59 research outputs found

    Financing Marine Conservation: A Menu of Options

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    This guide describes over 30 mechanisms for financing the conservation of marine biodiversity, both within and outside of MPAs. Its main purpose is to familiarize conservation professionals i.e., the managers and staff of government conservation agencies, international donors, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) with a menu of options for financing the conservation of marine and coastal biodiversity. A number of economic incentive mechanisms for marine conservation (as contrasted with revenue-raising mechanisms) are also presented in section 5 (on Real Estate and Development Rights) and section 6 (on Fishing Industry Revenues). Each section provides a description of the financing mechanism and examples showing how the mechanism has been used to finance marine conservation. In some cases, even though a mechanism may have only been used to finance terrestrial conservation, it has been included in this guide because of its potential to also serve as a new source of funding for marine conservation. This guide is not intended to provide detailed instructions on how to establish and implement each of the different conservation financing mechanisms. Instead references are provided at the end of each section for sources of additional information about each of the mechanisms described. Citations to specific references are also included in the text in parentheses

    A New Distance to The Antennae Galaxies (NGC 4038/39) Based on the Type Ia Supernova 2007sr

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    Traditionally, the distance to NGC 4038/39 has been derived from the systemic recession velocity, yielding about 20 Mpc for H_0 = 72 km/s/Mpc. Recently, this widely adopted distance has been challenged based on photometry of the presumed tip of the red giant branch (TRGB), which seems to yield a shorter distance of 13.3+-1.0 Mpc and, with it, nearly 1 mag lower luminosities and smaller radii for objects in this prototypical merger. Here we present a new distance estimate based on observations of the Type Ia supernova (SN) 2007sr in the southern tail, made at Las Campanas Observatory as part of the Carnegie Supernova Project. The resulting distance of D(SN Ia) = 22.3+-2.8 Mpc [(m-M)_0 = 31.74+-0.27 mag] is in good agreement with a refined distance estimate based on the recession velocity and the large-scale flow model developed by Tonry and collaborators, D(flow) = 22.5+-2.8 Mpc. We point out three serious problems that a short distance of 13.3 Mpc would entail, and trace the claimed short distance to a likely misidentification of the TRGB. Reanalyzing Hubble Space Telescope (HST) data in the Archive with an improved method, we find a TRGB fainter by 0.9 mag and derive from it a preliminary new TRGB distance of D(TRGB) = 20.0+-1.6 Mpc. Finally, assessing our three distance estimates we recommend using a conservative, rounded value of D = 22+-3 Mpc as the best currently available distance to The Antennae.Comment: 8 pages, 5 figures, 1 table (emulateapj; uses amsmath package). Accepted for publication in The Astronomical Journal, Vol. 136. Figs. 1 & 2 degraded to reduce file size

    The Carnegie Supernova Project: First Near-Infrared Hubble Diagram to z~0.7

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    The Carnegie Supernova Project (CSP) is designed to measure the luminosity distance for Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) as a function of redshift, and to set observational constraints on the dark energy contribution to the total energy content of the Universe. The CSP differs from other projects to date in its goal of providing an I-band {rest-frame} Hubble diagram. Here we present the first results from near-infrared (NIR) observations obtained using the Magellan Baade telescope for SNe Ia with 0.1 < z < 0.7. We combine these results with those from the low-redshift CSP at z <0.1 (Folatelli et al. 2009). We present light curves and an I-band Hubble diagram for this first sample of 35 SNe Ia and we compare these data to 21 new SNe Ia at low redshift. These data support the conclusion that the expansion of the Universe is accelerating. When combined with independent results from baryon acoustic oscillations (Eisenstein et al. 2005), these data yield Omega_m = 0.27 +/- 0.0 (statistical), and Omega_DE = 0.76 +/- 0.13 (statistical) +/- 0.09 (systematic), for the matter and dark energy densities, respectively. If we parameterize the data in terms of an equation of state, w, assume a flat geometry, and combine with baryon acoustic oscillations, we find that w = -1.05 +/- 0.13 (statistical) +/- 0.09 (systematic). The largest source of systematic uncertainty on w arises from uncertainties in the photometric calibration, signaling the importance of securing more accurate photometric calibrations for future supernova cosmology programs. Finally, we conclude that either the dust affecting the luminosities of SNe Ia has a different extinction law (R_V = 1.8) than that in the Milky Way (where R_V = 3.1), or that there is an additional intrinsic color term with luminosity for SNe Ia independent of the decline rate.Comment: 44 pages, 23 figures, 9 tables; Accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journa

    The UV-Optical Color Dependence of Galaxy Clustering in the Local Universe

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    We measure the UV-optical color dependence of galaxy clustering in the local universe. Using the clean separation of the red and blue sequences made possible by the NUV - r color-magnitude diagram, we segregate the galaxies into red, blue and intermediate "green" classes. We explore the clustering as a function of this segregation by removing the dependence on luminosity and by excluding edge-on galaxies as a means of a non-model dependent veto of highly extincted galaxies. We find that \xi (r_p, \pi) for both red and green galaxies shows strong redshift space distortion on small scales -- the "finger-of-God" effect, with green galaxies having a lower amplitude than is seen for the red sequence, and the blue sequence showing almost no distortion. On large scales, \xi (r_p, \pi) for all three samples show the effect of large-scale streaming from coherent infall. On scales 1 Mpc/h < r_p < 10 Mpc/h, the projected auto-correlation function w_p(r_p) for red and green galaxies fits a power-law with slope \gamma ~ 1.93 and amplitude r_0 ~ 7.5 and 5.3, compared with \gamma ~ 1.75 and r_0 ~ 3.9 Mpc/h for blue sequence galaxies. Compared to the clustering of a fiducial L* galaxy, the red, green, and blue have a relative bias of 1.5, 1.1, and 0.9 respectively. The w_p(r_p) for blue galaxies display an increase in convexity at ~ 1 Mpc/h, with an excess of large scale clustering. Our results suggest that the majority of blue galaxies are likely central galaxies in less massive halos, while red and green galaxies have larger satellite fractions, and preferentially reside in virialized structures. If blue sequence galaxies migrate to the red sequence via processes like mergers or quenching that take them through the green valley, such a transformation may be accompanied by a change in environment in addition to any change in luminosity and color.Comment: accepted by MNRA

    The Carnegie Hubble Program: The Leavitt Law at 3.6 \mu m and 4.5 \mu m in the Large Magellanic Cloud

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    The Carnegie Hubble Program (CHP) is designed to improve the extragalactic distance scale using data from the post-cryogenic era of Spitzer. The ultimate goal is a determination of the Hubble constant to an accuracy of 2%. This paper is the first in a series on the Cepheid population of the Large Magellanic Cloud, and focusses on the period-luminosity relations (Leavitt laws) that will be used, in conjunction with observations of Milky Way Cepheids, to set the slope and zero--point of the Cepheid distance scale in the mid-infrared. To this end, we have obtained uniformly-sampled light curves for 85 LMC Cepheids, having periods between 6 and 140 days. Period-luminosity and period-color relations are presented in the 3.6 \mu m and 4.5\mu m bands. We demonstrate that the 3.6 \mu m band is a superb distance indicator. The cyclical variation of the [3.6]-[4.5] color has been measured for the first time. We attribute the amplitude and phase of the color curves to the dissociation and recombination of CO molecules in the Cepheid's atmosphere. The CO affects only the 4.5 \mu m flux making it a potential metallicity indicator.Comment: 38 pages, 9 figures, 3 tables. ApJ accepted. Cepheid photometry available in electronic version of ApJ, or on request from V

    Wide-Field InfrarRed Survey Telescope-Astrophysics Focused Telescope Assets WFIRST-AFTA 2015 Report

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    This report describes the 2014 study by the Science Definition Team (SDT) of the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) mission. It is a space observatory that will address the most compelling scientific problems in dark energy, exoplanets and general astrophysics using a 2.4-m telescope with a wide-field infrared instrument and an optical coronagraph. The Astro2010 Decadal Survey recommended a Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope as its top priority for a new large space mission. As conceived by the decadal survey, WFIRST would carry out a dark energy science program, a microlensing program to determine the demographics of exoplanets, and a general observing program utilizing its ultra wide field. In October 2012, NASA chartered a Science Definition Team (SDT) to produce, in collaboration with the WFIRST Study Office at GSFC and the Program Office at JPL, a Design Reference Mission (DRM) for an implementation of WFIRST using one of the 2.4-m, Hubble-quality telescope assemblies recently made available to NASA. This DRM builds on the work of the earlier WFIRST SDT, reported by Green et al. (2012) and the previous WFIRST-2.4 DRM, reported by Spergel et. (2013). The 2.4-m primary mirror enables a mission with greater sensitivity and higher angular resolution than the 1.3-m and 1.1-m designs considered previously, increasing both the science return of the primary surveys and the capabilities of WFIRST as a Guest Observer facility. The addition of an on-axis coronagraphic instrument to the baseline design enables imaging and spectroscopic studies of planets around nearby stars.Comment: This report describes the 2014 study by the Science Definition Team of the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope mission. 319 pages; corrected a misspelled name in the authors list and a typo in the abstrac

    Using viral vectors as gene transfer tools (Cell Biology and Toxicology Special Issue: ETCS-UK 1 day meeting on genetic manipulation of cells)

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    In recent years, the development of powerful viral gene transfer techniques has greatly facilitated the study of gene function. This review summarises some of the viral delivery systems routinely used to mediate gene transfer into cell lines, primary cell cultures and in whole animal models. The systems described were originally discussed at a 1-day European Tissue Culture Society (ETCS-UK) workshop that was held at University College London on 1st April 2009. Recombinant-deficient viral vectors (viruses that are no longer able to replicate) are used to transduce dividing and post-mitotic cells, and they have been optimised to mediate regulatable, powerful, long-term and cell-specific expression. Hence, viral systems have become very widely used, especially in the field of neurobiology. This review introduces the main categories of viral vectors, focusing on their initial development and highlighting modifications and improvements made since their introduction. In particular, the use of specific promoters to restrict expression, translational enhancers and regulatory elements to boost expression from a single virion and the development of regulatable systems is described

    CMB-S4: Forecasting Constraints on Primordial Gravitational Waves

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    CMB-S4---the next-generation ground-based cosmic microwave background (CMB) experiment---is set to significantly advance the sensitivity of CMB measurements and enhance our understanding of the origin and evolution of the Universe, from the highest energies at the dawn of time through the growth of structure to the present day. Among the science cases pursued with CMB-S4, the quest for detecting primordial gravitational waves is a central driver of the experimental design. This work details the development of a forecasting framework that includes a power-spectrum-based semi-analytic projection tool, targeted explicitly towards optimizing constraints on the tensor-to-scalar ratio, rr, in the presence of Galactic foregrounds and gravitational lensing of the CMB. This framework is unique in its direct use of information from the achieved performance of current Stage 2--3 CMB experiments to robustly forecast the science reach of upcoming CMB-polarization endeavors. The methodology allows for rapid iteration over experimental configurations and offers a flexible way to optimize the design of future experiments given a desired scientific goal. To form a closed-loop process, we couple this semi-analytic tool with map-based validation studies, which allow for the injection of additional complexity and verification of our forecasts with several independent analysis methods. We document multiple rounds of forecasts for CMB-S4 using this process and the resulting establishment of the current reference design of the primordial gravitational-wave component of the Stage-4 experiment, optimized to achieve our science goals of detecting primordial gravitational waves for r>0.003r > 0.003 at greater than 5σ5\sigma, or, in the absence of a detection, of reaching an upper limit of r<0.001r < 0.001 at 95%95\% CL.Comment: 24 pages, 8 figures, 9 tables, submitted to ApJ. arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1907.0447

    CMB-S4: Forecasting Constraints on Primordial Gravitational Waves

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    Abstract: CMB-S4—the next-generation ground-based cosmic microwave background (CMB) experiment—is set to significantly advance the sensitivity of CMB measurements and enhance our understanding of the origin and evolution of the universe. Among the science cases pursued with CMB-S4, the quest for detecting primordial gravitational waves is a central driver of the experimental design. This work details the development of a forecasting framework that includes a power-spectrum-based semianalytic projection tool, targeted explicitly toward optimizing constraints on the tensor-to-scalar ratio, r, in the presence of Galactic foregrounds and gravitational lensing of the CMB. This framework is unique in its direct use of information from the achieved performance of current Stage 2–3 CMB experiments to robustly forecast the science reach of upcoming CMB-polarization endeavors. The methodology allows for rapid iteration over experimental configurations and offers a flexible way to optimize the design of future experiments, given a desired scientific goal. To form a closed-loop process, we couple this semianalytic tool with map-based validation studies, which allow for the injection of additional complexity and verification of our forecasts with several independent analysis methods. We document multiple rounds of forecasts for CMB-S4 using this process and the resulting establishment of the current reference design of the primordial gravitational-wave component of the Stage-4 experiment, optimized to achieve our science goals of detecting primordial gravitational waves for r > 0.003 at greater than 5σ, or in the absence of a detection, of reaching an upper limit of r < 0.001 at 95% CL
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