4,817 research outputs found

    Spitzer observations of the Orion OB1 association: disk census in the low mass stars

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    We present new Spitzer Space Telescope observations of two fields in the Orion OB1 association. We report here IRAC/MIPS observations for 115 confirmed members and 41 photometric candidates of the ~10 Myr 25 Orionis aggregate in the OB1a subassociation, and 106 confirmed members and 65 photometric candidates of the 5 Myr region located in the OB1b subassociation. The 25 Orionis aggregate shows a disk frequency of 6% while the field in the OB1b subassociation shows a disk frequency of 13%. Combining IRAC, MIPS and 2MASS photometry we place stars bearing disks in several classes: stars with optically thick disks (class II systems), stars with an inner transitional disks (transitional disk candidates) and stars with "evolved disks"; the last exhibit smaller IRAC/MIPS excesses than class II systems. In all, we identify 1 transitional disk candidate in the 25 Orionis aggregate and 3 in the OB1b field; this represents ~10% of the disk bearing stars, indicating that the transitional disk phase can be relatively fast. We find that the frequency of disks is a function of the stellar mass, suggesting a maximum around stars with spectral type M0. Comparing the infrared excess in the IRAC bands among several stellar groups we find that inner disk emission decays with stellar age, showing a correlation with the respective disk frequencies. The disk emission at the IRAC and MIPS bands in several stellar groups indicates that disk dissipation takes place faster in the inner region of the disks. Comparison with models of irradiated accretion disks, computed with several degrees of settling, suggests that the decrease in the overall accretion rate observed in young stellar groups is not sufficient to explain the weak disk emission observed in the IRAC bands for disk bearing stars with ages 5 Myr or older.Comment: Accepted in the Astrophysical Journa

    IRAC Observations of Taurus Pre-Main Sequence Stars

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    We present infrared photometry obtained with the IRAC camera on the Spitzer Space Telescope of a sample of 82 pre-main sequence stars and brown dwarfs in the Taurus star-forming region. We find a clear separation in some IRAC color-color diagrams between objects with and without disks. A few ``transition'' objects are noted, which correspond to systems in which the inner disk has been evacuated of small dust. Separating pure disk systems from objects with remnant protostellar envelopes is more difficult at IRAC wavelengths, especially for objects with infall at low rates and large angular momenta. Our results generally confirm the IRAC color classification scheme used in previous papers by Allen et al. and Megeath et al. to distinguish between protostars, T Tauri stars with disks, and young stars without (inner) disks. The observed IRAC colors are in good agreement with recent improved disk models, and in general accord with models for protostellar envelopes derived from analyzing a larger wavelength region. We also comment on a few Taurus objects of special interest. Our results should be useful for interpreting IRAC results in other, less well-studied star-forming regions.Comment: 29 pages 10 figures, to appear in Ap

    Inside-Out Evacuation of Transitional Protoplanetary Disks by the Magneto-Rotational Instability

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    How do T Tauri disks accrete? The magneto-rotational instability (MRI) supplies one means, but protoplanetary disk gas is typically too poorly ionized to be magnetically active. Here we show that the MRI can, in fact, explain observed accretion rates for the sub-class of T Tauri disks known as transitional systems. Transitional disks are swept clean of dust inside rim radii of ~10 AU. Stellar coronal X-rays ionize material in the disk rim, activating the MRI there. Gas flows from the rim to the star, at a rate limited by the depth to which X-rays ionize the rim wall. The wider the rim, the larger the surface area that the rim wall exposes to X-rays, and the greater the accretion rate. Interior to the rim, the MRI continues to transport gas; the MRI is sustained even at the disk midplane by super-keV X-rays that Compton scatter down from the disk surface. Accretion is therefore steady inside the rim. Blown out by radiation pressure, dust largely fails to accrete with gas. Contrary to what is usually assumed, ambipolar diffusion, not Ohmic dissipation, limits how much gas is MRI-active. We infer values for the transport parameter alpha on the order of 0.01 for GM Aur, TW Hyd, and DM Tau. Because the MRI can only afflict a finite radial column of gas at the rim, disk properties inside the rim are insensitive to those outside. Thus our picture provides one robust setting for planet-disk interaction: a protoplanet interior to the rim will interact with gas whose density, temperature, and transport properties are definite and decoupled from uncertain initial conditions. Our study also supplies half the answer to how disks dissipate: the inner disk drains from the inside out by the MRI, while the outer disk photoevaporates by stellar ultraviolet radiation.Comment: Accepted to Nature Physics June 7, 2007. The manuscript for publication is embargoed per Nature policy. This arxiv.org version contains more technical details and discussion, and is distributed with permission from the editors. 10 pages, 4 figure

    Measurement of 1.7 to 74 MeV polarised gamma rays with the HARPO TPC

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    Current {\gamma}-ray telescopes based on photon conversions to electron-positron pairs, such as Fermi, use tungsten converters. They suffer of limited angular resolution at low energies, and their sensitivity drops below 1 GeV. The low multiple scattering in a gaseous detector gives access to higher angular resolution in the MeV-GeV range, and to the linear polarisation of the photons through the azimuthal angle of the electron-positron pair. HARPO is an R&D program to characterise the operation of a TPC (Time Projection Chamber) as a high angular-resolution and sensitivity telescope and polarimeter for {\gamma} rays from cosmic sources. It represents a first step towards a future space instrument. A 30 cm cubic TPC demonstrator was built, and filled with 2 bar argon-based gas. It was put in a polarised {\gamma}-ray beam at the NewSUBARU accelerator in Japan in November 2014. Data were taken at different photon energies from 1.7 MeV to 74 MeV, and with different polarisation configurations. The electronics setup is described, with an emphasis on the trigger system. The event reconstruction algorithm is quickly described, and preliminary measurements of the polarisation of 11 MeVphotons are shown.Comment: Proceedings VCI201

    Disease effects on reproduction can cause population cycles in seasonal environments

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    Recent studies of rodent populations have demonstrated that certain parasites can cause juveniles to delay maturation until the next reproductive season. Furthermore, a variety of parasites may share the same host, and evidence is beginning to accumulate showing nonindependent effects of different infections.We investigated the consequences for host population dynamics of a disease-induced period of no reproduction, and a chronic reduction in fecundity following recovery from infection (such as may be induced by secondary infections) using a modified SIR (susceptible, infected, recovered) model. We also included a seasonally varying birth rate as recent studies have demonstrated that seasonally varying parameters can have important effects on long-term host–parasite dynamics. We investigated the model predictions using parameters derived from five different cyclic rodent populations.Delayed and reduced fecundity following recovery from infection have no effect on the ability of the disease to regulate the host population in the model as they have no effect on the basic reproductive rate. However, these factors can influence the long-term dynamics including whether or not they exhibit multiyear cycles.The model predicts disease-induced multiyear cycles for a wide range of realistic parameter values. Host populations that recover relatively slowly following a disease-induced population crash are more likely to show multiyear cycles. Diseases for which the period of infection is brief, but full recovery of reproductive function is relatively slow, could generate large amplitude multiyear cycles of several years in length. Chronically reduced fecundity following recovery can also induce multiyear cycles, in support of previous theoretical studies.When parameterized for cowpox virus in the cyclic field vole populations (Microtus agrestis) of Kielder Forest (northern England), the model predicts that the disease must chronically reduce host fecundity by more than 70%, following recovery from infection, for it to induce multiyear cycles. When the model predicts quasi-periodic multiyear cycles it also predicts that seroprevalence and the effective date of onset of the reproductive season are delayed density-dependent, two phenomena that have been recorded in the field

    On the athermal character of structural phase transitions

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    The significance of thermal fluctuations on nucleation in structural first-order phase transitions has been examined. The prototype case of martensitic transitions has been experimentally investigated by means of acoustic emission techniques. We propose a model based on the mean first-passage time to account for the experimental observations. Our study provides a unified framework to establish the conditions for isothermal and athermal transitions to be observed.Comment: 5 pages, 4 figures, accepted in Phys. Rev. Let

    Magnetospheres and Disk Accretion in Herbig Ae/Be Stars

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    We present evidence of magnetically-mediated disk accretion in Herbig Ae/Be stars. Magnetospheric accretion models of Balmer and sodium profiles calculated with appropriate stellar and rotational parameters are in qualitative agreement with the observed profiles of the Herbig Ae star UX Ori, and yield a mass accretion rate of ~ 10^{-8} Msun/yr. If more recent indications of an extremely large rotation rate for this object are correct, the magnetic field geometry must deviate from that of a standard dipole in order to produce line emission consistent with observed flux levels. Models of the associated accretion shock qualitatively explain the observed distribution of excess fluxes in the Balmer discontinuity for a large ensemble of Herbig Ae/Be stars, and imply typically small mass accretion rates, < 10^{-7} Msun/yr. In order for accretion to proceed onto the star, significant amounts of gas must exist inside the dust destruction radius, which is potentially problematic for recently advocated scenarios of "puffed" inner dust wall geometries. However, our models of the inner gas disk show that for the typical accretion rates we have derived, the gas should be generally optically thin, thus allowing direct stellar irradiation of the inner dust edge of the disk.Comment: 32 pages, 12 figures, accepted by Ap
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