Posts Tagged pap

Recent Postings from pap

The rebrightening of planetary nebulae through ISM interaction

The interaction of planetary nebulae (PNe) with the interstellar medium as they move through it is now acknowledged to be a major shaping effect not just for ancient and large PNe, but also for relatively young PNe with high speed central stars. The most common effect is a rebrightening as the PN shell interacts with a pre-existing bow shock structure formed during the previous evolutionary phase of the central star. In this review, we consider this rebrightening in detail for the first time and discuss its origins, highlighting some observed examples. We go on to discuss the AGB star progenitors, reviewing the evidence for bow shock structures, and consider the progeny of rebrightened PNe – strongly disrupted objects which bear very little resemblance to typical PNe. Sh 2-68 is inferred to be perhaps the only documented case so far of such a PN.

The progenitors of Type Ia supernovae with long delay times

The nature of the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is still unclear. In this paper, by considering the effect of the instability of accretion disk on the evolution of white dwarf (WD) binaries, we performed binary evolution calculations for about 2400 close WD binaries, in which a carbon–oxygen WD accretes material from a main-sequence star or a slightly evolved subgiant star (WD + MS channel), or a red-giant star (WD + RG channel) to increase its mass to the Chandrasekhar (Ch) mass limit. According to these calculations, we mapped out the initial parameters for SNe Ia in the orbital period–secondary mass ($\log P^{\rm i}-M^{\rm i}_2$) plane for various WD masses for these two channels, respectively. We confirm that WDs in the WD + MS channel with a mass as low as $0.61 M_\odot$ can accrete efficiently and reach the Ch limit, while the lowest WD mass for the WD + RG channel is $1.0 \rm M_\odot$. We have implemented these results in a binary population synthesis study to obtain the SN Ia birthrates and the evolution of SN Ia birthrates with time for both a constant star formation rate and a single starburst. We find that the Galactic SN Ia birthrate from the WD + MS channel is $\sim$$1.8\times 10^{-3} {\rm yr}^{-1}$ according to our standard model, which is higher than previous results. However, similar to previous studies, the birthrate from the WD + RG channel is still low ($\sim$$3\times 10^{-5} {\rm yr}^{-1}$). We also find that about one third of SNe Ia from the WD + MS channel and all SNe Ia from the WD + RG channel can contribute to the old populations ($\ga$1 Gyr) of SN Ia progenitors.

Unveiling radio halos in galaxy clusters in the LOFAR era

Giant radio halos are mega-parsec scale synchrotron sources detected in a fraction of massive and merging galaxy clusters. Radio halos provide one of the most important pieces of evidence for non-thermal components in large scale structure. Statistics of their properties can be used to discriminate among various models for their origin. Therefore, theoretical predictions of the occurrence of radio halos are important as several new radio telescopes are about to begin to survey the sky at low frequencies with unprecedented sensitivity. In this paper we carry out Monte Carlo simulations to model the formation and evolution of radio halos in a cosmological framework. We extend previous works on the statistical properties of radio halos in the context of the turbulent re-acceleration model. First we compute the fraction of galaxy clusters that show radio halos and derive the luminosity function of radio halos. Then, we derive differential and integrated number count distributions of radio halos at low radio frequencies with the main goal to explore the potential of the upcoming LOFAR surveys. By restricting to the case of clusters at redshifts <0.6, we find that the planned LOFAR all sky survey at 120 MHz is expected to detect about 350 giant radio halos. About half of these halos have spectral indices larger than 1.9 and substantially brighten at lower frequencies. If detected they will allow for a confirmation that turbulence accelerates the emitting particles. We expect that also commissioning surveys, such as MSSS, have the potential to detect about 60 radio halos in clusters of the ROSAT Brightest Cluster Sample and its extension (eBCS). These surveys will allow us to constrain how the rate of formation of radio halos in these clusters depends on cluster mass.

Evolution of perturbations in distinct classes of canonical scalar field models of dark energy

Dark energy must cluster in order to be consistent with the equivalence principle. The background evolution can be effectively modelled by either a scalar field or by a barotropic fluid.The fluid model can be used to emulate perturbations in a scalar field model of dark energy, though this model breaks down at large scales. In this paper we study evolution of dark energy perturbations in canonical scalar field models: the classes of thawing and freezing models.The dark energy equation of state evolves differently in these classes.In freezing models, the equation of state deviates from that of a cosmological constant at early times.For thawing models, the dark energy equation of state remains near that of the cosmological constant at early times and begins to deviate from it only at late times.Since the dark energy equation of state evolves differently in these classes,the dark energy perturbations too evolve differently. In freezing models, since the equation of state deviates from that of a cosmological constant at early times, there is a significant difference in evolution of matter perturbations from those in the cosmological constant model.In comparison, matter perturbations in thawing models differ from the cosmological constant only at late times. This difference provides an additional handle to distinguish between these classes of models and this difference should manifest itself in the ISW effect.

Bandwidth in bolometric interferometry

Bolometric Interferometry is a technology currently under development that will be first dedicated to the detection of B-mode polarization fluctuations in the Cosmic Microwave Background. A bolometric interferometer will have to take advantage of the wide spectral detection band of its bolometers in order to be competitive with imaging experiments. A crucial concern is that interferometers are presumed to be importantly affected by a spoiling effect known as bandwidth smearing. In this paper, we investigate how the bandwidth modifies the work principle of a bolometric interferometer and how it affects its sensitivity to the CMB angular power spectra. We obtain analytical expressions for the broadband visibilities measured by broadband heterodyne and bolometric interferometers. We investigate how the visibilities must be reconstructed in a broadband bolometric interferometer and show that this critically depends on hardware properties of the modulation phase shifters. Using an angular power spectrum estimator accounting for the bandwidth, we finally calculate the sensitivity of a broadband bolometric interferometer. A numerical simulation has been performed and confirms the analytical results. We conclude (i) that broadband bolometric interferometers allow broadband visibilities to be reconstructed whatever the kind of phase shifters used and (ii) that for dedicated B-mode bolometric interferometers, the sensitivity loss due to bandwidth smearing is quite acceptable, even for wideband instruments (a factor 2 loss for a typical 20% bandwidth experiment).

The Role of ESLEA in the development of eVLBI

The internet has been used for data transfer in radio astronomy ever since its inception; however it is only recently that network bandwidth capability means that the internet becomes competitive with traditional forms of data storage. Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) uses widely separated telescopes between which high bandwidth direct connections have not been feasible until recently. The academic networks now allow us to connect at high data rates (~1Gbps) in "eVLBI". The ESLEA project (Exploitation of Switched Lightpaths for E-science Applications) has played a major role in the development of eVLBI. We outline this development in this paper.

The 4th IBIS/ISGRI soft gamma-ray survey catalog

In this paper we report on the fourth soft gamma-ray source catalog obtained with the IBIS gamma-ray imager on board the INTEGRAL satellite. The scientific dataset is based on more than 70Ms of high quality observations performed during the first five and a half years of Core Program and public observations. Compared to previous IBIS surveys, this catalog includes a substantially increased coverage of extragalactic fields, and comprises more than 700 high-energy sources detected in the energy range 17–100 keV, including both transients and faint persistent objects which can only be revealed with longer exposure times. A comparison is provided with the latest Swift/BAT survey results.

On the influence of high energy electron populations on metal abundance estimates in galaxy groups and clusters

Spectral line emissivities have usually been calculated for a Maxwellian electron distribution. But many theoretical works on galaxy groups and clusters and on the solar corona suggest to consider modified Maxwellian electron distribution functions to fit observed X-ray spectra. Here we examine the influence of high energy electron populations on measurements of metal abundances. A generalized approach which was proposed in the paper by Prokhorov et al. (2009) is used to calculate the line emissivities for a modified Maxwellian distribution. We study metal abundances in galaxy groups and clusters where hard X-ray excess emission was observed. We found that for modified Maxwellian distributions the argon abundance decreases for the HCG 62 group, the iron abundance decreases for the Centaurus cluster and the oxygen abundance decreases for the solar corona with respect to the case of a Maxwellian distribution. Therefore, metal abundance measurements are a promising tool to test the presence of high energy electron populations.

An AzTEC 1.1-mm Survey for ULIRGs in the field of the Galaxy Cluster MS 0451.6-0305

We have undertaken a deep (sigma~1.1 mJy) 1.1-mm survey of the z=0.54 cluster MS 0451.6-0305 using the AzTEC camera on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope. We detect 36 sources with S/N>3.5 in the central 0.10 deg^2 and present the AzTEC map, catalogue and number counts. We identify counterparts to 18 sources (50%) using radio, mid-infrared, Spitzer IRAC and Submillimeter Array data. Optical, near- and mid-infrared spectral energy distributions are compiled for the 14 of these galaxies with detectable counterparts, which are expected to contain all likely cluster members. We then use photometric redshifts and colour selection to separate background galaxies from potential cluster members and test the reliability of this technique using archival observations of submillimetre galaxies. We find two potential MS 0451-03 members, which, if they are both cluster galaxies have a total star-formation rate (SFR) of ~100 solar masses per year — a significant fraction of the combined SFR of all the other galaxies in MS 0451-03. We also examine the stacked rest-frame mid-infrared, millimetre and radio emission of cluster members below our AzTEC detection limit and find that the SFRs of mid-IR selected galaxies in the cluster and redshift-matched field populations are comparable. In contrast, the average SFR of the morphologically classified late-type cluster population is ~3 times less than the corresponding redshift-matched field galaxies. This suggests that these galaxies may be in the process of being transformed on the red-sequence by the cluster environment. Our survey demonstrates that although the environment of MS 0451-03 appears to suppress star-formation in late-type galaxies, it can support active, dust-obscured mid-IR galaxies and potentially millimetre-detected LIRGs.

Stellar mass-to-light ratios from galaxy spectra: how accurate can they be?

Stellar masses play a crucial role in the exploration of galaxy properties and the evolution of the galaxy population. In this paper, we explore the minimum possible uncertainties in stellar mass-to-light (M/L) ratios from the assumed star formation history (SFH) and metallicity distribution, with the goals of providing a minimum set of requirements for observational studies. We use a large Monte Carlo library of SFHs to study as a function of galaxy spectral type and signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) the statistical uncertainties of M/L values using either absorption-line data or broad band colors. The accuracy of M/L estimates can be significantly improved by using metal-sensitive indices in combination with age-sensitive indices, in particular for galaxies with intermediate-age or young stellar populations. While M/L accuracy clearly depends on the spectral S/N ratio, there is no significant gain in improving the S/N much above 50/pix and limiting uncertainties of 0.03 dex are reached. Assuming that dust is accurately corrected or absent and that the redshift is known, color-based M/L estimates are only slightly more uncertain than spectroscopic estimates (at comparable spectroscopic and photometric quality), but are more easily affected by systematic biases. This is the case in particular for galaxies with bursty SFHs (high Hdelta at fixed D4000), the M/L of which cannot be constrained any better than 0.15 dex with any indicators explored here. Finally, we explore the effects of the assumed prior distribution in SFHs and metallicity, finding them to be higher for color-based estimates.

Massive star formation in Wolf-Rayet galaxies: II. Optical spectroscopy results

(Abridged) We have performed a comprehensive multiwavelength analysis of a sample of 20 starburst galaxies that show the presence of a substantial population of very young massive stars. In this paper, the second of the series, we present the results of the analysis of long-slit intermediate-resolution spectroscopy of star-formation bursts for 16 galaxies of our sample. We study the spatial localization of the WR stars in each galaxy. We analyze the excitation mechanism and derive the reddening coefficient, physical conditions and chemical abundances of the ionized gas. We study the kinematics of the ionized gas to check the rotation/turbulence pattern of each system. When possible, tentative estimates of the Keplerian mass of the galaxies have been calculated. Our analysis has revealed that a substantial fraction of the galaxies show evidences of perturbed kinematics. With respect to the results found in individual galaxies, we remark the detection of objects with different metallicity and decoupled kinematics in Haro 15 and Mkn 1199, the finding of evidences of tidal streams in IRAS 08208+2816, Tol 9 and perhaps in SBS 1319+579, and the development of a merging process in SBS 0926+606 A and in Tol 1457-262. All these results reinforce the hypothesis that interactions with or between dwarf objects is a very important mechanism in the triggering of massive star formation in starburst galaxies, specially in dwarf ones. It must be highlighted that only deep and very detailed observationscan provide clear evidences that these subtle interaction processes are taking place.

Spacecraft calorimetry as a test of the dark matter scattering model for flyby anomalies [Cross-Listing]

In previous papers we have shown that scattering of spacecraft nucleons from dark matter gravitationally bound to the earth gives a possible explanation of the flyby velocity anomalies. In addition to flyby velocity changes arising from the average over the scattering cross section of the collision-induced nucleon velocity change, there will be spacecraft temperature increases arising from the mean squared fluctuation of the collision-induced velocity change. We give here a quantitative treatment of this effect, and suggest that careful calorimetry on spacecraft traversing the region below 70,000 km where the flyby velocity changes take place could verify, or at a minimum place significant constraints, on the dark matter scattering model.

Lyalpha versus X-ray heating in the high-z IGM

In this paper we examine the effect of X-ray and Lyalpha photons on the intergalactic medium temperature. We calculate the photon production from a population of stars and micro-quasars in a set of cosmological hydrodynamic simulations which self-consistently follow the dark matter dynamics, radiative processes as well as star formation, black hole growth and associated feedback processes. We find that, (i) IGM heating is always dominated by X-rays unless the Lyalpha photon contribution from stars in objects with mass M<10^8 Msun becomes significantly enhanced with respect to the X-ray contribution from BHs in the same halo (which we do not directly model). (ii) Without overproducing the unresolved X-ray background, the gas temperature becomes larger than the CMB temperature, and thus an associated 21 cm signal should be expected in emission, at z<11.5. We discuss how in such a scenario the transition redshift between a 21 cm signal in absorption and in emission could be used to constraint BHs accretion and associated feedback processes.

A real-time software backend for the GMRT

The new era of software signal processing has had a large impact on radio astronomy instrumentation. Our design and implementation of a 32 antennae, 33 MHz, dual polarization, fully real-time software backend for the GMRT, using only off-the-self components, is an example of this. We have built a correlator and a beamformer, using PCI-based ADC cards, a Linux cluster of 48 nodes with dual gigabit inter-node connectivity for real-time data transfer requirements. The highly optimized compute pipelines uses cache efficient, multi-threaded parallel code, with the aid of vectorized processing. This backend allows flexibility in final time and frequency resolutions, and ability to implement algorithms for radio frequency interference rejection. Our approach has allowed relatively rapid development of a fairly sophisticated and flexible backend receiver system for the GMRT, which will greatly enhance the productivity of the telescope. In this paper we describe some of the first lights using this software processing pipeline. We believe this is the first instance of such a real-time observatory backend for an intermediate sized array like the GMRT.

Gamma-ray Burst Luminosity Relations: Two-dimensional versus Three-dimensional Correlations

The large scatters of luminosity relations of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) have been one of the most important reasons that prevent the extensive applications of GRBs in cosmology. In this paper, we extend the two-dimensional (2D) luminosity relations with $\tau_{\mathrm{lag}}$, $V$, $E_{\mathrm{peak}}$, and $\tau_{\mathrm{RT}}$ as the luminosity indicators to three dimensions (3D) using the same set of luminosity indicators to explore the possibility of decreasing the intrinsic scatters. We find that, for the 3D luminosity relations between the luminosity and an energy scale ($E_{\mathrm{peak}}$) and a time scale ($\tau_{\mathrm{lag}}$ or $\tau_{\mathrm{RT}}$), their intrinsic scatters are considerably smaller than those of corresponding 2D luminosity relations. Enlightened by the result and the definition of the luminosity (energy released in units of time), we discussed possible reasons behind, which may give us helpful suggestions on seeking more precise luminosity relations for GRBs in the future.

Galaxy-CMB and galaxy-galaxy lensing on large scales: sensitivity to primordial non-Gaussianity

A convincing detection of primordial non-Gaussianity in the local form of the bispectrum, whose amplitude is given by the fNL parameter, offers a powerful test of inflation. In this paper we calculate the modification of two-point cross-correlation statistics of weak lensing – galaxy-galaxy lensing and galaxy-Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) cross-correlation – due to fNL. We derive and calculate the covariance matrix of galaxy-galaxy lensing including cosmic variance terms. We focus on large scales (l<100) for which the shape noise of the shear measurement becomes irrelevant and cosmic variance dominates the error budget. For a modest degree of non-Gaussianity, fNL=+/-50, modifications of the galaxy-galaxy lensing signal at the 10% level are seen on scales R~300 Mpc, and grow rapidly toward larger scales as \propto R^2. We also see a clear signature of the baryonic acoustic oscillation feature in the matter power spectrum at ~150 Mpc, which can be measured by next-generation lensing experiments. In addition we can probe the local-form primordial non-Gaussianity in the galaxy-CMB lensing signal by correlating the lensing potential reconstructed from CMB with high-z galaxies. For example, for fNL=+/-50, we find that the galaxy-CMB lensing cross power spectrum is modified by ~10% at l~40, and by a factor of two at l~10, for a population of galaxies at z=2 with a bias of 2. The effect is greater for more highly biased populations at larger z; thus, high-z galaxy surveys cross-correlated with CMB offer a yet another probe of primordial non-Gaussianity.

The Activity of the Neighbours of AGN and Starburst Galaxies: Towards an evolutionary sequence of AGN activity

We present a follow-up study of a series of papers concerning the role of close interactions as a possible triggering mechanism of the activity of AGN and starburst (SB) galaxies. We have already studied the close (<100 kpc) and the large scale (<1 Mpc) environment of Sy1, Sy2 and Bright IRAS galaxies and their respective control samples (Koulouridis et al.). The results led us to the conclusion that a close encounter appears capable of activating a sequence where a normal galaxy becomes first a starburst, then a Sy2 and finally a Sy1 galaxy. However since both galaxies of an interacting pair should be affected, we present here optical spectroscopy and X-ray imaging of the neighbouring galaxies around our Seyfert and BIRG galaxy samples. We find that more than 70% of all neighbouring galaxies exhibit thermal or/and nuclear activity (namely enhanced star formation, starbursting and/or AGN) and furthermore we discovered various trends regarding the type and strength of the neighbour’s activity with respect to the activity of the central galaxy, the most important of which is that the neighbours of Sy2 are systematically more ionized, and their straburst is younger, than the neighbours of Sy1s. Our results not only strengthen the link between close galaxy interactions and activity but also provide more clues regarding the evolutionary sequence inferred by previous results.

Automated search for star clusters in large multiband surveys: II. Discovery and investigation of open clusters in the Galactic plane

Automated search for star clusters in J,H,K_s data from 2MASS catalog has been performed using the method developed by Koposov et. al (2008). We have found and verified 153 new clusters in the interval of the galactic latitude -24 < b < 24 degrees. Color excesses E(B-V), distance moduli and ages were determined for 130 new and 14 yet-unstudied known clusters. In this paper, we publish a catalog of coordinates, diameters, and main parameters of all the clusters under study. A special web-site available at http://ocl.sai.msu.ru has been developed to facilitate dissemination and scientific usage of the results.

The local dust foregrounds in the microwave sky: I. Thermal emission spectra

Analyses of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation maps made by the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) have revealed anomalies not predicted by the standard inflationary cosmology. In particular, the power of the quadrupole moment of the CMB fluctuations is remarkably low, and the quadrupole and octopole moments are aligned mutually and with the geometry of the Solar system. It has been suggested in the literature that microwave sky pollution by an unidentified dust cloud in the vicinity of the Solar system may be the cause for these anomalies. In this paper, we simulate the thermal emission by clouds of spherical homogeneous particles of several materials. Spectral constraints from the WMAP multi-wavelength data and earlier infrared observations on the hypothetical dust cloud are used to determine the dust cloud’s physical characteristics. In order for its emissivity to demonstrate a flat, CMB-like wavelength dependence over the WMAP wavelengths (3 through 14 mm), and to be invisible in the infrared light, its particles must be macroscopic. Silicate spheres from several millimetres in size and carbonaceous particles an order of magnitude smaller will suffice. According to our estimates of the abundance of such particles in the Zodiacal cloud and trans-neptunian belt, yielding the optical depths of the order of 1E-7 for each cloud, the Solar-system dust can well contribute 10 microKelvin (within an order of magnitude) in the microwaves. This is not only intriguingly close to the magnitude of the anomalies (about 30 microKelvin), but also alarmingly above the presently believed magnitude of systematic biases of the WMAP results (below 5 microKelvin) and, to an even greater degree, of the future missions with higher sensitivities, e.g. PLANCK.

Peaks in the cosmological density field: parameter constraints from 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey data

We use the number density of peaks in the smoothed cosmological density field taken from the 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey to constrain parameters related to the power spectrum of mass fluctuations, n (the spectral index), dn/d(lnk) (rolling in the spectral index), and the neutrino mass, m_nu. In a companion paper we use N-body simulations to study how the peak density responds to changes in the power spectrum, the presence of redshift distortions and the relationship between galaxies and dark matter halos. In the present paper we make measurements of the peak density from 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey data, for a range of smoothing filter scales from 4-33 h^-1 Mpc. We use these measurements to constrain the cosmological parameters, finding n=1.36 (+0.75)(-0.64), m_nu < 1.76 eV, dn/d(lnk)=-0.012 (+0.192)(-0.208), at the 68 % confidence level, where m_nu is the total mass of three massive neutrinos. At 95% confidence we find m_nu< 2.48 eV. These measurements represent an alternative way to constrain cosmological parameters to the usual direct fits to the galaxy power spectrum, and are expected to be relatively insensitive to non-linear clustering evolution and galaxy biasing.

Some Exact Blowup Solutions to the Pressureless Euler Equations in R^N

The pressureless Euler equations can be used as simple models of cosmology or plasma physics. In this paper, we construct the exact solutions in non-radial symmetry to the pressureless Euler equations in $R^{N}$ where the arbitrary function $f\geq0$ and $f\in C^{1};$ $s\geq1$, $a_{1}>0$ and $a_{2}$ are constants. In particular, for $a_{2}<0$, the solutions blow up on the finite time $T=-a_{1}/a_{2}$. Moreover, the functions (\ref{eq234}) are also the solutions to the pressureless Navier-Stokes equations.

Measurement of the atmospheric muon flux with the NEMO Phase-1 detector [Replacement]

The NEMO Collaboration installed and operated an underwater detector including prototypes of the critical elements of a possible underwater km3 neutrino telescope: a four-floor tower (called Mini-Tower) and a Junction Box. The detector was developed to test some of the main systems of the km3 detector, including the data transmission, the power distribution, the timing calibration and the acoustic positioning systems as well as to verify the capabilities of a single tridimensional detection structure to reconstruct muon tracks. We present results of the analysis of the data collected with the NEMO Mini-Tower. The position of photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) is determined through the acoustic position system. Signals detected with PMTs are used to reconstruct the tracks of atmospheric muons. The angular distribution of atmospheric muons was measured and results compared with Monte Carlo simulations.

Measurement of the atmospheric muon flux with the NEMO Phase-1 detector

The NEMO Collaboration installed and operated an underwater detector including prototypes of the critical elements of a possible underwater km3 neutrino telescope: a four-floor tower (called Mini-Tower) and a Junction Box. The detector was developed to test some of the main systems of the km3 detector, including the data transmission, the power distribution, the timing calibration and the acoustic positioning systems as well as to verify the capabilities of a single tridimensional detection structure to reconstruct muon tracks. We present results of the analysis of the data collected with the NEMO Mini-Tower. The position of photomultiplier tubes (PMTs) is determined through the acoustic position system. Signals detected with PMTs are used to reconstruct the tracks of atmospheric muons. The angular distribution of atmospheric muons was measured and results compared with Monte Carlo simulations.

The Imperial IRAS-FSC Redshift Catalogue: luminosity functions, evolution and galaxy bias

We present the luminosity function and selection function of 60 micron galaxies selected from the Imperial IRAS-FSC Redshift Catalogue (IIFSCz). Three methods, including the 1/Vmax} and the parametric and non-parametric maximum likelihood estimator, are used and results agree well with each other. A density evolution proportional to (1+z)^3.4 or a luminosity evolution exp(1.7 t_L / \tau)$ where t_L is the look-back time is detected in the full sample in the redshift range [0.02, 0.1], consistent with previous analyses. Of the four infrared subpopulations, cirrus-type galaxies and M82-type starbursts show similar evolutionary trends, galaxies with significant AGN contributions show stronger positive evolution and Arp 220-type starbursts exhibit strong negative evolution. The dominant subpopulation changes from cirrus-type galaxies to M82-type starbursts at log (L_60 / L_Sun) ~ 10.3. In the second half of the paper, we derive the projected two-point spatial correlation function for galaxies of different infrared template type. The mean relative bias between cirrus-type galaxies and M82-type starbursts, which correspond to quiescent galaxies with optically thin interstellar dust and actively star-forming galaxies respectively, is calculated to be around 1.25. The relation between current star formation rate (SFR) in star-forming galaxies and environment is investigated by looking at the the dependence of clustering on infrared luminosity. We found that M82-type actively star-forming galaxies show stronger clustering as infrared luminosity / SFR increases. The correlation between clustering strength and SFR in the local Universe seems to echo the basic trend seen in star-forming galaxies in the Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS) fields at z ~ 1.

Time-dependent MHD shocks and line intensity ratios in the HH 30 jet: A focus on cooling function and numerical resolution

The coupling between time-dependent, multidimensional MHD numerical codes and radiative line emission is of utmost importance in the studies of the interplay between dynamical and radiative processes in many astrophysical environments, with particular interest for problems involving radiative shocks. There is a widespread consensus that line emitting knots observed in Herbig-Haro jets can be interpreted as radiative shocks. In this paper we address two different aspects relevant to the time-dependent calculations of the line intensity ratios of forbidden transitions, resulting from the excitation by planar, time-dependent radiative shocks traveling in a stratified medium. The first one concerns the impact of the radiation and ionization processes included in the cooling model, and the second one the effects of the numerical grid resolution. In this paper we apply the AMR methodology to the treatment of radiating shocks and show how this method is able to vastly reduce the integration time. The technique is applied to the knots of the HH 30 jet to obtain the observed line intensity ratios and derive the physical parameters, such as density, temperature and ionization fraction. We consider the impact of two different cooling functions and different grid resolutions on the results. We conclude that the use of different cooling routines has effects on results whose weight depends upon the line ratio considered. Moreover, we find the minimum numerical resolution of the simulation grid behind the shock to achieve convergence in the results. This is crucial for the forthcoming 2D calculations of radiative shocks.

Radio counterpart of the lensed sub-mm emission in the cluster MS0451.6-0305: new evidence for the merger scenario

SMM J04542-0301 is an extended (~1 arcmin) sub-mm source located near the core of the cluster MS0451.6-0305. It has been suggested that part of its emission arises from the interaction between a LBG and two EROs at z~2.9 that are multiply-imaged. However, the dramatic resolution difference between the sub-mm map and the optical/NIR images make it difficult to confirm this hypothesis. In this paper, we present a deep (~ 10 microJy/beam), high resolution (~2 arcsec) 1.4 GHz radio map of the cluster core, in which we have identified 6 sources located within SMM J04542-0301. The strong lensing effect in the radio data has been quantified by constructing a new lens model of the cluster. The brightest and most extended of these sources (RJ) is located in the middle of the sub-mm emission, and has no obvious counterpart in the optical/NIR. Three other detections (E1, E2 and E3) seem to be associated with the images of one of the EROs. The last two detections (CR1 and CR2), for which no optical/NIR counterpart have been found, seem to constitute two relatively compact emitting regions embedded in a ~5 arcsec extended radio source located at the position of the sub-mm peak. The presence of this extended component can only be explained if it is being produced by a lensed region of dust obscured star formation in the center of the merger. A comparison between the radio and sub-mm data at the same resolution suggests that E1, E2, E3, CR1 and CR2 are associated with the sub-mm emission. The radio observations provide strong observational evidence in favor of the merger hypothesis. However, the question if RJ is also contributing to the observed sub-mm emission remains open. These results illustrate the promising prospects for radio interferometry and strong gravitational lensing to study the internal structure of SMGs.

Reconstructing quintom from WMAP 5-year observations: Generalized ghost condensate

In the 5-year WMAP data analysis, a new parametrization form for dark energy equation-of-state was used, and it has been shown that the equation-of-state, $w(z)$, crosses the cosmological-constant boundary $w=-1$. Based on this observation, in this paper, we investigate the reconstruction of quintom dark energy model. As a single-real-scalar-field model of dark energy, the generalized ghost condensate model provides us with a successful mechanism for realizing the quintom-like behavior. Therefore, we reconstruct this scalar-field quintom dark energy model from the WMAP 5-year observational results. As a comparison, we also discuss the quintom reconstruction based on other specific dark energy ansatzs, such as the CPL parametrization and the holographic dark energy scenarios.

The mass distribution of a moderate redshift galaxy group and brightest group galaxy from gravitational lensing and kinematics

The gravitational lens system CLASS B2108+213 has two radio-loud lensed images separated by 4.56 arcsec. The relatively large image separation implies that the lensing is caused by a group of galaxies. In this paper, new optical imaging and spectroscopic data for the lensing galaxies of B2108+213 and the surrounding field galaxies are presented. These data are used to investigate the mass and composition of the lensing structure. The redshift and stellar velocity dispersion of the main lensing galaxy (G1) are found to be z = 0.3648 +/- 0.0002 and sigma_v = 325 +/- 25 km/s, respectively. The optical spectrum of the lensed quasar shows no obvious emission or absorption features and is consistent with a BL Lac type radio source. However, the tentative detection of the G-band and Mg-b absorption lines, and a break in the spectrum of the host galaxy of the lensed quasar gives a likely source redshift of z = 0.67. Spectroscopy of the field around B2108+213 finds 51 galaxies at a similar redshift to G1, thus confirming that there is a much larger structure at z ~ 0.365 associated with this system. The width of the group velocity distribution is 694 +/- 93 km/s, but is non-Gaussian, implying that the structure is not yet viralized. The main lensing galaxy is also the brightest group member and has a surface brightness profile consistent with a typical cD galaxy. A lensing and dynamics analysis of the mass distribution, which also includes the newly found group members, finds that the logarithmic slope of the mass density profile is on average isothermal inside the Einstein radius, but steeper at the location of the Einstein radius. This apparent change in slope can be accounted for if an external convergence gradient, representing the underlying parent halo of the galaxy group, is included in the mass model.

Particle Acceleration at Relativistic Shocks in Extragalactic Systems

Diffusive shock acceleration (DSA) at relativistic shocks is expected to be an important acceleration mechanism in a variety of astrophysical objects including extragalactic jets in active galactic nuclei and gamma ray bursts. These sources remain strong and interesting candidate sites for the generation of ultra-high energy cosmic rays. In this paper, key predictions of DSA at relativistic shocks that are salient to the issue of cosmic ray ion and electron production are outlined. Results from a Monte Carlo simulation of such diffusive acceleration in test-particle, relativistic, oblique, MHD shocks are presented. Simulation output is described for both large angle and small angle scattering scenarios, and a variety of shock obliquities including superluminal regimes when the de Hoffman-Teller frame does not exist. The distribution function power-law indices compare favorably with results from other techniques. They are found to depend sensitively on the mean magnetic field orientation in the shock, and the nature of MHD turbulence that propagates along fields in shock environs. An interesting regime of flat spectrum generation is addressed, providing evidence for its origin being due to shock drift acceleration. The impact of these theoretical results on gamma-ray burst and blazar science is outlined. Specifically, Fermi gamma-ray observations of these cosmic sources are already providing significant constraints on important environmental quantities for relativistic shocks, namely the frequency of scattering and the level of field turbulence.

Dense and warm molecular gas in the envelopes and outflows of southern low-mass protostars

Observations of dense molecular gas lie at the basis of our understanding of the density and temperature structure of protostellar envelopes and molecular outflows. We aim to characterize the properties of the protostellar envelope, molecular outflow and surrounding cloud, through observations of high excitation molecular lines within a sample of 16 southern sources presumed to be embedded YSOs. Observations of submillimeter lines of CO, HCO+ and their isotopologues, both single spectra and small maps were taken with the FLASH and APEX-2a instruments mounted on APEX to trace the gas around the sources. The HARP-B instrument on the JCMT was used to map IRAS 15398-3359 in these lines. HCO+ mapping probes the presence of dense centrally condensed gas, a characteristic of protostellar envelopes. The rare isotopologues C18O and H13CO+ are also included to determine the optical depth, column density, and source velocity. The combination of multiple CO transitions, such as 3-2, 4-3 and 7-6, allows to constrain outflow properties, in particular the temperature. Archival submillimeter continuum data are used to determine envelope masses. Eleven of the sixteen sources have associated warm and/or dense quiescent as characteristic of protostellar envelopes, or an associated outflow. Using the strength and degree of concentration of the HCO+ 4-3 and CO 4-3 lines as a diagnostic, five sources classified as Class I based on their spectral energy distributions are found not to be embedded YSOs. The C18O 3-2 lines show that for none of the sources, foreground cloud layers are present. Strong molecular outflows are found around six sources, .. (continued in paper)

A comparison of measured and simulated solar network contrast

Long-term trends in the solar spectral irradiance are important to determine the impact on Earth’s climate. These long-term changes are thought to be caused mainly by changes in the surface area covered by small-scale magnetic elements. The direct measurement of the contrast to determine the impact of these small-scale magnetic elements is, however, limited to a few wavelengths, and is, even for space instruments, affected by scattered light and instrument defocus. In this work we calculate emergent intensities from 3-D simulations of solar magneto-convection and validate the outcome by comparing with observations from Hinode/SOT. In this manner we aim to construct the contrast at wavelengths ranging from the NUV to the FIR.

How can a Negative Magnetic Helicity Active Region Generate a Positive Helicity Magnetic Cloud ?

The geoeffective magnetic cloud (MC) of 20 November 2003, has been associated to the 18 November 2003, solar active events in previous studies. In some of these, it was estimated that the magnetic helicity carried by the MC had a positive sign, as well as its solar source, active region (AR) NOAA 10501. In this paper we show that the large-scale magnetic field of AR 10501 had a negative helicity sign. Since coronal mass ejections (CMEs) are one of the means by which the Sun ejects magnetic helicity excess into the interplanetary space, the signs of magnetic helicity in the AR and MC should agree. Therefore, this finding contradicts what is expected from magnetic helicity conservation. However, using for the first time correct helicity density maps to determine the spatial distribution of magnetic helicity injection, we show the existence of a localized flux of positive helicity in the southern part of AR 10501. We conclude that positive helicity was ejected from this portion of the AR leading to the observed positive helicity MC.

Network Tools for Astronomical Data Retrieval

The first step in a science project is the acquisition and understanding of the relevant data. This paper outlines the results of a project to design and test network tools specifically oriented at retrieving astronomical data. The tools range from simple data transfer methods to more complex browser-emulating scripts. When integrated with a defined sample or catalog, these scripts provide seamless techniques to retrieve and store data of varying types. Examples are given on how these tools can be used to leapfrog from website to website to acquire multi-wavelength datasets. This project demonstrates the capability to use multiple data websites, in conjunction, to perform the type of calculations once reserved for on-site datasets.

Characterization of CoRoT Target Fields with the Berlin Exoplanet Search Telescope: Identification of Periodic Variable Stars in the LRa1 Field

In this paper, we report on observations of the CoRoT LRa1 field with the Berlin Exoplanet Search Telescope (BEST). The current paper is part of a series of papers describing the results of our stellar variability survey. The BEST is a small aperture telescope with a wide field of view (FOV). It is dedicated to searching for stellar variability within the target fields of the CoRoT space mission to aid in minimizing false-alarm rates and identify potential targets for additional science. The LRa1 field is CoRoT’s second long run field located in the galactic anticenter direction. We observed the LRa1 stellar field on 23 nights between November and March 2005/2006. From 6099 stars marked as variable, 39 were classified as periodic variable stars and 27 of them are within the CoRoT FOV. We also confirmed the variability for four stars listed in the General Catalogue of Variable Stars (GCVS).

The quest for the solar g modes [Replacement]

Solar gravity modes (or g modes) — oscillations of the solar interior for which buoyancy acts as the restoring force — have the potential to provide unprecedented inference on the structure and dynamics of the solar core, inference that is not possible with the well observed acoustic modes (or p modes). The high amplitude of the g-mode eigenfunctions in the core and the evanesence of the modes in the convection zone make the modes particularly sensitive to the physical and dynamical conditions in the core. Owing to the existence of the convection zone, the g modes have very low amplitudes at photospheric levels, which makes the modes extremely hard to detect. In this paper, we review the current state of play regarding attempts to detect g modes. We review the theory of g modes, including theoretical estimation of the g-mode frequencies, amplitudes and damping rates. Then we go on to discuss the techniques that have been used to try to detect g modes. We review results in the literature, and finish by looking to the future, and the potential advances that can be made — from both data and data-analysis perspectives — to give unambiguous detections of individual g modes. The review ends by concluding that, at the time of writing, there is indeed a consensus amongst the authors that there is currently no undisputed detection of solar g modes.

The quest for the solar g modes

Solar gravity modes (or g modes) — oscillations of the solar interior for which buoyancy acts as the restoring force — have the potential to provide unprecedented inference on the structure and dynamics of the solar core, inference that is not possible with the well observed acoustic modes (or p modes). The high amplitude of the g-mode eigenfunctions in the core and the evanesence of the modes in the convection zone make the modes particularly sensitive to the physical and dynamical conditions in the core. Owing to the existence of the convection zone, the g modes have very low amplitudes at photospheric levels, which makes the modes extremely hard to detect. In this paper, we review the current state of play regarding attempts to detect g modes. We review the theory of g modes, including theoretical estimation of the g-mode frequencies, amplitudes and damping rates. Then we go on to discuss the techniques that have been used to try to detect g modes. We review results in the literature, and finish by looking to the future, and the potential advances that can be made — from both data and data-analysis perspectives — to give unambiguous detections of individual g modes. The review ends by concluding that, at the time of writing, there is indeed a consensus amongst the authors that there is currently no undisputed detection of solar g modes.

A new tool to determine masses and mass profiles using gravitational flexion

In a recent publication, an aperture mass statistic for gravitational flexion was derived and shown to be effective, at least with simulated data, in detecting massive structures and substructures within clusters of galaxies. Further, it was suggested that the radius at which the flexion aperture mass signal falls to zero might allow for estimation of the mass or density profile of the structures detected. In this paper, we more fully explore this possibility, considering the behaviour both of the peak signal and the zero-signal contours for two mass models–the singular isothermal sphere and Navarro-Frenk-White profiles–under varying aperture size, filter shape and mass concentration parameter. We demonstrate the effectiveness of the flexion aperture mass statistic in discriminating between mass profiles and concentration parameters, and in providing an accurate estimate of the mass of the lens, to within a factor of 2 or better.

Rings and spirals in barred galaxies. II. Ring and spiral morphology

In this series of papers, we propose a theory to explain the formation and properties of rings and spirals in barred galaxies. The building blocks of these structures are orbits guided by the manifolds emanating from the unstable Lagrangian points located near the ends of the bar. In this paper we focus on a comparison of the morphology of observed and of theoretical spirals and rings and we also give some predictions for further comparisons. Our theory can account for spirals as well as both inner and outer rings. The model outer rings have the observed $R_1$, $R_1′$, $R_2$, $R_2′$ and $R_1R_2$ morphologies, including the dimples near the direction of the bar major axis. We explain why the vast majority of spirals in barred galaxies are two armed and trailing, and discuss what it would take for higher multiplicity arms to form. We show that the shapes of observed and theoretical spirals agree and we predict that stronger non-axisymmetric forcings at and somewhat beyond corotation will drive more open spirals. We compare the ratio of ring diameters in theory and in observations and predict that more elliptical rings will correspond to stronger forcings. We find that the model potential may influence strongly the numerical values of these ratios.

Plasma heating in the very early phase of solar flares

In this paper we analyze soft and hard X-ray emission of the 2002 September 20 M1.8 GOES class solar flare observed by RHESSI and GOES satellites. In this flare event, soft X-ray emission precedes the onset of the main bulk hard X-ray emission by ~5 min. This suggests that an additional heating mechanism may be at work at the early beginning of the flare. However RHESSI spectra indicate presence of the non-thermal electrons also before impulsive phase. So, we assumed that a dominant energy transport mechanism during rise phase of solar flares is electron beam-driven evaporation. We used non-thermal electron beams derived from RHESSI spectra as the heating source in a hydrodynamic model of the analyzed flare. We showed that energy delivered by non-thermal electron beams is sufficient to heat the flare loop to temperatures in which it emits soft X-ray closely following the GOES 1-8 A light-curve. We also analyze the number of non-thermal electrons, the low energy cut-off, electron spectral indices and the changes of these parameters with time.

The far future of exoplanet direct characterization [Replacement]

In this outlook we describe what could be the next steps of the direct characterization of habitable exoplanets after first the medium and large mission projects and investigate the benefits of the spectroscopic and direct imaging approaches. We show that after third and fourth generation missions foreseeable for the next 100 years, we will face a very long era before being able to see directly the morphology of extrasolar organisms.

The far future of exoplanet direct characterizaion

In this outlook we describe what could be the next steps of the direct characterization of habitable exoplanets after first the medium and large mission projects and investigate the benefits of the spectroscopic and direct imaging approaches. We show that after third and fourth generation missions foreseeable for the next 100 years, we will face a very long era before being able to see directly the morphology of extrasolar organisms.

Modelling the orientation of accretion disks in quasars using H-alpha emission

Infrared spectroscopy of the H-alpha emission lines of a sub-sample of 19 high-redshift (0.8 < z < 2.3) Molonglo quasars, selected at 408 MHz, is presented. These emission lines are fitted with composite models of broad and narrow emission, which include combinations of classical broad-line regions of fast-moving gas clouds lying outside the quasar nucleus, and/or a theoretical model of emission from an optically-thick, flattened, rotating accretion disk. All bar one of the nineteen sources are found to have emission consistent with the presence of an optically-emitting accretion disk, with the exception appearing to display complex emission including at least three broad components. Ten of the quasars have strong Bayesian evidence for broad-line emission arising from an accretion disk together with a standard broad-line region, selected in preference to a model with two simple broad lines. Thus the best explanation for the complexity required to fit the broad H-alpha lines in this sample is optical emission from an accretion disk in addition to a region of fast-moving clouds. We derive estimates of the angle between the rotation axis of the accretion disk and the line of sight. A weak correlation is found between the accretion disk angle and the logarithm of the low-frequency radio luminosity. This is direct, albeit tenuous, evidence for the receding torus model. Velocity shifts of the broad H-alpha components are analysed and the results found to be consistent with a two-component model comprising one single-peaked broad line emitted at the same redshift as the narrow lines, and emission from an accretion disk which appears to be preferentially redshifted with respect to the narrow lines for high-redshift sources and blueshifted relative to the narrow lines for low-redshift sources.

The FERRUM project: Transition probabilities for forbidden lines in [FeII] and experimental metastable lifetimes

Accurate transition probabilities for forbidden lines are important diagnostic parameters for low-density astrophysical plasmas. In this paper we present experimental atomic data for forbidden [FeII] transitions that are observed as strong features in astrophysical spectra. Aims: To measure lifetimes for the 3d^6(^3G)4s a ^4G_{11/2} and 3d^6(^3D)4s b ^4D_{1/2} metastable levels in FeII and experimental transition probabilities for the forbidden transitions 3d^7 a ^4F_{7/2,9/2}- 3d^6(^3G)4s a ^4G_{11/2}. Methods: The lifetimes were measured at the ion storage ring facility CRYRING using a laser probing technique. Astrophysical branching fractions were obtained from spectra of Eta Carinae, obtained with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph onboard the Hubble Space Telescope. The lifetimes and branching fractions were combined to yield absolute transition probabilities. Results: The lifetimes of the a ^4G_{11/2} and the b ^4D_{1/2} levels have been measured and have the following values, 0.75(10) s and 0.54(3) s respectively. Furthermore, we have determined the transition probabilities for two forbidden transitions of a ^4F_{7/2,9/2}- a ^4G_{11/2} at 4243.97 and 4346.85 A. Both the lifetimes and the transition probabilities are compared to calculated values in the literature.

High Energy Photons From Gamma Ray Bursts

Emission of high energy (HE) photons above 100 MeV that is delayed and lasts much longer than the prompt MeV emission has been detected from several long duration gamma ray bursts (LGRBs) and short hard bursts (SHBs) by the Compton, Fermi and AGILE gamma ray observatories. In this paper we show that the main observed properties of this HE emission are those predicted by the cannonball (CB) model of GRBs: In the CB model all the observed radiations in a GRB are produced by the interaction of a highly relativistic jet of plasmoids (CBs) with the environment. The prompt X-ray and MeV $\gamma$-ray pulses are produced by inverse Compton scattering (ICS) of glory photons -photons scattered/emitted into a cavity created by the wind/ejecta blown from the progenitor star or a companion star long before the GRB- by the thermal electrons in the CBs. A simultaneous optical and high energy emission begins shortly after each MeV pulse when the CB collides with the wind/ejecta, and continues during the deceleration of the CB in the interstellar medium. The optical emission is dominated by synchrotron radiation (SR) from the swept-in and knocked-on electrons which are Fermi accelerated to high energies by the turbulent magnetic fields in the CBs, while ICS of these SR photons dominates the emission of HE photons. The lightcurves of the optical and HE emissions have approximately the same temporal behaviour but have different power-law spectra. The emission of very high energy (VHE) photons above 100 TeV is dominated by the decay of $\pi^0$’s produced in hadronic collisions of Fermi accelerated protons in the CBs. The CB model explains well all the observed radiations, including the high energy radiation from both LGRBs and SHBs as demonstrated here for GRB 090902B and SHB 090510.

Soft gamma-ray optics: new Laue lens design and performance estimates

Laue lenses are an emerging technology based on diffraction in crystals that allows the concentration of soft gamma rays. This kind of optics that works in the 100 keV – 1.5 MeV band can be used to realize an high-sensitivity and high-angular resolution telescope (in a narrow field of view). This paper reviews the recent progresses that have been done in the development of efficient crystals, in the design study and in the modelisation of the answer of Laue lenses. Through the example of a new concept of 20 m focal length lens focusing in the 100 keV – 600 keV band, the performance of a telescope based on a Laue lens is presented. This lens uses the most efficient mosaic crystals in each sub-energy range in order to yield the maximum reflectivity. Imaging capabilities are investigated and shows promising results.

Searching for Faint Planetary Nebulae Using the Digital Sky Survey

Recent Halpha surveys such as SHS and IPHAS have improved the completeness of the Galactic planetary nebula (PN) census. We now know of ~3,000 PNe in the Galaxy, but this is far short of most estimates, typically ~25,000 or more for the total population. The size of the Galactic PN population is required to derive an accurate estimate of the chemical enrichment rates of nitrogen, carbon, and helium. In addition, a high PN count (~20,000) is strong evidence that most 1-8 Msun main sequence stars will go through a PN phase, while a low count (<10,000) argues that special conditions (e.g., a close binary interaction) are required to form a PN. We describe a technique for finding hundreds more PNe using the existing data collections of the digital sky surveys, thereby improving the census of Galactic PNe.

Visible spectroscopy of the new ESO Large Program on trans-Neptunian objects and Centaurs: final results

A second large programme (LP) for the physical studies of TNOs and Centaurs, started at ESO Cerro Paranal on October 2006 to obtain high-quality data, has recently been concluded. In this paper we present the spectra of these pristine bodies obtained in the visible range during the last two semesters of the LP. We investigate the spectral behaviour of the TNOs and Centaurs observed, and we analyse the spectral slopes distribution of the full data set coming from this LP and from the literature. We computed the spectral slope for each observed object, and searched for possible weak absorption features. A statistical analysis was performed on a total sample of 73 TNOs and Centaurs to look for possible correlations between dynamical classes, orbital parameters, and spectral gradient. We obtained new spectra for 28 bodies, 15 of which were observed for the first time. All the new presented spectra are featureless, including 2003 AZ84, for which a faint and broad absorption band possibly attributed to hydrated silicates on its surface has been reported. The data confirm a wide variety of spectral behaviours, with neutral–grey to very red gradients. An analysis of the spectral slopes available from this LP and in the literature for a total sample of 73 Centaurs and TNOs shows that there is a lack of very red objects in the classical population. We present the results of the statistical analysis of the spectral slope distribution versus orbital parameters. In particular, we confirm a strong anticorrelation between spectral slope and orbital inclination for the classical population. A strong correlation is also found between the spectral slope and orbital eccentricity for resonant TNOs, with objects having higher spectral slope values with increasing eccentricity.

Laboratory Studies for Planetary Sciences. A Planetary Decadal Survey White Paper Prepared by the American Astronomical Society (AAS) Working Group on Laboratory Astrophysics (WGLA)

The WGLA of the AAS (http://www.aas.org/labastro/) promotes collaboration and exchange of knowledge between astronomy and planetary sciences and the laboratory sciences (physics, chemistry, and biology). Laboratory data needs of ongoing and next generation planetary science missions are carefully evaluated and recommended in this white paper submitted by the WGLA to Planetary Decadal Survey.

Pressure Support vs. Thermal Broadening in the Lyman-alpha Forest I: Effects of the Equation of State on Longitudinal Structure [Replacement]

In the low density intergalactic medium (IGM) that gives rise to the Lyman-alpha forest, gas temperature and density are tightly correlated. The velocity scale of thermal broadening and the Hubble flow across the gas Jeans scale are of similar magnitude (Hlambda_J ~ sigma_th). To separate the effects of gas pressure support and thermal broadening on the Lya forest, we compare spectra extracted from two smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations evolved with different photoionization heating rates (and thus different Jeans scales), imposing different temperature-density relations on the evolved particle distributions. The turnover scales in the flux power spectrum and flux autocorrelation function are determined mainly by thermal broadening rather than pressure. However, the insensitivity to pressure arises partly from a cancellation effect with a sloped temperature-density relation (T ~ rho^{0.6} in our simulations): the high density peaks in the colder, lower pressure simulation are less smoothed by pressure support than in the hotter simulation, and it is this higher density gas that experiences the strongest thermal broadening. Changes in thermal broadening and pressure support have comparably important effects on the flux probability distribution (PDF), which responds directly to the gas overdensity distribution rather than the scale on which it is smooth. Tests on a lower resolution simulation show that our statistical results are converged even at this lower resolution. While thermal broadening generally dominates the longitudinal structure in the Lya forest, we show in Paper II that pressure support determines the transverse coherence of the forest observed towards close quasar pairs. [ABRIDGED]

Giant Planet Atmospheres and Spectra

Direct measurements of the spectra of extrasolar giant planets are the keys to determining their physical and chemical nature. The goal of theory is to provide the tools and context with which such data are understood. It is only by putting spectral observations through the sieve of theory that the promise of exoplanet research can be realized. With the new {\em Spitzer} and HST data of transiting "hot Jupiters," we have now dramatically entered the era of remote sensing. We are probing their atmospheric compositions and temperature profiles, are constraining their atmospheric dynamics, and are investigating their phase light curves. Soon, many non-transiting exoplanets with wide separations (analogs of Jupiter) will be imaged and their light curves and spectra measured. In this paper, we present the basic physics, chemistry, and spectroscopy necessary to model the current direct detections and to develop the more sophisticated theories for both close-in and wide-separation extrasolar giant planets that will be needed in the years to come as exoplanet research accelerates into its future.

 

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