Time Dependent Models of Magnetospheric Accretion onto Young Stars [SSA]


Accretion onto Classical T Tauri stars is thought to take place through the action of magnetospheric processes, with gas in the inner disk being channeled onto the star’s surface by the stellar magnetic field lines. Young stars are known to accrete material in a time-variable manner and the source of this variability remains an open problem, particularly on the shortest (~ day) timescales. Using one-dimensional time-dependent numerical simulations that follow the field line geometry, we find that for plausibly realistic young stars, steady-state transonic accretion occurs naturally in the absence of any other source of variability. However, we show that if the density in the inner disk varies smoothly in time with ~ day long time-scales (e.g., due to turbulence) this complication can lead to the development of shocks in the accretion column. These shocks propagate along the accretion column and ultimately hit the star, leading to rapid, large amplitude changes in the accretion rate. We argue that when these shocks hit the star the observed time-dependence will be a rapid increase in accretion luminosity followed by a slower decline and could be an explanation for some of the short period variability observed in accreting young stars. Our one-dimensional approach bridges previous analytic work to more complicated, multi-dimensional simulations, and observations.

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C. Robinson, J. Owen, C. Espaillat, et. al.
Fri, 17 Mar 17

Comments: 16 Pages, 12 figures

Gaps in Globular Cluster Streams: Pal 5 and the Galactic Bar [GA]


Recent Pan-STARRS data show that the leading arm from the globular cluster Palomar 5 (Pal 5) appears shorter than the trailing arm, while simulations of Pal 5 predict similar angular extents. We demonstrate that including the spinning Galactic bar with appropriate pattern speeds in the dynamical modeling of Pal 5 can reproduce the Pan-STARRS data. As the bar sweeps by, some stream stars experience a difference in net torques near pericenter. This leads to the formation of apparent gaps along Pal 5’s tidal streams and these gaps grow due to an energy offset from the rest of the stream members. We conclude that only streams orbiting far from the Galactic center or streams on retrograde orbits (with respect to the bar) can be used to unambiguously constrain dark matter subhalo interactions. Additionally, we expect that the Pal 5 leading arm debris should re-appear south of the Pan-STARRS density truncation.

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S. Pearson, A. Price-Whelan and K. Johnston
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 5 Figures, 1 Table, submitted

Searching For Pulsars Associated With the Fermi GeV Excess [HEAP]


The Fermi Large Area Telescope has detected an extended region of GeV emission toward the Galactic Center that is currently thought to be powered by dark matter annihilation or a population of young and/or millisecond pulsars. In a test of the pulsar hypothesis, we have carried out an initial search of a 20 deg**2 area centered on the peak of the galactic center GeV excess. Candidate pulsars were identified as a compact, steep spectrum continuum radio source on interferometric images and followed with targeted single-dish pulsation searches. We report the discovery of the recycled pulsar PSR 1751-2737 with a spin period of 2.23 ms. PSR 1751-2737 appears to be an isolated recycled pulsar located within the disk of our Galaxy, and it is not part of the putative bulge population of pulsars that are thought to be responsible for the excess GeV emission. However, our initial success in this small pilot survey suggests that this hybrid method (i.e. wide-field interferometric imaging followed up with single dish pulsation searches) may be an efficient alternative strategy for testing whether a putative bulge population of pulsars is responsible for the GeV excess.

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D. Bhakta, J. Deneva, D. Frail, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: MNRAS, in press

Growth and dissolution of spherical density enhancements in SCDEW cosmologies [CEA]


Strongly Coupled Dark Energy plus Warm dark matter (SCDEW) cosmologies are based on the finding of a conformally invariant (CI) attractor solution during the early radiative expansion, requiring then the stationary presence of $\sim 1\, \%$ of coupled-DM and DE, since inflationary reheating. In these models, coupled-DM fluctuations, even in the early radiative expansion, grow up to non-linearity, as shown in a previous associated paper. Such early non-linear stages are modelized here through the evolution of a top-hat density enhancement. As expected, its radius $R$ increases up to a maximum and then starts to decrease. Virial balance is reached when the coupled-DM density contrast is just 25-26 and DM density enhancement is $\cal O$$(10\, \%)$ of total density. We show that this is not an equilibrium configuration, for a fluctuation of coupled-DM as, afterwards, $R$ restarts to increase, until the fluctuation dissolves. We estimate the duration of the whole process, from horizon crossing to dissolution, and find $z_{horizon}/z_{erasing} \sim 3 \times 10^4$. Therefore, only fluctuations entering the horizon at $z \lesssim 10^9$-$10^{10}$ are able to accrete WDM with mass $\sim 100\, $eV -as soon as it becomes non-relativistic- so avoiding full disruption. Accordingly, SCDEW cosmologies, whose WDM has mass $\sim 100\, $eV, can preserve primeval fluctuations down to stellar mass scale.

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S. Bonometto and R. Mainini
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 16 pages, 8 figures

Evidence of chaotic modes in the analysis of four delta Scuti stars [SSA]


Since CoRoT observations unveiled the very low amplitude modes that form a flat plateau in the power spectrum structure of delta Scuti stars, the nature of this phenomenon, including the possibility of spurious signals due to the light curve analysis, has been a matter of long-standing scientific debate. We contribute to this debate by finding the structural parameters of a sample of four delta Scuti stars, CID 546, CID 3619, CID 8669, and KIC 5892969, and looking for a possible relation between these stars’ structural parameters and their power spectrum structure. For the purposes of characterization, we developed a method of studying and analysing the power spectrum with high precision and have applied it to both CoRoT and Kepler light curves. We obtain the best estimates to date of these stars’ structural parameters. Moreover, we observe that the power spectrum structure depends on the inclination, oblateness, and convective efficiency of each star. Our results suggest that the power spectrum structure is real and is possibly formed by 2-period island modes and chaotic modes.

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S. Forteza, T. Cortes, A. Hernandez, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: N/A

An Approximate Analytic Model of a Star Cluster with Potential Escapers [GA]


In the context of a star cluster moving on a circular galactic orbit, a “potential escaper” is a cluster star that has orbital energy greater than the escape energy, and yet is confined within the Jacobi radius of the stellar system. On the other hand analytic models of stellar clusters typically have a truncation energy equal to the cluster escape energy, and therefore explicitly exclude these energetically unbound stars. Starting from the landmark analysis performed by Henon of periodic orbits of the circular Hill equations, we present a numerical exploration of the population of “non-escapers”, defined here as those stars which remain within two Jacobi radii for several galactic periods, with energy above the escape energy. We show that they can be characterised by the Jacobi integral and two further approximate integrals, which are based on perturbation theory and ideas drawn from Lidov-Kozai theory. Finally we use these results to construct an approximate analytic model that includes a phase space description of a population resembling that of potential escapers, in addition to the usual bound population.

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K. Daniel, D. Heggie and A. Varri
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 23 pages, 19 figures, 1 table

Searching for planetary signals in Doppler time series: a performance evaluation of tools for periodograms analysis [EPA]


We carry out a comparative analysis of the performance of three algorithms widely used to identify significant periodicities in radial-velocity (RV) datasets: the Generalised Lomb-Scargle Periodogram (GLS), its modified version based on Bayesian statistics (BGLS), and the multi-frequency periodogram scheme called FREquency DEComposer (FREDEC). We apply the algorithms to a suite of numerical simulations of (single and multiple) low-amplitude Keplerian RV signals induced by low-mass companions around M-dwarf primaries. The global performance of the three period search approaches is quite similar in the limit of an idealized, best-case scenario (single planets, circular orbits, white noise). However, GLS, BGLS and FREDEC are not equivalent when it comes to the correct identification of more complex signals (including correlated noise of stellar origin, eccentric orbits, multiple planets), with variable degrees of efficiency loss as a function of system parameters and degradation in completeness and reliability levels. The largest discrepancy is recorded in the number of false detections: the standard approach of residual analyses adopted for GLS and BGLS translates in large fractions of false alarms ($\sim30\%$) in the case of multiple systems, as opposed to $\sim10\%$ for the FREDEC approach of simultaneous multi-frequency search. Our results reinforce the need for the strengthening and further development of the most aggressive and effective {\it ab initio} strategies for the robust identification of low-amplitude planetary signals in RV datasets, particularly now that RV surveys are beginning to achieve sensitivity to potentially habitable Earth-mass planets around late-type stars.

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M. Pinamonti, A. Sozzetti, A. Bonomo, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 11 pages, 10 figures

A Comprehensive Library of X-ray Pulsars in the Small Magellanic Cloud: Time Evolution of their Luminosities and Spin Periods [HEAP]


We have collected and analyzed the complete archive of {\itshape XMM-Newton\} (116), {\itshape Chandra\} (151), and {\itshape RXTE\} (952) observations of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), spanning 1997-2014. The resulting observational library provides a comprehensive view of the physical, temporal and statistical properties of the SMC pulsar population across the luminosity range of $L_X= 10^{31.2}$–$10^{38}$~erg~s$^{-1}$. From a sample of 67 pulsars we report $\sim$1654 individual pulsar detections, yielding $\sim$1260 pulse period measurements. Our pipeline generates a suite of products for each pulsar detection: spin period, flux, event list, high time-resolution light-curve, pulse-profile, periodogram, and spectrum. Combining all three satellites, we generated complete histories of the spin periods, pulse amplitudes, pulsed fractions and X-ray luminosities. Some pulsars show variations in pulse period due to the combination of orbital motion and accretion torques. Long-term spin-up/down trends are seen in 12/11 pulsars respectively, pointing to sustained transfer of mass and angular momentum to the neutron star on decadal timescales. Of the sample 30 pulsars have relatively very small spin period derivative and may be close to equilibrium spin. The distributions of pulse-detection and flux as functions of spin-period provide interesting findings: mapping boundaries of accretion-driven X-ray luminosity, and showing that fast pulsars ($P<$10 s) are rarely detected, which yet are more prone to giant outbursts. Accompanying this paper is an initial public release of the library so that it can be used by other researchers. We intend the library to be useful in driving improved models of neutron star magnetospheres and accretion physics.

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J. Yang, S. Laycock, D. Christodoulou, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 17 pages, 11 + 58 (appendix) figures. To appear in the Astrophysical Journal Supplement

Relativistic Turbulence with Strong Synchrotron and Synchrotron-Self-Compton Cooling [HEAP]


Many relativistic plasma environments in high-energy astrophysics, including pulsar wind nebulae, hot accretion flows onto black holes, relativistic jets in active galactic nuclei and gamma-ray bursts, and giant radio lobes, are naturally turbulent. The plasma in these environments is often so hot that synchrotron and inverse-Compton (IC) radiative cooling becomes important. In this paper we investigate the general thermodynamic and radiative properties (and hence the observational appearance) of an optically thin relativistically hot plasma stirred by driven magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) turbulence and cooled by radiation. We find that if the system reaches a statistical equilibrium where turbulent heating is balanced by radiative cooling, the effective electron temperature tends to attain a universal value $\theta = kT_e/m_e c^2 \sim 1/\sqrt{\tau_T}$, where $\tau_T=n_e\sigma_T L \ll 1$ is the system’s Thomson optical depth, essentially independent of the strength of turbulent driving or magnetic field. This is because both MHD turbulent dissipation and synchrotron cooling are proportional to the magnetic energy density. We also find that synchrotron self-Compton (SSC) cooling and perhaps a few higher-order IC components are automatically comparable to synchrotron in this regime. The overall broadband radiation spectrum then consists of several distinct components (synchrotron, SSC, etc.), well separated in photon energy (by a factor $\sim \tau_T^{-1}$) and roughly equal in power. The number of IC peaks is checked by Klein-Nishina effects and depends logarithmically on $\tau_T$ and the magnetic field. We also examine the limitations due to synchrotron self-absorption, explore applications to Crab PWN and blazar jets, and discuss links to radiative magnetic reconnection.

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D. Uzdensky
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 12 pages, 1 figure; submitted for publication. Comments welcome!

WISDOM Project – I: Black Hole Mass Measurement Using Molecular Gas Kinematics in NGC 3665 [GA]


As a part of the mm-Wave Interferometric Survey of Dark Object Masses (WISDOM) project, we present an estimate of the mass of the supermassive black hole (SMBH) in the nearby fast-rotator early-type galaxy NGC 3665. We obtained Combined Array for Research in Millimeter Astronomy (CARMA) B and C array observations of the $^{12}$CO$(J=2-1)$ emission line with a combined angular resolution of $0″.59$. We analysed and modelled the three-dimensional molecular gas kinematics, obtaining a best-fit SMBH mass $M_{\rm BH}=5.75^{+1.49}_{-1.18} \times 10^{8}$ $M_{\odot}$, a mass-to-light ratio at $H$-band $(M/L)_{H}=1.45\pm0.04$ $(M/L)_{\odot, H}$, and other parameters describing the geometry of the molecular gas disc (statistical errors, all at $3\sigma$ confidence). We estimate the systematic uncertainties on the stellar $M/L$ to be $\approx0.2$ $(M/L)_{\odot, H}$, and on the SMBH mass to be $\approx0.4\times10^{8}$ $M_{\odot}$. The measured SMBH mass is consistent with that estimated from the latest correlations with galaxy properties. Following our older works, we also analysed and modelled the kinematics using only the major-axis position-velocity diagram, and conclude that the two methods are consistent.

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K. Onishi, S. Iguchi, T. Davis, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Accepted to MNRAS

The early B-type star Rho Oph A is an X-ray lighthouse [SSA]


We present the results of a 140 ks XMM-Newton observation of the B2 star $\rho$ Ophiuchi A. The star exhibited strong X-ray variability: a cusp-shaped increase of rate, similar to the one we partially observed in 2013, and a bright flare. These events are separated in time by about 104 ks, which likely correspond to the rotational period of the star (1.2 days). Time resolved spectroscopy of the X-ray spectra shows that the first event is almost only due to an increase of the plasma emission measure, while the second increase of rate is mainly due is a major flare, with temperatures in excess of 60 MK ($kT\sim5$ keV). From the analysis of its rise we infer a magnetic field of $\ge300$ G and a size of the flaring region of $\sim1.4-1.9\times10^{11}$ cm, which corresponds to $\sim25\%-30\%$ of the stellar radius. We speculate that either an intrinsic magnetism that produces a hot spot on its surface, or an unknown low mass companion are the source of such X-rays and variability. A hot spot of magnetic origin should be a stable structure over a time span of $\ge$2.5 years, and suggests an overall large scale dipolar magnetic field that produce an extended feature on the stellar surface. In the second scenario, a low mass unknown companion is the emitter of X-rays and it should orbit extremely close to the surface of the primary in a locked spin-orbit configuration, almost on the verge of collapsing onto the primary. As such, the X-ray activity of the secondary star would be enhanced by both its young age and the tight orbit like in RS Cvn systems and $\rho$ Ophiuchi would constitute an extreme system worth of further investigation.

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I. Pillitteri, S. Wolk, F. Reale, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 10 pages, 7 figures, 2 tables, A&A accepted

The long-period binary central stars of the planetary nebulae NGC 1514 and LoTr 5 [SSA]


The importance of long-period binaries on the formation and evolution of planetary is still rather poorly understood, in part due to the lack of central star systems known to comprise such long-period binaries.
Here, we report on the latest results from the on-going Mercator-HERMES survey for variability in the central stars of planetary nebulae.
We present a study of the central stars of NGC 1514, BD+30$^\circ$623, the spectrum of which shows features associated with a hot nebular progenitor as well as a possible A-type companion. Cross-correlation of high-resolution HERMES spectra against synthetic spectra shows the system to be a highly eccentric ($e\sim0.5$), double-lined binary with a period of $\sim$3300 days. Previous studies indicated that the cool component might be a Horizontal Branch star of mass $\sim$0.55 M$_\odot$ but the observed radial velocity amplitudes rule out such a low mass. Assuming the nebular symmetry axis and binary orbital plane are perpendicular, the data are more consistent with a post-main-sequence star ascending towards the Giant Branch.
We also present the continued monitoring of the central star of LoTr 5, HD 112313, which has now completed one full cycle, allowing the orbital period (P$\sim$2700 days) and eccentricity ($e\sim0.3$) to be derived.
To date, the orbital periods of BD+30$^\circ$623 and HD 112313 are the longest to have been measured spectroscopically in the central stars of planetary nebulae. Furthermore, these systems, along with BD+33$^\circ$2642, comprise the only spectroscopic wide-binary central stars currently known.

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D. Jones, H. Winckel, A. Aller, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 4 pages, 4 figures, 2 tables. Accepted for publication in Astronomy and Astrophysics Letters

What can we learn about GRB from the variability timescale related correlations? [HEAP]


Recently, two empirical correlations related to the minimum variability timescale ($\rm MTS$) of the lightcures are discovered in gamma-ray bursts (GRBs). One is the anti-correlation between $\rm MTS$ and Lorentz factor $\Gamma$, the other is the anti-correlation between the $\rm MTS$ and gamma-ray luminosity $L_\gamma$. Both the two correlations might be used to explore the activity of the central engine of GRBs. In this paper we try to understand these empirical correlations by combining two popular black hole (BH) central engine models (namely, Blandford \& Znajek mechanism and neutrino-dominated accretion flow). By taking the $\rm MTS$ as the timescale of viscous instability of the neutrino-dominated accretion flow (NDAF), we find that these correlations favor the scenario in which the jet is driven by Blandford-Znajek (BZ) mechanism.

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W. Xie, W. Lei and D. Wang
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 6 pages, 3 figures, accepted for publication in ApJ

Star formation, supernovae, iron, and $α$: consistent cosmic and Galactic histories [HEAP]


Recent versions of the observed cosmic star-formation history (SFH) have resolved an inconsistency between the SFH and the observed cosmic stellar mass density history. Here, we show that the same SFH revision scales up by a factor $\sim 2$ the delay-time distribution (DTD) of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia), as determined from the observed volumetric SN Ia rate history, and thus brings it into line with other field-galaxy SN Ia DTD measurements. The revised-SFH-based DTD has a $t^{-1.1 \pm 0.1}$ form and a Hubble-time-integrated SN Ia production efficiency of $N/M_\star=1.25\pm 0.10$ SNe Ia per $1000~{\rm M_\odot}$ of formed stellar mass. Using these revised histories and updated, purely empirical, iron yields of the various SN types, we rederive the cosmic iron accumulation history. Core-collapse SNe and SNe Ia have contributed about equally to the total mass of iron in the Universe today, as deduced also for the Sun. We find the track of the average cosmic gas element in the [$\alpha$/Fe] vs. [Fe/H] abundance-ratio plane, as well as the track for gas in galaxy clusters, which have a higher DTD and have had a distinct, burst-like, SFH. Our cosmic $[\alpha$/Fe] vs. [Fe/H] track is broadly similar to the observed main locus of Galactic stars in this plane, indicating a Milky Way (MW) SFH similar in form to the cosmic one, and we find a MW SFH that makes the track closely match the stellar locus. The cluster DTD with a short-burst SFH at $z=3$ produces a track that matches well the observed `high-$\alpha$’ locus of MW stars, suggesting the halo/thick-disk population has had a galaxy-cluster-like formation history.

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D. Maoz and O. Graur
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Submitted to MNRAS, comments welcome

Integral field observations of the blue compact galaxy Haro14. Star formation and feedback in dwarf galaxies [GA]


(Abridged) Low-luminosity, gas-rich blue compact galaxies (BCG) are ideal laboratories to investigate many aspects of the star formation in galaxies. We study the morphology, stellar content, kinematics, and the nebular excitation and ionization mechanism in the BCG Haro 14 by means of integral field observations with VIMOS in the VLT. From these data we build maps in continuum and in the brighter emission lines, produce line-ratio maps, and obtain the velocity and velocity dispersion fields. We also generate the integrated spectrum of the major HII regions and young stellar clusters identified in the maps to determine reliable physical parameters and oxygen abundances. We find as follows: i) the current star formation in Haro 14 is spatially extended with the major HII regions placed along a linear structure, elongated in the north-south direction, and in a horseshoe-like curvilinear feature that extends about 760 pc eastward; the continuum emission is more concentrated and peaks close to the galaxy center; ii) two different episodes of star formation are present: the recent starburst, with ages $\leq$ 6 Myrs and the intermediate-age clusters, with ages between 10 and 30 Myrs; these stellar components rest on a several Gyr old underlying host galaxy; iii) the H$\alpha$/H$\beta$ pattern is inhomogeneous, with excess color values varying from E(B-V)=0.04 up to E(B-V)=1.09; iv) shocks play a significant role in the galaxy; and v) the velocity field displays a complicated pattern with regions of material moving toward us in the east and north galaxy areas. The morphology of Haro 14, its irregular velocity field, and the presence of shocks speak in favor of a scenario of triggered star formation. Ages of the knots are consistent with the ongoing burst being triggered by the collective action of stellar winds and supernovae originated in the central clusters.

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L. Cairos and J. Gonzalez-Perez
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 18 pages, 17 figures. Accepted for publication in A&A

When the Universe Expands Too Fast: Relentless Dark Matter [CL]


We consider a modification to the standard cosmological history consisting of introducing a new species $\phi$ whose energy density red-shifts with the scale factor $a$ like $\rho_\phi \propto a^{-(4+n)}$. For $n>0$, such a red-shift is faster than radiation, hence the new species dominates the energy budget of the universe at early times while it is completely negligible at late times. If equality with the radiation energy density is achieved at low enough temperatures, dark matter can be produced as a thermal relic during the new cosmological phase. Dark matter freeze-out then occurs at higher temperatures compared to the standard case, implying that reproducing the observed abundance requires significantly larger annihilation rates. Here, we point out a completely new phenomenon, which we refer to as $\textit{relentless}$ dark matter: for large enough $n$, unlike the standard case where annihilation ends shortly after the departure from thermal equilibrium, dark matter particles keep annihilating long after leaving chemical equilibrium, with a significant depletion of the final relic abundance. Relentless annihilation occurs for $n \geq 2$ and $n \geq 4$ for s-wave and p-wave annihilation, respectively, and it thus occurs in well motivated scenarios such as a quintessence with a kination phase. We discuss a few microscopic realizations for the new cosmological component and highlight the phenomenological consequences of our calculations for dark matter searches.

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F. DEramo, N. Fernandez and S. Profumo
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 14 pages, 9 figures

A new insight into the Galactic potential: A simple secular model for the evolution of binary systems in the solar neighbourhood [EPA]


Context. Among the main effects that the Milky Way exerts in binary systems, the Galactic tide is the only one that is not probabilistic and can be deduced from a potential. Therefore, it is possible to perform an analysis of the global structure of the phase space of binary systems in the solar neighbourhood using the Galactic potential. Aims. The aim of this work is to obtain a simple model to study the collisionless dynamical evolution of generic wide binaries systems in the solar neighbourhood. Methods. Through an averaging process, we reduced the three-dimensional potential of the Galaxy to a secular one-degree of freedom model. The accuracy of this model was tested by comparing its predictions with numerical simulations of the exact equations of motion of a two-body problem disturbed by the Galaxy. Results. Using the one-degree of freedom model, we developed a detailed dynamical study, finding that the secular Galactic tide period changes as a function of the separation of the pair, which also gives a dynamical explanation for the arbitrary classification between “wide” and “tight” binaries. Moreover, the secular phase space for a generic gravitationally bound pair is similar to the dynamical structure of a Lidov-Kozai resonance, but surprisingly this structure is independent of the masses and semimajor axis of the binary system. Thus, the Galactic potential is able to excite the initially circular orbit of binary systems to high values of eccentricity, which has important implications for studies of binary star systems (with and without exoplanets), comets, and Oort cloud objects.

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J. Correa-Otto, M. Calandra and R. Gil-Hutton
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 16 pages, 17 figures, acepted to published in A&A

The quest for blue supergiants: binary merger models for the evolution of the progenitor of SN 1987A [SSA]


We present the results of a detailed, systematic stellar evolution study of binary mergers for blue supergiant (BSG) progenitors of Type II supernovae. In particular, these are the first evolutionary models that can simultaneously reproduce nearly all observational aspects of the progenitor of SN 1987A, $\text{Sk}-69\,^{\circ}202$, such as its position in the HR diagram, the enrichment of helium and nitrogen in the triple-ring nebula, and its lifetime before its explosion. The merger model, based on the one proposed by Podsiadlowski 1992 et al. and Podsiadlowski 2007 et al., consists of a main sequence secondary star that dissolves completely in the common envelope of the primary red supergiant at the end of their merger. We empirically explore a large initial parameter space, such as primary masses ($15\,\text{M}_{\odot}$, $16\,\text{M}_{\odot}$, and $17\,\text{M}_{\odot}$), secondary masses ($2\,\text{M}_{\odot}$, $3\,\text{M}_{\odot}$, …, $8\,\text{M}_{\odot}$) and different depths up to which the secondary penetrates the He core of the primary during the merger. The evolution of the merged star is continued until just before iron-core collapse and the surface properties of the 84 pre-supernova models ($16\,\text{M}_{\odot}-23\,\mathrm{M}_{\odot}$) computed have been made available in this work. Within the parameter space studied, the majority of the pre-supernova models are compact, hot BSGs with effective temperature $>12\,\text{kK}$ and radii of $30\,\text{R}_{\odot}-70\,\mathrm{R}_{\odot}$ of which six match nearly all the observational properties of $\text{Sk}-69\,^{\circ}202$.

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A. Menon and A. Heger
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Submitted to MNRAS. 21 pages, 11 figures, 7 tables

Multi-fluid Approach to High-frequency Waves in Plasmas. II. Small-amplitude Regime in Partially Ionized Media [SSA]


The presence of neutral species in a plasma has been shown to greatly affect the properties of magnetohydrodynamic waves. For instance, the interaction between ions and neutrals through momentum transfer collisions causes the damping of Alfv\’en waves and alters their oscillation frequency and phase speed. When the collision frequencies are larger than the frequency of the waves, single-fluid magnetohydrodynamic approximations can accurately describe the effects of partial ionization, since there is a strong coupling between the various species. However, at higher frequencies, the single-fluid models are not applicable and more complex approaches are required. Here, we use a five-fluid model with three ionized and two neutral components, which takes into consideration Hall’s current and Ohm’s diffusion in addition to the friction due to collisions between different species. We apply our model to plasmas composed of hydrogen and helium, and allow the ionization degree to be arbitrary. By means of the analysis of the corresponding dispersion relation and numerical simulations, we study the properties of small-amplitude perturbations. We discuss the effect of momentum transfer collisions on the ion-cyclotron resonances and compare the importance of magnetic resistivity, ion-neutral and ion-ion collisions on the wave damping at various frequency ranges. Application to partially ionized plasmas of the solar atmosphere are performed.

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D. Martinez-Gomez, R. Soler and J. Terradas
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 24 pages, 15 figures. Revised version published in The Astrophysical Journal

A search for sterile neutrinos with the latest cosmological observations [CEA]


We report the result of a search for sterile neutrinos with the latest cosmological observations. Both cases of massless and massive sterile neutrinos are considered in the $\Lambda$CDM cosmology. The cosmological observations used in this work include the Planck 2015 temperature and polarization data, the baryon acoustic oscillation data, the Hubble constant direct measurement data, the Planck Sunyaev-Zeldovich cluster counts data, the Planck lensing data, and the cosmic shear data. We find that the current observational data give a hint of the existence of massless sterile neutrino (as dark radiation) at the 1.44$\sigma$ level, and the consideration of an extra massless sterile neutrino can indeed relieve the tension between observations and improve the cosmological fit. For the case of massive sterile neutrino, the observations give a rather tight upper limit on the mass, which implies that actually a massless sterile neutrino is more favored. Our result is consistent with the recent result of neutrino oscillation experiment done by the Daya Bay and MINOS collaborations, as well as the recent result of cosmic ray experiment done by the IceCube collaboration.

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L. Feng, J. Zhang and X. Zhang
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 15 pages, 4 figures

Interferometric confirmation of "water fountain" candidates [SSA]


Water fountain stars (WFs) are evolved objects with water masers tracing high-velocity jets (up to several hundreds of km s$^{-1}$). They could represent one of the first manifestations of collimated mass-loss in evolved objects and thus, be a key to understanding the shaping mechanisms of planetary nebulae. Only 13 objects had been confirmed so far as WFs with interferometer observations. We present new observations with the Australia Telescope Compact Array and archival observations with the Very Large Array of four objects that are considered to be WF candidates, mainly based on single-dish observations. We confirm IRAS 17291-2147 and IRAS 18596+0315 (OH 37.1-0.8) as bona fide members of the WF class, with high-velocity water maser emission consistent with tracing bipolar jets. We argue that IRAS 15544-5332 has been wrongly considered as a WF in previous works, since we see no evidence in our data nor in the literature that this object harbours high-velocity water maser emission. In the case of IRAS 19067+0811, we did not detect any water maser emission, so its confirmation as a WF is still pending. With the result of this work, there are 15 objects that can be considered confirmed WFs. We speculate that there is no significant physical difference between WFs and obscured post-AGB stars in general. The absence of high-velocity water maser emission in some obscured post-AGB stars could be attributed to a variability or orientation effect.

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J. Gomez, O. Suarez, J. Rizzo, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: To be published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 13 pages, 10 figures, 7 tables

MC$^2$: Multi-wavelength and dynamical analysis of the merging galaxy cluster ZwCl 0008.8+5215: An older and less massive Bullet Cluster [GA]


We analyze a rich dataset including Subaru/SuprimeCam, HST/ACS and WFC3, Keck/DEIMOS, Chandra/ACIS-I, and JVLA/C and D array for the merging galaxy cluster ZwCl 0008.8+5215. With a joint Subaru/HST weak gravitational lensing analysis, we identify two dominant subclusters and estimate the masses to be M$_{200}=\text{5.7}^{+\text{2.8}}_{-\text{1.8}}\times\text{10}^{\text{14}}\,\text{M}_{\odot}$ and 1.2$^{+\text{1.4}}_{-\text{0.6}}\times10^{14}$ M$_{\odot}$. We estimate the projected separation between the two subclusters to be 924$^{+\text{243}}_{-\text{206}}$ kpc. We perform a clustering analysis on confirmed cluster member galaxies and estimate the line of sight velocity difference between the two subclusters to be 92$\pm$164 km s$^{-\text{1}}$. We further motivate, discuss, and analyze the merger scenario through an analysis of the 42 ks of Chandra/ACIS-I and JVLA/C and D polarization data. The X-ray surface brightness profile reveals a remnant core reminiscent of the Bullet Cluster. The X-ray luminosity in the 0.5-7.0 keV band is 1.7$\pm$0.1$\times$10$^{\text{44}}$ erg s$^{-\text{1}}$ and the X-ray temperature is 4.90$\pm$0.13 keV. The radio relics are polarized up to 40$\%$. We implement a Monte Carlo dynamical analysis and estimate the merger velocity at pericenter to be 1800$^{+\text{400}}_{-\text{300}}$ km s$^{-\text{1}}$. ZwCl 0008.8+5215 is a low-mass version of the Bullet Cluster and therefore may prove useful in testing alternative models of dark matter. We do not find significant offsets between dark matter and galaxies, as the uncertainties are large with the current lensing data. Furthermore, in the east, the BCG is offset from other luminous cluster galaxies, which poses a puzzle for defining dark matter — galaxy offsets.

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N. Golovich, R. Weeren, W. Dawson, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 22 pages, 19 figures, accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal on March 13, 2017

SIGS – Seismic Inferences for Glitches in Stars [SSA]


The increased amount of high precision seismic data for solar-like stars calls for the existence of tools that can extract information from such data. In the case of the study of acoustic glitches there are no publicly available tools and most existing ones require a deep knowledge of their implementation. In this work a tool is presented that aims to both simplify the interaction with the user and also be capable of working automatically to determine properties of acoustic glitches from seismic data of solar-like stars. This tool is shown to work with both the Sun and other solar analogs but also shows that are still severe limitations to the methods used, when considering smaller datasets.

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L. Pereira, J. Faria and M. Monteiro
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 4 pages; 5 figures; Submitted to the Proceedings of the joint TASC2/KASC9 workshop – SPACEINN & HELAS8 conference 2016

Astrophysics and Big Data: Challenges, Methods, and Tools [IMA]


Nowadays there is no field research which is not flooded with data. Among the sciences, Astrophysics has always been driven by the analysis of massive amounts of data. The development of new and more sophisticated observation facilities, both ground-based and spaceborne, has led data more and more complex (Variety), an exponential growth of both data Volume (i.e., in the order of petabytes), and Velocity in terms of production and transmission. Therefore, new and advanced processing solutions will be needed to process this huge amount of data. We investigate some of these solutions, based on machine learning models as well as tools and architectures for Big Data analysis that can be exploited in the astrophysical context.

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M. Garofalo, A. Botta and G. Ventre
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 4 pages, 1 figures, proceedings of the IAU-325 symposium on Astroinformatics, Cambridge University press

Aqua MODIS Band 24 Crosstalk Striping [IMA]


Aqua MODIS, unlike its predecessor on board the Terra spacecraft, had always been thought to have been spared from significant deleterious impacts of electronic crosstalk on its imagery. However, recent efforts brought to our attention the presence of striping artifacts in Aqua MODIS images from band 24 (4.47$\mu$m), which upon further inspection proved to have a noticeable impact on the quality of the L1B product and to have been present since the beginning of the mission, in 2002. Using images of the Moon from scheduled lunar observations, we linked the artifacts with electronic crosstalk contamination of the response of detector 1 of band 24 by signal sent from the detector 10 of band 26 (1.375$\mu$m), a neighboring band in the same focal plane assembly. In this paper, we report on these findings, the artifact mitigation strategy adopted by us, and on our success in restoring band 24 detector 1 behavior and image quality.

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G. Keller, Z. Wang, A. Wu, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: N/A

Supra-galactic Colour Patterns in Globular Cluster Systems [GA]


An analysis of globular cluster systems associated with galaxies included in the Virgo and Fornax HST Advanced Camera Surveys reveals distinct (g-z) colour modulation patterns. These features appear on composite samples of globular clusters and, most evidently, in galaxies with absolute magnitudes Mg in the range from -20.2 to -19.2. These colour modulations are also detectable on some samples of globular clusters in the central galaxies NGC 1399 and NGC 4486 (and confirmed on data sets obtained with different instruments and photometric systems), as well as in other bright galaxies in these clusters. After discarding field contamination, photometric errors and statistical effects, we conclude that these supra-galactic colour patterns are real and reflect some previously unknown characteristic. These features suggest that the globular cluster formation process was not entirely stochastic but included a fraction of clusters that formed in a rather synchronized fashion over large spatial scales, and in a tentative time lapse of about 1.5 Gy at redshifts z between 2 and 4. We speculate that the putative mechanism leading to that synchronism may be associated with large scale feedback effects connected with violent star forming events and/or with super massive black holes.

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J. Forte
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 20 pages. 38 figures. 4 tables

The Suppression and Promotion of Magnetic Flux Emergence in Fully Convective Stars [SSA]


Evidence of surface magnetism is now observed on an increasing number of cool stars. The detailed manner by which dynamo-generated magnetic fields giving rise to starspots traverse the convection zone still remains unclear. Some insight into this flux emergence mechanism has been gained by assuming bundles of magnetic field can be represented by idealized thin flux tubes (TFTs). Weber & Browning (2016) have recently investigated how individual flux tubes might evolve in a 0.3 solar-mass M dwarf by effectively embedding TFTs in time-dependent flows representative of a fully convective star. We expand upon this work by initiating flux tubes at various depths in the upper 50-75% of the star in order to sample the differing convective flow pattern and differential rotation across this region. Specifically, we comment on the role of differential rotation and time-varying flows in both the suppression and promotion of the magnetic flux emergence process.

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M. Weber, M. Browning, S. Boardman, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 8 pages, 5 figures, accepted for publication in the International Astronomical Union Proceedings Series for IAUS 328 – ‘Living Around Active Stars’

Comment on "Strong Evidence for the Normal Neutrino Hierarchy" [CEA]


In the preprint arxiv:1703.03425 “strong evidence” for the normal neutrino mass ordering is claimed. The authors obtain Bayesian odds of 42:1 in favour of the normal ordering. Their conclusion is based on adopting a flat logarithmic prior for the three neutrino masses. Such an assumption favours a hierarchical spectrum for the masses, which is much easier to accommodate for the normal mass ordering, and hence their prior assumption makes the inverted ordering much less likely a priori. We argue that the claimed “evidence” for normal ordering is almost entirely driven by the adopted prior and not due to the data itself.

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T. Schwetz, K. Freese, M. Gerbino, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 2 pages, no figures, comment on arXiv:1703.03425

The Bright and Dark Sides of High-Redshift starburst galaxies from {\it Herschel} and {\it Subaru} observations [GA]


We present rest-frame optical spectra from the FMOS-COSMOS survey of twelve $z \sim 1.6$ \textit{Herschel} starburst galaxies, with Star Formation Rate (SFR) elevated by $\times$8, on average, above the star-forming Main Sequence (MS). Comparing the H$\alpha$ to IR luminosity ratio and the Balmer Decrement we find that the optically-thin regions of the sources contain on average only $\sim 10$ percent of the total SFR whereas $\sim90$ percent comes from an extremely obscured component which is revealed only by far-IR observations and is optically-thick even in H$\alpha$. We measure the [NII]$_{6583}$/H$\alpha$ ratio, suggesting that the less obscured regions have a metal content similar to that of the MS population at the same stellar masses and redshifts. However, our objects appear to be metal-rich outliers from the metallicity-SFR anticorrelation observed at fixed stellar mass for the MS population. The [SII]$_{6732}$/[SII]$_{6717}$ ratio from the average spectrum indicates an electron density $n_{\rm e} \sim 1,100\ \mathrm{cm}^{-3}$, larger than what estimated for MS galaxies but only at the 1.5$\sigma$ level. Our results provide supporting evidence that high-$z$ MS outliers are the analogous of local ULIRGs, and are consistent with a major merger origin for the starburst event.

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A. Puglisi, E. Daddi, A. Renzini, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 6 pages, 4 figures, Accepted for publication in ApJ Letters

Protecting the Dark Skies of Chile: Initiatives, Education and Coordination [IMA]


During the next decade, Chile will consolidate its place as the ‘World Capital of Astronomy’. By 2025, more than 70% of the world’s infrastructure for conducting professional astronomical observations will be installed in the Atacama Desert in the north of the country. The amazing scientific discoveries these telescopes produce have a direct impact on our understanding of the cosmos, and protecting this ‘window to the universe’ is fundamental in order to ensure humanity’s right to contemplate the night sky and decipher our origins. As a country, Chile faces the challenge of fighting light pollution and protecting its dark skies in a context of sprawling urban growth and an ever-expanding mining industry that shares the same territory with astronomical observatories.
The Chilean Astronomical Society (Sociedad Chilena de Astronomia, SOCHIAS) plays an active role in protecting dark skies through a series of initiatives involving educational programmes, aiding in the development and enforcement of public policy and regulation, and seeking the declaration of Chile’s best astronomical sites as protected heritage areas, both at the national and international levels. Whilst describing our experiences, I highlight the importance of approaching the problem of light pollution from all sides, involving all the relevant actors (communities, national and local governments, lighting industry, environmentalists, astronomers and others). I also discuss how communication and timely coordination with potential problematic actors (like industries, cities and some government agencies) can be an effective tool to transform potential enemies into allies in the fight for the protection of the night sky.

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G. Blanc
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 9 pages, 3 figures. Published as par of the proceedings of the “The Right to Dark Skies” conference, organized by UNESCO, Mexico City, January 2016

The X-ray variability of Seyfert 1.8/1.9 galaxies [GA]


Seyfert 1.8/1.9 are sources showing weak broad H-alpha components in their optical spectra. We aim at testing whether Seyfert 1.8/1.9 have similar properties at UV and X-ray wavelengths to Seyfert 2. We use the 15 Seyfert 1.8/1.9 in the Veron Cetty and Veron catalogue with public data available from the Chandra and/or XMM-Newton archives at different dates, with timescales between observations ranging from days to years. Our results are homogeneously compared with a previous work using the same methodology applied to a sample of Seyfert 2 (Hernandez-Garcia et al. 2015). X-ray variability is found in all 15 nuclei over the aforementioned ranges of timescales. The main variability pattern is related to intrinsic changes in the sources, which are observed in ten nuclei. Changes in the column density are also frequent, as they are observed in six nuclei, and variations at soft energies, possibly related to scattered nuclear emission, are detected in six sources. X-ray intraday variations are detected in six out of the eight studied sources. Variations at UV frequencies are detected in seven out of nine sources. A comparison between the samples of Seyfert 1.8/1.9 and 2 shows that, even if the main variability pattern is due to intrinsic changes of the sources in the two families, these nuclei exhibit different variability properties in the UV and X-ray domains. In particular, variations in the broad X-ray band on short time-scales (days/weeks), and variations in the soft X-rays and UV on long time-scales (months/years) are detected in Seyfert 1.8/1.9 but not in Seyfert 2. Overall, we suggest that optically classified Seyfert 1.8/1.9 should be kept separated from Seyfert 2 galaxies in UV/X-ray studies of the obscured AGN population because their intrinsic properties might be different.

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L. Hernandez-Garcia, J. Masegosa, O. Gonzalez-Martin, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Accepted for publication in A&A. arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1505.01166

A general explanation on the correlation of dark matter halo spin with the large scale environment [CEA]


Both simulations and observations have found that the spin of halo/galaxy is correlated with the large scale environment, and particularly the spin of halo flips in filament. A consistent picture of halo spin evolution in different environments is still lacked. Using N-body simulation we find that halo spin with its environment evolves continuously from sheet to cluster, and the flip of halo spin happens both in filament and nodes. For the flip in filament can be explained by halo formation time and the migrating time when its environment changes from sheet to filament. For low-mass haloes, they form first in sheets and migrate into filaments later, so their mass and spin growth inside filament are lower, and the original spin is still parallel to filament. For massive haloes, they migrate into filaments first, and most of their mass and spin growth are obtained in filaments, so the resulted spin is perpendicular to filament. Our results well explain the overall evolution of cosmic web in the cold dark matter model and can be tested using high-redshift data. The scenario can also be tested against alternative models of dark matter, such as warm/hot dark matter, where the structure formation will proceed in a different way.

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P. Wang and X. Kang
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 5 pages, 2 figures, Accepted by MNRAS Letters

Dirac states of an electron in a circular intense magnetic field [HEAP]


Neutron-star magnetospheres are structured by very intense magnetic fields extending from 100 to 10 5 km traveled by very energetic electrons and positrons with Lorentz factors up to $\sim$ 10 7. In this context, particles are forced to travel almost along the magnetic field with very small gyro-motion, potentially reaching the quantified regime. We describe the state of Dirac particles in a locally uniform, constant and curved magnetic field in the approximation that the Larmor radius is very small compared to the radius of curvature of the magnetic field lines. We obtain a result that admits the usual relativistic Landau states as a limit of null curvature. We will describe the radiation of these states, that we call quantum curvature or synchro-curvature radiation, in an upcoming paper.

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G. Voisin, S. Bonazzola and F. Mottez
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: N/A

A possible solution of the puzzling variation of the orbital period of MXB 1659-298 [HEAP]


MXB 1659-298 is a transient neutron star Low-Mass X-ray binary system that shows eclipses in the light curve with a peiodicity of 7.1 hr. MXB 1659-298 on outburst in August 2015 after 14 years of quiescence. We span a baseline of 40 years using the eight eclipse arrival times present in literature and adding 51 eclipse arrival times collected during the last two outbursts. We find that the companion star mass is $0.76 $ M$_{\odot}$, the inclination angle of the system is $72^{\circ}\!.4$ and the corona surrounding the neutron star has a size of $R_c \simeq 3.5 \times 10^8$ cm. A simple quadratic ephemeris do not fit the delays associated with the eclipse arrival times, the addition of a sinusoidal term is needed. We infer a binary orbital period of $P=7.1161099(3)$ hr and an orbital period derivative of $\dot{P}=-8.5(1.2) \times 10^{-12}$ s s$^{-1}$; the sinusoidal modulation has a period of $2.31 \pm 0.02$ yr. These results are consistent with a conservative mass transfer scenario during the outbursts and with a totally non-conservative mass transfer scenario during X-ray quiescence with the same mass transfer rate. The periodic modulation can be explained by either a gravitational quadrupole coupling due to variations of the oblateness of the companion star or with a presence of celestial body by orbiting around the binary system; in the latter case the mass of a third body is M$_3 = 21 \pm 2$ M$_J$.

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R. Iaria, A. Gambino, T. Salvo, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 9 pages, 6 figures. Submitted to MNRAS on 2016 November 21, revised version after referee report

New Evidence for the Dynamical Decay of a Multiple System in the Orion Kleinmann-Low Nebula [SSA]


We have measured astrometry for members of the Orion Nebula Cluster with images obtained in 2015 with the Wide Field Camera 3 on board the Hubble Space Telescope. By comparing those data to previous measurements with NICMOS on Hubble in 1998, we have discovered that a star in the Kleinmann-Low Nebula, source x from Lonsdale et al. (1982), is moving with an unusually high proper motion of 29 mas/yr, which corresponds to 55 km/s at the distance of Orion. Previous radio observations have found that three other stars in the Kleinmann-Low Nebula (BN and sources I and n) have high proper motions (5-14 mas/yr) and were near a single location ~540 years ago, and thus may have been members of a multiple system that dynamically decayed. The proper motion of source x is consistent with ejection from that same location 540 years ago, which provides strong evidence that the dynamical decay did occur and that the runaway star BN originated in the Kleinmann-Low Nebula rather than the nearby Trapezium cluster. However, our constraint on the motion of source n is significantly smaller than the most recent radio measurement, which indicates that it did not participate in the event that ejected the other three stars.

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K. Luhman, M. Robberto, J. Tan, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Astrophysical Journal Letters, in press

Clustering of MgII absorption line systems around massive galaxies: an important constraint on feedback processes in galaxy formation [GA]


We use the latest version of the metal line absorption catalogue of Zhu & M\’enard (2013) to study the clustering of MgII absorbers around massive galaxies (~10^11.5 M_sun), quasars and radio-loud AGN with redshifts between 0.4 and 0.75. Clustering is evaluated in two dimensions, by binning absorbers both in projected radius and in velocity separation. Excess MgII is detected around massive galaxies out to R_p=20 Mpc. At projected radii less than 800 kpc, the excess extends out to velocity separations of 10,000 km/s. The extent of the high velocity tail within this radius is independent of the mean stellar age of the galaxy and whether or not it harbours an active galactic nucleus. We interpret our results using the publicly available Illustris and Millennium simulations. Models where the MgII absorbers trace the dark matter particle or subhalo distributions do not fit the data. They overpredict the clustering on small scales and do not reproduce the excess high velocity separation MgII absorbers seen within the virial radius of the halo. The Illustris simulations which include thermal, but not mechanical feedback from AGN, also do not provide an adequate fit to the properties of the cool halo gas within the virial radius. We propose that the large velocity separation MgII absorbers trace gas that has been pushed out of the dark matter halos, possibly by multiple episodes of AGN-driven mechanical feedback acting over long timescales.

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G. Kauffmann, D. Nelson, B. Menard, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 10 pages, 11 figures, accepted in MNRAS

MHD simulations of oscillating cusp-filling tori around neutron stars — missing upper kHz QPO [HEAP]


We performed axisymmetric, grid-based, ideal magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations of oscillating cusp-filling tori orbiting a non-rotating neutron star. A pseudo-Newtonian potential was used to construct the constant angular momentum tori in equilibrium. The inner edge of the torus is terminated by a “cusp” in the effective potential. The initial motion of the model tori were perturbed with uniform sub-sonic vertical and diagonal velocity fields. As the configuration evolved in time, we measured the mass accretion rate on the neutron star surface and obtained the power spectrum. The prominent mode of oscillation in the cusp torus is the radial epicyclic mode. From our analysis it follows that the mass accretion rate carries a modulation imprint of the oscillating torus, and hence so does the boundary layer luminosity.

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V. Parthasarathy, W. Kluzniak and M. Cemeljic
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Submitted as a Letter to MNRAS. 5 pages, 3 figures, 1 table. Comments are welcome

Hubble Space Telescope Observations of BALQSO Ton 34 Reveal a Connection between the Broad Line Region and the BAL Outflow [GA]


Ton 34 recently transitioned from non-absorbing quasar into a BALQSO.Here, we report new HST-STIS observations of this quasar. Along with CIV absorption, we also detect absorption by NV+Ly alpha and possibly OVI+Ly beta. We follow the evolution of the CIV BAL, and find that, for the slower outflowing material, the absorption trough varies little (if at all) on a rest-frame timescale of 2 yr. However, we detect a strong deepening of the absorption in the gas moving at larger velocities (-20,000 – -23,000 km s-1). The data is consistent with a multistreaming flow crossing our line of sight to the source. The transverse velocity of the flow should be few thousand km s-1, similar to the rotation velocity of the BLR gas (2,600 km s-1). By simply assuming Keplerian motion, these two components must have similar locations, pointing to a common outflow forming the BLR and the BAL. We speculate that BALs, mini-BALs, and NALs, are part of a common, ubiquitous, accretion-disk outflow in AGN, but become observable depending on the viewing angle towards the flow. The absorption troughs suggest a wind covering only 20% of the emitting source, implying a maximum size of 10^-3 pc for the clouds forming the BAL/BLR medium. This is consistent with constraints of the BLR clouds from X-ray occultations. Finally, we suggest that the low excitation broad emission lines detected in the spectra of this source lie beyond the wind, and this gas is probably excited by the shock of the BAL wind with the surrounding medium.

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Y. Krongold, L. Binette, R. Bohlin, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Accepted for publication in MNRAS

Constraints on long-lived electrically charged massive particles from anomalous strong lens systems [CEA]


We investigate anomalous strong lens systems, particularly the effects of weak lensing by structures in the line of sight, in models with long-lived electrically charged massive particles (CHAMPs). In such models, matter density perturbations are suppressed through the acoustic damping and the flux ratio of lens systems are impacted, from which we can constrain the nature of CHAMPs. For this purpose, first we perform $N$-body simulations and develop a fitting formula to obtain non-linear matter power spectra in models where cold neutral dark matter and CHAMPs coexist in the early Universe. By using the observed anomalous quadruple lens samples, we obtained the constraints on the lifetime ($\tau_{\rm Ch}$) and the mass density fraction ($r_{\rm Ch}$) of CHAMPs. We show that, for $r_{\rm Ch}=1$, the lifetime is bounded as $\tau_{\rm Ch} < 0.96\,$yr (95% confidence level), while a longer lifetime $\tau_{\rm Ch} = 10\,$yr is allowed when $r_{\rm Ch} < 0.5$ at the 95% confidence level. Implications of our result for particle physics models are also discussed.

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A. Kamada, K. Inoue, K. Kohri, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 20 pages, 6 figures

The Radial Acceleration Relation in Disk Galaxies in the MassiveBlack-II Simulation [GA]


A strong correlation has been measured between the observed centripetal accelerations in galaxies and the accelerations implied by the baryonic components of galaxies. This empirical radial acceleration relation must be accounted for in any viable model of galaxy formation. We measure and compare the radial accelerations contributed by baryons and by dark matter in disk galaxies in the MassiveBlack-II hydrodynamic galaxy formation simulation. The sample of 1594 galaxies spans three orders of magnitude in luminosity and four in surface brightness, comparable to the observed sample from the Spitzer Photometry & Accurate Rotation Curves (SPARC) dataset used by McGaugh et al. (2016). We find that radial accelerations contributed by baryonic matter only and by total matter are highly correlated, with only small scatter around their mean or median relation, despite the wide ranges of galaxy luminosity and surface brightness. We further find that the radial acceleration relation in this simulation differs from that of the SPARC sample, and can be described by a simple power law in the acceleration range we are probing.

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A. Tenneti, Y. Mao, R. Croft, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 7 pages, 4 figures

$\textit{"Super-deblended"}$ Dust Emission in Galaxies: I. the GOODS-North Catalog and the Cosmic Star Formation Rate Density out to Redshift 6 [GA]


We present a new technique to obtain multi-wavelength $\textit{“super-deblended”}$ photometry in highly confused images, that we apply here in the GOODS-North field to Herschel and (sub-)millimeter data sets. The key novelties of the method are two: first, starting from a common large prior database of deep 24 $\mu$m and VLA 20 cm detections, an $\textit{active}$ selection of $\textit{useful}$ fitting priors is performed independently at each frequency band and moving from less to more confused bands. Exploiting knowledge of redshift and all available photometry for each source up to the dataset under exam, we identify $\textit{hopelessly faint}$ priors that we remove from the fitting pool. This approach critically reduces blending degeneracies and allows reliable photometry of galaxies in FIR+mm bands. Second, we obtain well-behaved $\textit{quasi-Gaussian}$ flux uncertainties, individually tailored to all fitted priors in each band. This is done exploiting extensive simulations calibrating the conversion of formal fitting uncertainties onto real uncertainties, depending on quantities directly measurable in the observations. Our catalog achieves deeper detection limits with high fidelity measurements and uncertainties at far-infrared to millimeter bands. We identify 71 $z \ge 3$ galaxies with reliable FIR+mm detection and study their location in stellar mass–star formation rate diagrams. We present new constraints on the cosmic star formation rate density at $3 < z < 6$ finding significant contribution from $z \ge 3$ dusty galaxies that are missed by optical to near-infrared color selections. The photometric catalog is released publicly (upon acceptance of the paper).

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D. Liu, E. Daddi, M. Dickinson, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Submitted to ApJ

Cosmic Voids in Evolving Dark Sector Cosmologies: the Low Redshift Universe [CEA]


We present a comparison of void properties between the standard model of cosmology, $\Lambda$ Cold Dark Matter ($\Lambda$CDM), and two alternative cosmological models with evolving and interacting dark sectors: a quintessence model ($\phi$CDM) and a Coupled Dark Matter-Dark Energy (CDE) model. Using $N$-body simulations of these models, we derive several measures of void statistics and properties, including distributions of void volume, ellipticity, prolateness, and average density. We find that the volume distribution derived from the CDE simulation deviates from the volume distribution derived from the $\Lambda$CDM simulation in the present-day universe, suggesting that the presence of a coupled dark sector could be observable through this statistic. We also find that the distributions of void ellipticity and prolateness are practically indistinguishable among the three models over the redshift range $z=0.0-1.0$, indicating that simple void shape statistics are insensitive to small changes in dark sector physics. Interestingly, we find that the distributions of average void density measured in each of the three simulations are distinct from each other. In particular, voids on average tend to be emptiest under a quintessence model, and densest under the $\Lambda$CDM model. Our results suggest that it is the scalar field present in both alternative models that causes emptier voids to form, while the coupling of the dark sector mitigates this effect by slowing down the evacuation of matter from voids.

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E. Adermann, P. Elahi, G. Lewis, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 16 pages, 10 figures, accepted by MNRAS

Implications for the origin of early-type dwarf galaxies — the discovery of rotation in isolated, low-mass early-type galaxies [GA]


We present the discovery of rotation in quenched, low-mass early-type galaxies that are isolated. This finding challenges the claim that (all) rotating dwarf early-type galaxies in clusters were once spiral galaxies that have since been harassed and transformed into early-type galaxies. Our search of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey data within the Local volume ($z<0.02$) has yielded a sample of 46 galaxies with a stellar mass $M_\star \lesssim 5\times10^9$ M$_\odot$ (median $M_\star \sim 9.29 \times 10^8$ M$_\odot$), a low H$\alpha$ equivalent width EW$_{{\rm H}\alpha}< 2$ \AA, and no massive neighbour ($M_{\star}\gtrsim3 \times 10^{10}$ M$_{\odot}$) within a velocity interval of $\Delta V = 500$ km s$^{-1}$ and a projected distance of $\sim$1 Mpc. Nine of these galaxies were subsequently observed with Keck ESI and their radial kinematics are presented here. These extend out to the half-light radius $R_e$ in the best cases, and beyond $R_e/2$ for all. They reveal a variety of behaviours similar to those of a comparison sample of early-type dwarf galaxies in the Virgo cluster observed by Toloba et al. Both samples have similar frequencies of slow and fast rotators, as well as kinematically decoupled cores. This, and especially the finding of rotating quenched low-mass galaxies in isolation, reveals that the early-type dwarfs in galaxy clusters need not be harassed or tidally stirred spiral galaxies.

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J. Janz, S. Penny, A. Graham, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 16 pages, 9 figures, 5 tables. Accepted for publication in MNRAS

DeepVel: deep learning for the estimation of horizontal velocities at the solar surface [SSA]


Many phenomena taking place in the solar photosphere are controlled by plasma motions. Although the line-of-sight component of the velocity can be estimated using the Doppler effect, we do not have direct spectroscopic access to the components that are perpendicular to the line-of-sight. These components are typically estimated using methods based on local correlation tracking. We have designed DeepVel, an end-to-end deep neural network that produces an estimation of the velocity at every single pixel and at every time step and at three different heights in the atmosphere from just two consecutive continuum images. We confront DeepVel with local correlation tracking, pointing out that they give very similar results in the time- and spatially-averaged cases. We use the network to study the evolution in height of the horizontal velocity field in fragmenting granules, supporting the buoyancy-braking mechanism for the formation of integranular lanes in these granules. We also show that DeepVel can capture very small vortices, so that we can potentially expand the scaling cascade of vortices to very small sizes and durations.

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A. Ramos, I. Requerey and N. Vitas
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 9 pages, 5 figures, submitted to A&A

The Novel ABALONE Photosensor Technology [CL]


The patented and proven ABALONE Photosensor Technology (Daniel Ferenc, U.S. Patent 9,064,678, 2010) has the capability of opening new horizons in the fields of fundamental physics, functional medical imaging, and nuclear security. This article discusses our new technology and overviews the unprecedented performance of ABALONE Photosensors, produced in the custom designed production line at UC Davis and continuously tested since 2013. In conclusion, the modern ABALONE Technology is far superior to prior art in performance, robustness and the capacity for integration into large area detector shells. It is about two orders of magnitude more cost effective while being mass-producible with a relatively low investment.

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D. Ferenc, A. Chang and M. Ferenc
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 16 pages, 7 figures, Submitted for publication to Nuclear Instruments And Methods In Physics Research A on March 12, 2017 (Ms. Ref. No.: NIMA-D-17-00243)

First constraints on fuzzy dark matter from Lyman-$α$ forest data and hydrodynamical simulations [CEA]


We present constraints on the masses of extremely light bosons dubbed fuzzy dark matter from Lyman-$\alpha$ forest data. Extremely light bosons with a De Broglie wavelength of $\sim 1$ kpc have been suggested as dark matter candidates that may resolve some of the current small scale problems of the cold dark matter model. For the first time we use hydrodynamical simulations to model the Lyman-$\alpha$ flux power spectrum in these models and compare with the observed flux power spectrum from two different data sets: the XQ-100 and HIRES/MIKE quasar spectra samples. After marginalization over nuisance and physical parameters and with conservative assumptions for the thermal history of the IGM that allow for jumps in the temperature of up to $5000\rm\,K$, XQ-100 provides a lower limit of $7.1\times 10^{-22}$ eV, HIRES/MIKE returns a stronger limit of $14.3\times 10^{-22}$ eV, while the combination of both data sets results in a limit of $20\times 10^{-22}$ eV (2$\sigma$ C.L.). The limits for the analysis of the combined data sets increases to $37.5\times 10^{-22}$ eV (2$\sigma$ C.L.) when a smoother thermal history is assumed where the temperature of the IGM evolves as a power-law in redshift. Light boson masses in the range $1-10 \times10^{-22}$ eV are ruled out at high significance by our analysis, casting strong doubts on suggestions of significant astrophysical implications of FDM, in particular for solving the “small scale crisis” of cold dark matter models.

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V. Irsic, M. Viel, M. Haehnelt, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 7 pages, 3 figures

A Preferred Mass Range for Primordial Black Hole Formation and Black Holes as Dark Matter Revisited [CEA]


Bird, et. al. and Sasaki, et. al. have recently proposed the intriguing possibility that the black holes detected by LIGO could be all or part of the cosmological dark matter. This offers an alternative to WIMPs and axions, where dark matter could be comprised solely of Standard Model particles. The mass range lies within an observationally viable window and the predicted merger rate can be tested by future LIGO observations. In this paper, we argue that non-thermal histories favor production of black holes near this mass range — with heavier ones unlikely to form in the early universe and lighter black holes being diluted through late-time entropy production. We discuss how this prediction depends on the primordial power spectrum, the likelihood of black hole formation, and the underlying model parameters. We find the prediction for the preferred mass range to be rather robust assuming a blue spectral index less than two. We consider the resulting relic density in black holes, and using recent observational constraints, establish whether they could account for all of the dark matter today.

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J. Georg and S. Watson
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 8 pages, 3 figures

Early Universe Higgs dynamics in the presence of the Higgs-inflaton and non-minimal Higgs-gravity couplings [CL]


Apparent metastability of the electroweak vacuum poses a number of cosmological questions. These concern evolution of the Higgs field to the current vacuum, and its stability during and after inflation. Higgs-inflaton and non-minimal Higgs-gravity interactions can make a crucial impact on these considerations potentially solving the problems. In this work, we allow for these couplings to be present simultaneously and study their interplay. We find that different combinations of the Higgs-inflaton and non-minimal Higgs-gravity couplings induce effective Higgs mass during and after inflation. This crucially affects the Higgs stability considerations during preheating. In particular, a wide range of the couplings leading to stable solutions becomes allowed.

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Y. Ema, M. Karciauskas, O. Lebedev, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 17 pages, 5 figures

SDSS-IV MaNGA: variation of the stellar initial mass function in spiral and early-type galaxies [GA]


We perform Jeans anisotropic modeling (JAM) on elliptical and spiral galaxies from the MaNGA DR13 sample. By comparing the stellar mass-to-light ratios estimated from stellar population synthesis (SPS) and from JAM, we find a similar systematic variation of the initial mass function (IMF) as in the earlier $\rm ATLAS^{3D}$ results. Early type galaxies (elliptical and lenticular) with lower velocity dispersions within one effective radius are consistent with a Chabrier-like IMF while galaxies with higher velocity dispersions are consistent with a more bottom heavy IMF such as the Salpeter IMF. Spiral galaxies have similar systematic IMF variations, but with slightly different slopes and larger scatters, due to the uncertainties caused by higher gas fractions and extinctions for these galaxies. Furthermore, we examine the effects of stellar mass-to-light ratio gradients on our JAM modeling, and find that the trends from our results becomes stronger after considering the gradients.

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H. Li, J. Ge, S. Mao, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: Accepted for publication in ApJ. 9 pages, 9 figures

A multi-observatory database of X-ray pulsars in the Magellanic Clouds [HEAP]


Using hundreds of XMM-Newton and Chandra archival observations and nearly a thousand RXTE observations, we have generated a comprehensive library of the known pulsars in the Small and Large Magellanic Clouds (SMC, LMC). The pulsars are detected multiple times across the full parameter spaces of X-ray luminosity ($L_X= 10^{31-38}$~erg/s) and spin period ( P$<$1s — P$>$1000s) and the library enables time-domain studies at a range of energy scales. The high time-resolution and sensitivity of the EPIC cameras are complemented by the angular resolution of Chandra and the regular monitoring of RXTE. Our processing %$\sim$15 year pipeline uses the latest calibration files and software to generate a suite of useful products for each pulsar detection: event lists, high time-resolution light curves, periodograms, spectra, and complete histories of $\dot{P}$, the pulsed fraction, etc., in the broad (0.2-12 keV), soft (0.2-2 keV), and hard (2-12 keV) energy bands. After combining the observations from these telescopes, we found that 28 pulsars show long-term spin up and 25 long-term spin down. We also used the faintest and brightest sources to map out the lower and upper boundaries of accretion-powered X-ray emission: the propeller line and the Eddington line, respectively. We are in the process of comparing the observed pulse profiles to geometric models of X-ray emission in order to constrain the physical parameters of the pulsars. Finally we are preparing a public release of the library so that it can be used by others in the astronomical community.

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J. Yang, S. Laycock, J. Drake, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17

Comments: 6 pages, 6 figures