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See detailGlobal Modeling of X-Ray Spectra Produced in O-type Star Winds
Hervé, Anthony ULg; Rauw, Grégor ULg; Nazé, Yaël ULg et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2012), 748

High-resolution X-ray spectra of O-type stars revealed less wind absorption than expected from smooth winds with conventional mass-loss rates. Various solutions have been proposed, including porous winds ... [more ▼]

High-resolution X-ray spectra of O-type stars revealed less wind absorption than expected from smooth winds with conventional mass-loss rates. Various solutions have been proposed, including porous winds, optically thick clumps, or an overall reduction of the mass-loss rates. The latter has a strong impact on the evolution of the star. Our final goal is to analyze high-resolution X-ray spectra of O-type stars with a multi-temperature plasma model in order to determine crucial stellar and wind parameters such as the mass-loss rate, the CNO abundances, and the X-ray temperature plasma distribution in the wind. In this context we are developing a modeling tool to calculate synthetic X-ray spectra. We present here the main ingredients and physics necessary for such a work. Our code uses the most recent version of the AtomDB emissivities to compute the intrinsic emissivity of the hot plasma as well as the CMFGEN model atmosphere code to evaluate the opacity of the cool wind. Following the comparison between two formalisms of stellar wind fragmentation, we introduce, for the first time in X-rays, the effects of a tenuous inter-clump medium. We then explore the quantitative impact of different model parameters on the X-ray spectra such as the position in the wind of the X-ray emitting plasma. For the first time, we also show that the two formalisms of stellar wind fragmentation yield different results, although the differences for individual lines are small and can probably not be tested with the current generation of X-ray telescopes. As an illustration of our method, we compare various synthetic line profiles to the observed O VIII λ18.97 line in the spectrum of ζ Puppis. We illustrate how different combinations of parameters can actually lead to the same morphology of a single line, underlining the need to analyze the whole spectrum in a consistent way when attempting to constrain the parameters of the wind. [less ▲]

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See detailMicrolensing Binaries Discovered through High-magnification Channel
Shin, I.-G.; Choi, J.-Y.; Park, S.-Y. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2012), 746

Microlensing can provide a useful tool to probe binary distributions down to low-mass limits of binary companions. In this paper, we analyze the light curves of eight binary-lensing events detected ... [more ▼]

Microlensing can provide a useful tool to probe binary distributions down to low-mass limits of binary companions. In this paper, we analyze the light curves of eight binary-lensing events detected through the channel of high-magnification events during the seasons from 2007 to 2010. The perturbations, which are confined near the peak of the light curves, can be easily distinguished from the central perturbations caused by planets. However, the degeneracy between close and wide binary solutions cannot be resolved with a 3σ confidence level for three events, implying that the degeneracy would be an important obstacle in studying binary distributions. The dependence of the degeneracy on the lensing parameters is consistent with a theoretical prediction that the degeneracy becomes severe as the binary separation and the mass ratio deviate from the values of resonant caustics. The measured mass ratio of the event OGLE-2008-BLG-510/MOA-2008-BLG-369 is q ~ 0.1, making the companion of the lens a strong brown dwarf candidate. [less ▲]

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See detailHigh-resolution X-ray spectroscopy of the magnetic Of?p star HD148937
Nazé, Yaël ULg; Zhekov, S. A.; Walborn, N. R.

in Astrophysical Journal (2012), 746

High-resolution data of the peculiar magnetic massive star HD148937 were obtained with Chandra-HETGS, and are presented here in combination with a re-analysis of the older XMM-RGS data. The lines of the ... [more ▼]

High-resolution data of the peculiar magnetic massive star HD148937 were obtained with Chandra-HETGS, and are presented here in combination with a re-analysis of the older XMM-RGS data. The lines of the high-Z elements (Mg, Si, S) were found to be unshifted and relatively narrow (FWHM of about 800km/s), i.e. narrower than the O line recorded by RGS, which possibly indicates that the hot plasma is multi-thermal and has several origins. These data further indicate a main plasma temperature of about 0.6keV and a formation of the X-ray emission at about one stellar radius above the photosphere. From the spectral fits and the H-to-He line ratios, the presence of very hot plasma is however confirmed, though with a smaller relative strength than for the prototype magnetic oblique rotator $\theta^1$\,Ori\,C. Both stars thus share many similarities, but HD148937 appears less extreme than $\theta^1$\,Ori\,C despite having also a large magnetic confinement parameter. [less ▲]

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See detailHigh-contrast Stellar Observations within the Diffraction Limit at the Palomar Hale Telescope
Mennesson, B.; Hanot, Charles ULg; Serabyn, Eugene et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 743

We report on high-accuracy high-resolution (<20 mas) stellar observations obtained with the Palomar Fiber Nuller (PFN), a near-infrared (sime2.2 μm) interferometric coronagraph installed at the Palomar ... [more ▼]

We report on high-accuracy high-resolution (<20 mas) stellar observations obtained with the Palomar Fiber Nuller (PFN), a near-infrared (sime2.2 μm) interferometric coronagraph installed at the Palomar Hale telescope. The PFN uses destructive interference between two elliptical (3 m × 1.5 m) sub-apertures of the primary to reach high dynamic range inside the diffraction limit of the full telescope. In order to validate the PFN's instrumental approach and its data reduction strategy, based on the newly developed "Null Self-Calibration" (NSC) method, we observed a sample of eight well-characterized bright giants and supergiants. The quantity measured is the source astrophysical null depth, or equivalently the object's visibility at the PFN 3.2 m interferometric baseline. For the bare stars α Boo, α Her, β And, and α Aur, PFN measurements are in excellent agreement with previous stellar photosphere measurements from long baseline interferometry. For the mass-losing stars β Peg, α Ori, ρ Per, and χ Cyg, circumstellar emission and/or asymmetries are detected. Overall, these early observations demonstrate the PFN's ability to measure astrophysical null depths below 10[SUP]-2[/SUP] (limited by stellar diameters), with 1 σ uncertainties as low as a few 10[SUP]-4[/SUP]. Such visibility accuracy is unmatched at this spatial resolution in the near-infrared and translates into a contrast better than 10[SUP]-3[/SUP] within the diffraction limit. With further improvements anticipated in 2011/2012, a state-of-the-art infrared science camera and a new extreme adaptive optics system, the PFN should provide a unique tool for the detection of hot debris disks and young self-luminous sub-stellar companions in the immediate vicinity of nearby stars. [less ▲]

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See detailSpitzer Secondary Eclipses of WASP-18b
Nymeyer, Sarah; Harrington, Joseph; Hardy, Ryan A et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 742(1), 35

The transiting exoplanet WASP-18b was discovered in 2008 by the Wide Angle Search for Planets (WASP) project. The Spitzer Exoplanet Target of Opportunity Program observed secondary eclipses of WASP-18b ... [more ▼]

The transiting exoplanet WASP-18b was discovered in 2008 by the Wide Angle Search for Planets (WASP) project. The Spitzer Exoplanet Target of Opportunity Program observed secondary eclipses of WASP-18b using Spitzer's Infrared Array Camera (IRAC) in the 3.6-micron and 5.8-micron bands on 2008 December 20, and in the 4.5-micron and 8.0-micron bands on 2008 December 24. We report eclipse depths of 0.31+-0.02, 0.38+-0.03, 0.41+-0.02, 0.43+-0.03 %, and brightness temperatures of 2920 +- 90, 3150 +- 130, 3040 +- 130 and 2960 +- 130 K, respectively. WASP-18b is one of the hottest planets yet discovered - as hot as an M-class star. The planet's pressure-temperature profile features a thermal inversion. The observations also require WASP-18b to have near-zero albedo and almost no redistribution of energy from the day-side to the night side of the planet. [less ▲]

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See detailDiscovery and Mass Measurements of a Cold, 10 Earth Mass Planet and Its Host Star
Muraki, Y.; Han, C.; Bennett, D. P. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 741

We present the discovery and mass measurement of the cold, low-mass planet MOA-2009-BLG-266Lb, performed with the gravitational microlensing method. This planet has a mass of m[SUB]p[/SUB] = 10.4 ± 1.7 M ... [more ▼]

We present the discovery and mass measurement of the cold, low-mass planet MOA-2009-BLG-266Lb, performed with the gravitational microlensing method. This planet has a mass of m[SUB]p[/SUB] = 10.4 ± 1.7 M[SUB]⊕[/SUB] and orbits a star of mass M [SUB]sstarf[/SUB] = 0.56 ± 0.09 M[SUB]sun[/SUB] at a semimajor axis of a = 3.2{+1.9\atop -0.5} AU and an orbital period of P = 7.6{+7.7\atop -1.5} yrs. The planet and host star mass measurements are enabled by the measurement of the microlensing parallax effect, which is seen primarily in the light curve distortion due to the orbital motion of the Earth. But the analysis also demonstrates the capability to measure the microlensing parallax with the Deep Impact (or EPOXI) spacecraft in a heliocentric orbit. The planet mass and orbital distance are similar to predictions for the critical core mass needed to accrete a substantial gaseous envelope, and thus may indicate that this planet is a "failed" gas giant. This and future microlensing detections will test planet formation theory predictions regarding the prevalence and masses of such planets. [less ▲]

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See detailThe High Albedo of the Hot Jupiter Kepler-7 b
Demory, Brice*-Olivier; Seager, Sara; Madhusudhan, Nikku et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 735

Hot Jupiters are expected to be dark from both observations (albedo upper limits) and theory (alkali metals and/or TiO and VO absorption). However, only a handful of hot Jupiters have been observed with ... [more ▼]

Hot Jupiters are expected to be dark from both observations (albedo upper limits) and theory (alkali metals and/or TiO and VO absorption). However, only a handful of hot Jupiters have been observed with high enough photometric precision at visible wavelengths to investigate these expectations. The NASA Kepler mission provides a means to widen the sample and to assess the extent to which hot Jupiter albedos are low. We present a global analysis of Kepler-7 b based on Q0-Q4 data, published radial velocities, and asteroseismology constraints. We measure an occultation depth in the Kepler bandpass of 44 ± 5 ppm. If directly related to the albedo, this translates to a Kepler geometric albedo of 0.32 ± 0.03, the most precise value measured so far for an exoplanet. We also characterize the planetary orbital phase light curve with an amplitude of 42 ± 4 ppm. Using atmospheric models, we find it unlikely that the high albedo is due to a dominant thermal component and propose two solutions to explain the observed planetary flux. First, we interpret the Kepler-7 b albedo as resulting from an excess reflection over what can be explained solely by Rayleigh scattering, along with a nominal thermal component. This excess reflection might indicate the presence of a cloud or haze layer in the atmosphere, motivating new modeling and observational efforts. Alternatively, the albedo can be explained by Rayleigh scattering alone if Na and K are depleted in the atmosphere by a factor of 10-100 below solar abundances. [less ▲]

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See detailNew Constraints on Companions and Dust within a Few AU of Vega
Mennesson, B.; Serabyn, E.; Hanot, Charles ULg et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 736

We report on high contrast near-infrared (~2.2 μm) observations of Vega obtained with the Palomar Fiber Nuller, a dual sub-aperture rotating coronagraph installed at the Palomar Hale telescope. The data ... [more ▼]

We report on high contrast near-infrared (~2.2 μm) observations of Vega obtained with the Palomar Fiber Nuller, a dual sub-aperture rotating coronagraph installed at the Palomar Hale telescope. The data show consistent astrophysical null depth measurements at the ~= 10[SUP]–3[/SUP] level or below for three different baseline orientations spanning 60 deg in azimuth, with individual 1σ uncertainties <=7 × 10[SUP]–4[/SUP]. These high cancellation and accuracy levels translate into a dynamic range greater than 1000:1 inside the diffraction limit of the 5 m telescope beam. Such high contrast performance is unprecedented in the near-infrared and provides improved constraints on Vega's immediate (sime20 to 250 mas, or sime0.15 to 2 AU) environment. In particular, our measurements rule out any potential companion in the [0.25-1 AU] region contributing more than 1% of the overall near-infrared stellar flux, with limits as low as 0.2% near 0.6 AU. These are the best upper limits established so far by direct detection for a companion to Vega in this inner region. We also conclude that any dust population contributing a significant (>=1%) near-infrared thermal excess can arise only within 0.2 AU of the star, and that it must consist of much smaller grains than in the solar zodiacal cloud. Dust emission from farther than sime2 AU is also not ruled out by our observations, but would have to originate in strong scattering, pointing again to very small grains. Based on observations obtained at the Hale Telescope, Palomar Observatory as part of a continuing collaboration between the California Institute of Technology, NASA/JPL, and Cornell University. [less ▲]

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See detailEPOXI: Comet 103P/Hartley 2 Observations from a Worldwide Campaign
Meech, K. J.; A'Hearn, M. F.; Adams, J. A. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 734(Letters), 11-9

Earth- and space-based observations provide synergistic information for space mission encounters by providing data over longer timescales, at different wavelengths and using techniques that are impossible ... [more ▼]

Earth- and space-based observations provide synergistic information for space mission encounters by providing data over longer timescales, at different wavelengths and using techniques that are impossible with an in situ flyby. We report here such observations in support of the EPOXI spacecraft flyby of comet 103P/Hartley 2. The nucleus is small and dark, and exhibited a very rapidly changing rotation period. Prior to the onset of activity, the period was ~16.4 hr. Starting in 2010 August the period changed from 16.6 hr to near 19 hr in December. With respect to dust composition, most volatiles and carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios, the comet is similar to other Jupiter-family comets. What is unusual is the dominance of CO[SUB]2[/SUB]-driven activity near perihelion, which likely persists out to aphelion. Near perihelion the comet nucleus was surrounded by a large halo of water-ice grains that contributed significantly to the total water production. [less ▲]

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See detailImproving Interferometric null depth measurements using statistical distributions: theory and first results with the Palomar Fiber Nuller
Hanot, Charles ULg; Mennesson, Bertrand; Martin, Stefan et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 729(2), 110

A new "self-calibrated" statistical analysis method has been developed for the reduction of nulling interferometry data. The idea is to use the statistical distributions of the fluctuating null depth and ... [more ▼]

A new "self-calibrated" statistical analysis method has been developed for the reduction of nulling interferometry data. The idea is to use the statistical distributions of the fluctuating null depth and beam intensities to retrieve the astrophysical null depth (or equivalently the object's visibility) in the presence of fast atmospheric fluctuations. The approach yields an accuracy much better (about an order of magnitude) than is presently possible with standard data reduction methods, because the astrophysical null depth accuracy is no longer limited by the magnitude of the instrumental phase and intensity errors but by uncertainties on their probability distributions. This approach was tested on the sky with the two-aperture fiber nulling instrument mounted on the Palomar Hale telescope. Using our new data analysis approach alone—and no observations of calibrators—we find that error bars on the astrophysical null depth as low as a few 10–4 can be obtained in the near-infrared, which means that null depths lower than 10–3 can be reliably measured. This statistical analysis is not specific to our instrument and may be applicable to other interferometers. [less ▲]

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See detailOrtho-to-para Abundance Ratio (OPR) of Ammonia in 15 Comets: OPRs of Ammonia Versus 14N/15N Ratios in CN
Shinnaka, Yoshiharu; Kawakita, Hideyo; Kobayashi, Hitomi et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 729

The ortho-to-para abundance ratio (OPR) of cometary molecules is considered to be one of the primordial characteristics of cometary ices. We present OPRs of ammonia (NH[SUB]3[/SUB]) in 15 comets based on ... [more ▼]

The ortho-to-para abundance ratio (OPR) of cometary molecules is considered to be one of the primordial characteristics of cometary ices. We present OPRs of ammonia (NH[SUB]3[/SUB]) in 15 comets based on optical high-dispersion spectroscopic observations of NH[SUB]2[/SUB], which is a photodissociation product of ammonia in the gaseous coma. The observations were mainly carried out with the VLT/UVES. The OPR of ammonia is estimated from the OPR of NH[SUB]2[/SUB] based on the observations of the NH[SUB]2[/SUB] (0, 9, 0) vibronic band. The absorption lines by the telluric atmosphere are corrected and the cometary C[SUB]2[/SUB] emission lines blended with NH[SUB]2[/SUB] lines are removed in our analysis. The ammonia OPRs show a cluster between 1.1 and 1.2 (this corresponds to a nuclear spin temperature of ~30 K) for all comets in our sample except for 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 (73P/SW3). Comet 73P/SW3 (both B- and C-fragments) shows the OPR of ammonia consistent with nuclear spin statistical weight ratio (1.0) that indicates a high-temperature limit as nuclear spin temperature. We compared the ammonia OPRs with other properties ([SUP]14[/SUP]N/[SUP]15[/SUP]N ratios in CN, D/H ratios of water, and mixing ratios of volatiles). Comet 73P/SW3 is clearly different from the other comets in the plot of ammonia OPRs versus [SUP]14[/SUP]N/[SUP]15[/SUP]N ratios in CN. The ammonia OPRs of 1.0 and lower [SUP]15[/SUP]N-fractionation of CN in comet 73P/SW3 imply that icy materials in this comet formed under warmer conditions than other comets. Comets may be classified into two groups in the plot of ammonia OPRs against [SUP]14[/SUP]N/[SUP]15[/SUP]N ratios in CN. [less ▲]

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See detailDiscovery of a New AM CVn System with the Kepler Satellite
Fontaine, G.; Brassard, P.; Green, E. M. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 726

We report the discovery of a new AM CVn system on the basis of broadband photometry obtained with the Kepler satellite supplemented by ground-based optical spectroscopy. Initially retained on Kepler ... [more ▼]

We report the discovery of a new AM CVn system on the basis of broadband photometry obtained with the Kepler satellite supplemented by ground-based optical spectroscopy. Initially retained on Kepler target lists as a potential compact pulsator, the blue object SDSS J190817.07+394036.4 (KIC 004547333) has turned out to be a high-state AM CVn star showing the He-dominated spectrum of its accretion disk significantly reddened by interstellar absorption. We constructed new grids of NLTE synthetic spectra for accretion disks in order to analyze our spectroscopic observations. From this analysis, we infer preliminary estimates of the rate of mass transfer, the inclination angle of the disk, and the distance to the system. The AM CVn nature of the system is also evident in the Kepler light curve, from which we extracted 11 secure periodicities. The luminosity variations are dominated by a basic periodicity of 938.507 s, likely to correspond to a superhump modulation. The light curve folded on the period of 938.507 s exhibits a pulse shape that is very similar to the superhump wavefront seen in AM CVn itself, which is a high-state system and the prototype of the class. Our Fourier analysis also suggests the likely presence of a quasi-periodic oscillation similar to those already observed in some high-state AM CVn systems. Furthermore, some very low-frequency, low-amplitude aperiodic photometric activity is likely present, which is in line with what is expected in accreting binary systems. Inspired by previous work, we further looked for and found some intriguing numerical relationships between the 11 secure detected frequencies, in the sense that we can account for all of them in terms of only three basic clocks. This is further evidence in favor of the AM CVn nature of the system. [less ▲]

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See detailA sub-Saturn Mass Planet, MOA-2009-BLG-319Lb
Miyake, N.; Sumi, T.; Dong, Subo et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 1010

We report the gravitational microlensing discovery of a sub-Saturn mass planet, MOA-2009-BLG-319Lb, orbiting a K or M-dwarf star in the inner Galactic disk or Galactic bulge. The high cadence observations ... [more ▼]

We report the gravitational microlensing discovery of a sub-Saturn mass planet, MOA-2009-BLG-319Lb, orbiting a K or M-dwarf star in the inner Galactic disk or Galactic bulge. The high cadence observations of the MOA-II survey discovered this microlensing event and enabled its identification as a high magnification event approximately 24 hours prior to peak magnification. As a result, the planetary signal at the peak of this light curve was observed by 20 different telescopes, which is the largest number of telescopes to contribute to a planetary discovery to date. The microlensing model for this event indicates a planet-star mass ratio of q = (3.95 +/- 0.02) x 10^{-4} and a separation of d = 0.97537 +/- 0.00007 in units of the Einstein radius. A Bayesian analysis based on the measured Einstein radius crossing time, t_E, and angular Einstein radius, \theta_E, along with a standard Galactic model indicates a host star mass of M_L = 0.38^{+0.34}_{-0.18} M_{Sun} and a planet mass of M_p = 50^{+44}_{-24} M_{Earth}, which is half the mass of Saturn. This analysis also yields a planet-star three-dimensional separation of a = 2.4^{+1.2}_{-0.6} AU and a distance to the planetary system of D_L = 6.1^{+1.1}_{-1.2} kpc. This separation is ~ 2 times the distance of the snow line, a separation similar to most of the other planets discovered by microlensing. [less ▲]

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See detailHubble Space Telescope/Advanced Camera for Surveys Observations of Europa's Atmospheric Ultraviolet Emission at Eastern Elongation
Saur, Joachim; Feldman, Paul D; Roth, Lorenz et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2011), 738

We report results of a Hubble Space Telescope (HST) campaign with the Advanced Camera for Surveys to observe Europa at eastern elongation, i.e., Europa's leading side, on 2008 June 29. With five ... [more ▼]

We report results of a Hubble Space Telescope (HST) campaign with the Advanced Camera for Surveys to observe Europa at eastern elongation, i.e., Europa's leading side, on 2008 June 29. With five consecutive HST orbits, we constrain Europa's atmospheric O I 1304 Å and O I 1356 Å emissions using the prism PR130L. The total emissions of both oxygen multiplets range between 132 ± 14 and 226 ± 14 Rayleigh. An additional systematic error with values on the same order as the statistical errors may be due to uncertainties in modeling the reflected light from Europa's surface. The total emission also shows a clear dependence of Europa's position with respect to Jupiter's magnetospheric plasma sheet. We derive a lower limit for the O[SUB]2[/SUB] column density of 6 × 10[SUP]18[/SUP] m[SUP]-2[/SUP]. Previous observations of Europa's atmosphere with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph in 1999 of Europa's trailing side show an enigmatic surplus of radiation on the anti-Jovian side within the disk of Europa. With emission from a radially symmetric atmosphere as a reference, we searched for an anti-Jovian versus sub-Jovian asymmetry with respect to the central meridian on the leading side and found none. Likewise, we searched for departures from a radially symmetric atmospheric emission and found an emission surplus centered around 90° west longitude, for which plausible mechanisms exist. Previous work about the possibility of plumes on Europa due to tidally driven shear heating found longitudes with strongest local strain rates which might be consistent with the longitudes of maximum UV emissions. Alternatively, asymmetries in Europa's UV emission can also be caused by inhomogeneous surface properties, an optically thick atmospheric contribution of atomic oxygen, and/or by Europa's complex plasma interaction with Jupiter's magnetosphere. [less ▲]

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See detailWASP-22 b: A Transiting "Hot Jupiter" Planet in a Hierarchical Triple System
Maxted, P. F. L.; Anderson, D. R.; Gillon, Michaël ULg et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 140(6), 2007-2012

We report the discovery of a transiting planet orbiting the star TYC 6446-326-1. The star, WASP-22, is a moderately bright (V = 12.0) solar-type star (T[SUB]eff[/SUB] = 6000 ± 100 K, [Fe/H] = –0.05 ± 0.08 ... [more ▼]

We report the discovery of a transiting planet orbiting the star TYC 6446-326-1. The star, WASP-22, is a moderately bright (V = 12.0) solar-type star (T[SUB]eff[/SUB] = 6000 ± 100 K, [Fe/H] = –0.05 ± 0.08). The light curve of the star obtained with the WASP-South instrument shows periodic transit-like features with a depth of about 1% and a duration of 0.14 days. The presence of a transit-like feature in the light curve is confirmed using z-band photometry obtained with Faulkes Telescope South. High-resolution spectroscopy obtained with the CORALIE and HARPS spectrographs confirms the presence of a planetary mass companion with an orbital period of 3.533 days in a near-circular orbit. From a combined analysis of the spectroscopic and photometric data assuming that the star is a typical main-sequence star we estimate that the planet has a mass M [SUB]p[/SUB] = 0.56 ± 0.02M [SUB]Jup[/SUB] and a radius R [SUB]p[/SUB] = 1.12 ± 0.04R [SUB]Jup[/SUB]. In addition, there is a linear trend of 40 m s[SUP]–1[/SUP] yr[SUP]–1[/SUP] in the radial velocities measured over 16 months, from which we infer the presence of a third body with a long-period orbit in this system. The companion may be a low mass M-dwarf, a white dwarf, or a second planet. [less ▲]

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See detailOGLE-2009-BLG-092/MOA-2009-BLG-137: A Dramatic Repeating Event with the Second Perturbation Predicted by Real-time Analysis
Ryu, Y*-H; Han, C.; Hwang, K*-H et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 723(1), 81-88

We report the result of the analysis of a dramatic repeating gravitational microlensing event OGLE-2009-BLG-092/MOA-2009-BLG-137, for which the light curve is characterized by two distinct peaks with ... [more ▼]

We report the result of the analysis of a dramatic repeating gravitational microlensing event OGLE-2009-BLG-092/MOA-2009-BLG-137, for which the light curve is characterized by two distinct peaks with perturbations near both peaks. We find that the event is produced by the passage of the source trajectory over the central perturbation regions associated with the individual components of a wide-separation binary. The event is special in the sense that the second perturbation, occurring ~100 days after the first, was predicted by the real-time analysis conducted after the first peak, demonstrating that real-time modeling can be routinely done for binary and planetary events. With the data obtained from follow-up observations covering the second peak, we are able to uniquely determine the physical parameters of the lens system. We find that the event occurred on a bulge clump giant and it was produced by a binary lens composed of a K- and M-type main-sequence stars. The estimated masses of the binary components are M [SUB]1[/SUB] = 0.69 ± 0.11 M [SUB]sun[/SUB] and M [SUB]2[/SUB] = 0.36 ± 0.06 M [SUB]sun[/SUB], respectively, and they are separated in projection by r [SUB]bottom[/SUB] = 10.9 ± 1.3 AU. The measured distance to the lens is D [SUB]L[/SUB] = 5.6 ± 0.7 kpc. We also detect the orbital motion of the lens system. [less ▲]

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See detailERRATUM: "Physical Properties of the 0.94 Day Period Transiting Planetary System WASP-18" (2009, ApJ, 707, 167)
Southworth, John; Hinse, T. C.; Dominik, M. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 723(2), 1829

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See detailHD 259440: The Proposed Optical Counterpart of the γ-ray Binary HESS J0632+057
Aragona, C.; McSwain, M. V.; De Becker, Michaël ULg

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 724

HD 259440 is a B0pe star that was proposed as the optical counterpart to the γ-ray source HESS J0632+057. Here, we present optical spectra of HD 259440 acquired to investigate the stellar parameters, the ... [more ▼]

HD 259440 is a B0pe star that was proposed as the optical counterpart to the γ-ray source HESS J0632+057. Here, we present optical spectra of HD 259440 acquired to investigate the stellar parameters, the properties of the Be star disk, and evidence of binarity in this system. Emission from the Hα line shows evidence of a spiral density wave in the nearly edge-on disk. We find a best-fit stellar effective temperature of 27,500-30,000 K and a log surface gravity of 3.75-4.0, although our fits are somewhat ambiguous due to scattered light from the circumstellar disk. We derive a mass of 13.2-19.0 M sun and a radius of 6.0-9.6 R sun. By fitting the spectral energy distribution, we find a distance between 1.1 and 1.7 kpc. We do not detect any significant radial velocity shifts in our data, ruling out orbital periods shorter than one month. If HD 259440 is a binary, it is likely a long-period (>100 d) system. [less ▲]

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See detailWASP-24 b: A New Transiting Close-in Hot Jupiter Orbiting a Late F-star
Street, R. A.; Simpson, E.; Barros, S. C. C. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 720

We report the discovery of a new transiting close-in giant planet, WASP-24 b, in a 2.341 day orbit, 0.037 AU from its F8-9 type host star. By matching the star's spectrum with theoretical models, we infer ... [more ▼]

We report the discovery of a new transiting close-in giant planet, WASP-24 b, in a 2.341 day orbit, 0.037 AU from its F8-9 type host star. By matching the star's spectrum with theoretical models, we infer an effective temperature T [SUB]eff[/SUB] = 6075 ± 100 K and a surface gravity of log g = 4.15 ± 0.10. A comparison of these parameters with theoretical isochrones and evolutionary mass tracks places only weak constraints on the age of the host star, which we estimate to be 3.8[SUP]+1.3[/SUP] [SUB]-1.2[/SUB] Gyr. The planetary nature of the companion was confirmed by radial velocity measurements and additional photometric observations. These data were fit simultaneously in order to determine the most probable parameter set for the system, from which we infer a planetary mass of 1.071[SUP]+0.036[/SUP] [SUB]-0.038[/SUB] M [SUB]Jup[/SUB] and radius 1.3[SUP]+0.039[/SUP] [SUB]-0.037[/SUB] R [SUB]Jup[/SUB]. [less ▲]

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See detailFrequency of Solar-like Systems and of Ice and Gas Giants Beyond the Snow Line from High-magnification Microlensing Events in 2005-2008
Gould, A.; Dong, Subo; Gaudi, B. S. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2010), 720

We present the first measurement of the planet frequency beyond the "snow line," for the planet-to-star mass-ratio interval –4.5 < log q < –2, corresponding to the range of ice giants to gas giants. We ... [more ▼]

We present the first measurement of the planet frequency beyond the "snow line," for the planet-to-star mass-ratio interval –4.5 < log q < –2, corresponding to the range of ice giants to gas giants. We find \endgraf\vbox{\begin{center}$\displaystyle{d^2 N{_{\rm pl}}\over d\log q\, d\log s} = (0.36\pm 0.15)\;{\rm dex}^{-2}$\end{center}}\noindentat the mean mass ratio q = 5 × 10 –4 with no discernible deviation from a flat (Öpik's law) distribution in log-projected separation s. The determination is based on a sample of six planets detected from intensive follow-up observations of high-magnification ( A>200) microlensing events during 2005-2008. The sampled host stars have a typical mass M host ~ 0.5 M sun [less ▲]

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