Found 108 talks archived in Stars

sebastian_ramirez-alegria_120529s
Tuesday May 29, 2012
Dr. Sebastián Ramírez Alegría
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain

Abstract

I am going to present the new massive and obscured cluster Masgomas-1. This cluster, discovered by our group formed by astronomers from the IAC and CEFCA, is the
first candidate derived from the preliminary version of our systematic search algorithm for obscured (and young) massive clusters, and part of the MASGOMAS project  (MAssive Stars in Galactic Obscured MAssive clusterS). In this talk I will present the spectrophotometric observations obtained with LIRIS at William Herschel Telescope (ORM), which allowed the physical characterization of the massive stellar population of Masgomas-1, and the confirmation of the  cluster's massive nature
(i.e. Mcl > 10^4 Msun).


miguel_urbaneja_120524s
Thursday May 24, 2012
Dr. Miguel Urbaneja
Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii

Abstract

Measuring distances to galaxies and determining their chemical compositions are two fundamental activities in modern extragalactic astronomy, in that they help characterizing the physical properties of their constituents and their evolutionary status. Ultimately, these measurements lead to stronger constraints on the cosmological parameters of an expanding universe and the history of cosmic chemical enrichment. Both these questions can be tackled afresh with the quantitative analysis of the absorption line spectra of individual massive and luminous, young B- and A-type supergiant stars. A spectroscopic distance determination method, the FGLR, can yield accurate distances up to several Mpc, extending to a local volume where the results can be compared with those obtained from Cepheids and other distance indicators. Moreover, and this being a unique advantage of the FGLR, reddening values and metallicities are simultaneously determined for each individual stellar target. These stellar metallicities are very accurate and can be used to constrain the formation and evolution of galaxies and to assess and overcome the systematic uncertainties of H II region strong-line abundances through a galaxy-by-galaxy comparison. Moreover, stellar spectroscopy provides fundamental complementary abundance information for star forming galaxies on additional atomic species such as iron-group elements. I will present recent results of our on-going efforts to study individual blue supergiant stars in galaxies within and beyond the Local Group based on medium and low resolution optical spectra collected with ESO VLT and the Keck telescopes. The promising perspectives of future work, based on the giant ground-based telescopes of the next generation (E-ELT, TMT) are also discussed.


yuri_cavecchi_120517s
Thursday May 17, 2012
Mr. Yuri Cavecchi
Universiteit van Amsterdam

Abstract

I will review what we know about Type I Bursts (thermonuclear explosions on the surface of accreting Neutron Stars) and burst oscillations (fluctuations in the intensity of the burst lightcurves). I will describe the known problems in burst oscillation models and the various solutions that have been proposed. I will report recent progress made in the case of the pulsar IGR J17480-2446 in the Globular Cluster Terzan 5, where we were able to pin point the most likely mechanism responsible for the oscillations. I will explain whether this might be applicable to the other bursters and discuss future perspectives including current efforts to develop magneto-hydrodynamical simulations of the bursting process.


kerstin_geissler_120315s
Tuesday March 13, 2012
Dr. Kerstin Geissler
European Southern Observatory

Abstract

We present the completion of a program to cross-correlate the SDSS Data Release 1 and 2MASS Point Source Catalog in search for extremely red L and T dwarfs. The program was initiated by Metchev and collaborators, who presented the findings on all newly identified T dwarfs in SDSS DR1, and estimated the space density of isolated T0--T8 dwarfs in the solar neighbourhood. In the current work we present most of the L dwarf discoveries. Our red-sensitive (z-J > 2.75 mag) cross-match proves to be efficient in detecting peculiarly red L dwarfs, adding two new ones, including one of the reddest known L dwarfs. Our search also nets a new peculiarly blue L7 dwarf and, surprisingly, two M8 dwarfs. We further broaden our analysis to detect unresolved binary L or T dwarfs through spectral template fitting to all L and T dwarfs presented here and in the earlier work by Metchev and collaborators. We identify nine probable binaries, six of which are new and eight harbour likely T dwarf secondaries. We combine this result with current knowledge of the mass ratio distribution and frequency of substellar companions to estimate an overall space density of 0.005--0.05 pc^{-3} for individual T0--T8 dwarfs.


selma_de_mink_120301s
Thursday March 1, 2012
Dr. Selma de Mink
Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore

Abstract

Although they are rare and short-lived, massive stars play a major role in Universe. With their large luminosities, strong stellar winds and spectacular explosions they act as cosmic engines, heating and enriching their surroundings, where the next generation of stars are forming. 
The latest stellar evolutionary models show that rotation can have drastic effects, which has been suggested as a evolutionary path for the progenitors of long gamma-ray bursts. I will discuss the recent efforts of theorists and observers to understand the effects of rotation including some highlights of the ongoing "VLT-FLAMES Tarantula Survey of Massive Stars". A further challenge arises from the preference of massive stars to come in close pairs. Interaction with a companion leads to spectacular phenomena such as runaways, X-ray binaries and stellar mergers. I will present new results on the true close binary fraction for massive stars, which imply that only a minority evolve undisturbed towards their death.

almudena_alonso_herrero_120228s
Tuesday February 28, 2012
Dr. Almudena Alonso Herrero
Instituto de Astrofísica de Cantabria, Spain

Abstract

Luminous Infrared Galaxies (LIR=10^11-10^12Lsun) have star formation rates in the range of ~20-200Msun/yr. In the local Universe ~50% LIRGs show AGN or AGN/SB composite nuclear activity from optical spectroscopy. We decompose Spitzer/IRS 5-35micron spectra of a complete sample of 50 local (d<75Mpc) LIRGs using SB and AGN clumpy torus model templates. We derive a mid-IR AGN detection rate in our sample of local LIRGs of 50%. We also compare the continuum mid-IR AGN detection with other indicators in the mid-IR, optical and X-rays. We estimate for the first time the AGN bolometric contribution to the IR luminosity of the galaxies in local LIRGs. We find that one-third of local LIRGs have LAGN(bol)/LIR>0.05, with only ~10% having a significant contribution LAGN(bol)/LIR>0.25. This is in line with results of Nardini et al. (2010) that only at LIR>3x10^12Lsun the AGN starts dominating bolometrically the IR luminosity in the majority of the systems.


carsten_weidner_120214s
Tuesday February 14, 2012
Dr. Carsten Weidner
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain

Abstract

Over the past years observations of young and populous star clusters have shown that the stellar initial mass function (IMF) can be conveniently described by a two-part power-law with an exponent alpha2 = 2.3 for stars more massive than about 0.5 Msol and an exponent of alpha1 = 1.3 for less massive stars. A consensus has also emerged that most, if not all, stars form in stellar groups and star clusters, and that the mass function of these can be described as a power-law (the embedded cluster mass function, ECMF) with an exponent beta ~2. These two results imply that the integrated galactic IMF (IGIMF) for early-type stars cannot be a Salpeter power-law, but that they must have a steeper exponent. An application to star-burst galaxies shows that the IGIMF can become top-heavy. This has important consequences for the distribution of stellar remnants and for the chemo-dynamical and photometric evolution of galaxies.


thomas_de_boer_120126s
Thursday January 26, 2012
Mr. Thomas de Boer
Kapteyn Astronomical Institute Groningen, The Netherlands

Abstract

We present the detailed Star Formation History of the nearby Sculptor and Fornax dwarf spheroidal galaxies, from wide-field photometry of resolved stars, going down to the oldest Main Sequence Turn-Off. The accurately flux calibrated, wide-field Colour-Magnitude Diagrams are used directly in combination with spectroscopic metallicities of individual RGB stars to constrain the ages of different stellar populations, and derive the Star Formation History with particular accuracy.
The detailed Star Formation History shows the star formation at different ages and metallicities, at different positions in the galaxy, and shows that the known metallicity gradients are well matched to an age gradient. The obtained SFH is used to determine accurate age estimates for individual RGB stars, for which spectroscopic abundances (alpha-elements, r- and s-process elements) are known. In this way, we obtain the accurate age-metallicity relation of each galaxy, as well as the temporal evolution of alpha-element abundances.
This allows us to study, for the first time, the timescale of chemical evolution in these two dwarf galaxies, and determine an accurate age of the "knee" in the alpha-element distribution. Finally, we compare the timescale of chemical evolution in both dwarf galaxies, and determine whether the chemical abundance patterns seen in galaxies with recent episodes of star formation are a direct continuation of those with only old populations.


nanda_rea_120124s
Tuesday January 24, 2012
Dr. Nanda Rea
Institut de Ciencies de l'Espai, Spain

Abstract

I will review our current knowledge of soft gamma repeaters (SGR) and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXP), two peculiar classes of pulsars believed to be 'magnetars', i.e. neutron stars powered by a huge magnetic field. Recent studies of transient events from SGRs and AXPs allowed a large jump in our understanding of these objects, although they also prompted new unanswered questions. In particular, the recent discovery of a low magnetic field magnetar is causing a re-think of some of the basic ingredients of the magnetar model.


stan_owocki_120119s
Thursday January 19, 2012
Dr. Stan Owocki
Bartol Research Institute, University of Delaware, USA

Abstract

Massive stars lose mass through powerful, radiatively driven stellar winds. Building on the original "CAK" model for steady, spherical winds driven by line-scattering, this talk will review recent research on the multi-faceted nature of such wind mass loss under varied conditions, for example due to rapid rotation, magnetic channeling, binary interaction, or a luminosity near the Eddington limit. An overall theme is that wind mass loss can in this way lead to a wide variety of astrophysical phenomena, including bipolar nebulae, massive star magnetospheres, colliding winds or compact companion accretion, and luminous blue variable eruption. The discussion here will summarize these with an emphasis on their varied observational signatures.



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