variable VV Pup

VV Pup is typical system of AM Her stars, where the main accreting pole rotates in and out of view during the orbital cycle. In the present paper we present ROSAT data analysis for the magnetic cataclysmic variable VV Pup. We obtained the X-ray light curves of VV Pup in high state, the PSPC count rate 0.1-2.0 keV is plotted as a function of time with bins of 10 sec and the count rate is folded over the orbital period of 100.4 min with bin size of 100 sec for individual observations. We calculate the mean best-fit PSPC spectrum, with a three-component spectral fit including a soft X-ray blackbody, hard X-ray bremsstrahlung, and Gaussian line covers the phase intervals, for a bright phase (phi_orb=0.9-1.1), the dip data (phi_orb=0.18-0.7), the egress from the dip (phi_orb=0.7-0.8), the phase interval phi = 0.1-0.18 and the mean best-fit spectrum for all data (phi_orb=0.0-1.0). We calculate spectral parameters, the hardness ratios, count rate and total integrated black body flux.

The dynamics of collapsing cores and star formation

Low-mass stars are generally understood to form by the gravitational collapse of the dense molecular clouds known as starless cores. Continuum observations have not been able to distinguish among the several different hypotheses that describe the collapse because the predicted density distributions are the almost the same, as they are for all spherical self-gravitating clouds. However, the predicted contraction velocities are different enough that the models can be discriminated by comparing the velocities at large and small radii. This can be done by observing at least two different molecular line transitions that are excited at different densities. For example, the spectral lines of the H2O (110 – 101) and C18O (1-0) have critical densities for collisional de-excitation that differ by 5 orders of magnitude. We compare observations of these lines from the contracting starless core L1544 against the spectra predicted for several different hypothetical models of contraction including the Larson-Penston flow, the inside-out collapse of the singular isothermal sphere, the quasi-equilibrium contraction of an unstable Bonnor-Ebert sphere, and the non-equilibrium collapse of an over-dense Bonnor-Ebert sphere. Only the model of the unstable quasi-equilibrium Bonnor-Ebert sphere is able to produce the observed shapes of both spectral lines. This model allows us to interpret other observations of molecular lines in L1544 to find that the inward velocities seen in observations of CS(2-1) and N2H+ are located within the starless core itself, in particular in the region where the density profile follows an inverse square law. If these conclusions were to hold in the analysis of other starless cores, this would imply that the formation of hydrostatic clouds within the turbulent interstellar medium is not only possible but not exceptional and may be an evolutionary phase in low-mass star formation.

Herbig AeBe stars: Multiplicity and consequences

By virtue of their young age and intermediate mass, Herbig AeBe stars represent a cornerstone for our understanding of the mass-dependency of both the stellar and planetary formation processes. In this contribution, I review the current state-of-the-art multiplicity surveys of Herbig AeBe stars to assess both the overall frequency of companions and the distribution of key orbital parameters (separation, mass ratio and eccentricity). In a second part, I focus on the interplay between the multiplicity of Herbig AeBe stars and the presence and properties of their protoplanetary disks. Overall, it appears that both star and planet formation in the context of intermediate-mass stars proceeds following similar mechanisms as lower-mass stars.

Discovery of Time Variation of the Intensity of Molecular Lines in IRC+10216 in The Submillimeter and Far Infrared Domains

We report on the discovery of strong intensity variations in the high rotational lines of abundant molecular species towards the archetypical circumstellar envelope of IRC+10216. The observations have been carried out with the HIFI instrument on board \textit{Herschel}\thanks{\textit{Herschel} is an ESA space observatory with science instruments provided by European-led Principal Investigator consortia and with important participation from NASA} and with the IRAM\thanks{This work was based on observations carried out with the IRAM 30-meter telescope. IRAM is supported by INSU/CNRS (France), MPG (Germany) and IGN (Spain)} 30-m telescope. They cover several observing periods spreading over 3 years. The line intensity variations for molecules produced in the external layers of the envelope most probably result from time variations in the infrared pumping rates. We analyze the main implications this discovery has on the interpretation of molecular line emission in the envelopes of Mira-type stars. Radiative transfer calculations have to take into account both the time variability of infrared pumping and the possible variation of the dust and gas temperatures with stellar phase in order to reproduce the observation of molecular lines at different epochs. The effect of gas temperature variations with stellar phase could be particularly important for lines produced in the innermost regions of the envelope. Each layer of the circumstellar envelope sees the stellar light radiation with a different lag time (phase). Our results show that this effect must be included in the models. The sub-mm and FIR lines of AGB stars cannot anymore be considered as safe intensity calibrators.

Hot Explosions in the Cool Atmosphere of the Sun

The solar atmosphere was traditionally represented with a simple one-dimensional model. Over the past few decades, this paradigm shifted for the chromosphere and corona that constitute the outer atmosphere, which is now considered a dynamic structured envelope. Recent observations by IRIS (Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph) reveal that it is difficult to determine what is up and down even in the cool 6000-K photosphere just above the solar surface: this region hosts pockets of hot plasma transiently heated to almost 100,000 K. The energy to heat and accelerate the plasma requires a considerable fraction of the energy from flares, the largest solar disruptions. These IRIS observations not only confirm that the photosphere is more complex than conventionally thought, but also provide insight into the energy conversion in the process of magnetic reconnection.

Stability of Hall equilibria in neutron star crusts

In the solid crusts of neutron stars, the advection of the magnetic field by the current-carrying electrons, an effect known as Hall drift, should play a very important role as the ions remain essentially fixed (as long as the solid does not break). Although Hall drift preserves the magnetic field energy, it has been argued that it may drive a turbulent cascade to scales at which Ohmic dissipation becomes effective, allowing a much faster decay in objects with very strong fields. On the other hand, it has been found that there are "Hall equilibria", i.e., field configurations that are unaffected by Hall drift. Here, we address the crucial question of the stability of these equilibria through axially symmetric (2D) numerical simulations of Hall drift and Ohmic diffusion, with the simplifying assumption of uniform electron density and conductivity. We demonstrate the 2D-stability of a purely poloidal equilibrium, for which Ohmic dissipation makes the field evolve towards an attractor state through adjacent stable configurations, around which damped oscillations occur. For this field, the decay scales with the Ohmic timescale. We also study the case of an unstable equilibrium consisting of both poloidal and toroidal field components that are confined within the crust. This field evolves into a stable configuration, which undergoes damped oscillations superimposed on a slow evolution towards an attractor, just as the purely poloidal one.

The formation of low-mass helium white dwarfs in close binaries

Recently, a large number of low-mass (<0.30 M_sun) helium white dwarfs (He WDs) have been discovered as a result of several surveys campaigns such as WASP, ELM, Kepler or SDSS. The far majority of them have as companion another compact object. There appears to be discrepancies between current theoretical modelling of low-mass He WDs and a number of key observational cases indicating that some details of their formation scenario yet remain to be understood.

Radial velocities from VLT-KMOS spectra of giant stars in the globular cluster NGC 6388

We present new radial velocity measurements for 82 stars, members of the Galactic globular cluster NGC 6388, obtained from ESO-VLT KMOS spectra acquired during the instrument Science Verification. The accuracy of the wavelength calibration is discussed and a number of tests of the KMOS response are presented. The cluster systemic velocity obtained (81.3 +/- 1.5 km/sec) is in very good agreement with previous determinations. While a hint of ordered rotation is found between 9” and 20” from the cluster centre, where the distribution of radial velocities is clearly bimodal, more data are needed before drawing any firm conclusions. The acquired sample of radial velocities has been also used to determine the cluster velocity dispersion profile between ~9” and 70”, supplementing previous measurements at r < 2” and r > 60” obtained with ESO-SINFONI and ESO-FLAMES spectroscopy, respectively. The new portion of the velocity dispersion profile nicely matches the previous ones, better defining the knee of the distribution. The present work clearly shows the effectiveness of a deployable Integral Field Unit in measuring the radial velocities of individual stars for determining the velocity dispersion profile of Galactic globular clusters. It represents the pilot project for an ongoing large program with KMOS and FLAMES at the ESO-VLT, aimed at determining the next generation of velocity dispersion and rotation profiles for a representative sample of globular clusters.

Optical Dual-Band Photometry and Spectroscopy of the WZ Sge-Type Dwarf Nova EZ Lyn during the 2010 Superoutburst

We performed optical simultaneous dual-band (SDSS $g’$- and $i’$- band) photometry and low-resolution spectroscopy for the WZ Sge-type dwarf nova EZ Lyn during its 2010 superoutburst. Dual-band photometry revealed that the $g’-i’$ color reddened with a decrease in brightness, during the main superoutburst and the following rebrightening phase, whereas the color became bluer with a further decrease in brightness during the slow, final decline phase. With a fit to our photometric results by a blackbody function, we estimated the disk radius ratio (ratio of the disk radius to the binary separation) and compared this with that of V455 And, a WZ Sge-type object that did not show any rebrightening in the 2007 superoutburst. The comparison revealed: (1) the disk radius ratio of EZ Lyn decreased more slowly than that of V455 And; and (2) the radius ratio of EZ Lyn at the end of the main superoutburst was larger than that of the V455 And. These results favor the mass reservoir model for the mechanism of rebrightening. During both the superoutburst plateau and subsequent rebrightening phase, H$\alpha$ and H$\beta$ lines were detected. The H$\alpha$ line showed a double-peak profile from which we estimated the disk radius ratio. The comparison of this ratio with that derived by photometry, indicates that the H$\alpha$ disk was larger than the photometric one, which suggests that the optically thin gas was extended to the outer region more than the optically thick gas disk and was possibly responsible for the rebrightening phenomenon. Time-series dual-band photometry during the main superoutburst revealed that color variations during the early superhump show roughly the same behavior as that of V455 And, whereas color variations during the ordinary superhump display clear anticorrelation with brightness, in contrast to that seen in the V455 And.

Hubble Space Telescope Proper Motion (HSTPROMO) Catalogs of Galactic Globular Clusters. I. Sample Selection, Data Reduction and NGC 7078 Results

We present the first study of high-precision internal proper motions (PMs) in a large sample of globular clusters, based on Hubble Space Telescope (HST) data obtained over the past decade with the ACS/WFC, ACS/HRC, and WFC3/UVIS instruments. We determine PMs for over 1.3 million stars in the central regions of 22 clusters, with a median number of ~60,000 stars per cluster. These PMs have the potential to significantly advance our understanding of the internal kinematics of globular clusters by extending past line-of-sight (LOS) velocity measurements to two- or three-dimensional velocities, lower stellar masses, and larger sample sizes. We describe the reduction pipeline that we developed to derive homogeneous PMs from the very heterogeneous archival data. We demonstrate the quality of the measurements through extensive Monte-Carlo simulations. We also discuss the PM errors introduced by various systematic effects, and the techniques that we have developed to correct or remove them to the extent possible. We provide in electronic form the catalog for NGC 7078 (M 15), which consists of 77,837 stars in the central 2.4 arcmin. We validate the catalog by comparison with existing PM measurements and LOS velocities, and use it to study the dependence of the velocity dispersion on radius, stellar magnitude (or mass) along the main sequence, and direction in the plane of the sky (radial/tangential). Subsequent papers in this series will explore a range of applications in globular-cluster science, and will also present the PM catalogs for the other sample clusters.

Radial velocity measurements of the pulsating zirconium star: LS IV -14 116

The helium-rich hot subdwarf LS IV -14 116 shows remarkably high surface abundances of zirconium, yttrium, strontium, and germanium, indicative of strong chemical stratification in the photosphere. It also shows photometric behaviour indicative of non-radial g-mode pulsations, despite having surface properties inconsistent with any known pulsational instability zone. We have conducted a search for radial velocity variability. This has demonstrated that at least one photometric period is observable in several absorption lines as a radial velocity variation with a semi-amplitude in excess of 5 km s$^{-1}$. A correlation between line strength and pulsation amplitude provides evidence that the photosphere pulsates differentially. The ratio of light to velocity amplitude is too small to permit the largest amplitude oscillation to be radial.

Small-Scale Structuring Of Ellerman Bombs at Solar Limb

Ellerman bombs (EBs) have been widely studied in recent years due to their dynamic, explosive nature and apparent links to the underlying photospheric magnetic field implying that they may be formed by magnetic reconnection in the photosphere. Despite a plethora of researches discussing the morphologies of EBs, there has been a limited investigation of how these events appear at the limb, specifically, whether they manifest as vertical extensions away from the disc. In this article, we make use of high-resolution, high-cadence observations of an AR at the solar limb, collected by the CRISP instrument, to identify EBs and infer their physical properties. The upper atmosphere is also probed using the SDO/AIA. We analyse 22 EB events evident within these data, finding that 20 appear to follow a parabolic path away from the solar surface at an average speed of 9 km s^(-1), extending away from their source by 580 km, before retreating back at a similar speed. These results show strong evidence of vertical motions associated with EBs, possibly explaining the dynamical `flaring’ (changing in area and intensity) observed in on-disc events. Two in-depth case studies are also presented which highlight the unique dynamical nature of EBs within the lower solar atmosphere. The viewing angle of these observations allows for a direct linkage between these EBs and other small-scale events in the H-alpha line wings, including a potential flux emergence scenario. The findings presented here suggest that EBs could have a wider-reaching influence on the solar atmosphere than previously thought, as we reveal a direct linkage between EBs and an emerging small-scale loop, and other near-by small-scale explosive events. However, as previous research found, these extensions do not appear to impact upon the H-alpha line core, and are not observed by the SDO/AIA EUV filters.

Unveiling new stellar companions from the PIONIER exozodi survey

The main goal of the EXOZODI survey is to detect and characterize circumstellar dust and to propose the first statistical study of exozodiacal disks in the near-infrared using telescopes in both hemispheres. For this purpose, Ertel et al. have conducted in 2012 a survey of nearby main sequence stars with VLTI/PIONIER to search for the presence of circumstellar dust. This survey, carried out during 12 nights, comprises about 100 stars. For each star, we obtained typically three OBs and we searched for circumstellar emission based on the measurement of squared visibilities at short baselines. A drop in the measured visibilities with respect to the expected photospheric visibility indicates the presence of resolved emission around the target star. It is however generally not possible to conclude on the morphology of the detected emission based solely on the squared visibilities. Here, we focus on closure phases to search for faint companions around the whole sample. Indeed, to derive robust statistics on the occurrence rate of bright exozodiacal disks, we need to discriminate between companions and disks. For this reason, the main goal of this paper is to discriminate between circumstellar disks (which show no closure phase provided that they are point-symmetric) and faint companions (point-like sources, creating non-zero closure phases). We also aim to reveal new companions that do not necessarily produce a significant signature in the squared visibilities, as the signature of the companion may show up more prominently in the closure phases. In this process, we reveal four new stellar companions with contrasts ranging from 2% to 95% (i.e., up to equal flux binaries). We also tentatively detect faint companions around one other target that will require follow-up observations to be confirmed or infirmed. We discuss the implications of these discoveries on the results of the exozodi survey.

Supernova neutrinos and the turbulence power spectrum: point source statistics

The neutrinos emitted from the proto-neutron star created in a core-collapse supernova must run through a significant amount of turbulence before exiting the star. Turbulence can modify the flavor evolution of the neutrinos imprinting itself upon the signal we will detect here at Earth. The turbulence effect upon individual neutrinos, and the correlation between pairs of neutrinos, is sensitive to the power spectrum of the turbulence and recent analysis of the turbulence in a two-dimensional hydrodynamical simulation of a core-collapse supernova indicates the power spectrum may not be the Kolmogorov 5/3 inverse power law as has been previously assumed. We study the effect of non-Kolmogorov turbulence power spectra upon individual neutrinos from a point source and find reasonable values for the turbulence amplitudes indicate supernova neutrinos and antineutrinos do possess sensitivity to the power spectrum when the turbulence is in the vicinity of the Mikheyev, Smirnov and Wolfenstein resonances.

Supernova neutrinos and the turbulence power spectrum: point source statistics [Cross-Listing]

The neutrinos emitted from the proto-neutron star created in a core-collapse supernova must run through a significant amount of turbulence before exiting the star. Turbulence can modify the flavor evolution of the neutrinos imprinting itself upon the signal we will detect here at Earth. The turbulence effect upon individual neutrinos, and the correlation between pairs of neutrinos, is sensitive to the power spectrum of the turbulence and recent analysis of the turbulence in a two-dimensional hydrodynamical simulation of a core-collapse supernova indicates the power spectrum may not be the Kolmogorov 5/3 inverse power law as has been previously assumed. We study the effect of non-Kolmogorov turbulence power spectra upon individual neutrinos from a point source and find reasonable values for the turbulence amplitudes indicate supernova neutrinos and antineutrinos do possess sensitivity to the power spectrum when the turbulence is in the vicinity of the Mikheyev, Smirnov and Wolfenstein resonances.

On the structure and evolution of planets and their host stars $-$ effects of various heating mechanisms on the size of giant gas planets

It is already stated in the previous studies that the radius of the giant planets is affected by stellar irradiation. The confirmed relation between radius and incident flux depends on planetary mass intervals. In this study, we show that there is a single relation between radius and irradiated energy per gram per second ($l_-$), for all mass intervals. There is an extra increase in radius of planets if $l_-$ is higher than 1100 times energy received by the Earth ($l_\oplus$). This is likely due to dissociation of molecules. The tidal interaction as a heating mechanism is also considered and found that its maximum effect on the inflation of planets is about 15 per cent. We also compute age and heavy element abundances from the properties of host stars, given in the TEPCat catalogue (Southworth 2011). The metallicity given in the literature is as [Fe/H]. However, the most abundant element is oxygen, and there is a reverse relation between the observed abundances [Fe/H] and [O/Fe]. Therefore, we first compute [O/H] from [Fe/H] by using observed abundances, and then find heavy element abundance from [O/H]. We also develop a new method for age determination. Using the ages we find, we analyse variation of both radius and mass of the planets with respect to time, and estimate the initial mass of the planets from the relation we derive for the first time. According to our results, the highly irradiated gas giants lose 5 per cent of their mass in every 1 Gyr.

Viscosity effects on waves in partially and fully ionized plasma in magnetic field

Viscosity is discussed in multicomponent partially and fully ionized plasma, and its effects on two very different waves (Alfven and Langmuir) in solar atmosphere. A full set of viscosity coefficients is presented which includes coefficients for electrons, protons and hydrogen atoms. These are applied to layers with mostly magnetized protons in solar chromosphere where the Alfven wave could in principle be expected. The viscosity coefficients are calculated and presented graphically for the altitudes between 700 and 2200 km, and required corresponding cross sections for various types of collisions are given in terms of altitude. It is shown that in chromosphere the viscosity plays no role for the Alfven wave, which is only strongly affected by ion friction with neutrals. In corona, assuming the magnetic field of a few Gauss, the Alfven wave is more affected by ion viscosity than by ion-electron friction only for wavelengths shorter that 1-30 km, dependent on parameters and assuming the perturbed magnetic field of one percent of its equilibrium value. For the Langmuir wave the viscosity-friction interplay in chromosphere is shown to be dependent on altitude and on wavelengths. In corona the viscosity is the main dissipative mechanism acting on the Langmuir mode.

Key Aspects of Coronal Heating

We highlight ten key aspects of coronal heating that must be understood before we can consider the problem to be solved. (1) All coronal heating is impulsive. (2) The details of coronal heating matter. (3) The corona is filled with elemental magnetic stands. (4) The corona is densely populated with current sheets. (5) The strands must reconnect to prevent an infinite buildup of stress. (6) What determines the nanoflare frequency? (7) What is the quantum of energy release? (8) What causes the collective behavior responsible for loops? (9) What are the onset conditions for energy release? (10) Chromospheric nanoflares are not a primary source of coronal plasma. Significant progress in solving the coronal heating problem will require a coordination of approaches: observational studies, 1D hydro simulations, large-scale and localized 3D MHD simulations, and possibly also kinetic simulations. There is a unique value to each of these approaches, and the community must strive to coordinate better.

Deep $z$-band observations of the coolest Y dwarf

WISE J085510.83-071442.5 (hereafter, WISE 0855-07) is the coolest Y dwarf known to date and is located at a distance of 2.31$\pm 0.08$ pc, giving it the fourth largest parallax of any known star or brown dwarf system. We report deep $z$-band observations of WISE 0855-07 using FORS2 on UT1/VLT. We do not detect any counterpart to WISE 0855-07 in our $z$-band images and estimate a brightness upper limit of AB mag $>$ 24.8 ($F_{\nu}$ $<$ 0.45 $\mu$Jy) at 910 $\pm$ 65 nm with $3\sigma$-confidence. We combine our z-band upper limit with previous near- and mid-infrared photometry to place constraints on the atmospheric properties of WISE 0855-07 via comparison to models which implement water clouds in the atmospheres of $T_{eff} < 300$ K substellar objects. We find that none of the available models that implement water clouds can completely reproduce the observed SED of WISE 0855-07. Every model significantly disagrees with the (3.6 $\mu$m / 4.5 $\mu$m) flux ratio and at least one other bandpass. Since methane is predicted to be the dominant absorber at 3-4 $\mu$m, these mismatches might point to an incorrect or incomplete treatment of methane in current models. We conclude that \mbox{(a) WISE0855-07} has $T_{eff} \sim 200-250$~K, (b) $< 80 \%$ of its surface is covered by clouds, and (c) deeper observations, and improved models of substellar evolution, atmospheres, clouds, and opacities will be necessary to better characterize this object.

Dynamical analyses of the companions orbiting eclipsing binaries II. Z Draconis with four companions close to 6:3:2:1 mean motion resonances

All available mid-eclipse times of the short-period eclipsing binary Z Draconis are analysed, and multiple cyclic variations are found. Based on the light-travel time model, we find three companions around Z Draconis, and one or more possible short-period companions. The derived orbital periods suggest that the three outer companions and an inner one are in a near 6:3:2:1 mean-motion resonances. The most outer companion has the minimum mass of $\sim0.7M_{\bigodot}$, whereas other companions are M dwarfs. We have studied the stabilities of the companions moving on a series of mutually inclined orbits. The results show that no orbital configurations can survive for 200 yr. We speculate that the instability of the system can be attributed to the uncertainties of the short-period companions, which result from the low-precision mid-eclipse times. Thus, secular CCD observations with much higher precision are needed in the future.

Conversion from mutual helicity to self-helicity observed with IRIS

Context. In the upper atmosphere of the Sun observations show convincing evidence for crossing and twisted structures, which are interpreted as mutual helicity and self-helicity. Aims. We use observations with the new Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) to show the conversion of mutual helicity into self-helicity in coronal structures on the Sun. Methods. Using far UV spectra and slit-jaw images from IRIS and coronal images and magnetograms from SDO, we investigated the evolution of two crossing loops in an active region, in particular, the properties of the Si IV line profile in cool loops. Results. In the early stage two cool loops cross each other and accordingly have mutual helicity. The Doppler shifts in the loops indicate that they wind around each other. As a consequence, near the crossing point of the loops (interchange) reconnection sets in, which heats the plasma. This is consistent with the observed increase of the line width and of the appearance of the loops at higher temperatures. After this interaction, the two new loops run in parallel, and in one of them shows a clear spectral tilt of the Si IV line profile. This is indicative of a helical (twisting) motion, which is the same as to say that the loop has self-helicity. Conclusions. The high spatial and spectral resolution of IRIS allowed us to see the conversion of mutual helicity to self-helicity in the (interchange) reconnection of two loops. This is observational evidence for earlier theoretical speculations.

MY Camelopardalis, a very massive merger progenitor

Context. The early-type binary MY Cam belongs to the young open cluster Alicante 1, embedded in Cam OB3. Aims. MY Cam consists of two early-O type main-sequence stars and shows a photometric modulation suggesting an orbital period slightly above one day. We intend to confirm this orbital period and derive orbital and stellar parameters. Methods. Timing analysis of a very exhaustive (4607 points) light curve indicates a period of 1.1754514 +- 0.0000015 d. High- resolution spectra and the cross-correlation technique implemented in the TODCOR program were used to derive radial velocities and obtain the corresponding radial velocity curves for MY Cam. Modelling with the stellar atmosphere code FASTWIND was used to obtain stellar parameters and create templates for cross-correlation. Stellar and orbital parameters were derived using the Wilson-Devinney code, such that a complete solution to the binary system could be described. Results. The determined masses of the primary and secondary stars in MY Cam are 37.7 +- 1.6 and 31.6 +- 1.4 Msol, respectively. The corresponding temperatures, derived from the model atmosphere fit, are 42 000 and 39 000 K, with the more massive component being hotter. Both stars are overfilling their Roche lobes, sharing a common envelope. Conclusions. MY Cam contains the most massive dwarf O-type stars found so far in an eclipsing binary. Both components are still on the main sequence, and probably not far from the zero-age main sequence. The system is a likely merger progenitor, owing to its very short period.

 

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