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See detailA radio-map of the colliding winds in the very massive binary system HD93129A
Benaglia, Paula; Marcote, Benito; Moldon, Javier et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (in press)

Radio observations are an effective tool to discover particle acceleration regions in colliding-wind binaries, through detection of synchrotron radiation; these regions are natural laboratories for the ... [more ▼]

Radio observations are an effective tool to discover particle acceleration regions in colliding-wind binaries, through detection of synchrotron radiation; these regions are natural laboratories for the study of relativistic particles.Wind-collision region (WCR) models can reproduce the radio continuum spectra of massive binaries that contain both thermal and non-thermal radio emission; however, key constraints for models come from high-resolution imaging. Only five WCRs have been resolved to date at radio frequencies at milliarcsec (mas) angular scales. The source HD93129A, prototype of the very few known O2 I stars, is a romising target for study: recently, a second massive, early-type star about 50 mas away was discovered, and a non-thermal radio source detected in the region. Preliminary long-baseline array data suggest that a significant fraction of the radio emission from the system comes from a putative WCR. We sought evidence that HD93129A is a massive binary system with colliding stellar winds that produce non-thermal radiation, through spatially resolved images of the radio emitting regions. Methods.We completed observations with the Australian Long Baseline Array (LBA) to resolve the system at mas angular resolutions and reduced archival Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) data to derive the total radio emission. We also compiled optical astrometric data of the system in a homogeneous way. We reduced historical Hubble Space Telescope data and obtained absolute and relative astrometry with milliarcsec accuracy. The astrometric analysis leads us to conclude that the two stars in HD93129A form a gravitationally bound system. The LBA data reveal an extended arc-shaped non-thermal source between the two stars, indicative of a WCR. The wind momentum-rate ratio of the two stellar winds is estimated. The ATCA data show a point source with a change in flux level between 2003-4 and 2008-9, that is modeled with a non-thermal power-law spectrum with spectral indices of - 1:03 +/- 0:09 and -1:21 +/- 0:03 respectively. The mass-loss rates derived from the deduced thermal radio emission and from the characteristics of the WCR are consistent with estimates derived by other authors. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Herschel view of the nebula around the luminous blue variable star AG Carinae
Vamvatira-Nakou, Chloi ULg; Hutsemekers, Damien ULg; Royer, P. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 578

Far-infrared Herschel PACS imaging and spectroscopic observations of the nebula around the luminous blue variable (LBV) star AG Car have been obtained along with optical imaging in the Halpha+[NII] filter ... [more ▼]

Far-infrared Herschel PACS imaging and spectroscopic observations of the nebula around the luminous blue variable (LBV) star AG Car have been obtained along with optical imaging in the Halpha+[NII] filter. In the infrared light, the nebula appears as a clumpy ring shell that extends up to 1.2 pc with an inner radius of 0.4 pc. It coincides with the Halpha nebula, but extends further out. Dust modeling of the nebula was performed and indicates the presence of large grains. The dust mass is estimated to be ~ 0.2 Msun. The infrared spectrum of the nebula consists of forbidden emission lines over a dust continuum. Apart from ionized gas, these lines also indicate the existence of neutral gas in a photodissociation region that surrounds the ionized region. The abundance ratios point towards enrichment by processed material. The total mass of the nebula ejected from the central star amounts to ~ 15 Msun, assuming a dust-to-gas ratio typical of LBVs. The abundances and the mass-loss rate were used to constrain the evolutionary path of the central star and the epoch at which the nebula was ejected, with the help of available evolutionary models. This suggests an ejection during a cool LBV phase for a star of ~ 55 Msun with little rotation. [less ▲]

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See detailPhotometric identification of the periods of the first candidate extragalactic magnetic massive stars
Nazé, Yaël ULg; Walborn, Nolan R.; Morrell, Nidia et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 577

Galactic stars belonging to the Of?p category are all strongly magnetic objects exhibiting rotationally modulated spectral and photometric changes on timescales of weeks to years. Five candidate Of?p ... [more ▼]

Galactic stars belonging to the Of?p category are all strongly magnetic objects exhibiting rotationally modulated spectral and photometric changes on timescales of weeks to years. Five candidate Of?p stars in the Magellanic Clouds have been discovered, notably in the context of ongoing surveys of their massive star populations. Here we describe an investigation of their photometric behaviour, revealing significant variability in all studied objects on timescales of one week to more than four years, including clearly periodic variations for three of them. Their spectral characteristics along with these photometric changes provide further support for the hypothesis that these are strongly magnetized O stars, analogous to the Of?p stars in the Galaxy. [less ▲]

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See detailA spectroscopic investigation of the O-type star population in four Cygnus OB associations. II. Determination of the fundamental parameters
Mahy, Laurent ULg; Rauw, Grégor ULg; De Becker, Michaël ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 577

Aims: Having established the binary status of nineteen O-type stars located in four Cygnus OB associations, we now determine their fundamental parameters to constrain their properties and their ... [more ▼]

Aims: Having established the binary status of nineteen O-type stars located in four Cygnus OB associations, we now determine their fundamental parameters to constrain their properties and their evolutionary status. We also investigate their surface nitrogen abundances, which we compare with other results from the literature obtained for galactic O-type stars. Methods: Using optical spectra collected for each object in our sample and some UV data from the archives, we apply the CMFGEN atmosphere code to determine their main properties. For the binary systems, we have disentangled the components to obtain their individual spectra and investigate them as if they were single stars. Results: We find that the distances of several presumably single O-type stars seem poorly constrained because their luminosities are not in agreement with the "standard" luminosities of stars with similar spectral types. The ages of these O-type stars are all less than 7 Myr. Therefore, the ages of these stars agree with those, quoted in the literature, of the four associations, except for Cyg OB8 for which the stars seem older than the association itself. However, we point out that the distance of certain stars is debatable relative to values found in the literature. The N content of these stars put in perspective with N contents of several other galactic O-type stars seems to draw the same five groups as found in the "Hunter" diagram for the O and B-type stars in the LMC even though their locations are obviously different. We determine mass-loss rates for several objects from the Halpha line and UV spectra. Finally, we confirm the "mass discrepancy" especially for O stars with masses smaller than 30 Msun;. [less ▲]

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See detailSearch for magnetic fields in particle-accelerating colliding-wind binaries
Neiner, C.; Grunhut, J.; Leroy, B. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 575

Some colliding-wind massive binaries, called particle-accelerating colliding-wind binaries (PACWB), exhibit synchrotron radio emission, which is assumed to be generated by a stellar magnetic field ... [more ▼]

Some colliding-wind massive binaries, called particle-accelerating colliding-wind binaries (PACWB), exhibit synchrotron radio emission, which is assumed to be generated by a stellar magnetic field. However, no measurement of magnetic fields in these stars has ever been performed. We aim at quantifying the possible stellar magnetic fields present in PACWB to provide constraints for models. We gathered 21 high-resolution spectropolarimetric observations of 9 PACWB available in the ESPaDOnS, Narval and HarpsPol archives. We analysed these observations with the least squares deconvolution method. We separated the binary spectral components when possible. No magnetic signature is detected in any of the 9 PACWB stars and all longitudinal field measurements are compatible with 0 G. We derived the upper field strength of a possible field that could have remained hidden in the noise of the data. While the data are not very constraining for some stars, for several stars we could derive an upper limit of the polar field strength of the order of 200 G. We can therefore exclude the presence of strong or moderate stellar magnetic fields in PACWB, typical of the ones present in magnetic massive stars. Weak magnetic fields could however be present in these objects. These observational results provide the first quantitative constraints for future models of PACWB. [less ▲]

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See detailSpectroscopic variability of two Oe stars
Rauw, Grégor ULg; Morel, Thierry ULg; Nazé, Yaël ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 575

Context. The two Oe stars HD 45 314 and HD 60 848 have recently been found to exhibit very different X-ray properties: whilst HD 60 848 has an X-ray spectrum and the emission level typical of most OB ... [more ▼]

Context. The two Oe stars HD 45 314 and HD 60 848 have recently been found to exhibit very different X-ray properties: whilst HD 60 848 has an X-ray spectrum and the emission level typical of most OB stars, HD 45 314 features a much harder and brighter X-ray emission, making it a so-called γ Cas analogue. Aims: Monitoring the optical spectra could provide hints towards the origin of these very different behaviours. Methods: We analyse a large set of spectroscopic observations of HD 45 314 and HD 60 848, extending over 20 years. We further attempt to fit the Hα line profiles of both stars with a simple model of emission line formation in a Keplerian disk. Results: Strong variations in the strengths of the Hα, Hβ, and He i λ 5876 emission lines are observed for both stars. In the case of HD 60 848, we find a time lag between the variations in the equivalent widths of these lines, which is currently not understood. The emission lines are double peaked with nearly identical strengths of the violet and red peaks. The Hα profile of this star can be successfully reproduced by our model of a disk seen under an inclination of 30°. In the case of HD 45 314, the emission lines are highly asymmetric and display strong line profile variations. We find a major change in behaviour between the 2002 outburst and the one observed in 2013. This concerns both the relationship between the equivalent widths of the various lines and their morphologies at maximum strength (double-peaked in 2002 versus single-peaked in 2013). Our simple disk model fails to reproduce the observed Hα line profiles of HD 45 314. Conclusions: Our results further support the interpretation that Oe stars do have decretion disks similar to those of Be stars. Whilst the emission lines of HD 60 848 are explained well by a disk with a Keplerian velocity field, the disk of HD 45 314 seems to have a significantly more complex velocity field that could be another signature of the phenomenon that produces its peculiar X-ray emission. [less ▲]

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See detailA connection between the instability strips of ZZ Ceti and V777 Her white dwarfs
Van Grootel, Valérie ULg; Fontaine, Gilles; Brassard, Pierre et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 575

Aims. We aim to determine the theoretical instability strips of white dwarfs with diverse H and He content in their atmospheres, from a solar composition to a H-depleted atmosphere. Pulsators with mixed H ... [more ▼]

Aims. We aim to determine the theoretical instability strips of white dwarfs with diverse H and He content in their atmospheres, from a solar composition to a H-depleted atmosphere. Pulsators with mixed H-He atmospheres are indeed known to exist, and these are the white dwarfs in cataclysmic accreting systems of the GW Lib type. We thus also aim to determine the range of periods of excited pulsation modes, and to qualitatively compare these to the observed periods in GW Lib white dwarf pulsators. Methods. In the first full nonadiabatic stability analysis of pulsators of this kind, we applied a time-dependent convection treatment and an energy leakage argument to compute, for cooling models of white dwarfs with various masses and envelope compositions, the location of the blue and the red edges, as well as the properties of pulsation modes. Results. We find that our derived instability strips form a true continuum in the log g-Teff plane and that their individual location depends uniquely on the assumed atmospheric composition, from the solar composition models at low effective temperatures to the H-depleted models at much higher temperatures. Taking into account our previous results from the ZZ Ceti (pure H atmosphere) and V777 Her (pure He atmosphere) white dwarf pulsators, this implies that all of these instability domains are connected via the same fundamental driving mechanism. Applying our results to the case of white dwarf pulsators of the GW Lib type, we find that our theoretical instability strips can qualitatively account for all of the known cases. The computed range of periods of excited modes also compares qualitatively very well to the observed ones. Conclusions. The GW Lib pulsators are very similar in nature to ZZ Ceti and V777 Her white dwarfs. It is the diverse chemical compositions in their atmosphere and envelope that defines their specific pulsation properties. Beyond GW Lib pulsators, white dwarfs can sometimes exhibit mixed H-He atmospheres, such as in the recently found proto-He white dwarf pulsators. Our results open the way towards quantitative asteroseismology of these various kinds of white dwarfs. [less ▲]

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See detailTRAPPIST monitoring of comet C/2012 F6 (Lemmon)
Opitom, Cyrielle ULg; Jehin, Emmanuel ULg; Manfroid, Jean ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 574

We report the results of the long-term narrowband photometry and imaging monitoring of comet C/2012 F6 (Lemmon) with the robotic TRAPPIST telescope (La Silla Observatory). Observations covered 52 nights ... [more ▼]

We report the results of the long-term narrowband photometry and imaging monitoring of comet C/2012 F6 (Lemmon) with the robotic TRAPPIST telescope (La Silla Observatory). Observations covered 52 nights pre- and post-perihelion between December 11, 2012, and June 11, 2013 (perihelion: 24 March, 2013). We followed the evolution of the OH, NH, CN, C[SUB]3[/SUB], and C[SUB]2[/SUB] production rates computed with the Haser model as well as the evolution of the A(θ)fρ parameter as a proxy for the dust production. All five gas species display similar slopes for the heliocentric dependence. An asymmetry about perihelion is observed, the rate of brightening being steeper than the rate of fading. The chemical composition of the comet's coma changes slightly along the orbit: the relative abundance of C[SUB]2[/SUB] to CN increases with the heliocentric distance (r) below -1.4 au and decreases with r beyond 1.4 au while the C[SUB]3[/SUB]-to-CN ratio is constant during our observations. The behavior of the dust is different from that of the gas, the slope of the heliocentric dependence becoming steeper in early February, correlated to a change in the visual lightcurve slope. However, the dust color does not vary during the observations. The application of several enhancement techniques on the images revealed structures in the CN, C[SUB]3[/SUB], and C[SUB]2[/SUB] images. These features imply the existence of one or several active zone(s) on the comet nucleus. The shape of the structures is similar in these three filters and changes from a roughly hourglass shape in December and January to a corkscrew shape in February and March. The structures in the continuum filters (sampling the dust) are not correlated to those observed for the gas. During several full nights in February, we observed changes in the CN and C[SUB]2[/SUB] structures that repeated periodically because of the nucleus rotation, our derived rotational period being of 9.52 ± 0.05 h. Full Tables 2, 4, 6 are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/574/A38">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/574/A38</A> [less ▲]

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See detailB fields in OB stars (BOB): on the detection of weak magnetic fields in the two early B-type stars beta CMa and epsilon CMa
Fossati, L.; Castro, N.; Morel, Thierry ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 574

Within the context of the "B fields in OB stars (BOB)" collaboration, we used the HARPSpol spectropolarimeter to observe the early B-type stars beta CMa (HD44743; B1 II/III) and epsilon CMa (HD52089; B1.5 ... [more ▼]

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

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See detailThe VLTI/PIONIER near-infrared interferometric survey of southern T Tauri stars. I. First results
Anthonioz, F.; Menard, F.; Pinte, C. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 574

Context. The properties of the inner disks of bright Herbig AeBe stars have been studied with near-infrared (NIR) interferometry and high resolution spectroscopy. The continuum (dust) and a few molecular ... [more ▼]

Context. The properties of the inner disks of bright Herbig AeBe stars have been studied with near-infrared (NIR) interferometry and high resolution spectroscopy. The continuum (dust) and a few molecular gas species have been studied close to the central star; however, sensitivity problems limit direct information about the inner disks of the fainter T Tauri stars. <BR /> Aims: Our aim is to measure some of the properties (inner radius, brightness profile, shape) of the inner regions of circumstellar disk surrounding southern T Tauri stars. <BR /> Methods: We performed a survey with the VLTI/PIONIER recombiner instrument at H-band of 21 T Tauri stars. The baselines used ranged from 11 m to 129 m, corresponding to a maximum resolution of ~3 mas (~0.45 au at 150 pc). <BR /> Results: Thirteen disks are resolved well and the visibility curves are fully sampled as a function of baseline in the range 45-130 m for these 13 objects. A simple qualitative examination of visibility profiles allows us to identify a rapid drop-off in the visibilities at short baselines(<10 Mlambda) in 8 resolved disks. This is indicative of a significant contribution from an extended (R> 3 au, at 150 pc) contribution of light from the disk. We demonstrate that this component is compatible with scattered light, providing strong support to an earlier prediction. The amplitude of the drop-off and the amount of dust thermal emission changes from source to source suggesting that each disk is different. A by-product of the survey is the identification of a new milli-arcsec separation binary: WW Cha. Spectroscopic and interferometric data of AK Sco have also been fitted with a binary + disk model. <BR /> Conclusions: The visibility data are reproduced well when thermal emission and scattering from dust are fully considered. The inner radii measured are consistent with the expected dust sublimation radii. The modelling of AK Sco suggests a likely coplanarity between the disk and the binary's orbital plane. [less ▲]

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See detailForbidden oxygen lines at various nucleocentric distances in comets
Decock, Alice ULg; Jehin, Emmanuel ULg; Rousselot, P. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 573

Aims: We study the formation of the [OI] lines - that is, 5577.339 Å (the green line), 6300.304 Å and 6363.776 Å (the two red lines) - in the coma of comets and determine the parent species of the oxygen ... [more ▼]

Aims: We study the formation of the [OI] lines - that is, 5577.339 Å (the green line), 6300.304 Å and 6363.776 Å (the two red lines) - in the coma of comets and determine the parent species of the oxygen atoms using the ratio of the green-to-red-doublet emission intensity, I[SUB]5577[/SUB]/(I[SUB]6300[/SUB] + I[SUB]6364[/SUB]), (hereafter the G/R ratio) and the line velocity widths. <BR /> Methods: We acquired high-resolution spectroscopic observations at the ESO Very Large Telescope of comets C/2002 T7 (LINEAR), 73P-C/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3, 8P/Tuttle, and 103P/Hartley 2 when they were close to Earth (<0.6 au). Using the observed spectra, which have a high spatial resolution (<60 km/pixel), we determined the intensities and widths of the three [OI] lines. We spatially extracted the spectra to achieve the best possible resolution of about 1-2'', that is, nucleocentric projected distances of 100 to 400 km depending on the geocentric distance of the comet. We decontaminated the [OI] green line from C[SUB]2[/SUB] lines blends that we identified. <BR /> Results: The observed G/R ratio in all four comets varies as a function of nucleocentric projected distance (between ~0.25 to ~0.05 within 1000 km). This is mainly due to the collisional quenching of O([SUP]1[/SUP]S) and O([SUP]1[/SUP]D) by water molecules in the inner coma. The observed green emission line width is about 2.5 km s[SUP]-1[/SUP] and decreases as the distance from the nucleus increases, which can be explained by the varying contribution of CO[SUB]2[/SUB] to the O([SUP]1[/SUP]S) production in the innermost coma. The photodissociation of CO[SUB]2[/SUB] molecules seem to produce O([SUP]1[/SUP]S) closer to the nucleus, while the water molecule forms all the O([SUP]1[/SUP]S) and O([SUP]1[/SUP]D) atoms beyond 10[SUP]3[/SUP] km. Thus we conclude that the main parent species producing O([SUP]1[/SUP]S) and O([SUP]1[/SUP]D) in the inner coma is not always the same. The observations have been interpreted in the framework of the previously described coupled-chemistry-emission model, and the upper limits of the relative abundances of CO[SUB]2[/SUB] were derived from the observed G/R ratios. Measuring the [OI] lines might provide a new way to determine the CO[SUB]2[/SUB] relative abundance in comets. Based on observations made with ESO Telescope at the La Silla Paranal Observatory under programs ID 073.C-0525, 277.C-5016, 080.C-0615 and 086.C-0958.Tables 3 and 4 are available in electronic form at <A href="http://www.aanda.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201424403/olm">http://www.aanda.org</A> [less ▲]

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See detailThe Gaia-ESO Survey: CNO abundances in the open clusters Trumpler 20, NGC 4815, and NGC 6705
Tautvaišienė, G.; Drazdauskas, A.; Mikolaitis, Š. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 573

Context. The Gaia-ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey will observe a large sample of clusters and cluster stars, covering a wide age-distance-metallicity-position-density parameter space. <BR /> Aims: We aim ... [more ▼]

Context. The Gaia-ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey will observe a large sample of clusters and cluster stars, covering a wide age-distance-metallicity-position-density parameter space. <BR /> Aims: We aim to determine C, N, and O abundances in stars of Galactic open clusters of the Gaia-ESO survey and to compare the observed abundances with those predicted by current stellar and Galactic evolution models. In this pilot paper, we investigate the first three intermediate-age open clusters. <BR /> Methods: High-resolution spectra, observed with the FLAMES-UVES spectrograph on the ESO VLT, were analysed using a differential model atmosphere method. Abundances of carbon were derived using the C[SUB]2[/SUB] band heads at 5135 and 5635.5 Å. The wavelength interval 6470-6490 Å, with CN features, was analysed to determine nitrogen abundances. Oxygen abundances were determined from the [O i] line at 6300 Å. <BR /> Results: The mean values of the elemental abundances in Trumpler 20 as determined from 42 stars are: [ Fe/H ] = 0.10 ± 0.08 (s.d.), [ C/H ] = -0.10 ± 0.07, [ N/H ] = 0.50 ± 0.07, and consequently C/N = 0.98 ± 0.12. We measure from five giants in NGC 4815: [ Fe/H ] = -0.01 ± 0.04, [ C/H ] = -0.17 ± 0.08, [ N/H ] = 0.53 ± 0.07, [ O/H ] = 0.12 ± 0.09, and C/N = 0.79 ± 0.08. We obtain from 27 giants in NGC 6705: [ Fe/H ] = 0.0 ± 0.05, [ C/H ] = -0.08 ± 0.06, [ N/H ] = 0.61 ± 0.07, [ O/H ] = 0.13 ± 0.05, and C/N = 0.83 ± 0.19. The C/N ratios of stars in the investigated open clusters were compared with the ratios predicted by stellar evolutionary models. For the corresponding stellar turn-off masses from 1.9 to 3.3 M[SUB]⊙[/SUB], the observed C/N ratio values are very close to the predictions of standard first dredge-up models as well as to models of thermohaline extra-mixing. They are not decreased as much as predicted by the recent model in which the thermohaline- and rotation-induced extra-mixing act together. The average [O/H] abundance ratios of NGC 4815 and NGC 6705 are compared with the predictions of two Galactic chemical evolution models. The data are consistent with the evolution at the solar radius within the errors. <BR /> Conclusions: The first results of CNO determinations in open clusters show the potential of the Gaia-ESO Survey to judge stellar and Galactic chemical evolution models and the validity of their physical assumptions through a homogeneous and detailed spectral analysis. Based on data products from observations made with ESO Telescopes at the La Silla Paranal Observatory under programme ID 188.B-3002 (The Gaia-ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey, PIs G. Gilmore and S. Randich). [less ▲]

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See detailV444 Cygni X-ray and polarimetric variability: Radiative and Coriolis forces shape the wind collision region
Lomax, J. R.; Nazé, Yaël ULg; Hoffman, J. L. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 573

We present results from a study of the eclipsing, colliding-wind binary V444 Cyg that uses a combination of X-ray and optical spectropolarimetric methods to describe the 3D nature of the shock and wind ... [more ▼]

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

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See detailStellar acoustic radii, mean densities, and ages from seismic inversion techniques
Buldgen, Gaël ULg; Dupret, Marc-Antoine ULg; Reese, Daniel et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 574

Context. Determining stellar characteristics such as the radius, mass or age is crucial when studying stellar evolution or exoplanetary systems, or when characterising stellar populations in the Galaxy ... [more ▼]

Context. Determining stellar characteristics such as the radius, mass or age is crucial when studying stellar evolution or exoplanetary systems, or when characterising stellar populations in the Galaxy. Asteroseismology is the golden path to accurately obtain these characteristics. In this context, a key question is how to make these methods less model-dependent. Aims: Building on the previous work of Daniel Reese, we wish to extend the Substractive Optimally Localized Averages (SOLA) inversion technique to new stellar global characteristics beyond the mean density. The goal is to provide a general framework in which to estimate these characteristics as accurately as possible in low-mass main-sequence stars. Methods: First, we describe our framework and discuss the reliability of the inversion technique and possible sources of error. We then apply this methodology to the acoustic radius, an age indicator based on the sound speed derivative and the mean density, and compare it to estimates based on the average large and small frequency separations. These inversions are carried out for several test cases including various metallicities, different mixing-lengths, non-adiabatic effects, and turbulent pressure. Results: We observe that the SOLA method yields accurate results in all test cases whereas results based on the large and small frequency separations are less accurate and more sensitive to surface effects and structural differences in the models. If we include the surface corrections of Kjeldsen et al. (2008, ApJ, 683, L175), we obtain results of comparable accuracy for the mean density. Overall, the mean density and acoustic radius inversions are more robust than the inversions for the age indicator. Moreover, the current approach is limited to relatively young stars with radiative cores. Increasing the number of observed frequencies improves the reliability and accuracy of the method. [less ▲]

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See detailStellar laboratories. V. The Xe VI ultraviolet spectrum and the xenon abundance in the hot DO-type white dwarf RE 0503-289
Rauch, T; Hoyer, D; Quinet, Pascal ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 577(A88),

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See detailStellar laboratories. IV. New Ga IV, Ga V and Ga VI oscillator strengths and the gallium abundance in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE 0503-289
Rauch, T; Werner, K; Quinet, Pascal ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2015), 577(A6),

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See detailWASP-94 A and B planets: hot-Jupiter cousins in a twin-star system
Neveu-VanMalle, M.; Queloz, D.; Anderson, D. R. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2014), 572

We report the discovery of two hot-Jupiter planets, each orbiting one of the stars of a wide binary system. <ASTROBJ>WASP-94A</ASTROBJ> (<ASTROBJ>2MASS 20550794-3408079</ASTROBJ>) is an F8 type star ... [more ▼]

We report the discovery of two hot-Jupiter planets, each orbiting one of the stars of a wide binary system. <ASTROBJ>WASP-94A</ASTROBJ> (<ASTROBJ>2MASS 20550794-3408079</ASTROBJ>) is an F8 type star hosting a transiting planet with a radius of 1.72 ± 0.06 R<SUB>Jup</SUB>, a mass of 0.452 ± 0.034 M<SUB>Jup</SUB>, and an orbital period of 3.95 days. The Rossiter-McLaughlin effect is clearly detected, and the measured projected spin-orbit angle indicates that the planet occupies a retrograde orbit. <ASTROBJ>WASP-94B</ASTROBJ> (<ASTROBJ>2MASS 20550915-3408078</ASTROBJ>) is an F9 stellar companion at an angular separation of 15'' (projected separation 2700 au), hosting a gas giant with a minimum mass of 0.618 ± 0.028 M<SUB>Jup</SUB> with a period of 2.008 days, detected by Doppler measurements. The orbital planes of the two planets are inclined relative to each other, indicating that at least one of them is inclined relative to the plane of the stellar binary. These hot Jupiters in a binary system bring new insights into the formation of close-in giant planets and the role of stellar multiplicity. The radial-velocity and photometric data used for this work are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/572/A49">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/572/A49</A> [less ▲]

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See detailShort-term spectroscopic variability of Plaskett's star
Palate, Matthieu ULg; Rauw, Grégor ULg

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2014), 572

Context. Plaskett's star (HD 47129) is a very massive O-star binary in a post Roche-lobe overflow stage. CoRoT observations of this system revealed photometric variability with a number of frequencies ... [more ▼]

Context. Plaskett's star (HD 47129) is a very massive O-star binary in a post Roche-lobe overflow stage. CoRoT observations of this system revealed photometric variability with a number of frequencies. <BR /> Aims: The aim of this paper is to characterize the variations in spectroscopy and investigate their origin. <BR /> Methods: To sample its short-term variability, HD 47129 was intensively monitored during two spectroscopic campaigns of six nights each. The spectra were disentangled and Fourier analyses were performed to determine possible periodicities and to investigate the wavelength dependence of the phase constant and the amplitude of the periodicities. <BR /> Results: Complex line profile variations are observed. Frequencies near 1.65, 0.82, and 0.37 d[SUP]-1[/SUP] are detected consistently in the He i λ 4471, He ii λ 4542, and N iii λ 4510-4518 lines. These frequencies are consistent with those of the strongest signals detected in photometry. The possibilities that these variations stem from pulsations, a recently detected magnetic field or tidal interactions are discussed. <BR /> Conclusions: Whilst all three scenarios have their strengths, none of them can currently account for all the observed properties of the line profile variations. Based on observations collected at the Observatoire de Haute Provence (OHP, France). [less ▲]

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See detailMixed modes in red giants: a window on stellar evolution
Mosser, B.; Benomar, O.; Belkacem, K. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2014), 572

Context. The detection of oscillations with a mixed character in subgiants and red giants allows us to probe the physical conditions in their cores. <BR /> Aims: With these mixed modes, we aim at ... [more ▼]

Context. The detection of oscillations with a mixed character in subgiants and red giants allows us to probe the physical conditions in their cores. <BR /> Aims: With these mixed modes, we aim at determining seismic markers of stellar evolution. <BR /> Methods: Kepler asteroseismic data were selected to map various evolutionary stages and stellar masses. Seismic evolutionary tracks were then drawn with the combination of the frequency and period spacings. <BR /> Results: We measured the asymptotic period spacing for 1178 stars at various evolutionary stages. This allows us to monitor stellar evolution from the main sequence to the asymptotic giant branch and draw seismic evolutionary tracks. We present clear quantified asteroseismic definitions that characterize the change in the evolutionary stages, in particular the transition from the subgiant stage to the early red giant branch, and the end of the horizontal branch. <BR /> Conclusions: The seismic information is so precise that clear conclusions can be drawn independently of evolution models. The quantitative seismic information can now be used for stellar modeling, especially for studying the energy transport in the helium-burning core or for specifying the inner properties of stars entering the red or asymptotic giant branches. Modeling will also allow us to study stars that are identified to be in the helium-subflash stage, high-mass stars either arriving or quitting the secondary clump, or stars that could be in the blue-loop stage. Table 1 is only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/572/L5">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/572/L5</A> [less ▲]

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See detailAlignment of quasar polarizations with large-scale structures
Hutsemekers, Damien ULg; Braibant, Lorraine ULg; Pelgrims, Vincent ULg et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2014), 572

We have measured the optical linear polarization of quasars belonging to Gpc scale quasar groups at redshift z ~ 1.3. Out of 93 quasars observed, 19 are significantly polarized. We found that quasar ... [more ▼]

We have measured the optical linear polarization of quasars belonging to Gpc scale quasar groups at redshift z ~ 1.3. Out of 93 quasars observed, 19 are significantly polarized. We found that quasar polarization vectors are either parallel or perpendicular to the directions of the large-scale structures to which they belong. Statistical tests indicate that the probability that this effect can be attributed to randomly oriented polarization vectors is on the order of 1%. We also found that quasars with polarization perpendicular to the host structure preferentially have large emission line widths while objects with polarization parallel to the host structure preferentially have small emission line widths. Considering that quasar polarization is usually either parallel or perpendicular to the accretion disk axis depending on the inclination with respect to the line of sight, and that broader emission lines originate from quasars seen at higher inclinations, we conclude that quasar spin axes are likely parallel to their host large-scale structures. Based on observations made with ESO Telescopes at the La Silla Paranal Observatory under program ID 092.A-0221.Table 1 is available in electronic form at <A href="http://www.aanda.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201424631/olm">http://www.aanda.org</A> [less ▲]

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