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Sample records for white dwarf g191-b2b

  1. Stellar laboratories. VI. New Mo IV - VII oscillator strengths and the molybdenum abundance in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T; Hoyer, D; Werner, K; Demleitner, M; Kruk, J W

    2015-01-01

    For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. To identify molybdenum lines in the ultraviolet (UV) spectra of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE0503-289 and to determine their photospheric Mo abundances, newly calculated Mo IV - VII oscillator strengths are used. We identified twelve Mo V and nine Mo VI lines in the UV spectrum of RE0503-289 and measured a photospheric Mo abundance of 1.2 - 3.0 x 10**-4 (mass fraction, 22500 - 56400 times the solar abundance). In addition, from the As V and Sn IV resonance lines, we measured mass fractions of arsenic (0.5 - 1.3 x 10**-5, about 300 - 1200 times solar) and tin (1.3 - 3.2 x 10**-4, about 14300 35200 times solar). For G191-B2B, upper limits were determined for the abundances of Mo (5.3 x 10*...

  2. Stellar laboratories II. New Zn IV and Zn V oscillator strengths and their validation in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T; Quinet, P; Kruk, J W

    2014-01-01

    For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model-atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. In a recent analysis of the ultraviolet (UV) spectrum of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B, 21 Zn IV lines were newly identified. Because of the lack of Zn IV data, transition probabilities of the isoelectronic Ge VI were adapted for a first, coarse determination of the photospheric Zn abundance. We performed new calculations of Zn IV and Zn V oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of the Zn IV - V spectrum exhibited in high-resolution and high-S/N UV observations of G191-B2B and RE0503-289. In the UV spectrum of G191-B2B, we identify 31 Zn IV and 16 Zn V lines. Most of these are identified for the first time in an...

  3. Stellar Laboratories II. New Zn Iv and Zn v Oscillator Strengths and Their Validation in the Hot White Dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauch, T.; Werner, K.; Quinet, P.; Kruk, J. W.

    2014-01-01

    Context. For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise (SN) spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. In a recent analysis of the ultraviolet (UV) spectrum of the DA-type white dwarf G191B2B,21 Zn iv lines were newly identified. Because of the lack of Zn iv data, transition probabilities of the isoelectronic Ge vi were adapted for a first, coarse determination of the photospheric Zn abundance.Aims. Reliable Zn iv and Zn v oscillator strengths are used to improve the Zn abundance determination and to identify more Zn lines in the spectra of G191B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE 0503289. Methods. We performed new calculations of Zn iv and Zn v oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of the Zn iv v spectrum exhibited in high-resolution and high-SN UV observations of G191B2B and RE 0503289. Results. In the UV spectrum of G191B2B, we identify 31 Zn iv and 16 Zn v lines. Most of these are identified for the first time in any star. We can reproduce well almost all of them at log Zn 5.52 0.2 (mass fraction, about 1.7 times solar). In particular, the Zn iv Zn v ionization equilibrium, which is a very sensitive Teff indicator, is well reproduced with the previously determined Teff 60 000 2000 K and log g 7.60 0.05. In the spectrum of RE 0503289, we identified 128 Zn v lines for the first time and determined log Zn 3.57 0.2 (155 times solar). Conclusions. Reliable measurements and calculations of atomic data are a pre-requisite for stellar-atmosphere modeling. Observed Zn iv and Zn v line profiles in two white dwarf (G191B2B and RE 0503289) ultraviolet spectra were well reproduced with our newly calculated oscillator strengths. This allowed us to determine the photospheric Zn abundance of these two stars precisely.

  4. Stellar Laboratories: 3. New Ba 5, Ba 6, and Ba 7 Oscillator Strengths and the Barium Abundance in the Hot White Dwarfs G191-B2B and RE 0503-289

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauch, T.; Werner, K.; Quinet, P.; Kruk, Jeffrey Walter

    2014-01-01

    Context. For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. Aims. Reliable Ba 5-7 oscillator strengths are used to identify Ba lines in the spectra of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE 0503-289 and to determine their photospheric Ba abundances. Methods. We newly calculated Ba v-vii oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of Ba lines exhibited in high-resolution and high-S/N UV observations of G191-B2B and RE 0503-289. Results. For the first time, we identified highly ionized Ba in the spectra of hot white dwarfs. We detected Ba vi and Ba vii lines in the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) spectrum of RE 0503-289. The Ba vi/Ba vii ionization equilibrium is well reproduced with the previously determined effective temperature of 70 000 K and surface gravity of log g=7.5. The Ba abundance is 3.5 +/- 0.5 × 10(exp-4) (mass fraction, about 23 000 times the solar value). In the FUSE spectrum of G191-B2B, we identified the strongest Ba vii line (at 993.41 Å) only, and determined a Ba abundance of 4.0 +/- 0.5 × 10(exp-6) (about 265 times solar). Conclusions. Reliable measurements and calculations of atomic data are a pre-requisite for stellar-atmosphere modeling. Observed Ba vi-vii line profiles in two white dwarfs' (G191-B2B and RE 0503-289) far-ultraviolet spectra were well reproduced with our newly calculated oscillator strengths. This allowed to determine the photospheric Ba abundance of these two stars precisely.

  5. Stellar laboratories III. New Ba V, Ba VI, and Ba VII oscillator strengths and the barium abundance in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T; Quinet, P; Kruk, J W

    2014-01-01

    For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. Reliable Ba V - VII oscillator strengths are used to identify Ba lines in the spectra of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE0503-289 and to determine their photospheric Ba abundances. We newly calculated Ba V - VII oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of Ba lines exhibited in high-resolution and high-S/N UV observations of G191-B2B and RE0503-289. For the first time, we identified highly ionized Ba in the spectra of hot white dwarfs. We detected Ba VI and Ba VII lines in the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) spectrum of RE0503-289. The Ba VI / Ba VII ionization equil...

  6. Stellar laboratories IV. New Ga IV, Ga V, and Ga VI oscillator strengths and the gallium abundance in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE0503-289

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T; Quinet, P; Kruk, J W

    2015-01-01

    For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high-signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra of hot stars, advanced non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These atmospheres are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that are used to calculate them. Reliable Ga IV - VI oscillator strengths are used to identify Ga lines in the spectra of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE0503-289 and to determine their photospheric Ga abundances. We newly calculated Ga IV - VI oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for analyzing of Ga lines exhibited in high-resolution and high-S/N UV observations of G191-B2B and RE0503-289. We unambiguously detected 20 isolated and 6 blended (with lines of other species) Ga V lines in the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) spectrum of RE0503-289. The identification of Ga IV and Ga VI lines is uncertain because th...

  7. The virtual observatory service TheoSSA: Establishing a database of synthetic stellar flux standards. I. NLTE spectral analysis of the DA-type white dwarf G 191-B2B

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T; Kruk, J W; Werner, K

    2013-01-01

    H-rich, DA-type white dwarfs are particularly suited as primary standard stars for flux calibration. State-of-the-art NLTE models consider opacities of species up to trans-iron elements and provide reliable synthetic stellar-atmosphere spectra to compare with observation. We establish a database of theoretical spectra of stellar flux standards that are easily accessible via a web interface. In the framework of the Virtual Observatory, the German Astrophysical Virtual Observatory developed the registered service TheoSSA. It provides easy access to stellar spectral energy distributions (SEDs) and is intended to ingest SEDs calculated by any model-atmosphere code. In case of the DA white dwarf G 191-B2B, we demonstrate that the model reproduces not only its overall continuum shape but also the numerous metal lines exhibited in its ultraviolet spectrum. TheoSSA is in operation and contains presently a variety of SEDs for DA white dwarfs. It will be extended in the near future and can host SEDs of all primary and ...

  8. The Virtual Observatory Service TheoSSA: Establishing a Database of Synthetic Stellar Flux Standards I. NLTE Spectral Analysis of the DA-Type White Dwarf G191-B2B *,**,***,****

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauch, T.; Werner, K.; Bohlin, R.; Kruk, J. W.

    2013-01-01

    Hydrogen-rich, DA-type white dwarfs are particularly suited as primary standard stars for flux calibration. State-of-the-art NLTE models consider opacities of species up to trans-iron elements and provide reliable synthetic stellar-atmosphere spectra to compare with observations. Aims. We will establish a database of theoretical spectra of stellar flux standards that are easily accessible via a web interface. Methods. In the framework of the Virtual Observatory, the German Astrophysical Virtual Observatory developed the registered service TheoSSA. It provides easy access to stellar spectral energy distributions (SEDs) and is intended to ingest SEDs calculated by any model-atmosphere code. In case of the DA white dwarf G191-B2B, we demonstrate that the model reproduces not only its overall continuum shape but also the numerous metal lines exhibited in its ultraviolet spectrum. Results. TheoSSA is in operation and contains presently a variety of SEDs for DA-type white dwarfs. It will be extended in the near future and can host SEDs of all primary and secondary flux standards. The spectral analysis of G191-B2B has shown that our hydrostatic models reproduce the observations best at Teff =60 000 +/- 2000K and log g=7.60 +/- 0.05.We newly identified Fe vi, Ni vi, and Zn iv lines. For the first time, we determined the photospheric zinc abundance with a logarithmic mass fraction of -4.89 (7.5 × solar). The abundances of He (upper limit), C, N, O, Al, Si, O, P, S, Fe, Ni, Ge, and Sn were precisely determined. Upper abundance limits of about 10% solar were derived for Ti, Cr, Mn, and Co. Conclusions. The TheoSSA database of theoretical SEDs of stellar flux standards guarantees that the flux calibration of all astronomical data and cross-calibration between different instruments can be based on the same models and SEDs calculated with different model-atmosphere codes and are easy to compare.

  9. Stellar laboratories. VI. New Mo iv-vii oscillator strengths and the molybdenum abundance in the hot white dwarfs G191-B2B and RE 0503-289

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rauch, T.; Quinet, P.; Hoyer, D.; Werner, K.; Demleitner, M.; Kruk, J. W.

    2016-03-01

    Context. For the spectral analysis of high-resolution and high signal-to-noise (S/N) spectra of hot stars, state-of-the-art non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) model atmospheres are mandatory. These are strongly dependent on the reliability of the atomic data that is used for their calculation. Aims: To identify molybdenum lines in the ultraviolet (UV) spectra of the DA-type white dwarf G191-B2B and the DO-type white dwarf RE 0503-289 and, to determine their photospheric Mo abundances, reliable Mo iv-vii oscillator strengths are used. Methods: We newly calculated Mo iv-vii oscillator strengths to consider their radiative and collisional bound-bound transitions in detail in our NLTE stellar-atmosphere models for the analysis of Mo lines exhibited in high-resolution and high S/N UV observations of RE 0503-289. Results: We identified 12 Mo v and 9 Mo vi lines in the UV spectrum of RE 0503-289 and measured a photospheric Mo abundance of 1.2-3.0 × 10-4 (mass fraction, 22 500-56 400 times the solar abundance). In addition, from the As v and Sn iv resonance lines, we measured mass fractions of arsenic (0.5-1.3 × 10-5, about 300-1200 times solar) and tin (1.3-3.2 × 10-4, about 14 300-35 200 times solar). For G191-B2B, upper limits were determined for the abundances of Mo (5.3 × 10-7, 100 times solar) and, in addition, for Kr (1.1 × 10-6, 10 times solar) and Xe (1.7 × 10-7, 10 times solar). The arsenic abundance was determined (2.3-5.9 × 10-7, about 21-53 times solar). A new, registered German Astrophysical Virtual Observatory (GAVO) service, TOSS, has been constructed to provide weighted oscillator strengths and transition probabilities. Conclusions: Reliable measurements and calculations of atomic data are a prerequisite for stellar-atmosphere modeling. Observed Mo v-vi line profiles in the UV spectrum of the white dwarf RE 0503-289 were well reproduced with our newly calculated oscillator strengths. For the first time, this allowed the photospheric Mo abundance in a white dwarf to be determined. Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained at the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26666.Based on observations made with the NASA-CNES-CSA Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer.Tables A.10-A.13 are only available via the German Astrophysical Virtual Observatory (GAVO) service TOSS (http://dc.g-vo.org/TOSS).

  10. Deuterium abundance toward G191-B2B: Results from the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) Mission

    OpenAIRE

    Lemoine, M.; Vidal-Madjar, A.; Hebrard, G.; Desert, J. -M.; Ferlet, R.; Etangs, A. Lecavelier Des; Howk, J. C.; ANDRE, M.; W. P. Blair; Friedman, S. D.; Kruk, J. W.; Lacour, S.; Moos, H. W.; Sembach, K.; Chayer, P.

    2001-01-01

    High-resolution spectra of the hot white dwarf G191-B2B, covering the wavelength region 905-1187A, were obtained with the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE). This data was used in conjunction with existing high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope STIS observations to evaluate the total HI, DI, OI and NI column densities along the line of sight. Previous determinations of N(DI) based upon GHRS and STIS observations were controversial due to the saturated strength of the DI Lyman-alpha...

  11. Deuterium abundance toward G191-B2B Results from the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) Mission

    CERN Document Server

    Lemoine, M; Hébrard, G; Désert, J M; Ferlet, R; Etangs, A L; Howk, J C; André, M; Blair, W P; Friedman, S D; Kruk, J W; Lacour, S; Moos, H W; Sembach, K R; Chayer, P; Jenkins, E B; Köster, D; Linsky, J L; Wood, B E; Oegerle, W R; Sonneborn, G; York, D G

    2001-01-01

    High-resolution spectra of the hot white dwarf G191-B2B, covering the wavelength region 905-1187A, were obtained with the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE). This data was used in conjunction with existing high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope STIS observations to evaluate the total HI, DI, OI and NI column densities along the line of sight. Previous determinations of N(DI) based upon GHRS and STIS observations were controversial due to the saturated strength of the DI Lyman-alpha line. In the present analysis the column density of DI has been measured using only the unsaturated Lyman-beta and Lyman-gamma lines observed by FUSE. A careful inspection of possible systematic uncertainties tied to the modeling of the stellar continuum or to the uncertainties in the FUSE instrumental characteristics has been performed. The column densities derived are: log N(DI) = 13.40 +/-0.07, log N(OI) = 14.86 +/-0.07, and log N(NI) = 13.87 +/-0.07 quoted with 2-sigma uncertainties. The measurement of the HI column ...

  12. Towards a standardised line list for G191-B2B, and other DA type objects

    CERN Document Server

    Preval, Simon P; Holberg, Jay B; Dickinson, N J

    2012-01-01

    We present a comprehensive analysis of the far UV spectrum of G191-B2B over the range of 900-1700{\\AA} using co-added data from the FUSE and STIS archives. While previous identifications made by Holberg et al. (2003) are reaffirmed in this work, it is found that many previously unidentified lines can now be attributed to Fe, Ni, and a few lighter metals. Future work includes extending this detailed analysis to a wider range of DA objects, in the expectation that a more complete analysis of their atmospheres can be realised.

  13. Limits on the dependence of the fine-structure constant on gravitational potential from white-dwarf spectra

    OpenAIRE

    Berengut, J. C.; Flambaum, V. V.; ONG, A; Webb, J. K.; Barrow, John D; Barstow, M. A.; Preval, S. P.; Holberg, J. B

    2013-01-01

    We propose a new probe of the dependence of the fine structure constant, alpha, on a strong gravitational field using metal lines in the spectra of white dwarf stars. Comparison of laboratory spectra with far-UV astronomical spectra from the white dwarf star G191-B2B recorded by the Hubble Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph gives limits on the fractional variation of alpha of (Delta alpha/alpha)=(4.2 +- 1.6)x10^(-5) and (-6.1 +- 5.8)x10^(-5) from Fe V and Ni V spectra, respectively, at a di...

  14. Limits on the Dependence of the Fine-Structure Constant on Gravitational Potential from White-Dwarf Spectra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berengut, J. C.; Flambaum, V. V.; Ong, A.; Webb, J. K.; Barrow, John D.; Barstow, M. A.; Preval, S. P.; Holberg, J. B.

    2013-07-01

    We propose a new probe of the dependence of the fine-structure constant α on a strong gravitational field using metal lines in the spectra of white-dwarf stars. Comparison of laboratory spectra with far-UV astronomical spectra from the white-dwarf star G191-B2B recorded by the Hubble Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph gives limits of Δα/α=(4.2±1.6)×10-5 and (-6.1±5.8)×10-5 from FeV and NiV spectra, respectively, at a dimensionless gravitational potential relative to Earth of Δϕ≈5×10-5. With better determinations of the laboratory wavelengths of the lines employed these results could be improved by up to 2 orders of magnitude.

  15. Accreting White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Hernanz, M

    2008-01-01

    Thermonuclear (type Ia) supernovae are explosions in accreting white dwarfs, but the exact scenario leading to these explosions is still unclear. An important step to clarify this point is to understand the behaviour of accreting white dwarfs in close binary systems. The characteristics of the white dwarf (mass, chemical composition, luminosity), the accreted material (chemical composition) and those related with the properties of the binary system (mass accretion rate), are crucial for the further evolution towards the explosion. An analysis of the outcome of accretion and the implications for the growth of the white dwarf towards the Chandrasekhar mass and its thermonuclear explosion is presented.

  16. Progenitors of white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Direct observational evidence is presented which indicates that the immediate progenitors of white dwarfs are the central stars of planetary nebulae (approximately 70%), other post-AGB objects (approximately 30%), and post-HB objects not massive enough to climb the AGB (approximately 0.3%). The combined birth rate for these objects is in satisfactory agreement with the death rate of main-sequence stars and the birth rate of white dwarfs

  17. White dwarf planets

    OpenAIRE

    Bonsor Amy; Veras Dimitri; Villaver Eva; Mustill Alexander J.; Wyatt Mark C.

    2013-01-01

    The recognition that planets may survive the late stages of stellar evolution, and the prospects for finding them around White Dwarfs, are growing. We discuss two aspects governing planetary survival through stellar evolution to the White Dwarf stage. First we discuss the case of a single planet, and its survival under the effects of stellar mass loss, radius expansion, and tidal orbital decay as the star evolves along the Asymptotic Giant Branch. We show that, for stars initially of 1 ? 5?M?...

  18. Gaia and white dwarf - brown dwarf binaries .

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casewell, S. L.

    White dwarf-brown dwarf binaries are excellent benchmark systems, as the white dwarf provides an accurate (although model dependent) age calibrator for the brown dwarf. While these systems are rare, with authors suggesting the frequency to be between 0.5 and 2 %, they are being used to provide ages for the coolest brown dwarfs (e.g. WD0806-661) and also as testbeds for irradiated atmospheres. Gaia is estimated to detect ˜2000 of these systems using astrometry, enlarging the sample, and allowing limits to be placed on the brown dwarf desert.

  19. White dwarf dynamical interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Aznar Siguan, Gabriela

    2015-01-01

    Merging white dwarfs is a promising channel to trigger Type Ia supernovae, known as the double degenerate scenario. Supernovae are stellar explosions that radiate as much energy as any ordinary star is expected to emit over its entire life span, outshining briefly the whole hosting galaxy. They enrich the interstellar medium with higher mass elements and trigger the formation of new stars by the produced expanding shock. Additionally, Type Ia supernovae have been used as standard candles and ...

  20. White dwarfs and supernovae

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The long-term evolution of accreting C-O white dwarfs in close binary systems may be a source of neutron stars and/or SNI explosions. We take into account the effects of solidification of the star's core on the speed of propagation of thermonuclear burning. We also consider the possible separation of oxygen from carbon as a result of solidification. By combining several degrees of chemical differentiation with different accretion rates, we show that the evolutionary outcome may range from total collapse (with formation of a neutron star) to partial disruption due to off-center ignition of carbon

  1. Magnetized White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Terrero, D Alvear; Martínez, A Pérez

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this thesis is to obtain more realistic equations of state to describe the matter forming magnetized white dwarfs, and use them to solve its structure equations. The equations of state are determined by considering the weak magnetic field approximation $Bwhite dwarfs. Also, we consider the energy and pressure correction due to the Coulomb interaction of the electron gas with the ions located in a crystal lattice. Moreover, spherically symmetric Tolman-Oppenheimer-Volkoff structure equations are solved independently for the perpendicular and parallel pressures, confirming the necessity of using axisymmetric structure equations, more adequate to describe the anisotropic system. Therefore, we study the solutions in cylindrical coordinates. In this case, the mass per longitude unit is obtained instead of the total mass of the whit...

  2. Asteroseismology of white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Córsico, A H

    2014-01-01

    Most of low- and intermediate-mass stars that populate the Universe will end their lives as white dwarf stars. These ancient stellar remnants have encrypted inside a precious record of the evolutionary history of the progenitor stars, providing a wealth of information about the evolution of stars, star formation, and the age of a variety of stellar populations, such as our Galaxy and open and globular clusters. While some information like surface chemical composition, temperature and gravity of white dwarfs can be inferred from spectroscopy, the internal structure of these compact stars can be unveiled only by means of asteroseismology, an approach based on the comparison between the observed pulsation periods of variable stars and the periods of appropriate theoretical models. In this communication, we first briefly describe the physical properties of white dwarf stars and the various families of pulsating white dwarfs known up to the present day, and then we present two recent analysis carried out by the La...

  3. White Dwarf Planets from GAIA

    OpenAIRE

    Silvotti, Roberto; Sozzetti, Alessandro; Lattanzi, Mario

    2010-01-01

    We investigate the potential of high-precision astrometry with GAIA for detection of giant planetary companions to nearby white dwarfs. If one considers that, to date, no confirmed planets around single white dwarfs are known, the results from GAIA will be crucial to study the late-stage evolution of planetary systems and to verify the possibility that 2nd-generation planets are formed.

  4. Singing and dancing white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Accreting white dwarfs have recently been shown to exhibit non-radial pulsations similar to their non-interacting counterparts. This allows us to probe the interior of the accreting white dwarf using seismology, and may be the only way to determine masses for non-eclipsing cataclysmic variables. Improving our understanding of accreting white dwarfs will have implications for models of supernovae Type Ia. Pulsating white dwarfs in cataclysmic variables are also useful in establishing the effects of accretion on pulsations. A search for nonradial pulsations among suitable candidates has led to the discovery of twelve such systems known to date. With the goal of establishing an instability strip (or strips) for these pulsating accretors, we acquired HST ultra-violet time-series spectroscopy of six pulsating white dwarfs in cataclysmic variables in 2007 and 2008. This approach enables us to measure the effective temperature of the white dwarf using the co-added spectrum, and to simultaneously characterize the pulsations. We also intended to constrain the pulsation mode identification by comparing the ultra-violet amplitudes to those from near-simultaneous ground-based photometry. Our preliminary results indicate a broad instability strip in the temperature range of 10500-15400 K.

  5. Luminosity function of white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trigonometric parallaxes, optical colors, and spectrophotometry are used to derive an empirical luminosity function for cool white dwarfs using the 1/V(max) method. To facilitate comparison with theoretical cooling curves, relations for cool white dwarfs are estimated for T(eff) versus M(V) and for M(V) versus M(bol). The results show that a downturn occurs in the distribution of cool degenerate stars near log luminosity equals about -4.4. The indicated local space density of observed degenerate dwarfs is 0.003 stars/pc exp 3, which corresponds to about 1 percent of the dynamical mass density in the solar neighborhood. 107 references

  6. Improved wavelengths for Fe V and Ni V for analysis of spectra of white dwarf stellar stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Jacob; Nave, Gillian

    2015-08-01

    A recent paper by J.C. Berengut et al. tests for a potential variation in the fine-structure constant, α, in the presence of a high gravitational field through spectral analysis of white-dwarf stars. The spectrum of G191-B2B has prominent Fe V and Ni V lines in the vacuum ultraviolet (VUV) region that were used to determine any variation in α via observed shifts in their wavelengths. Although no strong evidence for a variation was found, the authors did find a difference between values obtained for Fe V and Ni V that were indicative of a problem with the laboratory wavelengths. The laboratory wavelengths dominate the uncertainty of the measured variation, so improved values would tighten the constraints on the variation of α.We have re-measured the spectra of Fe V and Ni V spectra in the VUV in order to reduce the wavelength uncertainties and put the two spectra on a consistent wavelength scale. The spectra were produced by a sliding spark light source with electrodes made of invar, an iron nickel alloy. Spectra of Fe V and Ni V were obtained using peak currents of 750-2000 A. The spectra were recorded using the NIST Normal Incidence Vacuum Spectrograph with phosphor image plates and photographic plates as detectors. Wavelengths from 1100 Å to 1800 Å were covered in a single exposure. A spectrum of a Pt/Ne hollow cathode lamp was also recorded for wavelength calibration.The spectra recorded on photographic plates are better resolved than the phosphor image plate spectra and are being measured in two ways. The first measures the positions of the spectral lines on a comparator, traditionally used to measure many archival spectra at NIST. The second uses a commercial image scanner to obtain a digital image of the plate that can be analyzed using line fitting software. Preliminary analysis of these spectra indicates that the literature values of the Fe V and Ni V wavelengths are not on the same scale and differ from our new measurements by up to 0.02 Å in some wavelength regions. We shall present improved analyses of the spectra using both methods and summarize their advantages and disadvantages.

  7. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    García-Aspeitia, Miguel A., E-mail: aspeitia@fisica.uaz.edu.mx [Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología, Av, Insurgentes Sur 1582, Colonia Crédito Constructor, Del. Benito Juárez, C.P. 03940, Mexico, D.F. (Mexico); Unidad Académica de Física, Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas, Calzada Solidaridad esquina con Paseo a la Bufa S/N, C.P. 98060, Zacatecas (Mexico)

    2015-11-06

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for white dwarf stars with polytropic matter in the weak-field approximation using the Lane–Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to agree with the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predict an average value of the brane tension of <λ>≳84.818 MeV{sup 4}, with a standard deviation σ≃82.021 MeV{sup 4}, which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining higher than cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others.

  8. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for white dwarf stars with polytropic matter in the weak-field approximation using the Lane–Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to agree with the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predict an average value of the brane tension of <λ>≳84.818 MeV4, with a standard deviation σ≃82.021 MeV4, which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining higher than cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others

  9. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Garcia-Aspeitia, Miguel A

    2015-01-01

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for White Dwarf Stars with polytropic matter in the weak field approximation using the Lane-Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze its stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to be close to the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predicts an average value of brane tension as: $\\langle\\lambda\\rangle\\gtrsim84.818\\;\\rm MeV^4$, with a standard deviation $\\sigma\\simeq82.021\\;\\rm MeV^4$ which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining above of cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others.

  10. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for white dwarf stars with polytropic matter in the weak-field approximation using the Lane-Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to agree with the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predict an average value of the brane tension of left angle λ right angle >or similar 84.818 MeV4, with a standard deviation σ ≅ 82.021 MeV4, which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining higher than cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others. (orig.)

  11. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia-Aspeitia, Miguel A. [Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia, Mexico (Mexico); Unidad Academica de Fisica, Universidad Autonoma de Zacatecas (Mexico)

    2015-11-15

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for white dwarf stars with polytropic matter in the weak-field approximation using the Lane-Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to agree with the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predict an average value of the brane tension of left angle λ right angle >or similar 84.818 MeV{sup 4}, with a standard deviation σ ≅ 82.021 MeV{sup 4}, which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining higher than cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others. (orig.)

  12. Branes constrictions with White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garca-Aspeitia, Miguel A.

    2015-11-01

    We consider here a robust study of stellar dynamics for white dwarf stars with polytropic matter in the weak-field approximation using the Lane-Emden equation from the brane-world scenario. We also derive an analytical solution to the nonlocal energy density and show the behavior and sensitivity of these stars to the presence of extra dimensions. Similarly, we analyze stability and compactness, in order to show whether it is possible to agree with the conventional wisdom of white dwarfs dynamics. Our results predict an average value of the brane tension of < ? rangle ? 84.818MeV^4, with a standard deviation ? eq 82.021MeV^4, which comes from a sample of dwarf stars, being weaker than other astrophysical observations but remaining higher than cosmological results provided by nucleosynthesis among others.

  13. White Dwarf Kinematics vs Mass

    CERN Document Server

    Wegg, Christopher

    2012-01-01

    We have investigated the relationship between the kinematics and mass of young (0.95Msun) are consistent with the expected relative contributions of single star evolution and mergers. We find that the kinematics are consistent with the majority of high-mass white dwarfs being formed through single star evolution.

  14. Pulsating Helium Atmosphere White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Provencal, Judith; Montgomery, Michael H.; Bischoff-Kim, Agnes; Shipman, Harry; Nitta, Atsuko; Whole Earth Telescope Collaboration

    2015-08-01

    The overwhelming majority of all stars currently on the main sequence as well as those from earlier generations will or have ended their stellar lives as white dwarf stars. White dwarfs are rich forensic laboratories linking the history and future evolution of our Galaxy. Their structure and atmospheric composition provide evidence of how the progenitors lived, how they evolved, and how they died. This information reveals details of processes governing the behavior of contemporary main sequence stars. Combined with their distribution in luminosity/temperature, white dwarfs strongly constrain models of galactic and cosmological evolution.GD358 is among the brightest (mv =13.7) and best studied of the pulsating white dwarfs. This helium atmoshere pulsator (DBV) has an extensive photometric database spanning 30 years, including nine multisite Whole Earth Telescope campaigns. GD358 exhibits a range of behaviors, from drastic changes in excited pulsation modes to variable multiplet splittings. We use GD358 as a template for an examination of the DBV class, combining photometric results with recent COS spectroscopy. The results present new questions concerning DB formation and evolution.

  15. White dwarf research with Gaia

    OpenAIRE

    Jordan, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    The results of the Gaia mission will have tremendous influence on many topics in white dwarf research. In this paper the current status of the Gaia mission is described. At the end a short outlook on the release scenario and the expected accuracy of the Gaia data is provided.

  16. G-dwarfs, white dwarfs and the local dark matter

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The observed paucity of low metalicity stars (the G-dwarf problem), the observed paucity of low luminosity white dwarfs and the apparent overabundance of matter in the solar neighborhood are discussed in a single context. In particular, bimodal models of star formation with enhanced cooling of low luminosity white dwarfs may be able to simply solve the G-dwarf problem as well as the local dark matter problem without the overproduction of observable white dwarfs. Constraints from galactic chemical evolution are also discussed. 55 refs., 5 figs

  17. Magnetars and White Dwarf Pulsars

    CERN Document Server

    Lobato, Ronaldo V; Coelho, Jaziel G

    2016-01-01

    The Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs) and Soft Gamma-ray Repeaters (SGRs) are a class of pulsars understood as neutron stars (NSs) with super strong surface magnetic fields, namely $B\\gtrsim10^{14}$ G, and for that reason are known as Magnetars. However, in the last years some SGRs/AXPs with low surface magnetic fields $B\\sim(10^{12}-10^{13})$ G have been detected, challenging the Magnetar description. Moreover, some fast and very magnetic white dwarfs (WDs) have also been observed, and at least one showed X-Ray energy emission as an ordinary pulsar. Following this fact, an alternative model based on white dwarfs pulsars has been proposed to explain this special class of pulsars. In this model, AXPs and SGRs as dense and magnetized white dwarfs can have surface magnetic field $B\\sim 10^{7}-10^{10}$ G and rotate very fast with frequencies $\\Omega\\sim 1$ rad/s, consistent with the observed rotation periods $P\\sim (2-12)$ s.

  18. The space distribution of DA white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present a determination of the scaleheight and luminosity function of DA white dwarfs based on a new sample of 41 faint (B0=275±50 pc. Assuming such a scaleheight, the local luminosity function derived for the AAT sample shows good agreement with that obtained previously for the Palomar Green DA white dwarf sample, particularly in the overall normalization of the luminosity function. We derive a value for the local space density of DA white dwarfs with Mv3. (author)

  19. Diffusion processes in white dwarf stellar atmospheres

    OpenAIRE

    Landenberger-Schuh, Sonja

    2005-01-01

    The atmospheres of white dwarfs exhibit a quasi-mono-elemental composition. Due to high surface gravities, element segregation by gravitational settling is of great importance so that a large fraction of all heavy elements in these stars has disappeared from the outer layers. This gravitational sedimentation happens on much smaller time scales than the evolution along the white dwarf cooling sequence. Observations of young white dwarfs in the X-ray and extreme ultra-violet spectral ranges ...

  20. New cooling sequences for old white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Renedo Rouco, Isabel; Althaus, Leandro Gabriel; Miller Bertolami, Marcelo M; A. D. Romero; Córsico, Alejandro Hugo; Rohrmann, Rene Daniel; García-Berro Montilla, Enrique

    2010-01-01

    We present full evolutionary calculations appropriate for the study of hydrogen-rich DA white dwarfs. This is done by evolving white dwarf progenitors from the zero age main sequence, through the core hydrogen burning phase, the helium burning phase and the thermally pulsing asymptotic giant branch phase to the white dwarf stage. Complete evolutionary sequences are computed for a wide range of stellar masses and for two different metallicities: Z=0.01, which is representative of the solar nei...

  1. White Dwarfs in the ALHAMBRA Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catalán, S.; Isern, J.; García-Berro, E.; Torres, S.; Alhambra Team

    2005-07-01

    A new high visual depth survey is presented. New cool white dwarfs will eventually be discovered, which will undoubtely increase the statistical significance of the white dwarf luminosity function. Moreover, by increasing the sample of known white dwarfs, we will be able to determine which ones are members of a binary system and which of those binary systems are detached and composed by a main sequence star and a white dwarf. Hence, comparison of their corresponding ages will provide tight constraints on the evolutionary models.

  2. White dwarf cooling sequences and cosmochronology

    CERN Document Server

    Isern, J; Garcia-Berro, E

    2012-01-01

    The evolution of white dwarfs is a simple gravothermal process. This means that their luminosity function, i.e. the number of white dwarfs per unit bolometric magnitude and unit volume as a function of bolometric magnitude, is a monotonically increasing function that decreases abruptly as a consequence of the finite age of the Galaxy. The precision and the accuracy of the white dwarf luminosity functions obtained with the recent large surveys together with the improved quality of the theoretical models of evolution of white dwarfs allow to feed the hope that in a near future it will be possible to reconstruct the history of the different Galactic populations.

  3. White Dwarf Critical Tests for Modified Gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Rajeev Kumar; Kouvaris, Chris; Nielsen, Niklas Grønlund

    2016-04-01

    Scalar-tensor theories of gravity can lead to modifications of the gravitational force inside astrophysical objects. We exhibit that compact stars such as white dwarfs provide a unique setup to test beyond Horndeski theories of G3 type. We obtain stringent and independent constraints on the parameter ϒ characterizing the deviations from Newtonian gravity using the mass-radius relation, the Chandrasekhar mass limit, and the maximal rotational frequency of white dwarfs. We find that white dwarfs impose stronger constraints on ϒ than red and brown dwarfs.

  4. White Dwarf Critical Tests for Modified Gravity

    CERN Document Server

    Jain, Rajeev Kumar; Nielsen, Niklas Grønlund

    2015-01-01

    Scalar-tensor theories of gravity can lead to modifications of the gravitational force inside astrophysical objects. We exhibit that compact stars such as white dwarfs provide a unique set-up to test such deviations from Newtonian gravitational physics inside the stars. We obtain stringent and independent constraints on the parameter $\\Upsilon$ characterizing the deviations from gravity using the mass-radius relation, the Chandrasekhar mass limit and the maximal rotational frequency of white dwarfs. We find that white dwarfs impose stronger constraints on $\\Upsilon$ than the red and brown dwarfs.

  5. White Dwarf Critical Tests for Modified Gravity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Rajeev Kumar; Kouvaris, Chris; Nielsen, Niklas Grønlund

    2016-04-15

    Scalar-tensor theories of gravity can lead to modifications of the gravitational force inside astrophysical objects. We exhibit that compact stars such as white dwarfs provide a unique setup to test beyond Horndeski theories of G^{3} type. We obtain stringent and independent constraints on the parameter ϒ characterizing the deviations from Newtonian gravity using the mass-radius relation, the Chandrasekhar mass limit, and the maximal rotational frequency of white dwarfs. We find that white dwarfs impose stronger constraints on ϒ than red and brown dwarfs. PMID:27127952

  6. Disks and Planets Around Massive White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Livio, M.; Pringle, J. E.; Wood, K.

    2005-01-01

    We predict the existence of dusty disks and possibly CO planets around massive white dwarfs. We show that the thermal emission from these disks should be detectable in the infrared. The planets may also be detectable either by direct IR imaging, spectroscopy, or using the pulsations of the white dwarfs.

  7. Observational properties of magnetic white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Ferrario, Lilia

    2016-01-01

    There are no known examples of magnetic white dwarfs with fields larger than about 3MG paired with a non-degenerate companion in detached binary systems. The suggestion is that highly magnetic, isolated white dwarfs may originate from stars that coalesce during common envelope evolution while those stars that emerge from a common envelope on a close orbit may evolve into double degenerate systems consisting of two white dwarfs, one or both magnetic. The presence of planets or planetary debris around white dwarfs is also a new and exciting area of research that may give us important clues on the formation of first and second generation planetary systems, since these place unique signatures in the spectra of white dwarfs.

  8. A white dwarf with an oxygen atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kepler, S. O.; Koester, Detlev; Ourique, Gustavo

    2016-04-01

    Stars born with masses below around 10 solar masses end their lives as white dwarf stars. Their atmospheres are dominated by the lightest elements because gravitational diffusion brings the lightest element to the surface. We report the discovery of a white dwarf with an atmosphere completely dominated by oxygen, SDSS J124043.01+671034.68. After oxygen, the next most abundant elements in its atmosphere are neon and magnesium, but these are lower by a factor of ≥25 by number. The fact that no hydrogen or helium are observed is surprising. Oxygen, neon, and magnesium are the products of carbon burning, which occurs in stars at the high-mass end of pre-white dwarf formation. This star, a possible oxygen-neon white dwarf, will provide a rare observational test of the evolutionary paths toward white dwarfs.

  9. PREFACE: 16th European White Dwarfs Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Berro, Enrique; Hernanz, Margarita; Isern, Jordi; Torres, Santiago

    2009-07-01

    The 16th European Workshop on White Dwarfs was held in Barcelona, Spain, from 30 June to 4 July 2008 at the premises of the UPC. Almost 120 participants from Europe (France, Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, and several others), America (USA, Canada, Argentina, Brazil, and Chile), and other continents (Australia, South Africa, . . . ) attended the workshop. Among these participants were the most relevant specialists in the field. The topics covered by the conference were: White dwarf structure and evolution Progenitors and Planetary Nebulae White dwarfs in binaries: cataclysmic variables, double degenerates and other binaries White dwarfs, dust disks and planetary systems Atmospheres, chemical composition, magnetic fields Variable white dwarfs White dwarfs in stellar clusters and the halo White Dwarfs as SNIa progenitors The programme included 54 talks, and 45 posters. The oral presentations were distributed into the following sessions: Luminosity function, mass function and populations White dwarf structure and evolution White dwarf ages White dwarf catalogs and surveys Central stars of planetary nebulae Supernovae progenitors White dwarfs in novae and CVs Physical processes in white dwarfs and magnetic white dwarfs Disks, dust and planets around white dwarfs Pulsating white dwarfs Additionally we had a special open session about Spitzer and white dwarfs. The Proceedings of the 16th European Workshop on White Dwarfs are representative of the current state-of-the-art of the research field and include new and exciting results. We acknowledge the very positive attitude of the attendants to the workshop, which stimulated very fruitful discussions that took place in all the sessions and after the official schedule. Also, the meeting allowed new collaborations tp start that will undoubtedly result in significant advances in the research field. We also acknowledge the willingness of the participants to deliver their contributions before the final deadline. We sincerely thank them. The white dwarf community has been steadily growing since the first white dwarf workshop, held in Kiel (Germany) in 1974. Some of the participants in the first colloquium have already effectively retired; others - although officially retired - continue to attend successive workshops, Professor Weidemann, one of the first organizers, being a leading example. We hope we will be able to continue counting on them for many years. A very graphical view of the evolution of the field can be found in the homepage of Professor Detlev Koester, who has collected pictures of almost all the previous workshops:. Additionally, several astronomers coming from related fields have joined our (not so) small community. Most importantly, several generations of young scientists gave their first talks in these workshops. In summary our community is an active one, and we have close, durable and solid ties of friendship. We are optimistic and we foresee that the spirit of the previous workshops will continue in future editions. We would like to express our deepest gratitude to our sponsors: The Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), the Institut de Ciències de l'Espai (CSIC), the Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia (IEEC), the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, the Generalitat de Catalunya, the Ajuntament de Barcelona, the School of Civil Engineering of Barcelona and UPCnet. Finally, the IEEC staff and our graduate students have enthusiastically supported the organization of the workshop in every single detail; without them we would have not succeeded. We thank them especially. Also, we acknowledge the task of the Scientific Organizing Committee, which gave their full support in all the scientific tasks. Enrique García-Berro, UPC Margarida Hernanz, ICE (CSIC) Jordi Isern, ICE (CSIC) Santiago Torres, UPC Editors Conference photograph

  10. The Search for Brown Dwarfs around White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Farihi, J.; Becklin, E.E.; Zuckerman, B.

    2002-01-01

    The infrared search for substellar companions to nearby white dwarfs has been going for a little more than a decade. The most recent phase has been a wide field proper motion search carried out primarily at Steward Observatory, where we are complete down to J=18. Earlier phases included near field searches at the IRTF and Keck Observatory. In the last year we have discovered ten previously unrecognized faint proper motion companions. Of the recent discoveries, most are white dwarfs and a few ...

  11. Dyson Spheres around White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Semiz, İbrahim

    2015-01-01

    A Dyson Sphere is a hypothetical structure that an advanced civilization might build around a star to intercept all of the star's light for its energy needs. One usually thinks of it as a spherical shell about one astronomical unit (AU) in radius, and surrounding a more or less Sun-like star; and might be detectable as an infrared point source. We point out that Dyson Spheres could also be built around white dwarfs. This type would avoid the need for artificial gravity technology, in contrast to the AU-scale Dyson Spheres. In fact, we show that parameters can be found to build Dyson Spheres suitable --temperature- and gravity-wise-- for human habitation. This type would be much harder to detect.

  12. An overview of white dwarf stars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charpinet S.

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available We present a brief summary of what is currently known about white dwarf stars, with an emphasis on their evolutionary and internal properties. As is well known, white dwarfs represent the end products of stellar evolution for the vast majority of stars and, as such, bear the signatures of past events (such as mass loss, mixing phases, loss and redistribution of angular momentum, and thermonuclear burning that are of essential importance in the evolution of stars in general. In addition, white dwarf stars represent ideal testbeds for our understanding of matter under extreme conditions, and work on their constitutive physics (neutrino production rates, conductive and radiative opacities, interior liquid/solid equations of state, partially ionized and partially degenerate envelope equations of state, diffusion coefficients, line broadening mechanisms is still being actively pursued. Given a set of constitutive physics, cooling white dwarfs can be used advantageously as cosmochronometers. Moreover, the field has been blessed by the existence of four distinct families of pulsating white dwarfs, each mapping a different evolutionary phase, and this allows the application of the asteroseismological method to probe and test their internal structure and evolutionary state. We set the stage for the reviews that follow on cooling white dwarfs as cosmochronometers and physics laboratories, as well as on the properties of pulsating white dwarfs and the asteroseismological results that can be inferred.

  13. SDSS DR7 WHITE DWARF CATALOG

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present a new catalog of spectroscopically confirmed white dwarf stars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 7 spectroscopic catalog. We find 20,407 white dwarf spectra, representing 19,712 stars, and provide atmospheric model fits to 14,120 DA and 1011 DB white dwarf spectra from 12,843 and 923 stars, respectively. These numbers represent more than a factor of two increase in the total number of white dwarf stars from the previous SDSS white dwarf catalogs based on DR4 data. Our distribution of subtypes varies from previous catalogs due to our more conservative, manual classifications of each star in our catalog, supplementing our automatic fits. In particular, we find a large number of magnetic white dwarf stars whose small Zeeman splittings mimic increased Stark broadening that would otherwise result in an overestimated log g if fit as a non-magnetic white dwarf. We calculate mean DA and DB masses for our clean, non-magnetic sample and find the DB mean mass is statistically larger than that for the DAs.

  14. Pulsating White Dwarf Stars and Precision Asteroseismology

    CERN Document Server

    Winget, D E

    2008-01-01

    Galactic history is written in the white dwarf stars. Their surface properties hint at interiors composed of matter under extreme conditions. In the forty years since their discovery, pulsating white dwarf stars have moved from side-show curiosities to center stage as important tools for unraveling the deep mysteries of the Universe. Innovative observational techniques and theoretical modeling tools have breathed life into precision asteroseismology. We are just learning to use this powerful tool, confronting theoretical models with observed frequencies and their time rate-of-change. With this tool, we calibrate white dwarf cosmochronology; we explore equations of state; we measure stellar masses, rotation rates, and nuclear reaction rates; we explore the physics of interior crystallization; we study the structure of the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae, and we test models of dark matter. The white dwarf pulsations are at once the heartbeat of galactic history and a window into unexplored and exotic physics.

  15. White Dwarfs, Neutron Stars and Black Holes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szekeres, P.

    1977-01-01

    The three possible fates of burned-out stars: white dwarfs, neutron stars and black holes, are described in elementary terms. Characteristics of these celestial bodies, as provided by Einstein's work, are described. (CP)

  16. Accretion Flows in Magnetic White Dwarf Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imamura, James N.

    2005-01-01

    We received Type A and B funding under the NASA Astrophysics Data Program for the analysis and interpretation of hard x-ray data obtained by the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer and other NASA sponsored missions for Intermediate Polars (IPS) and Polars. For some targets, optical data was available. We reduced and analyzed the X-ray spectra and the X-ray and optical (obtained at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory) timing data using detailed shock models (which we constructed) to place constraints on the properties of the accreting white dwarfs, the high energy emission mechanisms of white dwarfs, and the large-scale accretion flows of Polars and IPS. IPS and Polars are white dwarf mass-transfer binaries, members of the larger class of cata,clysmic variables. They differ from the bulk of the cataclysmic variables in that they contain strongly magnetic white dwarfs; the white dwarfs in Polars have B, = 7 to 230 MG and those in IPS have B, less than 10 MG. The IPS and Polars are both examples of funneled accretion flows in strong magnetic field systems. The IPS are similar to x-ray pulsars in that accretion disks form in the systems which are disrupted by the strong stellar magnetic fields of the white dwarfs near the stellar surface from where the plasma is funneled to the surface of the white dwarf. The localized hot spots formed at the footpoints of the funnels coupled with the rotation of the white dwarf leads to coherent pulsed x-ray emission. The Polars offer an example of a different accretion topology; the magnetic field of the white dwarf controls the accretion flow from near the inner Lagrangian point of the system directly to the stellar surface. Accretion disks do not form. The strong magnetic coupling generally leads to synchronous orbital/rotational motion in the Polars. The physical system in this sense resembles the Io/Jupiter system. In both IPS and Polars, pulsed emission from the infrared to x-rays is produced as the funneled flows merge onto the white dwarfs through the formation of strong radiating shock waves. A comparative study of the IPS and Polars can elucidate the primary effects of the magnetic fields on the dynamics and thermodynamics in accreting white dwarf systems.

  17. An overview of white dwarf stars

    OpenAIRE

    Charpinet S.; Brassard P.; Fontaine G.; Randall S.K.; Van Grootel V.

    2013-01-01

    We present a brief summary of what is currently known about white dwarf stars, with an emphasis on their evolutionary and internal properties. As is well known, white dwarfs represent the end products of stellar evolution for the vast majority of stars and, as such, bear the signatures of past events (such as mass loss, mixing phases, loss and redistribution of angular momentum, and thermonuclear burning) that are of essential importance in the evolution of stars in general. In addition, whit...

  18. NEW COOLING SEQUENCES FOR OLD WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present full evolutionary calculations appropriate for the study of hydrogen-rich DA white dwarfs. This is done by evolving white dwarf progenitors from the zero-age main sequence, through the core hydrogen-burning phase, the helium-burning phase, and the thermally pulsing asymptotic giant branch phase to the white dwarf stage. Complete evolutionary sequences are computed for a wide range of stellar masses and for two different metallicities, Z = 0.01, which is representative of the solar neighborhood, and Z = 0.001, which is appropriate for the study of old stellar systems, like globular clusters. During the white dwarf cooling stage, we self-consistently compute the phase in which nuclear reactions are still important, the diffusive evolution of the elements in the outer layers and, finally, we also take into account all the relevant energy sources in the deep interior of the white dwarf, such as the release of latent heat and the release of gravitational energy due to carbon-oxygen phase separation upon crystallization. We also provide colors and magnitudes for these sequences, based on a new set of improved non-gray white dwarf model atmospheres, which include the most up-to-date physical inputs like the Lyα quasi-molecular opacity. The calculations are extended down to an effective temperature of 2500 K. Our calculations provide a homogeneous set of evolutionary cooling tracks appropriate for mass and age determinations of old DA white dwarfs and for white dwarf cosmochronology of the different Galactic populations.

  19. White dwarfs, red dwarfs and halo dark matter

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The nature of the microlensing events observed by the MACHO team towards the LMC still remains controversial. Low-mass substellar objects and stars with masses larger than ∼ 1Mo-dot have been ruled out, while stars of ∼ 0.5 Mo-dot are the most probable candidates. This means that the microlenses should be either red or white dwarfs. Consequently, we assess jointly the relative contributions of both types of stars to the mass budget of the Galactic halo. We use a Monte Carlo code that incorporates up-to-date evolutionary sequences of both red dwarfs and white dwarfs as well as detailed descriptions of both our Galaxy and the LMC and we compare the synthetic populations obtained with our simulator with the results obtained by the MACHO and EROS experiments. We find that the contribution of the red dwarf population is not enough to explain the number of events measured by the MACHO team. Even though, the optical depth obtained in our simulations almost doubles that obtained when taking into account the white dwarf population alone. Finally, we also find that the contribution to the halo dark matter of the entire population under study is smaller than 10%, at the 95% confidence level.

  20. THE MASSES OF POPULATION II WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Globular star clusters are among the first stellar populations to have formed in the Milky Way, and thus only a small sliver of their initial spectrum of stellar types are still burning hydrogen on the main sequence today. Almost all of the stars born with more mass than 0.8 Msun have evolved to form the white dwarf cooling sequence of these systems, and the distribution and properties of these remnants uniquely holds clues related to the nature of the now evolved progenitor stars. With ultra-deep Hubble Space Telescope imaging observations, rich white dwarf populations of four nearby Milky Way globular clusters have recently been uncovered, and are found to extend impressive 5-8 mag in the faint-blue region of the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. In this paper, we characterize the properties of these population II remnants by presenting the first direct mass measurements of individual white dwarfs near the tip of the cooling sequence in the nearest of the Milky Way globulars, M4. Based on Gemini/GMOS and Keck/LRIS multiobject spectroscopic observations, our results indicate that 0.8 Msun population II main-sequence stars evolving today form 0.53 0.01 Msun white dwarfs. We discuss the implications of this result as it relates to our understanding of stellar structure and evolution of population II stars and for the age of the Galactic halo, as measured with white dwarf cooling theory.

  1. New cooling sequences for old white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Renedo, Isabel; Bertolami, Marcelo M Miller; Romero, Alejandra D; Corsico, Alejandro H; Rohrmann, Rene D; Garcia-Berro, Enrique

    2010-01-01

    We present full evolutionary calculations appropriate for the study of hydrogen-rich DA white dwarfs. This is done by evolving white dwarf progenitors from the zero age main sequence, through the core hydrogen burning phase, the helium burning phase and the thermally pulsing asymptotic giant branch phase to the white dwarf stage. Complete evolutionary sequences are computed for a wide range of stellar masses and for two different metallicities: Z=0.01, which is representative of the solar neighborhood, and Z=0.001, which is appropriate for the study of old stellar systems, like globular clusters. During the white dwarf cooling stage we compute self-consistently the phase in which nuclear reactions are still important, the diffusive evolution of the elements in the outer layers and, finally, we also take into account all the relevant energy sources in the deep interior of the white dwarf, like the release of latent heat and the release of gravitational energy due to carbon-oxygen phase separation upon crystall...

  2. White dwarfs, the Galaxy and Dirac's cosmology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stothers, R.

    1976-01-01

    The additive and multiplicative versions of Dirac's cosmological hypothesis relating the gravitational constant variation with elapsed time and number of particles populating the universe is invoked to account for the deficiency or absence of white dwarfs fainter than about 0.0001 solar luminosity. An estimate is made of white dwarf luminosity in accordance with the two evolutionary models, and it is conjectured that some old white dwarfs with high space velocities may be on the verge of gravitational collapse. Lack of a special mechanism to produce the vast numbers of black holes or other dead stars accounting for 'missing matter' in the vicinity of the sun and in the galactic halo is noted in Dirac's multiplicative model. Results indicate that either Dirac's theory is untenable, or that radiation and heating are of some unknown nature, or that the process of creation of new matter requires a corresponding input of energy.

  3. Mystery of a Dimming White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-12-01

    In the wake of the recent media attention over an enigmatic, dimming star, another intriguing object has been discovered: J1529+2928, a white dwarf that periodically dims. This mystery, however, may have a simple solution with interesting consequences for future surveys of white dwarfs.Unexpected VariabilityJ1529+2928 is an isolated white dwarf that appears to have a mass of slightly more than the Sun. But rather than radiating steadily, J1529+2928 dims once every 38 minutes almost as though it were being eclipsed.The team that discovered these variations, led by Mukremin Kilic (University of Oklahoma), used telescopes at the Apache Point Observatory and the McDonald Observatory to obtain follow-up photometric data of J1529+2928 spread across 66 days. The team also took spectra of the white dwarf with the Gemini North telescope.Kilic and collaborators then began, one by one, to rule out possible causes of this objects variability.Eliminating OptionsThe period of the variability is too long for J1529+2928 to be a pulsating white dwarf with luminosity variation caused by gravity-wave pulsations.The variability cant be due to an eclipse by a stellar or brown-dwarf companion, because there isnt any variation in J1529+2928s radial velocity.Its not due to the orbit of a solid-body planetary object; such a transit would be too short to explain observations.It cant be due to the orbit of a disintegrated planet; this wouldnt explain the light curves observed in different filters plus the light curve doesnt change over the 66-day span.Spotty SurfaceTop and middle two panels: light curves from three different nights observing J1529+2928s periodic dimming. Bottom panel: The Fourier transform shows a peak at 37.7 cycles/day (and another, smaller peak at its first harmonic). [Kilic et al. 2015]So what explanation is left? The authors suggest that J1529+2928s variability is likely caused by a starspot on the white dwarfs surface that rotates into and out of our view. Estimates show that the observed light curves could be created by a starspot at about 10,000K (compared to the white dwarfs effective temperature of ~11,900K), covering 14% of the surface area at an inclination of 90.The formation of such a starspot would almost certainly require the presence of magnetic fields. Interestingly, J1529+2928 doesnt have a strong magnetic field; from its spectra, the team can constrain its field strength to be less than 70 kG.Given that up to 15% of white dwarfs are thought to have kG magnetic fields, eclipse-like events such as this one might in fact be common for white dwarfs. If so, then many similar events will likely be observed with future surveys of transients like Keplers ongoing K2 mission, which is expected to image another several hundred white dwarfs, or the upcoming Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, which will image 13 million white dwarfs.CitationMukremin Kilic et al 2015 ApJ 814 L31. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/814/2/L31

  4. Mystery of a Dimming White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-01-01

    In the wake of the recent media attention over an enigmatic, dimming star, another intriguing object has been discovered: J1529+2928, a white dwarf that periodically dims. This mystery, however, may have a simple solution with interesting consequences for future surveys of white dwarfs.Unexpected VariabilityJ1529+2928 is an isolated white dwarf that appears to have a mass of slightly more than the Sun. But rather than radiating steadily, J1529+2928 dims once every 38 minutes almost as though it were being eclipsed.The team that discovered these variations, led by Mukremin Kilic (University of Oklahoma), used telescopes at the Apache Point Observatory and the McDonald Observatory to obtain follow-up photometric data of J1529+2928 spread across 66 days. The team also took spectra of the white dwarf with the Gemini North telescope.Kilic and collaborators then began, one by one, to rule out possible causes of this objects variability.Eliminating OptionsThe period of the variability is too long for J1529+2928 to be a pulsating white dwarf with luminosity variation caused by gravity-wave pulsations.The variability cant be due to an eclipse by a stellar or brown-dwarf companion, because there isnt any variation in J1529+2928s radial velocity.Its not due to the orbit of a solid-body planetary object; such a transit would be too short to explain observations.It cant be due to the orbit of a disintegrated planet; this wouldnt explain the light curves observed in different filters plus the light curve doesnt change over the 66-day span.Spotty SurfaceTop and middle two panels: light curves from three different nights observing J1529+2928s periodic dimming. Bottom panel: The Fourier transform shows a peak at 37.7 cycles/day (and another, smaller peak at its first harmonic). [Kilic et al. 2015]So what explanation is left? The authors suggest that J1529+2928s variability is likely caused by a starspot on the white dwarfs surface that rotates into and out of our view. Estimates show that the observed light curves could be created by a starspot at about 10,000K (compared to the white dwarfs effective temperature of ~11,900K), covering 14% of the surface area at an inclination of 90.The formation of such a starspot would almost certainly require the presence of magnetic fields. Interestingly, J1529+2928 doesnt have a strong magnetic field; from its spectra, the team can constrain its field strength to be less than 70 kG.Given that up to 15% of white dwarfs are thought to have kG magnetic fields, eclipse-like events such as this one might in fact be common for white dwarfs. If so, then many similar events will likely be observed with future surveys of transients like Keplers ongoing K2 mission, which is expected to image another several hundred white dwarfs, or the upcoming Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, which will image 13 million white dwarfs.CitationMukremin Kilic et al 2015 ApJ 814 L31. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/814/2/L31

  5. Magnetic White Dwarf Stars in the SDSS

    CERN Document Server

    Kepler, S O; Jordan, Stefan; Kleinman, Scot J; Kulebi, Baybars; Koester, Detlev; Peanha, Viviane; Castanheira, Brbara G; Nitta, Atsuko; Costa, Jos Eduardo da Silveira; Winget, Don Earl; Kanaan, Antonio; Fraga, Luciano

    2012-01-01

    To obtain a better statistics on the occurrence of magnetism among white dwarfs, we searched the spectra of the hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf stars (DAs) in the Data Release 7 of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) for Zeeman splittings and estimated the magnetic fields. We found 521 DAs with detectable Zeeman splittings, with fields in the range from around 1 MG to 733 MG, which amounts to 4% of all DAs observed. As the SDSS spectra have low signal-to-noise ratios, we carefully investigated by simulations with theoretical spectra how reliable our detection of magnetic field was.

  6. Pulsating White Dwarfs in Globular Clusters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanaan, A.; Zabot, A.; Fraga, L.

    2012-09-01

    We present our current efforts to detect pulsating white dwarfs in globular clusters and analyze the future of this area when the Extremely Large Telescope (ELT), the Giant Magellan Telescope (GMT) and the Thirty-Meter Telescope (TMT) all become operational. Today we are able to detect pulsating white dwarfs in M 4, NGC 6397 and NGC 6752. When ELT comes on line we should be able to improve the quality of data for the nearby clusters and push the limit to at least 3 magnitudes further, up to NGC 6626, increasing the number of observable clusters from 3 to 20.

  7. White dwarfs: connection with masses of the parent stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A relationship between the mass of a white dwarf and the mass of the parent star on the main sequence is established. The white dwarf birth-rate matches the birth-rate (death-rate) of main sequence stars

  8. Hot Accretion onto White Dwarfs in Quiescent Dwarf Novae

    CERN Document Server

    Medvedev, M V; Medvedev, Mikhail V.; Menou, Kristen

    2001-01-01

    We present dynamically consistent solutions for hot accretion onto unmagnetized, rotating white dwarfs (WDs) in five quiescent dwarf novae. The measured WD rotation rates (and other system parameters) in RX And, SS Cyg, U Gem, VW Hyi and WZ Sge imply spindown of the WD by an extended hot flow emitting most of its X-rays in the vicinity of the stellar surface. In general, energy advection is absent and the flow is stable to convection and hydrodynamical outflows. In rapidly rotating systems, the X-ray luminosity provides only an upper limit on the quiescent accretion rate because of substantial stellar spindown luminosity. We suggest that the presence of hot flows in quiescent dwarf novae may limit the long-term WD rotation rates to significantly sub-Keplerian values.

  9. Theoretical Study of White Dwarf Double Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hira, Ajit; Koetter, Ted; Rivera, Ruben; Diaz, Juan

    2015-04-01

    We continue our interest in the computational simulation of the astrophysical phenomena with a study of gravitationally-bound binary stars, composed of at least one white dwarf star. Of particular interest to astrophysicists are the conditions inside a white dwarf star in the time frame leading up to its explosive end as a Type Ia supernova, for an understanding of the massive stellar explosions. In addition, the studies of the evolution of white dwarfs could serve as promising probes of theories of gravitation. We developed FORTRAN computer programs to implement our models for white dwarfs and other stars. These codes allow for different sizes and masses of stars. Simulations were done in the mass interval from 0.1 to 2.0 solar masses. Our goal was to obtain both atmospheric and orbital parameters. The computational results thus obtained are compared with relevant observational data. The data are further analyzed to identify trends in terms of sizes and masses of stars. We hope to extend our computational studies to blue giant stars in the future. Research Supported by National Science Foundation.

  10. SOAR + SMARTS Southern White Dwarf Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subasavage, John P.; Lepine, S.

    2012-01-01

    We present early results from the SOAR + SMARTS Southern White Dwarf SURVEY (SSSWDS). Our initial sift of relatively bright (15 < V < 18), white dwarf candidates uses the technique of reduced proper motion with inputs from the SUPERBLINK proper motion database combined with photographic magnitudes. Crude distance estimates from the linear photographic magnitude-color relation of Oppenheimer et al. 2001 are obtained and permit prioritized follow-up. For confirmation of luminosity class, we use the SOAR telescope atop Cerro Pachon equipped with the Goodman Spectrograph and a moderate resolution grating. In tandem, we acquire multi-epoch, optical Johnson-Kron-Cousins BVRI photometry using the SMARTS 1.0m telescope atop CTIO. Combined with JHK from 2MASS, we compare the photometric SED to relevant white dwarf model atmospheres to estimate physical parameters (e.g., effective temperature, mass) and distance. For the nearest targets, specifically those within the RECONS (www.recons.org) horizon of 25 pc, we aim to obtain trigonometric parallaxes as part of the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory Parallax Investigation (CTIOPI) project being conducted at the SMARTS 0.9m telescope. To date, we have confirmed 100 relatively bright, new white dwarfs in the southern hemisphere. Of those, 13 are estimated to be within our 25 pc horizon-of-interest, including two that are estimated to be within 15 pc. Ongoing observations will boost these figures by the end of the project.

  11. On The Evolution of Magnetic White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Tremblay, P -E; Freytag, B; Steiner, O; Ludwig, H -G; Steffen, M; Wedemeyer, S; Brassard, P

    2015-01-01

    We present the first radiation magnetohydrodynamics simulations of the atmosphere of white dwarf stars. We demonstrate that convective energy transfer is seriously impeded by magnetic fields when the plasma-beta parameter, the thermal to magnetic pressure ratio, becomes smaller than unity. The critical field strength that inhibits convection in the photosphere of white dwarfs is in the range B = 1-50 kG, which is much smaller than the typical 1-1000 MG field strengths observed in magnetic white dwarfs, implying that these objects have radiative atmospheres. We have then employed evolutionary models to study the cooling process of high-field magnetic white dwarfs, where convection is entirely suppressed during the full evolution (B > 10 MG). We find that the inhibition of convection has no effect on cooling rates until the effective temperature (Teff) reaches a value of around 5500 K. In this regime, the standard convective sequences start to deviate from the ones without convection owing to the convective cou...

  12. Disintegrating Planetary Bodies Around a White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-02-01

    Several months ago, the discovery of WD 1145+017 was announced. This white dwarf appears to be orbited by planetary bodies that are actively disintegrating due to the strong gravitational pull of their host. A follow-up study now reveals that this system has dramatically evolved since its discovery.Signs of DisruptionPotential planetary bodies orbiting a white dwarf would be exposed to a particular risk: if their orbits were perturbed and they passed inside the white dwarfs tidal radius, they would be torn apart. Their material could then form a debris disk around the white dwarf and eventually be accreted.Interestingly, we have two pieces of evidence that this actually happens:Weve observed warm, dusty debris disks around ~4% of white dwarfs, andThe atmospheres of ~25-50% of white dwarfs are polluted by heavy elements that have likely accreted recently.But in spite of this indirect evidence of planet disintegration, wed never observed planetary bodies actively being disrupted around white dwarfs until recently.Unusual TransitsIn April 2015, observations by Keplers K2 mission revealed a strange transit signal around WD 1145+017, a white dwarf 570 light-years from Earth that has both a dusty debris disk and a polluted atmosphere. This signal was interpreted as the transit of at least one, and possibly several, disintegrating planetesimals.In a recent follow-up, a team of scientists led by Boris Gnsicke (University of Warwick) obtained high-speed photometry of WD 1145+017 using the ULTRASPEC camera on the 2.4m Thai National Telescope. These observations were taken in November and December of 2015 roughly seven months after the initial photometric observations of the system. They reveal that dramatic changes have occurred in this short time.Rapid EvolutionA sample light curve from TNT/ULTRASPEC, obtained in December 2015 over 3.9 hours. Many varied transits are evident (click for a better view!). Transits labeled in color appear across multiple nights. [Gnsicke et al. 2016]Initial observations of WD 1145+017 showed a significant transit dip (10%) only every ~3.6 hours, on average. In contrast, in the current observations, every light curve is riddled with numerous transit events that have durations of 312 minutes and depths of 1060%. Many of the transit features overlap, so there are now only short segments of the light curve that dont appear to be attenuated by debris.Gnsicke and collaborators use the new data to analyze the transiting bodies. Though some transits are consistent from night to night, most evolve in shape and depth, appearing and disappearing over the course of the observing campaign. This rapid variability, along with the large size of the transiting bodies (several times the size of the white dwarf), support the conclusion that the transiting objects are not solid bodies. Instead, they are likely clouds of gas and dust flowing from smaller bodies that are being disrupted.Because astronomical timescales are often extremely long, the observations of WD 1145+047 are especially exciting this is a rare chance to watch a system evolve in real time! Given how rapidly it appears to be changing, continued observations are sure to soon reveal more about the planetary bodies orbiting this white dwarf.CitationB. T. Gnsicke et al 2016 ApJ 818 L7. doi:10.3847/2041-8205/818/1/L7

  13. A wide binary trigger for white dwarf pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonsor, Amy; Veras, Dimitri

    2015-11-01

    Metal pollution in white dwarf atmospheres is commonly assumed to be a signature of remnant planetary systems. Most explanations for this pollution predict a sharp decrease in the number of polluted systems with white dwarf cooling age. Observations do not confirm this trend, and metal pollution in old (1-5 Gyr) white dwarfs is difficult to explain. We propose an alternative, time-independent mechanism to produce the white dwarf pollution. The orbit of a wide binary companion can be perturbed by Galactic tides, approaching close to the primary star for the first time after billions of years of evolution on the white dwarf branch. We show that such a close approach perturbs a planetary system orbiting the white dwarf, scattering planetesimals on to star-grazing orbits, in a manner that could pollute the white dwarf's atmosphere. Our estimates find that this mechanism is likely to contribute to metal pollution, alongside other mechanisms, in up to a few per cent of an observed sample of white dwarfs with wide binary companions, independent of white dwarf age. This age independence is the key difference between this wide binary mechanism and others mechanisms suggested in the literature to explain white dwarf pollution. Current observational samples are not large enough to assess whether this mechanism makes a significant contribution to the population of polluted white dwarfs, for which better constraints on the wide binary population are required, such as those that will be obtained in the near future with Gaia.

  14. The White Dwarf Binary Pathways Survey I: A sample of FGK stars with white dwarf companions

    CERN Document Server

    Parsons, S G; Schreiber, M R; Gansicke, B T; Zorotovic, M; Ren, J J

    2016-01-01

    The number of white dwarf plus main-sequence star binaries has increased rapidly in the last decade, jumping from only ~30 in 2003 to over 3000. However, in the majority of known systems the companion to the white dwarf is a low mass M dwarf, since these are relatively easy to identify from optical colours and spectra. White dwarfs with more massive FGK type companions have remained elusive due to the large difference in optical brightness between the two stars. In this paper we identify 934 main-sequence FGK stars from the Radial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) survey in the southern hemisphere and the Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST) survey in the northern hemisphere, that show excess flux at ultraviolet wavelengths which we interpret as the likely presence of a white dwarf companion. We obtained Hubble Space Telescope ultraviolet spectra for nine systems which confirmed that the excess is indeed caused, in all cases, by a hot compact companion, eight being white dwarfs and one ...

  15. White Dwarf-M Dwarf Binaries in the Solar Neighborhood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Julie N.; Morgan, Dylan P.; Thorstensen, John R.; Lepine, Sebastien

    2016-01-01

    As the most populous constituents of our galaxy, low-mass dwarfs are vital to understanding our galaxy's structure and kinematics. While wide White dwarf-M dwarf binaries (WD+dMs) can provide significant constraints on M dwarf age-activity relations, close WD+dMs can aid our understanding of the nature of common envelope evolution and its products (e.g. cataclysmic variables). We present the discovery and characterization of 186 new WD+dMs from the SUPERBLINK proper motion survey. These WD+dMs were discovered as a result of a search for post-common envelope binaries (PCEBs) and are part of an ongoing project to understand the space density and distribution of WD+dMs and PCEBs. In order to identify the sample of WD+dMs in SUPERBLINK, we utilized NUV-V and V-Ks colors. Here, we describe the discovery method and color selection, as well as present a detailed description of the properties of our sample based on two-component fits to our optical spectroscopy obtained at the MDM Observatory.

  16. The SDSS White Dwarf - M Star Library

    CERN Document Server

    Heller, René; Østensen, Roy H

    2011-01-01

    The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), originally targeted at quasi-stellar objects, has provided us with a wealth of astronomical byproducts through the last decade. Since then, the number of white dwarfs (WDs) with physically bound main-sequence star companions (mostly dM stars) has increased radically, allowing for fundamentally new insights into stellar physics. Different methods for the retrieval and follow-up analysis of SDSS WD-dM binaries have been applied in the literature, leading to a rising number of WD-dM catalogs. Here we present a detailed literature search, coupled with our own hunting for SDSS WD-dMs by color selection, the outcome being named the "SDSS White Dwarf - M Star Library". We also explain improvements of our automated spectral analysis method.

  17. Watch This Space: Observing Merging White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Webbink, Ronald F

    2010-01-01

    The Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) will open the low-frequency (0.1-100 mHz) part of the gravitational wave spectrum to direct observation. Of order 3600 galactic close binary white dwarfs will be individually resolvable in its all-sky spectrum, of which a dozen systems are expected to be on the verge of merger, showing the effects of strong tidal heating and/or early onset of tidal mass transfer. Optical study of these systems would provide important insights into tidal dissipation mechanisms, and internal heating in merging white dwarfs that sets ignition conditions for potential type Ia supernovae. Theoretical modeling and instrumentation programs are needed now to enable a campaign for optical identifications to exploit this opportunity.

  18. Lessons for Asteroseismology from White Dwarf Stars

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Travis S. Metcalfe

    2005-06-01

    The interpretation of pulsation data for sun-like stars is currently facing challenges quite similar to those faced by white dwarf modelers ten years ago. The observational requirements for uninterrupted long-term monitoring are beginning to be satisfied by successful multi-site campaigns and dedicated satellite missions. But exploration of the most important physical parameters in theoretical models has been fairly limited, making it difficult to establish a detailed best-fit model for a particular set of oscillation frequencies. I review the past development and the current state of white dwarf asteroseismology, with an emphasis on what this can tell us about the road to success for asteroseismology of other types of stars.

  19. General Relativistic and Newtonian White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; Siutsou, Ivan

    2015-01-01

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs (RWDs) are analyzed within the framework of Newton's gravity and general relativity. In both cases Hartle's formalism is applied to construct the internal and external solutions to the field equations. The white dwarf (WD) matter is described by the Chandrasekhar equation of state. The region of stability of RWDs is constructed taking into account the mass-shedding limit, inverse $\\beta$-decay instability, and the boundary established by the turning points of constant angular momentum $J$ sequences which separates stable from secularly unstable configurations. We found the minimum rotation period $\\sim0.28$ s in both cases and maximum rotating masses $\\sim1.534 M_{\\odot}$ and $\\sim1.516 M_{\\odot}$ for the Newtonian and general relativistic WDs, respectively. By using the turning point method we show that general relativistic WDs can indeed be axisymmetrically unstable whereas the Newtonian WDs are stable.

  20. General Relativistic and Newtonian White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boshkayev, K.; Rueda, J. A.; Ruffini, R.; Siutsou, I.

    2015-01-01

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs (RWDs) are analyzed within the framework of Newton's gravity and general relativity. In both cases Hartle's formalism is applied to construct the internal and external solutions to the field equations. The white dwarf (WD) matter is described by the Chandrasekhar equation of state. The region of stability of RWDs is constructed taking into account the mass-shedding limit, inverse ?-decay instability, and the boundary established by the turning points of constant angular momentum J sequences which separates stable from secularly unstable configurations. We found the minimum rotation period 0.28 s in both cases and maximum rotating masses 1.534M? and 1.516M? for the Newtonian and general relativistic WDs, respectively. By using the turning point method we show that general relativistic WDs can indeed be axisymmetrically unstable whereas the Newtonian WDs are stable.

  1. Limits on Planets Around White Dwarf Stars

    CERN Document Server

    Mullally, F; Degennaro, Steven; Jeffery, Elizabeth; Thompson, S E; Chandler, Dean

    2008-01-01

    We present limits on planetary companions to pulsating white dwarf stars. A subset of these stars exhibit extreme stability in the period and phase of some of their pulsation modes; a planet can be detected around such a star by searching for periodic variations in the arrival time of these pulsations. We present limits on companions greater than a few Jupiter masses around a sample of 15 white dwarf stars as part of an on-going survey. One star shows a variation in arrival time consistent with a 2 M_J planet in a 4.5 year orbit. We discuss other possible explanations for the observed signal and conclude that a planet is the most plausible explanation based on the data available.

  2. Oxygen neutronization in accreting white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Bravo Guil, Eduardo; Isern Vilaboy, Jordi; Labay, Javier; Canal Masgoret, Ramon

    1983-01-01

    Solid carbon-oxygen white dwarf cores have been shown to be likely initial configurations for collapse to neutron star densities. Solidification seems to entail carbon/oxygen separation, with oxygen settling at the star's center and carbon being confined to more external, lower-density layers. Electron captures on 16O are then the triggering mechanism for collapse. The authors elucidate the outcome of the complete reaction network started by those captures and derive simple expressions for ac...

  3. Unlocking the secrets of white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Van Horn, Hugh M

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs, each containing about as much mass as our Sun but packed into a volume about the size of Earth, are the endpoints of evolution for most stars. Thousands of these faint objects have now been discovered, though only a century ago only three were known. They are among the most common stars in the Milky Way Galaxy, and they have become important tools in understanding the universe. Yet a century ago only three white dwarfs were known.   The existence of these stars completely baffled the scientists of the day, and solving the mysteries of these strange objects required revolutionary advances in science and technology, including the development of quantum physics, the construction and utilization of large telescopes, the invention of the digital computer, and the ability to make astronomical observations from space.   This book tells the story of the growth in our understanding of white dwarf stars, set within the context of the relevant scientific and technological advances. Part popular science, ...

  4. The Masses of Population II White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kalirai, Jason S; Richer, Harvey B; Bergeron, P; Catelan, Marcio; Hansen, Brad M S; Rich, R Michael

    2009-01-01

    Globular star clusters are among the first stellar populations to have formed in the Milky Way, and thus only a small sliver of their initial spectrum of stellar types are still burning hydrogen on the main-sequence today. Almost all of the stars born with more mass than 0.8 M_sun have evolved to form the white dwarf cooling sequence of these systems, and the distribution and properties of these remnants uniquely holds clues related to the nature of the now evolved progenitor stars. With ultra-deep HST imaging observations, rich white dwarf populations of four nearby Milky Way globular clusters have recently been uncovered, and are found to extend an impressive 5 - 8 magnitudes in the faint-blue region of the H-R diagram. In this paper, we characterize the properties of these population II remnants by presenting the first direct mass measurements of individual white dwarfs near the tip of the cooling sequence in the nearest of the Milky Way globulars, M4. Based on Gemini/GMOS and Keck/LRIS multiobject spectro...

  5. White dwarf cosmochronology in the solar neighborhood

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The study of the stellar formation history in the solar neighborhood is a powerful technique to recover information about the early stages and evolution of the Milky Way. We present a new method that consists of directly probing the formation history from the nearby stellar remnants. We rely on the volume complete sample of white dwarfs within 20 pc, where accurate cooling ages and masses have been determined. The well characterized initial-final mass relation is employed in order to recover the initial masses (1 ≲ M initial/M ☉ ≲ 8) and total ages for the local degenerate sample. We correct for moderate biases that are necessary to transform our results to a global stellar formation rate, which can be compared to similar studies based on the properties of main-sequence stars in the solar neighborhood. Our method provides precise formation rates for all ages except in very recent times, and the results suggest an enhanced formation rate for the solar neighborhood in the last 5 Gyr compared to the range 5 < Age (Gyr) < 10. Furthermore, the observed total age of ∼10 Gyr for the oldest white dwarfs in the local sample is consistent with the early seminal studies that have determined the age of the Galactic disk from stellar remnants. The main shortcoming of our study is the small size of the local white dwarf sample. However, the presented technique can be applied to larger samples in the future.

  6. Double White Dwarf Mergers with CASTRO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Maximilian P.; Zingale, M.; Calder, A.; Swesty, F. D.

    2013-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae are among the brightest explosions in the Universe and are recognized as reliable distance indicators. While the accepted cause of these events is the thermonuclear incineration of white dwarf stars instigated by accretion, the characteristics of the donor stars remain under investigation. Recent observational evidence supports the hypothesis that the progenitors of some events are binary white dwarf systems, and has spurred renewed theoretical interest in a merger scenario. We present preliminary work modeling such a system using the modern, three-dimensional compressible hydrodynamics code CASTRO. CASTRO uses an adaptive Eulerian grid to highly resolve features of interest and has been demonstrated to accurately address typical dynamical problems in astrophysics. We present simulations showing that it is an appropriate tool for the case of white dwarfs orbiting each other under Newtonian gravity. We show the capability of the code to conserve energy and angular momentum over multiple orbits, and we discuss the differences between simulations in inertial and co-rotating reference frames. We also present verification tests of the gravity solver and describe the importance of appropriate boundary conditions. With the success of these verification tests, the next step is to apply CASTRO to the inspiral and onset of mass transfer and determine areas of likely nuclear burning. This work was supported in part by the NSF under award AST-1211563.

  7. Further constraints on white dwarf galactic halos

    CERN Document Server

    Canal, R; Ruiz-Lapuente, P

    1997-01-01

    The suggestion that roughly half the mass of the galactic halo might be in the form of white dwarfs, together with the limits on the infrared background light and on the initial metallicity of the galactic disk, would set strong constraints on the initial mass function (IMF) of the halo. Particular IMFs have been proposed to cut off both the numbers of low-mass stars contributing to the infrared background and of high-mass stars which contribute to the growth of metallicity when they promptly explode as gravitational-collapse (Type II and Type Ib/c) supernovae. Here we examine the further contribution to metallicity from the Type Ia (thermonuclear) supernovae which would later be produced from the halo white dwarf population. We find that, for most of the evolutionary scenarios for the Type Ia supernova progenitor systems proposed so far, the constraints on the white dwarf mass fraction in the halo from the predicted production of iron would be extremely severe. When the predicted iron excess is not so large,...

  8. Spectroscopic and photometric studies of white dwarfs in the Hyades

    CERN Document Server

    Tremblay, P -E; Röser, S; Jordan, S; Ludwig, H -G; Goldman, B

    2012-01-01

    The Hyades cluster is known to harbour ten so-called classical white dwarf members. Numerous studies through the years have predicted that more than twice this amount of degenerate stars should be associated with the cluster. Using the PPMXL catalog of proper motions and positions, a recent study proposed 17 new white dwarf candidates. We review the membership of these candidates by using published spectroscopic and photometric observations, as well as by simulating the contamination from field white dwarfs. In addition to the ten classical Hyades white dwarfs, we find six white dwarfs that may be of Hyades origin and three more objects that have an uncertain membership status due to their unknown or imprecise atmospheric parameters. Among those, two to three are expected as field stars contamination. Accurate radial velocity measurements will confirm or reject the candidates. One consequence is that the longstanding problem that no white dwarf older than ~340 Myr appears to be associated with the cluster rem...

  9. The WFCAM transit survey and cool white dwarfs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pinfield D.

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available We present results from our search for cool white dwarfs in the WTS (WFCAM Transit Survey. Repeat observations starting in 2007 allowed to produce deep stacked images in J and measure proper motions. We combine this with deep optical imaging to select cool white dwarf candidates (Teff < 5000 K. About 27 cool white dwarf candidates with proper motions above 0.10 arcsec/yr were identified in one of the fields representing 1/8th of the survey area. Follow-up spectroscopy with the 10.2 m GTC telescope at La Palma confirmed the white dwarf status for all observed candidates. On-going work is being carried out to increase the sample of cool white dwarfs that will allow a more comprehensive study of the thick disk/halo white dwarf population.

  10. Formation and appearance of pulsar-like white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Ikhsanov, Nazar

    2014-01-01

    Accretion-driven spin-up of a magnetized white dwarf in a close binary system is discussed. We address a situation in which the magnetic field of the white dwarf is screening during the accretion phase and re-generating due to the field diffusion through the accreted material after it. We find this scenario to be effective for a formation of massive pulsar-like white dwarfs.

  11. Testing the initial-final mass relationship of white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Catalán Ruiz, Sílvia

    2008-01-01

    White dwarfs are the final remnants of low- and intermediate-mass stars. About 95% of main- sequence stars will end their evolutionary pathways as white dwarfs and, hence, the study of the white dwarf population provides details about the late stages of the life of the vast majority of stars.Since white dwarfs are long-lived objects, they also constitute useful objects to study the structure and evolution of our Galaxy. For instance, the initial-final mass relationship, which connects the fin...

  12. Search for Higgs Shifts in White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onofrio, Roberto; Wegner, Gary A.

    2014-08-01

    We report on a search for differential shifts between electronic and vibronic transitions in carbon-rich white dwarfs BPM 27606 and Procyon B. The absence of differential shifts within the spectral resolution and taking into account systematic effects such as space motion and pressure shifts allows us to set the first upper bound of astrophysical origin on the coupling between the Higgs field and the Kreschmann curvature invariant. Our analysis provides the basis for a more general methodology to derive bounds to the coupling of long-range scalar fields to curvature invariants in an astrophysical setting complementary to the ones available from high-energy physics or table-top experiments.

  13. Search for Higgs shifts in white dwarfs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Onofrio, Roberto [Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia " Galileo Galilei," Università di Padova, Via Marzolo 8, I-35131 Padova (Italy); Wegner, Gary A., E-mail: onofrior@gmail.com, E-mail: gary.a.wegner@dartmouth.edu [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Dartmouth College, 6127 Wilder Laboratory, Hanover, NH 03755 (United States)

    2014-08-20

    We report on a search for differential shifts between electronic and vibronic transitions in carbon-rich white dwarfs BPM 27606 and Procyon B. The absence of differential shifts within the spectral resolution and taking into account systematic effects such as space motion and pressure shifts allows us to set the first upper bound of astrophysical origin on the coupling between the Higgs field and the Kreschmann curvature invariant. Our analysis provides the basis for a more general methodology to derive bounds to the coupling of long-range scalar fields to curvature invariants in an astrophysical setting complementary to the ones available from high-energy physics or table-top experiments.

  14. White dwarfs in common proper motion binaries

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Arazimová, Eva; Kawka, Adela; Vennes, Stephane

    San Francisco : Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 2010 - (Prša, A.), s. 147-148 ISBN 978-1-58381-750-6. - (ASP Conference Series. 435). [Binaries - Key to Comprehension of the Universe . Brno (CZ), 08.06.2009-12.06.2009] R&D Projects: GA ČR GD205/08/H005; GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA300030908; GA MŠk(CZ) LC06014 Grant ostatní: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA301630901 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : white dwarfs Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  15. Search for Higgs shifts in white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Onofrio, Roberto

    2014-01-01

    We report on a search for differential shifts between electronic and vibronic transitions in carbon-rich white dwarfs BPM 27606 and Procyon B. The absence of differential shifts within the spectral resolution and taking into account systematic effects such as space motion and pressure shifts allows us to set the first upper bound of astrophysical origin on the coupling between the Higgs field and the Kreschmann curvature invariant. Our analysis provides the basis for a more general methodology to derive bounds to the coupling of long-range scalar fields to curvature invariants in an astrophysical setting complementary to the ones available from high-energy physics or table-top experiments.

  16. Search for Higgs shifts in white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report on a search for differential shifts between electronic and vibronic transitions in carbon-rich white dwarfs BPM 27606 and Procyon B. The absence of differential shifts within the spectral resolution and taking into account systematic effects such as space motion and pressure shifts allows us to set the first upper bound of astrophysical origin on the coupling between the Higgs field and the Kreschmann curvature invariant. Our analysis provides the basis for a more general methodology to derive bounds to the coupling of long-range scalar fields to curvature invariants in an astrophysical setting complementary to the ones available from high-energy physics or table-top experiments.

  17. Accretion on to Magnetic White Dwarfs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wickramasinghe Dayal

    2014-01-01

    The polars have no counterparts in neutron star systems and their study provides unique insights into the complex nature of the magnetospheric boundary. The observed properties of accretion shocks at the white dwarf surface such as the anomalous soft-X-ray excess and its time variability provide strong support for the hypothesis that under certain circumstances the field channelled funnel flow is “blobby”. This has been attributed to interchange instabilities such as the Magnetic Rayleigh-Taylor instability in the shocked gas at the stream-magnetosphere boundary where the stream fragments into discrete clumps of gas. As the clumps penetrate into the magnetosphere, they are shredded into smaller mass blobs via the Kelvin-Helmholtz instability that then couple on to field lines over an extended inner transition region in the orbital plane. The more massive blobs penetrate deep into the photosphere of the white dwarf releasing their energy as a reprocessed soft-X-ray black body component. Although similar instabilities are expected in the inner transition region in disced accretion albeit on a different scale there has been no direct observational evidence for blobby accretion in the generally lower field and disced IPs.

  18. Freak waves in white dwarfs and magnetars

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sabry, R. [Theoretical Physics Group, Physics Department, Faculty of Science, Damietta University, New Damietta 34517 (Egypt); Department of Physics, College of Science and Humanitarian Studies, Salman bin Abdulaziz University, Alkharj (Saudi Arabia); International Centre for Advanced Studies in Physical Sciences, Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Ruhr University Bochum, D-44780 Bochum (Germany); Moslem, W. M. [International Centre for Advanced Studies in Physical Sciences, Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Ruhr University Bochum, D-44780 Bochum (Germany); Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Port Said University, Port Said (Egypt); Centre for Theoretical Physics, The British University in Egypt (BUE), El-Shorouk City, Cairo (Egypt); Shukla, P. K. [International Centre for Advanced Studies in Physical Sciences, Faculty of Physics and Astronomy, Ruhr University Bochum, D-44780 Bochum (Germany); Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Center for Energy Research, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093 (United States)

    2012-12-15

    We report properties of ion acoustic freak waves that propagate in a plasma composed of warm ions and ultrarelativistic electrons and positrons. The dynamics of the nonlinear freak waves is governed by the nonlinear Schroedinger equation. The possible region for the freak waves to exist is defined precisely for typical parameters of white dwarfs and magnetars corona. It is found that for low wave number, the nonlinear ion-acoustic wave packets are structurally stable in magnetars corona than in white dwarfs. However, for large wave numbers the situation is opposite. The critical wave number threshold (k{sub c}), which indicates where the modulational instability sets in, is defined for both applications. It is seen that near to k{sub c} the freak wave amplitude becomes high, but it decreases whenever we stepped away from k{sub c}. For the wave numbers close to k{sub c}, the increase of the unperturbed density ratio of positrons-to-electrons ({beta}) would lead to increase the freak wave amplitude, but for larger wave numbers the amplitude decreases with the increase of {beta}.

  19. Two new extremely hot pulsating white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bond, H. E.; Grauer, A. D.; Green, R. F.; Liebert, J. W.

    1984-01-01

    High speed photometry of the extremely hot, nearly degenerate stars PG 1707 + 427 and PG 2131 + 066 reveals that they are low-amplitude pulsating variables. Power spectral analysis shows both to be multiperiodic, with dominant periods of 7.5 and 6.4-6.9 minutes, respectively. Together with the known pulsators PG 1159 - 035 and the central star of the planetary nebula Kohoutek 1-16, these objects define a new pulsational instability strip at the hot edge of the H-R diagram. The variations of these objects closely resemble those of the much cooler pulsating ZZ Ceti DA white dwarfs; both groups are probably nonradial g-mode pulsators. Evolutionary contraction of the PG 1159 - 035 variables may lead to period changes that would be detectable in as little as 1 year. The optical and IUE spectra of the PG 1159 - 035 variables are characterized by absorption lines of C IV and other CNO ions, indicating radiative levitation of species heavier than helium. He II is also present in the spectra, but the hydrogen Balmer lines are absent. Effective temperatures near 100,000 K are required, and the He II 4686 A profiles indicate log g greater than 6. These helium-rich pulsators form the hottest known subgroup of the DO white dwarfs.

  20. A wide binary trigger for white dwarf pollution

    CERN Document Server

    Bonsor, Amy

    2015-01-01

    Metal pollution in white dwarf atmospheres is likely to be a signature of remnant planetary systems. Most explanations for this pollution predict a sharp decrease in the number of polluted systems with white dwarf cooling age. Observations do not confirm this trend, and metal pollution in old (1-5 Gyr) white dwarfs is difficult to explain. We propose an alternative, time-independent mechanism to produce the white dwarf pollution. The orbit of a wide binary companion can be perturbed by Galactic tides, approaching close to the primary star for the first time after billions of years of evolution on the white dwarf branch. We show that such a close approach perturbs a planetary system orbiting the white dwarf, scattering planetesimals onto star-grazing orbits, in a manner that could pollute the white dwarf's atmosphere. Our estimates find that this mechanism is likely to contribute to metal pollution, alongside other mechanisms, in up to a few percent of an observed sample of white dwarfs with wide binary compan...

  1. Pure hydrogen atmosphere for very cool white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Saumon, D S

    1999-01-01

    Microlensing events observed in the line of sight toward the LMC indicate that a significant fraction of the mass of the dark halo of the Galaxy is probably composed of white dwarfs. In addition, white dwarf sequences have now be observed in the HR diagrams of several globular clusters. Because of the unavailability of white dwarf atmospheres for Teff < 4000K, cooling time scales for white dwarfs older than ~ 10 Gyr are very uncertain. Moreover, the identification of a MACHO white dwarf population by direct observation depends on a knowledge of the colors and bolometric corrections of very-cool white dwarfs. In this paper we present the first detailed model atmospheres and spectra of very cool hydrogen white dwarfs for Teff < 4000K. We include the latest description of the opacities of hydrogen and significantly, we introduce a non-ideal equation of state in the atmosphere calculation. We find that due to strong absorption from H_2 in the infrared, very old white dwarfs are brightest in the V, R, and I ...

  2. Constraining White Dwarf Structure and Neutrino Physics in 47 Tucanae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldsbury, R.; Heyl, J.; Richer, H. B.; Kalirai, J. S.; Tremblay, P. E.

    2016-04-01

    We present a robust statistical analysis of the white dwarf cooling sequence in 47 Tucanae. We combine Hubble Space Telescope UV and optical data in the core of the cluster, Modules for Experiments in Stellar Evolution (MESA) white dwarf cooling models, white dwarf atmosphere models, artificial star tests, and a Markov Chain Monte Carlo sampling method to fit white dwarf cooling models to our data directly. We use a technique known as the unbinned maximum likelihood to fit these models to our data without binning. We use these data to constrain neutrino production and the thickness of the hydrogen layer in these white dwarfs. The data prefer thicker hydrogen layers ({q}{{H}}=3.2× {10}-5) and we can strongly rule out thin layers ({q}{{H}}={10}-6). The neutrino rates currently in the models are consistent with the data. This analysis does not provide a constraint on the number of neutrino species.

  3. Fate of accreting white dwarfs: Type I supernovae vs collapse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The final fate of accreting C + O white dwarfs is either thermonuclear explosion or collapse, if the white dwarf mass grows to the Chandrasekhar mass. We discuss how the fate depends on the initial mass, age, composition of the white dwarf and the mass accretion rate. Relatively fast accretion leads to a carbon deflagration at low central density that gives rise to a Type Ia supernova. Slower accretion induces a helium detonation that could be observed as a Type Ib supernova. If the initial mass of the C + O white dwarf is larger than 1.2 Msub solar, a carbon deflagration starts at high central density and induces a collapse of the white dwarf to form a neutron star. We examine the critical condition for which a carbon deflagration leads to collapse, not explosion. For the case of explosion, we discuss to what extent the nucleosynthesis models are consistent with spectra of Type Ia and Ib supernovae. 61 refs., 18 figs

  4. Constraining white dwarf structure and neutrino physics in 47 Tucanae

    CERN Document Server

    Goldsbury, Ryan; Richer, Harvey; Kalirai, Jason; Tremblay, Pier-Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    We present a robust statistical analysis of the white dwarf cooling sequence in 47 Tucanae. We combine HST UV and optical data in the core of the cluster, Modules for Experiments in Stellar Evolution (MESA) white dwarf cooling models, white dwarf atmosphere models, artificial star tests, and a Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) sampling method to fit white dwarf cooling models to our data directly. We use a technique known as the unbinned maximum likelihood to fit these models to our data without binning. We use these data to constrain neutrino production and the thickness of the hydrogen layer in these white dwarfs. The data prefer thicker hydrogen layers $(q_\\mathrm{H}=3.2\\e{-5})$ and we can strongly rule out thin layers $(q_\\mathrm{H}=10^{-6})$. The neutrino rates currently in the models are consistent with the data. This analysis does not provide a constraint on the number of neutrino species.

  5. Fate of accreting white dwarfs: Type I supernovae vs collapse

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nomoto, Ken' ichi

    1986-01-01

    The final fate of accreting C + O white dwarfs is either thermonuclear explosion or collapse, if the white dwarf mass grows to the Chandrasekhar mass. We discuss how the fate depends on the initial mass, age, composition of the white dwarf and the mass accretion rate. Relatively fast accretion leads to a carbon deflagration at low central density that gives rise to a Type Ia supernova. Slower accretion induces a helium detonation that could be observed as a Type Ib supernova. If the initial mass of the C + O white dwarf is larger than 1.2 Msub solar, a carbon deflagration starts at high central density and induces a collapse of the white dwarf to form a neutron star. We examine the critical condition for which a carbon deflagration leads to collapse, not explosion. For the case of explosion, we discuss to what extent the nucleosynthesis models are consistent with spectra of Type Ia and Ib supernovae. 61 refs., 18 figs.

  6. Equilibrium structure of white dwarfs at finite temperatures

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Zhami, Bakytzhan; Kalymova, Zhanerke; Balgymbekov, Galymdin

    2015-01-01

    Recently, it has been shown by S.~M. de Carvalho et al. (2014) that the deviations between the degenerate case and observations were already evident for 0.7-0.8 M$_{\\odot}$ white dwarfs. Such deviations were related to the neglected effects of finite temperatures on the structure of a white dwarf. Therefore, in this work by employing the Chandrasekhar equation of state taking into account the effects of temperature we show how the total pressure of the white dwarf matter depends on the mass density at different temperatures. Afterwards we construct equilibrium configurations of white dwarfs at finite temperatures. We obtain the mass-radius relations of white dwarfs for different temperatures by solving the Tolman-Oppenheimer-Volkoff equation, and compare them with the estimated masses and radii inferred from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 4.

  7. An unsuccessful search for brown dwarf companions to white dwarf stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A search was carried out for brown dwarf stars in the solar neighbourhood, using the IRAS data base, in connection with the 'missing mass' theory. The paper was presented at the workshop on 'Astrophysics of brown dwarfs', Virginia, USA, 1985. No brown dwarf companions to white dwarf stars were discovered. However it is suggested that a similar search with a more sensitive survey instrument may yield some detections. (U.K.)

  8. WHITE DWARF/M DWARF BINARIES AS SINGLE DEGENERATE PROGENITORS OF TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Limits on the companions of white dwarfs in the single-degenerate scenario for the origin of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) have gotten increasingly tight, yet igniting a nearly Chandrasekhar mass C/O white dwarf from a condition of near hydrostatic equilibrium provides compelling agreement with observed spectral evolution. The only type of non-degenerate stars that survive the tight limits, MV ?> 8.4 on the SN Ia in SNR 0509-67.5 and MV ?> 9.5 in the remnant of SN 1572, are M dwarfs. While M dwarfs are observed in cataclysmic variables, they have special properties that have not been considered in most work on the progenitors of SNe Ia: they have small but finite magnetic fields and they flare frequently. These properties are explored in the context of SN Ia progenitors. White dwarf/M dwarf pairs may be sufficiently plentiful to provide, in principle, an adequate rate of explosions even with slow orbital evolution due to magnetic braking or gravitational radiation. Even modest magnetic fields on the white dwarf and M dwarf will yield adequate torques to lock the two stars together, resulting in a slowly rotating white dwarf, with the magnetic poles pointing at one another in the orbital plane. The mass loss will be channeled by a 'magnetic bottle' connecting the two stars, landing on a concentrated polar area on the white dwarf. This enhances the effective rate of accretion compared to spherical accretion. Luminosity from accretion and hydrogen burning on the surface of the white dwarf may induce self-excited mass transfer. The combined effects of self-excited mass loss, polar accretion, and magnetic inhibition of mixing of accretion layers give possible means to beat the 'nova limit' and grow the white dwarf to the Chandrasekhar mass even at rather moderate mass accretion rates.

  9. White Dwarf/M Dwarf Binaries as Single Degenerate Progenitors of Type Ia Supernovae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, J. Craig

    2012-10-01

    Limits on the companions of white dwarfs in the single-degenerate scenario for the origin of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) have gotten increasingly tight, yet igniting a nearly Chandrasekhar mass C/O white dwarf from a condition of near hydrostatic equilibrium provides compelling agreement with observed spectral evolution. The only type of non-degenerate stars that survive the tight limits, MV >~ 8.4 on the SN Ia in SNR 0509-67.5 and MV >~ 9.5 in the remnant of SN 1572, are M dwarfs. While M dwarfs are observed in cataclysmic variables, they have special properties that have not been considered in most work on the progenitors of SNe Ia: they have small but finite magnetic fields and they flare frequently. These properties are explored in the context of SN Ia progenitors. White dwarf/M dwarf pairs may be sufficiently plentiful to provide, in principle, an adequate rate of explosions even with slow orbital evolution due to magnetic braking or gravitational radiation. Even modest magnetic fields on the white dwarf and M dwarf will yield adequate torques to lock the two stars together, resulting in a slowly rotating white dwarf, with the magnetic poles pointing at one another in the orbital plane. The mass loss will be channeled by a "magnetic bottle" connecting the two stars, landing on a concentrated polar area on the white dwarf. This enhances the effective rate of accretion compared to spherical accretion. Luminosity from accretion and hydrogen burning on the surface of the white dwarf may induce self-excited mass transfer. The combined effects of self-excited mass loss, polar accretion, and magnetic inhibition of mixing of accretion layers give possible means to beat the "nova limit" and grow the white dwarf to the Chandrasekhar mass even at rather moderate mass accretion rates.

  10. HELIUM CORE WHITE DWARFS IN CATACLYSMIC VARIABLES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Binary evolution predicts a population of helium core (M sun) white dwarfs (WDs) that are slowly accreting hydrogen-rich material from low-mass main-sequence or brown dwarf donors with orbital periods less than 4 hr. Four binaries are presently known in the Milky Way that will reach such a mass-transferring state in a few Gyr. Despite these predictions and observations of progenitor binaries, there are still no secure cases of helium core WDs among the mass-transferring cataclysmic variables. This led us to calculate the fate of He WDs once accretion begins at a rate M-dot-10M-odot yr-1 set by angular momentum losses. We show here that the cold He core temperatures (Tc 7 K) and low M-dot thermonuclear runaway. Shara and collaborators noted that these large accumulated masses may lead to exceptionally long classical nova (CN) events. For a typical donor star of 0.2 Msun, such binaries will only yield a few hundred CNe, making these events rare among all CNe. We calculate the reheating of the accreting WD, allowing a comparison to the measured WD effective temperatures in quiescent dwarf novae and raising the possibility that WD seismology may be the best way to confirm the presence of a He WD. We also find that a very long (>1000 yr) stable burning phase occurs after the CN outburst, potentially explaining enigmatic short orbital period supersoft sources like RX J0537-7034 (Porb = 3.5 hr) and 1E 0035.4-7230 (Porb = 4.1 hr).

  11. HST Spectroscopy of the Hottest White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, Thomas

    2007-01-01

    Spectral analysis needs the observation of lines of successive ionization stages in order to evaluate the ionization equilibrium (of a particular species) which is a sensitive indicator for the effective temperature. Since stars with effective temperatures as high as 100000 K have their flux maximum in the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) wavelength range and due to the high degree of ionization, most of the metal lines are found in the ultraviolet (UV) range. Thus, high-S/N and high-resolution UV spectra are a pre-requisite for a precise analysis. Consequently, we employed the Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS), the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph (GHRS), and the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) aboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in order to obtain suitable data. We present state-of-the-art analyses of the hottest (pre-) white dwarfs by means of NLTE model atmospheres which include the metal-line blanketing of all elements from hydrogen to nickel.

  12. REMNANTS OF BINARY WHITE DWARF MERGERS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We carry out a comprehensive smooth particle hydrodynamics simulation survey of double-degenerate white dwarf binary mergers of varying mass combinations in order to establish correspondence between initial conditions and remnant configurations. We find that all but one of our simulation remnants share general properties such as a cold, degenerate core surrounded by a hot disk, while our least massive pair of stars forms only a hot disk. We characterize our remnant configurations by the core mass, the rotational velocity of the core, and the half-mass radius of the disk. We also find that some of our simulations with very massive constituent stars exhibit helium detonations on the surface of the primary star before complete disruption of the secondary. However, these helium detonations are insufficiently energetic to ignite carbon, and so do not lead to prompt carbon detonations.

  13. Future Observations of White Dwarfs from Space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barstow, M. A.; Casewell, S. L.

    2015-06-01

    We outline two possible future space missions suitable for the study of white dwarfs. These lie at the extreme ends of the spectrum of such opportunities in terms of cost and timescale. The SIRIUS extreme ultraviolet spectrograph will be proposed for the ESA/Chinese Academy of Sciences small, ≍ 50M Euro, mission. If selected it will fly in 2021. ATLAST is planned to be a very large UVOIR space observatory to provide a true replacement for the capabilities of HST. If it goes ahead, it will be a several billion-dollar project and will not fly before 2030. The paper provides further details on the technical capabilities of these space telescopes.

  14. TIDAL NOVAE IN COMPACT BINARY WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Compact binary white dwarfs (WDs) undergoing orbital decay due to gravitational radiation can experience significant tidal heating prior to merger. In these WDs, the dominant tidal effect involves the excitation of outgoing gravity waves in the inner stellar envelope and the dissipation of these waves in the outer envelope. As the binary orbit decays, the WDs are synchronized from outside in (with the envelope synchronized first, followed by the core). We examine the deposition of tidal heat in the envelope of a carbon-oxygen WD and study how such tidal heating affects the structure and evolution of the WD. We show that significant tidal heating can occur in the star's degenerate hydrogen layer. This layer heats up faster than it cools, triggering runaway nuclear fusion. Such 'tidal novae' may occur in all WD binaries containing a CO WD, at orbital periods between 5 minutes and 20 minutes, and precede the final merger by 105-106 years.

  15. Liberating exomoons in white dwarf planetary systems

    CERN Document Server

    Payne, Matthew J; Holman, Matthew J; Gaensicke, Boris T

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies indicate that more than a quarter of all white dwarf (WD) atmospheres are polluted by remnant planetary material, with some WDs being observed to accrete the mass of Pluto in 10^6 years. The short sinking timescale for the pollutants indicate that the material must be frequently replenished. Moons may contribute decisively to this pollution process if they are liberated from their parent planets during the post-main-sequence evolution of the planetary systems. Here, we demonstrate that gravitational scattering events among planets in WD systems easily triggers moon ejection. Repeated close encounters within tenths of a planetary Hill radii are highly destructive to even the most massive, close-in moons. Consequently, scattering increases both the frequency of perturbing agents in WD systems, as well as the available mass of polluting material in those systems, thereby enhancing opportunities for collision and fragmentation and providing more dynamical pathways for smaller bodies to reach the ...

  16. Uniform period spacings in white dwarf models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Asymptotic analysis of the equations of nonradial adiabatic oscillation shows that there is a uniform period spacing for g-modes with the same degree (l) and consecutive values of the radial wave number (n). If modes with the same l but different n are present in a pulsating star, then comparison of the period spacings in appropriate stellar models with period differences between the observed pulsation periods can provide mode identification, and thereby constrain other physical properties of the star. Since the pulsating white dwarfs are g-mode pulsators, those with rich power spectra may have period spacings that are integer multiples of some uniform period interval. The periods of PG1159 show spacings that correspond very closely to theoretical models for modes with l=1 and/or l=3. Since the period spacing of g-modes in DOV stars is sensitive to total stellar mass alone, this property of the period spectrum of PG1159 also strictly constrains its mass to be 0.60+-0.02 Msolar. New photometric observations of the other DOV stars are being undertaken, and progress continues in unravelling the complex lightcurve of the pulsating nucleus of the planetary nebula K1-16. Most compact pulsators are cooler than the DOV stars: the DBV and ZZ Ceti, or DAV, stars. In this paper, the authors calculate the period spacings for some representative DBV and DAV white dwarf models. They then briefly examine the applicability of the analysis of period spacings to the DBV and DAV stars

  17. ON GENERAL RELATIVISTIC UNIFORMLY ROTATING WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs (RWDs) are analyzed within the framework of general relativity. Hartle's formalism is applied to construct the internal and external solutions to the Einstein equations. The white dwarf (WD) matter is described by the relativistic Feynman-Metropolis-Teller equation of state which generalizes that of Salpeter by taking into account the finite size of the nuclei, and the Coulomb interactions as well as electroweak equilibrium in a self-consistent relativistic fashion. The mass M, radius R, angular momentum J, eccentricity ?, and quadrupole moment Q of RWDs are calculated as a function of the central density ? c and rotation angular velocity ?. We construct the region of stability of RWDs (J-M plane) taking into account the mass-shedding limit, inverse ?-decay instability, and the boundary established by the turning points of constant J sequences which separates stable from secularly unstable configurations. We found the minimum rotation periods ?0.3, 0.5, 0.7, and 2.2 s and maximum masses ?1.500, 1.474, 1.467, 1.202 M ? for 4He, 12C, 16O, and 56Fe WDs, respectively. By using the turning-point method, we found that RWDs can indeed be axisymmetrically unstable and we give the range of WD parameters where this occurs. We also construct constant rest-mass evolution tracks of RWDs at fixed chemical composition and show that, by losing angular momentum, sub-Chandrasekhar RWDs (mass smaller than maximum static one) can experience both spin-up and spin-down epochs depending on their initial mass and rotation period, while super-Chandrasekhar RWDs (mass larger than maximum static one) only spin up.

  18. ON GENERAL RELATIVISTIC UNIFORMLY ROTATING WHITE DWARFS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Rueda, Jorge A.; Ruffini, Remo; Siutsou, Ivan, E-mail: kuantay@icra.it, E-mail: jorge.rueda@icra.it, E-mail: ruffini@icra.it, E-mail: siutsou@icranet.org [Dipartimento di Fisica and ICRA, Sapienza Universita di Roma, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, I-00185 Rome (Italy)

    2013-01-10

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs (RWDs) are analyzed within the framework of general relativity. Hartle's formalism is applied to construct the internal and external solutions to the Einstein equations. The white dwarf (WD) matter is described by the relativistic Feynman-Metropolis-Teller equation of state which generalizes that of Salpeter by taking into account the finite size of the nuclei, and the Coulomb interactions as well as electroweak equilibrium in a self-consistent relativistic fashion. The mass M, radius R, angular momentum J, eccentricity {epsilon}, and quadrupole moment Q of RWDs are calculated as a function of the central density {rho} {sub c} and rotation angular velocity {Omega}. We construct the region of stability of RWDs (J-M plane) taking into account the mass-shedding limit, inverse {beta}-decay instability, and the boundary established by the turning points of constant J sequences which separates stable from secularly unstable configurations. We found the minimum rotation periods {approx}0.3, 0.5, 0.7, and 2.2 s and maximum masses {approx}1.500, 1.474, 1.467, 1.202 M {sub Sun} for {sup 4}He, {sup 12}C, {sup 16}O, and {sup 56}Fe WDs, respectively. By using the turning-point method, we found that RWDs can indeed be axisymmetrically unstable and we give the range of WD parameters where this occurs. We also construct constant rest-mass evolution tracks of RWDs at fixed chemical composition and show that, by losing angular momentum, sub-Chandrasekhar RWDs (mass smaller than maximum static one) can experience both spin-up and spin-down epochs depending on their initial mass and rotation period, while super-Chandrasekhar RWDs (mass larger than maximum static one) only spin up.

  19. THREE NEW ECLIPSING WHITE-DWARF-M-DWARF BINARIES DISCOVERED IN A SEARCH FOR TRANSITING PLANETS AROUND M-DWARFS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Law, Nicholas M. [Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Toronto, 50 St. George St., Toronto, ON M5S 3H4 (Canada); Kraus, Adam L. [Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, 2680 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu, HI 96822 (United States); Street, Rachel; Fulton, Benjamin J.; Shporer, Avi; Lister, Tim [Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network, Inc., 6740 Cortona Dr. Suite 102, Santa Barbara, CA 93117 (United States); Hillenbrand, Lynne A.; Baranec, Christoph; Bui, Khanh; Davis, Jack T. C.; Dekany, Richard G.; Kulkarni, S. R.; Ofek, Eran O. [Cahill Center for Astrophysics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Bloom, Joshua S.; Cenko, S. Bradley; Filippenko, Alexei V. [Department of Astronomy, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3411 (United States); Burse, Mahesh P.; Das, H. K. [Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Ganeshkhind, Pune-411007 (India); Kasliwal, Mansi M. [Carnegie Institution for Science, 813 Santa Barbara St., Pasadena, CA 91101 (United States); Nugent, Peter [Computational Cosmology Center, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States); and others

    2012-10-01

    We present three new eclipsing white-dwarf/M-dwarf binary systems discovered during a search for transiting planets around M-dwarfs. Unlike most known eclipsing systems of this type, the optical and infrared emission is dominated by the M-dwarf components, and the systems have optical colors and discovery light curves consistent with being Jupiter-radius transiting planets around early M-dwarfs. We detail the PTF/M-dwarf transiting planet survey, part of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF). We present a graphics processing unit (GPU)-based box-least-squares search for transits that runs approximately 8 Multiplication-Sign faster than similar algorithms implemented on general purpose systems. For the discovered systems, we decompose low-resolution spectra of the systems into white-dwarf and M-dwarf components, and use radial velocity measurements and cooling models to estimate masses and radii for the white dwarfs. The systems are compact, with periods between 0.35 and 0.45 days and semimajor axes of approximately 2 R{sub Sun} (0.01 AU). The M-dwarfs have masses of approximately 0.35 M{sub Sun }, and the white dwarfs have hydrogen-rich atmospheres with temperatures of around 8000 K and have masses of approximately 0.5 M{sub Sun }. We use the Robo-AO laser guide star adaptive optics system to tentatively identify one of the objects as a triple system. We also use high-cadence photometry to put an upper limit on the white-dwarf radius of 0.025 R{sub Sun} (95% confidence) in one of the systems. Accounting for our detection efficiency and geometric factors, we estimate that 0.08%{sub -0.05%}{sup +0.10%} (90% confidence) of M-dwarfs are in these short-period, post-common-envelope white-dwarf/M-dwarf binaries where the optical light is dominated by the M-dwarf. The lack of detections at shorter periods, despite near-100% detection efficiency for such systems, suggests that binaries including these relatively low-temperature white dwarfs are preferentially found at relatively large orbital radii. Similar eclipsing binary systems can have arbitrarily small eclipse depths in red bands and generate plausible small-planet-transit light curves. As such, these systems are a source of false positives for M-dwarf transiting planet searches. We present several ways to rapidly distinguish these binaries from transiting planet systems.

  20. THREE NEW ECLIPSING WHITE-DWARF-M-DWARF BINARIES DISCOVERED IN A SEARCH FOR TRANSITING PLANETS AROUND M-DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present three new eclipsing white-dwarf/M-dwarf binary systems discovered during a search for transiting planets around M-dwarfs. Unlike most known eclipsing systems of this type, the optical and infrared emission is dominated by the M-dwarf components, and the systems have optical colors and discovery light curves consistent with being Jupiter-radius transiting planets around early M-dwarfs. We detail the PTF/M-dwarf transiting planet survey, part of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF). We present a graphics processing unit (GPU)-based box-least-squares search for transits that runs approximately 8 × faster than similar algorithms implemented on general purpose systems. For the discovered systems, we decompose low-resolution spectra of the systems into white-dwarf and M-dwarf components, and use radial velocity measurements and cooling models to estimate masses and radii for the white dwarfs. The systems are compact, with periods between 0.35 and 0.45 days and semimajor axes of approximately 2 R☉ (0.01 AU). The M-dwarfs have masses of approximately 0.35 M☉, and the white dwarfs have hydrogen-rich atmospheres with temperatures of around 8000 K and have masses of approximately 0.5 M☉. We use the Robo-AO laser guide star adaptive optics system to tentatively identify one of the objects as a triple system. We also use high-cadence photometry to put an upper limit on the white-dwarf radius of 0.025 R☉ (95% confidence) in one of the systems. Accounting for our detection efficiency and geometric factors, we estimate that 0.08%-0.05%+0.10% (90% confidence) of M-dwarfs are in these short-period, post-common-envelope white-dwarf/M-dwarf binaries where the optical light is dominated by the M-dwarf. The lack of detections at shorter periods, despite near-100% detection efficiency for such systems, suggests that binaries including these relatively low-temperature white dwarfs are preferentially found at relatively large orbital radii. Similar eclipsing binary systems can have arbitrarily small eclipse depths in red bands and generate plausible small-planet-transit light curves. As such, these systems are a source of false positives for M-dwarf transiting planet searches. We present several ways to rapidly distinguish these binaries from transiting planet systems.

  1. Binary white dwarfs in the halo of the Milky Way

    CERN Document Server

    van Oirschot, Pim; Toonen, Silvia; Pols, Onno; Brown, Anthony G A; Helmi, Amina; Zwart, Simon Portegies

    2014-01-01

    Aims: We study single and binary white dwarfs in the inner halo of the Milky Way in order to learn more about the conditions under which the population of halo stars was born, such as the initial mass function (IMF), the star formation history, or the binary fraction. Methods: We simulate the evolution of low-metallicity halo stars at distances up to ~ 3 kpc using the binary population synthesis code SeBa. We use two different white dwarf cooling models to predict the present-day luminosities of halo white dwarfs. We determine the white dwarf luminosity functions (WDLFs) for eight different halo models and compare these with the observed halo WDLF of white dwarfs in the SuperCOSMOS Sky Survey. Furthermore, we predict the properties of binary white dwarfs in the halo and determine the number of halo white dwarfs that is expected to be observed with the Gaia satellite. Results: By comparing the WDLFs, we find that a standard IMF matches the observations more accurately than a top-heavy one, but the difference w...

  2. Isochrones and Luminosity Functions for Old White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Richer, H B; Limongi, M; Chieffi, A; Straniero, O; Fahlman, G G; Richer, Harvey B.; Hansen, Brad; Limongi, Marco; Chieffi, Alessandro; Straniero, Oscar; Fahlman, Gregory G.

    1999-01-01

    Using a new grid of models of cooling white dwarfs, we calculate isochrones and luminosity functions in the Johnson-Kron/Cousins and HST filter sets for systems containing old white dwarfs. These new models incorporate a non-grey atmosphere which is necessary to properly describe the effects of molecular opacity at the cool temperatures of old white dwarfs. The various functions calculated and extensively tabulated and plotted are meant to be as utilitarian as possible for observers so all results are listed in quantities that observers will obtain. The tables and plots developed should eventually prove critical in interpreting the results of HST's Advanced Camera observations of the oldest white dwarfs in nearby globular clusters, in understanding the results of searches for old white dwarfs in the Galactic halo, and in determining ages for star clusters of all ages using white dwarfs. As a practical application we demonstrate the use of these results by deriving the white dwarf cooling age of the old Galact...

  3. A SEARCH FOR ASTEROIDS, MOONS, AND RINGS ORBITING WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Do white dwarfs host asteroid systems? Although several lines of argument suggest that white dwarfs may be orbited by large populations of asteroids, transits would provide the most direct evidence. We demonstrate that the Kepler mission has the capability to detect transits of white dwarfs by asteroids. Because white-dwarf asteroid systems, if they exist, are likely to contain many asteroids orbiting in a spatially extended distribution, discoveries of asteroid transits can be made by monitoring only a small number of white dwarfs, compatible with Kepler's primary mission, which is to monitor stars with potentially habitable planets. Possible future missions that survey 10 times as many stars with similar sensitivity and minute-cadence monitoring can establish the characteristics of asteroid systems around white dwarfs, such as the distribution of asteroid sizes and semimajor axes. Transits by planets would be more dramatic, but the probability that they will occur is lower. Ensembles of planetary moons and/or the presence of rings around planets can also produce transits detectable by Kepler. The presence of moons and rings can significantly increase the probability that Kepler will discover planets orbiting white dwarfs, even while monitoring only a small number of them.

  4. Optical spectroscopy of candidate Alpha Persei white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casewell, S. L.; Dobbie, P. D.; Geier, S.; Lodieu, N.; Hambly, N. C.

    2015-08-01

    As part of an investigation into the high-mass end of the initial mass-final mass relation we performed a search for new white dwarf members of the nearby (172.4 pc), young (80-90 Myr) ? Persei open star cluster. The photometric and astrometric search using the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope (UKIRT) Infrared Deep Sky Survey and SuperCOSMOS sky surveys discovered 14 new white dwarf candidates. We have obtained medium resolution optical spectra of the brightest 11 candidates using the William Herschel Telescope and confirmed that while 7 are DA white dwarfs, 3 are DB white dwarfs and 1 is an sdOB star, only three have cooling ages within the cluster age, and from their position on the initial mass-final mass relation, it is likely none are cluster members. This result is disappointing, as recent work on the cluster mass function suggests that there should be at least one white dwarf member, even at this young age. It may be that any white dwarf members of ? Per are hidden within binary systems, as is the case in the Hyades cluster, however the lack of high-mass stars within the cluster also makes this seem unlikely. One alternative is that a significant level of detection incompleteness in the legacy optical image survey data at this Galactic latitude has caused some white dwarf members to be overlooked. If this is the case, Gaia will find them.

  5. White Dwarf/M Dwarf Binaries as Single Degenerate Progenitors of Type Ia Supernovae

    CERN Document Server

    Wheeler, J Craig

    2012-01-01

    Limits on the companions of white dwarfs in the single degenerate scenario for the origin of Type Ia supernovae (SNIa) have gotten increasingly tight. The only type of non-degenerate stars that survive the limits on the companions of SNIa in SNR 0509-67.5 and SN1572 are M dwarfs. M dwarfs have special properties that have not been considered in most work on the progenitors of SNIa: they have small but finite magnetic fields, and they flare frequently. These properties are explored in the context of SNIa progenitors. White dwarf/M dwarf pairs may be sufficiently plentiful to provide an adequate rate of explosions. Even modest magnetic fields on the white dwarf and M dwarf will yield adequate torques to lock the two stars together, resulting in a slowly rotating white dwarf, with the magnetic poles pointing at one another in the orbital plane. The mass loss will be channeled by a "magnetic bottle" connecting the two stars, landing on a concentrated polar area on the white dwarf. This enhances the effective rate...

  6. The WFCAM transit survey and cool white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Pinfield D.; Hornillos D. Cristobal; Hodgkin S.; Napiwotzki R.; Catalan S.

    2013-01-01

    We present results from our search for cool white dwarfs in the WTS (WFCAM Transit Survey). Repeat observations starting in 2007 allowed to produce deep stacked images in J and measure proper motions. We combine this with deep optical imaging to select cool white dwarf candidates (Teff < 5000 K). About 27 cool white dwarf candidates with proper motions above 0.10 arcsec/yr were identified in one of the fields representing 1/8th of the survey area. Follow-up spectroscopy with the 10.2 m GTC te...

  7. A disintegrating minor planet transiting a white dwarf

    OpenAIRE

    Vanderburg, Andrew; Johnson, John Asher; Rappaport, Saul; Bieryla, Allyson; Irwin, Jonathan; Lewis, John Arban; Kipping, David; Brown, Warren R.; Dufour, Patrick; Ciardi, David R.; Angus, Ruth; Schaefer, Laura; Latham, David W; Charbonneau, David; Beichman, Charles

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs are the end state of most stars, including the Sun, after they exhaust their nuclear fuel. Between 1/4 and 1/2 of white dwarfs have elements heavier than helium in their atmospheres, even though these elements should rapidly settle into the stellar interiors unless they are occasionally replenished. The abundance ratios of heavy elements in white dwarf atmospheres are similar to rocky bodies in the Solar system. This and the existence of warm dusty debris disks around about 4% of...

  8. On the origin of the ultramassive white dwarf GD50

    OpenAIRE

    2006-01-01

    We argue on the basis of astrometric and spectroscopic data that the ultramassive white dwarf GD50 is associated with the star formation event that created the Pleiades and is possibly a former member of this cluster. Its cooling age (~60Myrs) is consistent with it having evolved essentially as a single star from a progenitor with a mass M>6Msun so we find no need to invoke a white dwarf-white dwarf binary merger scenario to account for its existence. This result may represent the first direc...

  9. Induced Compression of White Dwarfs by Angular Momentum Loss

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; Zhami, Bakytzhan

    2016-01-01

    We investigate isolated sub- and super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs which lose angular momentum through magnetic dipole braking. We construct constant rest mass sequences by fulfilling all stability criteria of rotating configurations and show how the main structure of white dwarfs such as the central density, mean radius and angular velocity change with time. We explicitly demonstrate that all isolated white dwarfs regardless of their masses, by angular momentum loss, shrink and increase their central density. We also analyze the effects of the structure parameters on the evolution timescale both in the case of constant magnetic field and constant magnetic flux.

  10. The Torino Observatory Parallax Program: White Dwarf Candidates

    CERN Document Server

    Smart, R L; Bucciarelli, B; Massone, G; Casalegno, R; Chiumiento, G; Drimmel, R; Lanteri, L; Marocco, F; Spagna, A

    2003-01-01

    We present parallax determinations for six white dwarf candidates in the Torino Observatory Parallax Program. The absolute parallaxes are found with precisions at the 2-3 milliarcsecond level. For WD 1126+185 we find a distance incompatible with being a white dwarf, implying an incorrect classification. For WD 2216+484 we find our distance is consistent with a simple DA white dwarf rather than a composite system as previously proposed in the literature. In general it is found that the published photometric distance is an overestimate of the distance found here.

  11. The Torino Observatory Parallax Program: White dwarf candidates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smart, R. L.; Lattanzi, M. G.; Bucciarelli, B.; Massone, G.; Casalegno, R.; Chiumiento, G.; Drimmel, R.; Lanteri, L.; Marocco, F.; Spagna, A.

    2003-06-01

    We present parallax determinations for six white dwarf candidates in the Torino Observatory Parallax Program. The absolute parallaxes are found with precisions at the 2-3 milliarcsec level. For WD 1126+185 we find a distance incompatible with being a white dwarf, implying an incorrect classification. For WD 2216+484 we find our distance is consistent with a simple DA white dwarf rather than a composite system as previously proposed in the literature. In general it is found that the published photometric distance is an overestimate of the distance found here.

  12. Kinematics and Velocity Ellipsoid of the Solar Neighborhood White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Elsanhoury, W H; Abdel-Rahman, H I

    2015-01-01

    To determine the velocity ellipsoid of the solar neighborhood white dwarfs, we use the space velocity components of stars. Two samples of white dwarfs are used, 20 pc and 25 pc samples. Beside the two main samples, the solar velocity and velocity dispersions are calculated for the four subsamples, namely DA, non - DA, hot and cool white dwarfs. Comparison between the results of 20 pc sample and those of 25 pc sample gives good agreement, while the comparison between the other subsamples gives bad agreement. Dependence of the velocity dispersions and solar velocity on the chemical composition and effective temperatures are discussed.

  13. Time dependent white dwarf radiative shocks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We study the oscillatory instability of white dwarf radiative accretion shocks discovered by Langer, Chanmugam, and Shaviv. We extend previous works by examining spherical shocks dominated by: (1) bremsstrahlung and Compton cooling; and (2) bremsstrahlung and Compton cooling when the effects of electron thermal conduction are not negligible. The results of our calculations allow us to delineate stability regimes as a function of the dwarf mass, M/sub d/, and the accretion rate, M0. We parameterize M0 in terms of the optical depth to electron scattering through the preshock flow, tau/sub es/. In the Compton cooling and bremsstrahlung case, the shocks are unstable to low order oscillation modes if M/sub d/ less than or equal to (0.7 +- 0.1) M/sub solar/ for tau/sub es/ = 14, and if M/sub d/ less than or equal to (0.9 +- 0.1) M/sub solar/ for tau/sub es/ = 1. When electron thermal conduction is added, low order oscillation modes are unstable only if M/sub d/ less than or equal to (0.3 +- 0.1) M/sub sun mass/. The unstable modes have approximate oscillation periods of 1.1 tau/sub br/ and 0.63 tau/sub br/, where tau/sub br/ is the bremsstrahlung cooling time scale of the postshock plasma. Our results can be scaled to magnetically funneled accretion flows as long as cyclotron emission contributes less than about 10% of the postshock cooling. 14 refs., 1 fig

  14. Magnetic White Dwarfs: Observations, Theory, and Future Prospects

    CERN Document Server

    García-Berro, Enrique; Kepler, S O

    2015-01-01

    Isolated magnetic white dwarfs have field strengths ranging from kilogauss to gigagauss, and constitute an interesting class of objects. The origin of the magnetic field is still the subject of a hot debate. Whether these fields are fossil, hence the remnants of original weak magnetic fields amplified during the course of the evolution of the progenitor of white dwarfs, or on the contrary, are the result of binary interactions or, finally, other physical mechanisms that could produce such large magnetic fields during the evolution of the white dwarf itself, remains to be elucidated. In this work we review the current status and paradigms of magnetic fields in white dwarfs, from both the theoretical and observational points of view.

  15. Mass-radius relations of white dwarfs at finite temperatures

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; Zhami, Bakytzhan; Kalymova, Zhanerke; Balgimbekov, Galymdin

    2016-01-01

    We construct mass-radius relations of white dwarfs taking into account the effects of rotation and finite temperatures. We compare and contrast the theoretical mass-radius relations with observational data.

  16. Magnetic white dwarfs: Observations, theory and future prospects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garca-Berro, Enrique; Kilic, Mukremin; Kepler, Souza Oliveira

    2016-01-01

    Isolated magnetic white dwarfs have field strengths ranging from 103G to 109G, and constitute an interesting class of objects. The origin of the magnetic field is still the subject of a hot debate. Whether these fields are fossil, hence the remnants of original weak magnetic fields amplified during the course of the evolution of the progenitor of white dwarfs, or on the contrary, are the result of binary interactions or, finally, other physical mechanisms that could produce such large magnetic fields during the evolution of the white dwarf itself, remains to be elucidated. In this work, we review the current status and paradigms of magnetic fields in white dwarfs, from both the theoretical and observational points of view.

  17. Circumstellar debris and pollution at white dwarf stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farihi, J.

    2016-04-01

    Circumstellar disks of planetary debris are now known or suspected to closely orbit hundreds of white dwarf stars. To date, both data and theory support disks that are entirely contained within the preceding giant stellar radii, and hence must have been produced during the white dwarf phase. This picture is strengthened by the signature of material falling onto the pristine stellar surfaces; disks are always detected together with atmospheric heavy elements. The physical link between this debris and the white dwarf host abundances enables unique insight into the bulk chemistry of extrasolar planetary systems via their remnants. This review summarizes the body of evidence supporting dynamically active planetary systems at a large fraction of all white dwarfs, the remnants of first generation, main-sequence planetary systems, and hence provide insight into initial conditions as well as long-term dynamics and evolution.

  18. General Relativistic White Dwarfs and Their Astrophysical Implications

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; Siutsou, Ivan

    2014-01-01

    We consider applications of general relativistic uniformly-rotating white dwarfs to several astrophysical phenomena related to the spin-up and the spin-down epochs and to delayed type Ia supernova explosions of super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs, where we estimate the "spinning down" lifetime due to magnetic-dipole braking. In addition, we describe the physical properties of Soft Gamma Repeaters and Anomalous X-Ray Pulsars as massive rapidly-rotating highly-magnetized white dwarfs. Particularly we consider one of the so-called low-magnetic-field magnetars SGR 0418+5729 as a massive rapidly-rotating highly-magnetized white dwarf and give bounds for the mass, radius, moment of inertia, and magnetic field by requiring the general relativistic uniformly-rotating configurations to be stable.

  19. General relativistic white dwarfs and their astrophysical implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Rueda, Jorge A.; Ruffini, Remo; Siutsou, Ivan

    2014-09-01

    We consider applications of general relativistic uniformly-rotating white dwarfs to several astrophysical phenomena related to the spin-up and the spin-down epochs and to delayed type Ia supernova explosions of super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs, where we estimate the "spinning down" lifetime due to magnetic-dipole braking. In addition, we describe the physical properties of Soft Gamma Repeaters and Anomalous X-Ray Pulsars as massive rapidly-rotating highly-magnetized white dwarfs. Particularly we consider one of the so-called low-magnetic-field magnetars SGR 0418+5729 as a massive rapidly-rotating highly-magnetized white dwarf and give bounds for the mass, radius, moment of inertia, and magnetic field by requiring the general relativistic uniformly-rotating configurations to be stable.

  20. General relativistic white dwarfs and their astrophysical implications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boshkayev, Kuantay [Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty (Kazakhstan); Rueda, Jorge A.; Ruffini, Remo [Sapienza University of Rome, Rome (Italy); Siutsou, Ivan [ICRANet, Square of Republic, Pescara (Italy)

    2014-09-15

    We consider applications of general relativistic uniformly-rotating white dwarfs to several astrophysical phenomena related to the spin-up and the spin-down epochs and to delayed type Ia supernova explosions of super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs, where we estimate the 'spinning down' lifetime due to magnetic-dipole braking. In addition, we describe the physical properties of Soft Gamma Repeaters and Anomalous X-Ray Pulsars as massive rapidly-rotating highly-magnetized white dwarfs. Particularly we consider one of the so-called low-magnetic-field magnetars SGR 0418+5729 as a massive rapidly-rotating highly- magnetized white dwarf and give bounds for the mass, radius, moment of inertia, and magnetic field by requiring the general relativistic uniformly rotating configurations to be stable.

  1. Circumstellar Debris and Pollution at White Dwarf Stars

    CERN Document Server

    Farihi, J

    2016-01-01

    Circumstellar disks of planetary debris are now known or suspected to closely orbit hundreds of white dwarf stars. To date, both data and theory support disks that are entirely contained within the preceding giant stellar radii, and hence must have been produced during the white dwarf phase. This picture is strengthened by the signature of material falling onto the pristine stellar surfaces; disks are always detected together with atmospheric heavy elements. The physical link between this debris and the white dwarf host abundances enables unique insight into the bulk chemistry of extrasolar planetary systems via their remnants. This review summarizes the body of evidence supporting dynamically active planetary systems at a large fraction of all white dwarfs, the remnants of first generation, main-sequence planetary systems, and hence provide insight into initial conditions as well as long-term dynamics and evolution.

  2. Evaporation and Accretion of Extrasolar Comets Following White Dwarf Kicks

    OpenAIRE

    Stone, Nicholas; Metzger, Brian; Loeb, Abraham

    2014-01-01

    Several lines of observational evidence suggest that white dwarfs receive small birth kicks due to anisotropic mass loss. If other stars possess extrasolar analogues to the Solar Oort cloud, the orbits of comets in such clouds will be scrambled by white dwarf natal kicks. Although most comets will be unbound, some will be placed on low angular momentum orbits vulnerable to sublimation or tidal disruption. The dusty debris from these comets will manifest itself as an IR excess temporarily visi...

  3. QUIESCENT NUCLEAR BURNING IN LOW-METALLICITY WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We discuss the impact of residual nuclear burning in the cooling sequences of hydrogen-rich (DA) white dwarfs with very low metallicity progenitors (Z = 0.0001). These cooling sequences are appropriate for the study of very old stellar populations. The results presented here are the product of self-consistent, fully evolutionary calculations. Specifically, we follow the evolution of white dwarf progenitors from the zero-age main sequence through all the evolutionary phases, namely the core hydrogen-burning phase, the helium-burning phase, and the thermally pulsing asymptotic giant branch phase to the white dwarf stage. This is done for the most relevant range of main-sequence masses, covering the most usual interval of white dwarf masses—from 0.53 M ☉ to 0.83 M ☉. Due to the low metallicity of the progenitor stars, white dwarfs are born with thicker hydrogen envelopes, leading to more intense hydrogen burning shells as compared with their solar metallicity counterparts. We study the phase in which nuclear reactions are still important and find that nuclear energy sources play a key role during long periods of time, considerably increasing the cooling times from those predicted by standard white dwarf models. In particular, we find that for this metallicity and for white dwarf masses smaller than about 0.6 M ☉, nuclear reactions are the main contributor to the stellar luminosity for luminosities as low as log (L/L ☉) ≅ –3.2. This, in turn, should have a noticeable impact in the white dwarf luminosity function of low-metallicity stellar populations

  4. A disintegrating minor planet transiting a white dwarf.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanderburg, Andrew; Johnson, John Asher; Rappaport, Saul; Bieryla, Allyson; Irwin, Jonathan; Lewis, John Arban; Kipping, David; Brown, Warren R; Dufour, Patrick; Ciardi, David R; Angus, Ruth; Schaefer, Laura; Latham, David W; Charbonneau, David; Beichman, Charles; Eastman, Jason; McCrady, Nate; Wittenmyer, Robert A; Wright, Jason T

    2015-10-22

    Most stars become white dwarfs after they have exhausted their nuclear fuel (the Sun will be one such). Between one-quarter and one-half of white dwarfs have elements heavier than helium in their atmospheres, even though these elements ought to sink rapidly into the stellar interiors (unless they are occasionally replenished). The abundance ratios of heavy elements in the atmospheres of white dwarfs are similar to the ratios in rocky bodies in the Solar System. This fact, together with the existence of warm, dusty debris disks surrounding about four per cent of white dwarfs, suggests that rocky debris from the planetary systems of white-dwarf progenitors occasionally pollutes the atmospheres of the stars. The total accreted mass of this debris is sometimes comparable to the mass of large asteroids in the Solar System. However, rocky, disintegrating bodies around a white dwarf have not yet been observed. Here we report observations of a white dwarf--WD 1145+017--being transited by at least one, and probably several, disintegrating planetesimals, with periods ranging from 4.5 hours to 4.9 hours. The strongest transit signals occur every 4.5 hours and exhibit varying depths (blocking up to 40 per cent of the star's brightness) and asymmetric profiles, indicative of a small object with a cometary tail of dusty effluent material. The star has a dusty debris disk, and the star's spectrum shows prominent lines from heavy elements such as magnesium, aluminium, silicon, calcium, iron, and nickel. This system provides further evidence that the pollution of white dwarfs by heavy elements might originate from disrupted rocky bodies such as asteroids and minor planets. PMID:26490620

  5. On the stability of ultra-magnetized white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cceres, Diego L.; Rueda, Jorge A.; Ruffini, Remo

    2014-09-01

    Ultra-magnetized white dwarfs with interior fields up to 1018 G have recently been proposed to have a critical mass limit M max ? 2.58 M ?, which surpasses the traditional Chandrasekhar limit M ch ? 1.44 M ?. We show that several stability criteria and fundamental physical aspects that take place when huge magnetic fields and high densities are present have been neglected in the determination of such a new mass limit for white dwarfs, invalidating that result.

  6. A double white dwarf with a paradoxical origin?

    CERN Document Server

    Bours, M C P; Gaensicke, B T; Tauris, T M; Istrate, A G; Badenes, C; Dhillon, V S; Gal-Yam, A; Hermes, J J; Kengkriangkrai, S; Kilic, M; Koester, D; Mullally, F; Prasert, N; Steeghs, D; Thompson, S E; Thorstensen, J R

    2015-01-01

    We present Hubble Space Telescope UV spectra of the 4.6 h period double white dwarf SDSS J125733.63+542850.5. Combined with Sloan Digital Sky Survey optical data, these reveal that the massive white dwarf (secondary) has an effective temperature T2 = 13030 +/- 70 +/- 150 K and a surface gravity log g2 = 8.73 +/- 0.05 +/- 0.05 (statistical and systematic uncertainties respectively), leading to a mass of M2 = 1.06 Msun. The temperature of the extremely low-mass white dwarf (primary) is substantially lower at T1 = 6400 +/- 37 +/- 50 K, while its surface gravity is poorly constrained by the data. The relative flux contribution of the two white dwarfs across the spectrum provides a radius ratio of R1/R2 = 4.2, which, together with evolutionary models, allows us to calculate the cooling ages. The secondary massive white dwarf has a cooling age of about 1 Gyr, while that of the primary low-mass white dwarf is likely to be much longer, possibly larger than 5 Gyrs, depending on its mass and the strength of chemical di...

  7. White dwarf models of supernovae and cataclysmic variables

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    If the accreting white dwarf increases its mass to the Chandrasekhar mass, it will either explode as a Type I supernova or collapse to form a neutron star. In fact, there is a good agreement between the exploding white dwarf model for Type I supernovae and observations. We describe various types of evolution of accreting white dwarfs as a function of binary parameters (i.e,. composition, mass, and age of the white dwarf, its companion star, and mass accretion rate), and discuss the conditions for the precursors of exploding or collapsing white dwarfs, and their relevance to cataclysmic variables. Particular attention is given to helium star cataclysmics which might be the precursors of some Type I supernovae or ultrashort period x-ray binaries. Finally we present new evolutionary calculations using the updated nuclear reaction rates for the formation of O+Ne+Mg white dwarfs, and discuss the composition structure and their relevance to the model for neon novae. 61 refs., 14 figs

  8. The white dwarf population within 40 pc of the Sun

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres, Santiago; García-Berro, Enrique

    2016-04-01

    Context. The white dwarf luminosity function is an important tool to understand the properties of the solar neighborhood, like its star formation history, and its age. Aims: Here we present a population synthesis study of the white dwarf population within 40 pc from the Sun, and compare the results of this study with the properties of the observed sample. Methods: We use a state-of-the-art population synthesis code based on Monte Carlo techniques, which incorporates the most recent and reliable white dwarf cooling sequences, an accurate description of the Galactic neighborhood, and a realistic treatment of all the known observational biases and selection procedures. Results: We find a good agreement between our theoretical models and the observed data. In particular, our simulations reproduce a previously unexplained feature of the bright branch of the white dwarf luminosity function, which we argue is due to a recent episode of star formation. We also derive the age of the solar neighborhood employing the position of the observed cut-off of the white dwarf luminosity function, to obtain ~8.9 ± 0.2 Gyr. Conclusions: We conclude that a detailed description of the ensemble properties of the population of white dwarfs within 40 pc of the Sun allows us to obtain interesting constraints on the history of the Solar neighborhood.

  9. Optical spectroscopy of candidate Alpha Persei white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Casewell, S L; Geier, S; Lodieu, N; Hambly, N C

    2015-01-01

    As part of an investigation into the high mass end of the initial mass-final mass relation we performed a search for new white dwarf members of the nearby (172.4 pc), young (80-90 Myr) $\\alpha$ Persei open star cluster. The photometric and astrometric search using the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey and SuperCOSMOS sky surveys discovered 14 new white dwarf candidates. We have obtained medium resolution optical spectra of the brightest 11 candidates using the William Herschel Telescope and confirmed that while 7 are DA white dwarfs, 3 are DB white dwarfs and one is an sdOB star, only three have cooling ages within the cluster age, and from their position on the initial mass-final mass relation, it is likely none are cluster members. This result is disappointing, as recent work on the cluster mass function suggests that there should be at least one white dwarf member, even at this young age. It may be that any white dwarf members of $\\alpha$ Per are hidden within binary systems, as is the case in the Hyades clus...

  10. Evaporation and accretion of extrasolar comets following white dwarf kicks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stone, Nicholas; Metzger, Brian D.; Loeb, Abraham

    2015-03-01

    Several lines of observational evidence suggest that white dwarfs receive small birth kicks due to anisotropic mass-loss. If other stars possess extrasolar analogues to the Solar Oort cloud, the orbits of comets in such clouds will be scrambled by white dwarf natal kicks. Although most comets will be unbound, some will be placed on low angular momentum orbits vulnerable to sublimation or tidal disruption. The dusty debris from these comets will manifest itself as an IR excess temporarily visible around newborn white dwarfs; examples of such discs may already have been seen in the Helix Nebula, and around several other young white dwarfs. Future observations with the James Webb Space Telescope may distinguish this hypothesis from alternatives such as a dynamically excited Kuiper Belt analogue. Although competing hypotheses exist, the observation that ?15 per cent of young white dwarfs possess such discs, if interpreted as indeed being cometary in origin, provides indirect evidence that low-mass gas giants (thought necessary to produce an Oort cloud) are common in the outer regions of extrasolar planetary systems. Hydrogen abundances in the atmospheres of older white dwarfs can, if sufficiently low, also be used to place constraints on the joint parameter space of natal kicks and exo-Oort cloud models.

  11. Most Double Degenerate Low Mass White Dwarf Binaries Merge

    CERN Document Server

    Brown, Warren R; Kenyon, Scott J; Gianninas, A

    2016-01-01

    We estimate the merger rate of double degenerate binaries containing extremely low mass (ELM) <0.3 Msun white dwarfs in the Galaxy. Such white dwarfs are detectable for timescales of 0.1 Gyr -- 1 Gyr in the ELM Survey; the binaries they reside in have gravitational wave merger times of 0.001 Gyr -- 100 Gyr. To explain the observed distribution requires that most ELM white dwarf binary progenitors detach from the common envelope phase with <1 hr orbital periods. We calculate the local space density of ELM white dwarf binaries and estimate a merger rate of 3e-3/yr over the entire disk of the Milky Way; the merger rate in the halo is 10 times smaller. The ELM white dwarf binary merger rate exceeds by a factor of 40 the formation rate of stable mass transfer AM CVn binaries, marginally exceeds the rate of underluminous supernovae, and is identical to the formation rate of R CrB stars. On this basis, we conclude that ELM white dwarf binaries can be the progenitors of all observed AM CVn and possibly underlum...

  12. A disintegrating minor planet transiting a white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Vanderburg, Andrew; Rappaport, Saul; Bieryla, Allyson; Irwin, Jonathan; Lewis, John Arban; Kipping, David; Brown, Warren R; Dufour, Patrick; Ciardi, David R; Angus, Ruth; Schaefer, Laura; Latham, David W; Charbonneau, David; Beichman, Charles; Eastman, Jason; McCrady, Nate; Wittenmyer, Robert A; Wright, Jason T

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs are the end state of most stars, including the Sun, after they exhaust their nuclear fuel. Between 1/4 and 1/2 of white dwarfs have elements heavier than helium in their atmospheres, even though these elements should rapidly settle into the stellar interiors unless they are occasionally replenished. The abundance ratios of heavy elements in white dwarf atmospheres are similar to rocky bodies in the Solar system. This and the existence of warm dusty debris disks around about 4% of white dwarfs suggest that rocky debris from white dwarf progenitors' planetary systems occasionally pollute the stars' atmospheres. The total accreted mass can be comparable to that of large asteroids in the solar system. However, the process of disrupting planetary material has not yet been observed. Here, we report observations of a white dwarf being transited by at least one and likely multiple disintegrating planetesimals with periods ranging from 4.5 hours to 4.9 hours. The strongest transit signals occur every 4.5 ...

  13. ORBITAL EVOLUTION OF COMPACT WHITE DWARF BINARIES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The newfound prevalence of extremely low mass (ELM, MHe ☉) helium white dwarfs (WDs) in tight binaries with more massive WDs has raised our interest in understanding the nature of their mass transfer. Possessing small (Menv ∼ 10–3 M☉) but thick hydrogen envelopes, these objects have larger radii than cold WDs and so initiate mass transfer of H-rich material at orbital periods of 6-10 minutes. Building on the original work of D'Antona et al., we confirm the 106 yr period of continued inspiral with mass transfer of H-rich matter and highlight the fact that the inspiraling direct-impact double WD binary HM Cancri likely has an ELM WD donor. The ELM WDs have less of a radius expansion under mass loss, thus enabling a larger range of donor masses that can stably transfer matter and become a He mass transferring AM CVn binary. Even once in the long-lived AM CVn mass transferring stage, these He WDs have larger radii due to their higher entropy from the prolonged H-burning stage.

  14. The binary white dwarf LHS 3236

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The white dwarf LHS 3236 (WD1639+153) is shown to be a double-degenerate binary, with each component having a high mass. Astrometry at the U.S. Naval Observatory gives a parallax and distance of 30.86 ± 0.25 pc and a tangential velocity of 98 km s–1, and reveals binary orbital motion. The orbital parameters are determined from astrometry of the photocenter over more than three orbits of the 4.0 yr period. High-resolution imaging at the Keck Observatory resolves the pair with a separation of 31 and 124 mas at two epochs. Optical and near-IR photometry give a set of possible binary components. Consistency of all data indicates that the binary is a pair of DA stars with temperatures near 8000 and 7400 K and with masses of 0.93 and 0.91 M ☉; also possible is a DA primary and a helium DC secondary with temperatures near 8800 and 6000 K and with masses of 0.98 and 0.69 M ☉. In either case, the cooling ages of the stars are ∼3 Gyr and the total ages are <4 Gyr. The combined mass of the binary (1.66-1.84 M ☉) is well above the Chandrasekhar limit; however, the timescale for coalescence is long.

  15. Liberating exomoons in white dwarf planetary systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Payne, Matthew J.; Veras, Dimitri; Holman, Matthew J.; Gänsicke, Boris T.

    2016-03-01

    Previous studies indicate that more than a quarter of all white dwarf (WD) atmospheres are polluted by remnant planetary material, with some WDs being observed to accrete the mass of Pluto in 106 yr. The short sinking time-scale for the pollutants indicates that the material must be frequently replenished. Moons may contribute decisively to this pollution process if they are liberated from their parent planets during the post-main-sequence evolution of the planetary systems. Here, we demonstrate that gravitational scattering events amongst planets in WD systems easily trigger moon ejection. Repeated close encounters within tenths of planetary Hill radii are highly destructive to even the most massive, close-in moons. Consequently, scattering increases both the frequency of perturbing agents in WD systems, as well as the available mass of polluting material in those systems, thereby enhancing opportunities for collision and fragmentation and providing more dynamical pathways for smaller bodies to reach the WD. Moreover, during intense scattering, planets themselves have pericentres with respect to the WD of only a fraction of an astronomical unit, causing extreme Hill-sphere contraction, and the liberation of moons into WD-grazing orbits. Many of our results are directly applicable to exomoons orbiting planets around main-sequence stars.

  16. TWO NEW TIDALLY DISTORTED WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We identify two new tidally distorted white dwarfs (WDs), SDSS J174140.49+652638.7 and J211921.96–001825.8 (hereafter J1741 and J2119). Both stars are extremely low mass (ELM, ≤ 0.2 M☉) WDs in short-period, detached binary systems. High-speed photometric observations obtained at the McDonald Observatory reveal ellipsoidal variations and Doppler beaming in both systems; J1741, with a minimum companion mass of 1.1 M☉, has one of the strongest Doppler beaming signals ever observed in a binary system (0.59% ± 0.06% amplitude). We use the observed ellipsoidal variations to constrain the radius of each WD. For J1741, the star's radius must exceed 0.074 R☉. For J2119, the radius exceeds 0.10 R☉. These indirect radius measurements are comparable to the radius measurements for the bloated WD companions to A-stars found by the Kepler spacecraft, and they constitute some of the largest radii inferred for any WD. Surprisingly, J1741 also appears to show a 0.23% ± 0.06% reflection effect, and we discuss possible sources for this excess heating. Both J1741 and J2119 are strong gravitational wave sources, and the time-of-minimum of the ellipsoidal variations can be used to detect the orbital period decay. This may be possible on a timescale of a decade or less.

  17. Two New Tidally Distorted White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Hermes, J J; Brown, Warren R; Montgomery, M H; Winget, D E

    2012-01-01

    We identify two new tidally distorted white dwarfs (WDs), SDSS J174140.49+652638.7 and J211921.96-001825.8 (hereafter J1741 and J2119). Both stars are extremely low mass (ELM, < 0.2 Msun) WDs in short-period, detached binary systems. High-speed photometric observations obtained at the McDonald Observatory reveal ellipsoidal variations and Doppler beaming in both systems; J1741, with a minimum companion mass of 1.1 Msun, has one of the strongest Doppler beaming signals ever observed in a binary system (0.59 \\pm 0.06% amplitude). We use the observed ellipsoidal variations to constrain the radius of each WD. For J1741, the star's radius must exceed 0.074 Rsun. For J2119, the radius exceeds 0.10 Rsun. These indirect radius measurements are comparable to the radius measurements for the bloated WD companions to A-stars found by the Kepler spacecraft, and they constitute some of the largest radii inferred for any WD. Surprisingly, J1741 also appears to show a 0.23 \\pm 0.06% reflection effect, and we discuss possi...

  18. On general relativistic uniformly rotating white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; Siutsou, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    Uniformly rotating white dwarfs (RWDs) are analyzed within the framework of general relativity. The Hartle's formalism is applied to construct self-consistently the internal and external solutions to the Einstein equations. The relativistic Feynman-Metropolis-Teller EoS that generalizes the Salpeter's one taking fully into account the finite size of nuclei, the Coulomb interactions as well as electroweak equilibrium in a self-consistent relativistic fashion is used to describe the WD matter. The mass, radius, angular momentum, eccentricity and quadrupole moment of RWDs are calculated as a function of the central density and rotation angular velocity. We construct the region of stability of RWDs taking into account the mass-shedding limit, inverse beta-decay instability, and the boundary established by the turning points of constant angular momentum sequences that separates stable from secularly unstable configurations. We found the minimum rotation periods 0.3, 0.5, 0.7 and 2.2 seconds and maximum masses 1.50...

  19. Seismology of Rapidly Rotating Accreting White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Townsley, Dean M; Bildsten, Lars

    2016-01-01

    A number of White Dwarfs (WDs) in cataclysmic binaries have shown brightness variations consistent with non-radial oscillations as observed in isolated WDs. A few objects have been well-characterized with photometric campaigns in the hopes of gleaning information about the mass, spin, and possibly internal structural characteristics. The novel aspect of this work is the possiblity to measure or constrain the interior structure and spin rate of WDs which have spent gigayears accreting material from their companion, undergoing thousands of nova outbursts in the process. In addition, variations in the surface temperature affect the site of mode driving, and provide unique and challenging tests for mode driving theories previously applied to isolated WD's. Having undergone long-term accretion, these WDs are expected to have been spun up. Spin periods in the range 60-100 seconds have been measured by other means for two objects, GW Lib and V455 And. Compared to typical mode frequencies, the spin frequency may be s...

  20. Spin and Magnetism of White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kissin, Yevgeni

    2015-01-01

    The magnetism and rotation of white dwarf (WD) stars are investigated in relation to a hydromagnetic dynamo operating in the progenitor during shell burning phases. We find that the downward pumping of angular momentum in the convective envelope can, by itself, trigger dynamo action near the core-envelope boundary in an isolated intermediate-mass star. A solar-mass star must receive additional angular momentum following its rotational braking on the main sequence, either by a merger with a planet, or by tidal interaction in a stellar binary. Several arguments point to the outer core as the source for a magnetic field in the WD remnant: i) the outer third of a ~0.55$M_\\odot$ WD is processed during the shell burning phases of the progenitor; ii) escape of magnetic helicity through the envelope mediates the growth of (compensating) helicity in the core, as is needed to maintain a stable magnetic field in the remnant; and iii) intense radiation flux at the core boundary facilitates magnetic buoyancy within a rela...

  1. A Dark Spot on a Massive White Dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Kilic, Mukremin; Bell, Keaton J; Curd, Brandon; Brown, Warren R; Hermes, J J; Dufour, Patrick; Wisniewski, John P; Winget, D E; Winget, K I

    2015-01-01

    We present the serendipitous discovery of eclipse-like events around the massive white dwarf SDSS J152934.98+292801.9 (hereafter J1529+2928). We selected J1529+2928 for time-series photometry based on its spectroscopic temperature and surface gravity, which place it near the ZZ Ceti instability strip. Instead of pulsations, we detect photometric dips from this white dwarf every 38 minutes. Follow-up optical spectroscopy observations with Gemini reveal no significant radial velocity variations, ruling out stellar and brown dwarf companions. A disintegrating planet around this white dwarf cannot explain the observed light curves in different filters. Given the short period, the source of the photometric dips must be a dark spot that comes into view every 38 min due to the rotation of the white dwarf. Our optical spectroscopy does not show any evidence of Zeeman splitting of the Balmer lines, limiting the magnetic field strength to B<70 kG. Since up to 15% of white dwarfs display kG magnetic fields, such ecli...

  2. The Long-Term Outcomes of Double White Dwarf Mergers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwab, Josiah

    2016-01-01

    Binary star systems composed of two white dwarfs are a natural outcome of stellar evolution. Angular momentum losses from gravitational wave radiation cause the binary system's orbit to shrink until the two white dwarfs merge. The final outcome of the merger depends on the masses of the white dwarfs. Some potential outcomes, such as supernova explosions, may occur during or soon after the merger. Other outcomes, which I will refer to as "long-term" outcomes, occur as the merger remnant cools and its structure adjusts to the new state created during the energetic merger.In my dissertation, I quantitatively explore the long-term outcomes of the mergers of two white dwarfs. I focus primarily on the formation of neutron stars via accretion-induced collapse and the formation of two types of unusual stars, the single sub-dwarf B stars (hot, core helium fusing stars) and the R Coronae Borealis stars (cool, carbon-rich giant stars). Beginning with the results from my previous simulations of the short-lived viscous disk initially present in these remnants, I use the state-of-the-art MESA stellar evolution code to follow their thermal evolution.This work improves the quantitative understanding of which white dwarf binaries lead to a particular outcome and better characterizes the observational signatures of these outcomes. For systems that will undergo accretion-induced collapse, these simulations yield improved progenitor models that can then be used to explore the collapse and formation of a neutron star.

  3. Constraining White Dwarf Masses Via Apsidal Precession in Eccentric Double White Dwarf Binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Valsecchi, Francesca; Willems, Bart; Deloye, Christopher J; Kalogera, Vicky

    2011-01-01

    Galactic short period double white dwarfs (DWD) are guaranteed gravitational wave (GW) sources for the next generation of space-based interferometers sensitive to low-frequency GWs (10^{-4}- 1 Hz). Here we investigate the possibility of constraining the white dwarf (WD) properties through measurements of apsidal precession in eccentric binaries. We analyze the general relativistic (GR), tidal, and rotational contributions to apsidal precession by using detailed He WD models. We find that apsidal precession can lead to a detectable shift in the emitted GW signal, the effect being stronger (weaker) for binaries hosting hot (cool) WDs. We find that in hot (cool) DWDs tides dominate the precession at orbital frequencies above ~0.01 mHz (~1 mHz). Analyzing the apsidal precession of these sources only accounting for GR would potentially lead to an extreme overestimate of the component masses. Finally, we derive a relation that ties the radius and apsidal precession constant of cool WD components to their masses, th...

  4. New White Dwarf Stars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 10

    CERN Document Server

    Kepler, S O; Koester, Detlev; Ourique, Gustavo; Kleinman, Scot J; Romero, Alejandra Daniela; Nitta, Atsuko; Eisenstein, Daniel J; Costa, José Eduardo da Silveira; Külebi, Baybars; Jordan, Stefan; Dufour, Patrick; Giommi, Paolo; Rebassa-Mansergas, Alberto

    2014-01-01

    We report the discovery of 9 088 new spectroscopically confirmed white dwarfs and subdwarfs in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 10. We obtain Teff, log g and mass for hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf stars (DAs) and helium atmosphere white dwarf stars (DBs), and estimate the calcium/helium abundances for the white dwarf stars with metallic lines (DZs) and carbon/helium for carbon dominated spectra DQs. We found 1 central star of a planetary nebula, 2 new oxygen spectra on helium atmosphere white dwarfs, 71 DQs, 42 hot DO/PG1159s, 171 white dwarf+main sequence star binaries, 206 magnetic DAHs, 327 continuum dominated DCs, 397 metal polluted white dwarfs, 450 helium dominated white dwarfs, 647 subdwarfs and 6887 new hydrogen dominated white dwarf stars.

  5. Thermonuclear detonations ensuing white dwarf mergers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dan, M.; Guillochon, J.; Brggen, M.; Ramirez-Ruiz, E.; Rosswog, S.

    2015-12-01

    The merger of two white dwarfs (WDs) has for many years not been considered as the favoured model for the progenitor system of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). But recent years have seen a change of opinion as a number of studies, both observational and theoretical, have concluded that they should contribute significantly to the observed SN Ia rate. In this paper, we study the ignition and propagation of detonation through post-merger remnants and we follow the resulting nucleosynthesis up to the point where a homologous expansion is reached. In our study we cover the entire range of WD masses and compositions. For the emergence of a detonation we study three different setups. The first two are guided by the merger remnants from our earlier simulations, while for the third one the ignitions were set by placing hotspots with properties determined by spatially resolved calculations taken from the literature. There are some caveats to our approach which we investigate. We carefully compare the nucleosynthetic yields of successful explosions with SN Ia observations. Only three of our models are consistent with all the imposed constraints and potentially lead to a standard Type Ia event. The first one, a 0.45 M? helium (He) + 0.9 M? carbon-oxygen (CO) WD system produces a sub-luminous, SN 1991bg-like event while the other two, a 0.45 M? He+1.1 M? oxygen-neon WD system and a 1.05 + 1.05 M? system with two CO WDs, are good candidates for common SNe Ia.

  6. A DEEPLY ECLIPSING DETACHED DOUBLE HELIUM WHITE DWARF BINARY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Using Liverpool Telescope+RISE photometry we identify the 2.78 hr period binary star CSS 41177 as a detached eclipsing double white dwarf binary with a 21,100 K primary star and a 10,500 K secondary star. This makes CSS 41177 only the second known eclipsing double white dwarf binary after NLTT 11748. The 2 minute long primary eclipse is 40% deep and the secondary eclipse 10% deep. From Gemini+GMOS spectroscopy, we measure the radial velocities of both components of the binary from the Hα absorption line cores. These measurements, combined with the light curve information, yield white dwarf masses of M1 = 0.283 ± 0.064 Msun and M2 = 0.274 ± 0.034 Msun, making them both helium core white dwarfs. As an eclipsing, double-lined spectroscopic binary, CSS 41177 is ideally suited to measuring precise, model-independent masses and radii. The two white dwarfs will merge in roughly 1.1 Gyr to form a single sdB star.

  7. The First Mid-Infrared Spectra of Cool White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kilic, Mukremin; Mullally, Fergal; Reach, William T; von Hippel, Ted

    2007-01-01

    We present the first mid-infrared spectra of two cool white dwarfs obtained with the Spitzer Space Telescope. We also present 3.5-8 micron photometry for 19 cool white dwarfs with 5000K < Teff < 9000K. We perform a detailed model atmosphere analysis of these white dwarfs by fitting their UBVRIJHK and Spitzer photometry with state-of-the-art model atmospheres, and demonstrate that the optical and infrared spectral energy distributions of cool white dwarfs are well reproduced by our grid of models. Our mid-IR photometry and 7.5-14.5 micron spectrum of WD0018-267 are consistent with a Teff = 5720K, pure hydrogen white dwarf model atmosphere. On the other hand, LHS 1126 remains peculiar with significant mid-IR flux deficits in all IRAC bands and a featureless spectrum in the 5.2-7.5 micron range. Even though this deficit is attributed to collision induced absorption (CIA) due to molecular hydrogen, the shape of the deficit cannot be explained with current CIA opacity calculations. The infrared portion of th...

  8. White Dwarfs in HETDEX: Preparation for the Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castanheira, B. G.; Winget, D. E.

    2015-06-01

    In the past decade, large scale surveys have discovered a large number of white dwarf stars. Many new aspects have been revealed, including the discovery of the DQVs, close-in non-contact binary systems, and debris disks around many stars. Unfortunately, the population statistics of the newly discovered white dwarf stars are poorly constrained, because of the various methods used to assign objects to fibers for spectroscopic observations in the SDSS survey. A white dwarf sample that is magnitude limited, with well-constrained selection criteria, is needed. The HET Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX) will use the 9.2 m HET at McDonald Observatory and a set of more than 100 spectrographs to map the three-dimensional positions of one million galaxies, to probe dark energy. In this unique magnitude limited survey, all objects that fall into the fibers will be observed. We expect to observe spectroscopically about 10,00 white dwarf stars. In this paper, we will present the specifications and current status of HETDEX, which will start taking data in Fall 2014. We will also show our first results from observations of white dwarf stars using an identical spectrograph with the 2.7m HJS Telescope and discuss some of the approaches we have been working on in preparation for this exciting survey.

  9. A deeply eclipsing detached double helium white dwarf binary

    CERN Document Server

    Parsons, S G; Gnsicke, B T; Drake, A J; Koester, D

    2011-01-01

    Using Liverpool Telescope+RISE photometry we identify the 2.78 hour period binary star CSS 41177 as a detached eclipsing double white dwarf binary with a 21,100K primary star and a 10,500K secondary star. This makes CSS 41177 only the second known eclipsing double white dwarf binary after NLTT 11748. The 2 minute long primary eclipse is 40% deep and the secondary eclipse 10% deep. From Gemini+GMOS spectroscopy we measure the radial velocities of both components of the binary from the H{\\alpha} absorption line cores. These measurements, combined with the light curve information, yield white dwarf masses of M1 = 0.283\\pm0.064Msun and M2 = 0.274\\pm0.034Msun, making them both helium core white dwarfs. As an eclipsing, double-lined spectroscopic binary CSS 41177 is ideally suited to measuring precise, model-independent masses and radii. The two white dwarfs will merge in roughly 1.1 Gyr to form a single sdB star.

  10. Signs of a faint disc population at polluted white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Bergfors, Carolina; Dufour, Patrick; Rocchetto, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Observations of atmospheric metals and dust discs around white dwarfs provide important clues to the fate of terrestrial planetary systems around intermediate mass stars. We present Spitzer IRAC observations of 15 metal polluted white dwarfs to investigate the occurrence and physical properties of circumstellar dust created by the disruption of planetary bodies. We find subtle infrared excess emission consistent with warm dust around KUV 15519+1730 and HS 2132+0941, and weaker excess around the DZ white dwarf G245-58, which, if real, makes it the coolest white dwarf known to exhibit a 3.6 micron excess and the first DZ star with a bright disc. All together our data corroborate a picture where 1) discs at metal-enriched white dwarfs are commonplace and most escape detection in the infrared (possibly as narrow rings), 2) the discs are long lived, having lifetimes on the order of 10^6 yr or longer, and 3) the frequency of bright, infrared detectable discs decreases with age, on a timescale of roughly 500 Myr, su...

  11. Cool white dwarf companions to four millisecond pulsars

    CERN Document Server

    Bassa, C G; Camilo, F; Cognard, I; Koester, D; Kramer, M; Ransom, S R; Stappers, B W

    2015-01-01

    We report on photometric and spectroscopic observations of white dwarf companions to four binary radio millisecond pulsars, leading to the discovery of companions to PSRs J0614-3329, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We place limits on the brightness of the companion to PSR J0613-0200. Optical spectroscopy of the companion to PSR J0614-3329 identifies it as a DA type white dwarf with a temperature of Teff=6460+-80 K, a surface gravity log g=7.0+-0.2 cgs and a mass of Mwd=0.24+-0.04 Msun. We find that the distance to PSR J0614-3329 is smaller than previously estimated, removing the need for the pulsar to have an unrealistically high gamma-ray efficiency. Comparing the photometry with predictions from white dwarf cooling models allows us to estimate temperatures and cooling ages of the companions to PSRs J0613-0200, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We find that the white dwarfs in these systems are cool Teff5 Gyr. Thin Hydrogen envelopes are required for these white dwarfs to cool to the observed temperatures, and we sugges...

  12. Cool white dwarf companions to four millisecond pulsars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassa, C. G.; Antoniadis, J.; Camilo, F.; Cognard, I.; Koester, D.; Kramer, M.; Ransom, S. R.; Stappers, B. W.

    2016-02-01

    We report on photometric and spectroscopic observations of white dwarf companions to four binary radio millisecond pulsars, leading to the discovery of companions to PSRs J0614-3329, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We place limits on the brightness of the companion to PSR J0613-0200. Optical spectroscopy of the companion to PSR J0614-3329 identifies it as a DA-type white dwarf with a temperature of Teff = 6460 80 K, a surface gravity log g = 7.0 0.2 cgs and a mass of MWD = 0.24 0.04 M?. We find that the distance to PSR J0614-3329 is smaller than previously estimated, removing the need for the pulsar to have an unrealistically high ?-ray efficiency. Comparing the photometry with predictions from white dwarf cooling models allows us to estimate temperatures and cooling ages of the companions to PSRs J0613-0200, J1231-1411 and J2017+0603. We find that the white dwarfs in these systems are cool Teff white dwarfs to cool to the observed temperatures, and we suggest that besides hydrogen shell flashes, irradiation driven mass loss by the pulsar may have been important.

  13. Do all barium stars have a white dwarf companion?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dominy, J. F.; Lambert, D. L.

    1983-01-01

    International Ultraviolet Explorer short-wavelength, low-dispersion spectra were analyzed for four barium, two mild barium, and one R-type carbon star in order to test the hypothesis that the barium and related giants are produced by mass transfer from a companion now present as a white dwarf. An earlier tentative identification of a white dwarf companion to the mild barium star Zeta Cyg is confirmed. For the other stars, no ultraviolet excess attributable to a white dwarf is seen. Limits are set on the bolometric magnitude and age of a possible white dwarf companion. Since the barium stars do not have obvious progenitors among main-sequence and subgiant stars, mass transfer must be presumed to occur when the mass-gaining star is already on the giant branch. This restriction, and the white dwarf's minimum age, which is greater than 8 x 10 to the 8th yr, determined for several stars, effectively eliminates the hypothesis that mass transfer from an asymptotic giant branch star creates a barium star. Speculations are presented on alternative methods of producing a barium star in a binary system.

  14. The Empirical Determination of Convection in Pulsating White Dwarf Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Provencal, Judith; Montgomery, Mike; Reed, Mike; Dalessio, James; Kepler, S. O.; Baran, Andrez; Fraga, Luciano

    2011-08-01

    We propose high speed photometric observations of the hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf HS0507+0434B as part of a coordinated international campaign designed to determine the properties of convection in white dwarf atmospheres. Convection is one of the largest sources of theoretical uncertainty in our understanding of stellar physics. Asteroseismology has proven a powerful tool to attack this problem. White dwarf pulsations appear as local surface temperature variations, leading to local changes in the convection zone's depth and its ability to absorb/release energy. As the convection zone waxes and wanes, it modulates the local energy flux, leading to highly nonlinear light curves. We will use the observed nonlinearities in high precision light curves provided by SOAR, combined with accurate frequency, amplitude, and phase information provided by the Kitt Peak 2.1 m and the entire WET run to directly probe the nature of HS0507+0434B's convection zone.

  15. Atypical Thermonuclear Supernovae from Tidally Crushed White Dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suggestive evidence has accumulated that intermediate mass black holes (IMBHs) exist in some globular clusters. Some stars will inevitably wander sufficiently close to the hole to suffer a tidal disruption. IMBHs can disrupt not only solar-type stars but also compact white dwarf stars. We investigate the fate of white dwarfs that approach the hole close enough to be disrupted and compressed to such an extent that explosive nuclear burning is triggered. Based on a precise modeling of the gas dynamics together with the nuclear reactions, it is argued that thermonuclear ignition is a natural outcome for white dwarfs of all masses passing well within the tidal radius. A good fraction of the star is accreted, yielding high luminosities that persist for up to a year. A peculiar, underluminous thermonuclear explosion accompanied by a soft X-ray transient signal would, if detected, be a compelling testimony for the presence of an IMBH

  16. Hot white dwarfs, OB subdwarfs and dark clouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reid, Neill; Wegner, Gary; Wickramasinghe, D. T.; Bessell, M. S.

    1988-07-01

    The authors describe a method of using UBV photographic photometry to survey obscured regions in the Galactic plane for hot white dwarfs and OB subdwarfs. From an initial survey of two regions, the first towards the Coalsack, and the second covering part of the Scorpius-Centaurus cloud, the authors have found at least six white dwarfs, one probable interacting binary, five B subdwarfs, and two O subdwarfs. The space densities computed from these, admittedly sparse, statistics are similar to those deduced from Green's analysis of the Palomar-Green survey and thus a factor of 3 higher than Fleming et al's recent reanalysis of those data. The authors find a space density of ?2.010-2stars pc-3 for white dwarfs with MV ? 13.0.

  17. Hot white dwarfs, OB subdwarfs and dark clouds

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A method is described which uses UBV photographic photometry to survey obscured regions in the Galactic plane for hot white dwarfs and OB subdwarfs. From an initial survey of two regions, the first towards the Coalsack and the second covering part of the Scorpius-Centaurus cloud, at least six white dwarfs, one probable interacting binary, five B subdwarfs, and two O subdwarfs have been found. The space densities computed from these, admittedly sparse, statistics are similar to those deduced from Green's (1980) analysis of the Palomar-Green survey and thus a factor of 3 higher than Fleming et al.'s (1986) reanalysis of those data. A space density of about 0.02 stars/cu pc for white dwarfs with M(V) less than or equal to 13.0 is found. 42 references

  18. Evaporation and Accretion of Extrasolar Comets Following White Dwarf Kicks

    CERN Document Server

    Stone, Nicholas; Loeb, Abraham

    2014-01-01

    Several lines of observational evidence suggest that white dwarfs receive small birth kicks due to anisotropic mass loss. If other stars possess extrasolar analogues to the Solar Oort cloud, the orbits of comets in such clouds will be scrambled by white dwarf natal kicks. Although most comets will be unbound, some will be placed on low angular momentum orbits vulnerable to sublimation or tidal disruption. The dusty debris from these comets will manifest itself as a debris disk temporarily visible around newborn white dwarfs; examples of such disks may already have been seen in the Helix Nebula, and around several other young WDs. Future observations with the James Webb Space Telescope will distinguish this hypothesis from alternatives such as a dynamically excited Kuiper Belt analogue. If interpreted as indeed being cometary in origin, the observation that >15% of young WDs possess such disks provides indirect evidence that low mass gas giants (thought necessary to produce an Oort cloud) are common in the out...

  19. The atmospheric parameters of nearby white dwarfs revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giammichele, N.; Bergeron, P.; Dufour, P.

    2010-11-01

    We present improved atmospheric parameters of nearby white dwarfs lying within 20 pc of the Sun. The aim of the current study is to obtain the best statistical model of the least-biased sample of the white dwarf population. A homogeneous analysis of the local population is performed combining detailed spectroscopic and photometric analyses based on improved model atmosphere calculations for various spectral types including DA, DQ, and DZ stars. The spectroscopic technique is applied to all stars in our sample for which optical spectra are available. Photometric energy distributions, when available, are also combined to trigonometric parallax measurements to derive effective temperatures, stellar radii, as well as atmospheric compositions. A revised catalog of white dwarfs in the solar neighborhood is completed. Effective temperature, mass distributions, and luminosity function are also discussed.

  20. THE SPECTRAL EVOLUTION OF CONVECTIVE MIXING WHITE DWARFS, THE NON-DA GAP, AND WHITE DWARF COSMOCHRONOLOGY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The spectral distribution of field white dwarfs shows a feature called the 'non-DA gap'. As defined by Bergeron et al., this is a temperature range (5100-6100 K) where relatively few non-DA stars are found, even though such stars are abundant on either side of the gap. It is usually viewed as an indication that a significant fraction of white dwarfs switch their atmospheric compositions back and forth between hydrogen-rich and helium-rich as they cool. In this Letter, we present a Monte Carlo model of the Galactic disk white dwarf population, based on the spectral evolution model of Chen and Hansen. We find that the non-DA gap emerges naturally, even though our model only allows white dwarf atmospheres to evolve monotonically from hydrogen-rich to helium-rich through convective mixing. We conclude by discussing the effects of convective mixing on the white dwarf luminosity function and the use thereof for Cosmochronology.

  1. A Dark Spot on a Massive White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilic, Mukremin; Gianninas, Alexandros; Bell, Keaton J.; Curd, Brandon; Brown, Warren R.; Hermes, J. J.; Dufour, Patrick; Wisniewski, John P.; Winget, D. E.; Winget, K. I.

    2015-12-01

    We present the serendipitous discovery of eclipse-like events around the massive white dwarf SDSS J152934.98+292801.9 (hereafter J1529+2928). We selected J1529+2928 for time-series photometry based on its spectroscopic temperature and surface gravity, which place it near the ZZ Ceti instability strip. Instead of pulsations, we detect photometric dips from this white dwarf every 38 minutes. Follow-up optical spectroscopy observations with Gemini reveal no significant radial velocity variations, ruling out stellar and brown dwarf companions. A disintegrating planet around this white dwarf cannot explain the observed light curves in different filters. Given the short period, the source of the photometric dips must be a dark spot that comes into view every 38 minutes due to the rotation of the white dwarf. Our optical spectroscopy does not show any evidence of Zeeman splitting of the Balmer lines, limiting the magnetic field strength to B Chile), the Australian Research Council (Australia), Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia e Inovação (Brazil) and Ministerio de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación Productiva (Argentina).

  2. Contribution of brown dwarfs and white dwarfs to recent microlensing observations and to the halo mass budget

    CERN Document Server

    Chabrier, G; Méra, D; Chabrier, Gilles; Segretain, Laurent; Mera, Dominique

    1996-01-01

    We examine the recent results of the MACHO collaboration towards the Large Magellanic Cloud (Alcock et al. 1996) in terms of a halo brown dwarf or white dwarf population. The possibility for most of the microlensing events to be due to brown dwarfs is totally excluded by large-scale kinematic properties. The white dwarf scenario is examined in details in the context of the most recent white dwarf cooling theory (Segretain et al. 1994) which includes explicitely the extra source of energy due to carbon-oxygen differentiation at crystallization and the subsequent Debye cooling. We show that the observational constraints arising from the luminosity function of high-velocity white dwarfs in the solar neighborhood and from the recent HST deep field counts are consistent with a white dwarf contribution to the halo missing mass as large as 50 %, provided i) an IMF strongly peaked around 1.7 Msol and ii) a halo age older than 18 Gyr.

  3. Constraining the neutrino magnetic dipole moment from white dwarf pulsations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Córsico, A.H.; Althaus, L.G. [Grupo de Evolución Estelar y Pulsaciones, Facultad de Ciencias Astronómicas y Geofísicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Paseo del Bosque s/n, (1900) La Plata (Argentina); Bertolami, M.M. Miller [Instituto de Astrofísica La Plata, CONICET-UNLP, Paseo del Bosque s/n, (1900) La Plata (Argentina); Kepler, S.O. [Departamento de Astronomia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Av. Bento Goncalves 9500, Porto Alegre 91501-970, RS (Brazil); García-Berro, E., E-mail: acorsico@fcaglp.unlp.edu.ar, E-mail: althaus@fcaglp.unlp.edu.ar, E-mail: marcelo@MPA-Garching.MPG.DE, E-mail: kepler@if.ufrgs.br, E-mail: enrique.garcia-berro@upc.edu [Departament de Física Aplicada, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, c/Esteve Terrades 5, 08860, Castelldefels (Spain)

    2014-08-01

    Pulsating white dwarf stars can be used as astrophysical laboratories to constrain the properties of weakly interacting particles. Comparing the cooling rates of these stars with the expected values from theoretical models allows us to search for additional sources of cooling due to the emission of axions, neutralinos, or neutrinos with magnetic dipole moment. In this work, we derive an upper bound to the neutrino magnetic dipole moment (μ{sub ν}) using an estimate of the rate of period change of the pulsating DB white dwarf star PG 1351+489. We employ state-of-the-art evolutionary and pulsational codes which allow us to perform a detailed asteroseismological period fit based on fully DB white dwarf evolutionary sequences. Plasmon neutrino emission is the dominant cooling mechanism for this class of hot pulsating white dwarfs, and so it is the main contributor to the rate of change of period with time (Pidot) for the DBV class. Thus, the inclusion of an anomalous neutrino emission through a non-vanishing magnetic dipole moment in these sequences notably influences the evolutionary timescales, and also the expected pulsational properties of the DBV stars. By comparing the theoretical Pidot value with the rate of change of period with time of PG 1351+489, we assess the possible existence of additional cooling by neutrinos with magnetic dipole moment. Our models suggest the existence of some additional cooling in this pulsating DB white dwarf, consistent with a non-zero magnetic dipole moment with an upper limit of μ{sub ν} ∼< 10{sup -11} μ{sub B}. This bound is somewhat less restrictive than, but still compatible with, other limits inferred from the white dwarf luminosity function or from the color-magnitude diagram of the Globular cluster M5. Further improvements of the measurement of the rate of period change of the dominant pulsation mode of PG 1351+489 will be necessary to confirm our bound.

  4. Constraining the neutrino magnetic dipole moment from white dwarf pulsations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pulsating white dwarf stars can be used as astrophysical laboratories to constrain the properties of weakly interacting particles. Comparing the cooling rates of these stars with the expected values from theoretical models allows us to search for additional sources of cooling due to the emission of axions, neutralinos, or neutrinos with magnetic dipole moment. In this work, we derive an upper bound to the neutrino magnetic dipole moment (??) using an estimate of the rate of period change of the pulsating DB white dwarf star PG 1351+489. We employ state-of-the-art evolutionary and pulsational codes which allow us to perform a detailed asteroseismological period fit based on fully DB white dwarf evolutionary sequences. Plasmon neutrino emission is the dominant cooling mechanism for this class of hot pulsating white dwarfs, and so it is the main contributor to the rate of change of period with time (Pidot) for the DBV class. Thus, the inclusion of an anomalous neutrino emission through a non-vanishing magnetic dipole moment in these sequences notably influences the evolutionary timescales, and also the expected pulsational properties of the DBV stars. By comparing the theoretical Pidot value with the rate of change of period with time of PG 1351+489, we assess the possible existence of additional cooling by neutrinos with magnetic dipole moment. Our models suggest the existence of some additional cooling in this pulsating DB white dwarf, consistent with a non-zero magnetic dipole moment with an upper limit of ???<10-11?B. This bound is somewhat less restrictive than, but still compatible with, other limits inferred from the white dwarf luminosity function or from the color-magnitude diagram of the Globular cluster M5. Further improvements of the measurement of the rate of period change of the dominant pulsation mode of PG 1351+489 will be necessary to confirm our bound

  5. Astro-archaeology - The white dwarfs and hot subwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Horn, Hugh M.

    1991-01-01

    By 'astroarcheology' is presently meant the effort to ascertain the Galaxy's past in light of what is found in its most ancient, white dwarf constituents. Attention is given to the controversial role of the hot subdwarfs and the theory of white dwarf spectral evolution, as well as to the concept of the 'Whole Earth Telescope', involving continuous photometric coverage of rapidly varying astronomical sources and thereby eliminating the otherwise troublesome diurnal gaps in data. Much higher resolution of the power spectra of these objects is attainable by these means than any current alternative.

  6. Remnant evolution after a carbon-oxygen white dwarf merger

    OpenAIRE

    Yoon, Sung-Chul; Podsiadlowski, Philipp; Rosswog, Stephan

    2007-01-01

    We systematically explore the evolution of the merger of two carbon-oxygen (CO) white dwarfs. The dynamical evolution of a 0.9 Msun + 0.6 Msun CO white dwarf merger is followed by a three-dimensional SPH simulation. We use an elaborate prescription in which artificial viscosity is essentially absent, unless a shock is detected, and a much larger number of SPH particles than earlier calculations. Based on this simulation, we suggest that the central region of the merger remnant can, once it ha...

  7. Tidal Stablization of Neutron Stars and White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Lai, Dong

    1996-01-01

    What happens to a neutron star or white dwarf near its maximum mass limit when it is brought into a close binary orbit with a companion? Such situation may occur in the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae and in coalescing neutron star binaries. Using an energy variational principle, we show that tidal field reduces the central density of the compact object, making it more stable against radial collapse. For a cold white dwarf, the tidal field increases the maximum stable mass only slightly, bu...

  8. White dwarfs: composition, mass budget and galactic evolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recent results on the composition of white dwarf atmospheres, both hydrogen-rich (DA) and hydrogen-poor (non-DA) are summarized. DA atmospheres seem to be helium- and metal-poor by factors of at least 10 and 100, non-DA atmospheres are extremely helium-rich (He/H > 104) and metal-poor, but have variable carbon content. Whereas the interior composition must be that of the products of helium burning, little is known about the composition of the nondegenerate envelope. Consideration of stellar evolution and white dwarf formation via the Planetary Nebula stage gives restraints on composition and mass fraction of the outer envelopes. (orig./BJ)

  9. White Dwarf - Red Dwarf Systems Resolved with the Hubble Space Telescope: I. First Results

    OpenAIRE

    Farihi, J.; Hoard, D. W.; Wachter, S.

    2006-01-01

    First results are presented for a Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Advanced Camera for Surveys snapshot study of white dwarfs with likely red dwarf companions. Of 48 targets observed and analyzed so far, 27 are totally or partially resolved into two or more components, while an additional 15 systems are almost certainly unresolved binaries. These results provide the first direct empirical evidence for a bimodal distribution of orbital separations among binary systems containing at lea...

  10. GRMHD formulation of highly super-Chandrasekhar rotating magnetised white dwarfs: Stable configurations of non-spherical white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Subramanian, Sathyawageeswar

    2015-01-01

    Here we extend the exploration of significantly super-Chandrasekhar magnetised white dwarfs by numerically computing axisymmetric stationary equilibria of differentially rotating magnetised polytropic compact stars in general relativity (GR), within the ideal magnetohydrodynamic regime. We use a general relativistic magnetohydrodynamic (GRMHD) framework that describes rotating and magnetised axisymmetric white dwarfs, choosing appropriate rotation laws and magnetic field profiles (toroidal and poloidal). The numerical procedure for finding solutions in this framework uses the 3+1 formalism of numerical relativity, implemented in the open source XNS code. We construct equilibrium sequences by varying different physical quantities in turn, and highlight the plausible existence of super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs, with masses in the range of 2-3 solar mass, with central (deep interior) magnetic fields of the order of $10^{14}$ Gauss and differential rotation with surface time periods of about 1-10 seconds. We no...

  11. The impact of chemical differentiation of white dwarfs on thermonuclear supernovae

    OpenAIRE

    Bravo, Eduardo; Althaus, Leandro G.; García-Berro, Enrique; Domínguez, Inmaculada

    2010-01-01

    Gravitational settling of 22Ne in cooling white dwarfs can affect the outcome of thermonuclear supernovae. We investigate how the supernova energetics and nucleosynthesis are in turn influenced by this process. We use realistic chemical profiles derived from state-of-the-art white dwarf cooling sequences. The cooling sequences provide a link between the white dwarf chemical structure and the age of the supernova progenitor system. The cooling sequence of a 1 M_sun white dwarf was computed unt...

  12. Physical properties of IP Pegasi: an eclipsing dwarf nova with an unusually cool white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Copperwheat, C M; Dhillon, V S; Littlefair, S P; Hickman, R; Gänsicke, B T; Southworth, J

    2009-01-01

    We present high speed photometric observations of the eclipsing dwarf nova IP Peg taken with the triple-beam camera ULTRACAM mounted on the William Herschel Telescope. The primary eclipse in this system was observed twice in 2004, and then a further sixteen times over a three week period in 2005. Our observations were simultaneous in the Sloan u', g' and r' bands. By phase-folding and averaging our data we make the first significant detection of the white dwarf ingress in this system and find the phase width of the white dwarf eclipse to be 0.0935 +/- 0.0003, significantly higher than the previous best value of between 0.0863 and 0.0918. The mass ratio is found to be q = M2 /M1 = 0.48 +/- 0.01, consistent with previous measurements, but we find the inclination to be 83.8 +/- 0.5 deg, significantly higher than previously reported. We find the radius of the white dwarf to be 0.0063 +/- 0.0003 solar radii, implying a white dwarf mass of 1.16 +/- 0.02 solar masses. The donor mass is 0.55 +/- 0.02 solar masses. Th...

  13. An independent test of the photometric selection of white dwarf candidates using LAMOST DR3

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentile Fusillo, N. P.; Rebassa-Mansergas, A.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Liu, X.-W.; Ren, J. J.; Koester, D.; Zhan, Y.; Hou, Y.; Wang, Y.; Yang, M.

    2015-09-01

    In previous work by Gentile Fusillo et al., we developed a selection method for white dwarf candidates which makes use of photometry, colours and proper motions to calculate a probability of being a white dwarf (PWD). The application of our method to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) data release 10 resulted in ≃66 000 photometrically selected objects with a derived PWD, approximately ≃21 000 of which are high-confidence white dwarf candidates. Here, we present an independent test of our selection method based on a sample of spectroscopically confirmed white dwarfs from the Large Sky Area Multi-Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST) survey. We do this by cross-matching all our ≃66 000 SDSS photometric white dwarf candidates with the over 4 million spectra available in the third data release of LAMOST. This results in 1673 white dwarf candidates with no previous SDSS spectroscopy, but with available LAMOST spectra. Among these objects, we identify 309 genuine white dwarfs. We find that our PWD can efficiently discriminate between confirmed LAMOST white dwarfs and contaminants. Our white dwarf candidate selection method can be applied to any multiband photometric survey and in this work we conclusively confirm its reliability in selecting white dwarfs without recourse to spectroscopy. We also discuss the spectroscopic completeness of white dwarfs in LAMOST, as well as deriving effective temperatures, surface gravities and masses for the hydrogen-rich atmosphere white dwarfs in the newly identified LAMOST sample.

  14. The brightest pure-H ultracool white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Catalan, S; Pinfield, D J; Smith, L C; Zhang, Z H; Napiwotzki, R; Marocco, F; Day-Jones, A C; Gomes, J; Forde, K P; Lucas, P W; Jones, H R A

    2012-01-01

    We report the identification of LSR J0745+2627 in the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS) Large Area Survey (LAS) as a cool white dwarf with kinematics and age compatible with the thick-disk/halo population. LSR J0745+2627 has a high proper motion (890 mas/yr) and a high reduced proper motion value in the J band (H_J=21.87). We show how the infrared-reduced proper motion diagram is useful for selecting a sample of cool white dwarfs with low contamination. LSR J0745+2627 is also detected in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). We have spectroscopically confirmed this object as a cool white dwarf using X-Shooter on the Very Large Telescope. A detailed analysis of its spectral energy distribution reveals that its atmosphere is compatible with a pure-H composition model with an effective temperature of 3880+-90 K. This object is the brightest pure-H ultracool white dwarf (Teff<4000 K) ever identified. We have constrained the dis...

  15. Revisiting the luminosity function of single halo white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Cojocaru, R; Althaus, L G; Isern, J; García-Berro, E

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs are the fossils left by the evolution of low-and intermediate-mass stars, and have very long evolutionary timescales. This allows us to use them to explore the properties of old populations, like the Galactic halo. We present a population synthesis study of the luminosity function of halo white dwarfs, aimed at investigating which information can be derived from the currently available observed data. We employ an up-to-date population synthesis code based on Monte Carlo techniques, that incorporates the most recent and reliable cooling sequences for metal poor progenitors as well as an accurate modeling of the observational biases. We find that because the observed sample of halo white dwarfs is restricted to the brightest stars only the hot branch of the white dwarf luminosity function can be used for such purposes, and that its shape function is almost insensitive to the most relevant inputs, like the adopted cooling sequences, the initial mass function, the density profile of the stellar spher...

  16. Magnetic White Dwarfs from the SDSS. The First Data Release

    CERN Document Server

    Schmidt, G D

    2003-01-01

    Beyond its goals related to the extragalactic universe, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) is an effective tool for identifying stellar objects with unusual spectral energy distributions. Here we report on the 53 new magnetic white dwarfs discovered during the first two years of the survey, including 38 whose data are made public in the 1500 square-degree First Data Release. Discoveries span the magnitude range 16.3 3 MG and g > 15. The new objects nearly double the total number of known magnetic white dwarfs, and include examples with polar field strengths B > 500 MG as well as several with exotic atmospheric compositions. The improved sample statistics and uniformity indicate that the distribution of magnetic white dwarfs has a broad peak in the range ~5-30 MG and a tail extending to nearly 10^9 G. Degenerates with polar fields B > 50 MG are consistent with being descendents of magnetic Ap/Bp main-sequence stars, but low- and moderate-field magnetic white dwarfs appear to imply another origin. Yet-undetec...

  17. Lithium production in the merging of white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Longland, Richard; Jos, Jordi; Garca-Berro, Enrique; Althaus, Leandro G

    2012-01-01

    The origin of R Coronae Borealis stars has been elusive for over 200 years. Currently, two theories for their formation have been presented. These are the Final Flash scenario, in which a dying asymptotic giant branch (AGB) star throws off its atmosphere to reveal the hydrogen poor, heavily processed material underneath, and the double degenerate scenario, in which two white dwarfs merge to produce a new star with renewed vigour. Some theories predict that the temperatures reached during the latter scenario would destroy any lithium originally present in the white dwarfs. The observed lithium content of some R Coronae Borealis stars, therefore, is often interpreted as an indication that the Final Flash scenario best describes their formation. In this paper, it is shown that lithium production can, indeed, occur in the merging of a helium white dwarf with a carbon-oxygen white dwarf if their chemical composition, particularly that of 3He, is fully considered. The production mechanism is described in detail, an...

  18. The white dwarf population within 40 pc of the Sun

    CERN Document Server

    Torres, S

    2016-01-01

    The white dwarf luminosity function is an important tool to understand the properties of the Solar neighborhood, like its star formation history, and its age. Here we present a population synthesis study of the white dwarf population within 40~pc from the Sun, and compare the results of this study with the properties of the observed sample. We use a state-of-the-art population synthesis code based on Monte Carlo techniques, that incorporates the most recent and reliable white dwarf cooling sequences, an accurate description of the Galactic neighborhood, and a realistic treatment of all the known observational biases and selection procedures. We find a good agreement between our theoretical models and the observed data. In particular, our simulations reproduce a previously unexplained feature of the bright branch of the white dwarf luminosity function, which we argue is due to a recent episode of star formation. We also derive the age of the Solar neighborhood employing the position of the observed cut-off of ...

  19. First Detection of Krypton and Xenon in a White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Klaus; Rauch, Thomas; Ringat, Ellen; Kruk, Jeffrey W.

    2012-01-01

    We report on the first detection of the noble gases krypton (Z = 36) and xenon (54) in a white dwarf. About 20 KrVI-VII and Xe VI-VII lines were discovered in the ultraviolet spectrum of the hot DO-type white dwarf RE 0503-289. The observations, performed with the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer, also reveal highly ionized photospheric lines from other trans-iron group elements, namely Ga (31), Ge (32), As (33), Se (34), Mo (42), Sn (50), Te (52), and I (53), from which gallium and molybdenum are new discoveries in white dwarfs, too. For Kr and Xe, we performed an NLTE analysis and derived mass fractions of log Kr = -4.3 plus or minus 0.5 and log Xe = -4.2 plus or minus 0.6, corresponding to an enrichment by factors of 450 and 3800, respectively, relative to the Sun. The origin of the large overabundances is unclear. We discuss the roles of neutron-capture nucleosynthesis in the-precursor star and radiation-driven diffusion. It is possible that diffusion is insignificant and thaI the observed metal abundances constrain the evolutionary history of the star. Its hydrogen deficiency may be the consequence of a late helium-shell nash or a binary white dwarf merger.

  20. Empirical Determination of Convection in Pulsating White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Provencal, Judith L.; Hermes, J. J.; Montgomery, M.; Reed, Mike; Shipman, Harry; Fraga, Luciano

    2013-02-01

    We propose high speed photometric observations of WD J1518+0658 with SOAR and the KPNO 2m as important components of a coordinated international campaign designed to survey the properties of convection in white dwarf atmospheres. Convection remains the largest source of theoretical uncertainty in our understanding of stellar physics. Asteroseismology has proven a powerful tool to attack this problem. White dwarf pulsations appear as local surface temperature variations. The extreme temperature sensitivity of convection leads to local variations in the convection zone's depth. This in turn modulates the local energy flux, producing nonsinusoidal light curves. The observed nonlinearities provide a self-consistent observational test of convection in white dwarf atmospheres. WD J1518+0658 is a member of the newly discovered class of extremely low mass white dwarf pulsators (ELMVs). ELMVs offer the opportunity to extend our investigation to unexplored regions of lower effective temperatures and surface gravities, where conditions are closer to those found in main sequence stars. High precision light curves from SOAR, combined with frequency, amplitude, and phase information provided by the KPNO 2m and the entire WET run, will allow us to recover WD J1518+0658's convective thermal response timescale.

  1. The Frequency of Debris Disks at White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Barber, Sara D; Kilic, Mukremin; Leggett, S K; Dufour, P; Bloom, J S; Starr, D L

    2012-01-01

    We present near- and mid-infrared photometry and spectroscopy from PAIRITEL, IRTF, and Spitzer of a metallicity-unbiased sample of 117 cool, hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs from the Palomar-Green survey and find five with excess radiation in the infrared, translating to a 4.3+2.7-1.2% frequency of debris disks. This is slightly higher than, but consistent with the results of previous surveys. Using an initial-final mass relation, we apply this result to the progenitor stars of our sample and conclude that 1-7Msol stars have at least a 4.3% chance of hosting planets; an indirect probe of the intermediate-mass regime eluding conventional exoplanetary detection methods. Alternatively, we interpret this result as a limit on accretion timescales as a fraction of white dwarf cooling ages; white dwarfs accrete debris from several generations of disks for ~10Myr. The average total mass accreted by these stars ranges from that of 200km asteroids to Ceres-sized objects, indicating that white dwarfs accrete moons and d...

  2. FIRST DETECTION OF KRYPTON AND XENON IN A WHITE DWARF

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report on the first detection of the noble gases krypton (Z = 36) and xenon (54) in a white dwarf. About 20 Kr VI- VII and Xe VI- VII lines were discovered in the ultraviolet spectrum of the hot DO-type white dwarf RE 0503289. The observations, performed with the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer, also reveal highly ionized photospheric lines from other trans-iron group elements, namely Ga (31), Ge (32), As (33), Se (34), Mo (42), Sn (50), Te (52), and I (53), from which gallium and molybdenum are new discoveries in white dwarfs, too. For Kr and Xe, we performed an NLTE analysis and derived mass fractions of log Kr = 4.3 0.5 and log Xe = 4.2 0.6, corresponding to an enrichment by factors of 450 and 3800, respectively, relative to the Sun. The origin of the large overabundances is unclear. We discuss the roles of neutron-capture nucleosynthesis in the precursor star and radiation-driven diffusion. It is possible that diffusion is insignificant and that the observed metal abundances constrain the evolutionary history of the star. Its hydrogen deficiency may be the consequence of a late helium-shell flash or a binary white dwarf merger.

  3. First Detection of Krypton and Xenon in a White Dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werner, Klaus; Rauch, Thomas; Ringat, Ellen; Kruk, Jeffrey W.

    2012-07-01

    We report on the first detection of the noble gases krypton (Z = 36) and xenon (54) in a white dwarf. About 20 Kr VI- VII and Xe VI- VII lines were discovered in the ultraviolet spectrum of the hot DO-type white dwarf RE 0503-289. The observations, performed with the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer, also reveal highly ionized photospheric lines from other trans-iron group elements, namely Ga (31), Ge (32), As (33), Se (34), Mo (42), Sn (50), Te (52), and I (53), from which gallium and molybdenum are new discoveries in white dwarfs, too. For Kr and Xe, we performed an NLTE analysis and derived mass fractions of log Kr = -4.3 0.5 and log Xe = -4.2 0.6, corresponding to an enrichment by factors of 450 and 3800, respectively, relative to the Sun. The origin of the large overabundances is unclear. We discuss the roles of neutron-capture nucleosynthesis in the precursor star and radiation-driven diffusion. It is possible that diffusion is insignificant and that the observed metal abundances constrain the evolutionary history of the star. Its hydrogen deficiency may be the consequence of a late helium-shell flash or a binary white dwarf merger.

  4. The frequency of planetary debris around young white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Koester, Detlev; Farihi, Jay

    2014-01-01

    (Abridged) We present the results of the first unbiased survey for metal pollution among H-atmosphere (DA) white dwarfs with cooling ages of 20-200 Myr and 17000K 0.8 Msun is found to be currently accreting, which suggests a large fraction are double-degenerate mergers, and the merger discs do not commonly reform large planetesimals or otherwise pollute the remnant. We reconfirm our previous finding that two white dwarf Hyads are currently accreting rocky debris. At least 27%, and possibly up to ~50%, of all white dwarfs with cooling ages 20-200 Myr are accreting planetary debris. At Teff > 23000K, the luminosity of white dwarfs is likely sufficient to vaporize circumstellar dust, and hence no stars with strong metal-pollution are found. However, planetesimal disruption events should occur in this cooling age and Teff range as well, and likely result in short phases of high mass transfer rates. It appears that the formation of rocky planetary material is common around 2-3 Msun late B- and A-type stars.

  5. Central stars of planetary nebulae: The white dwarf connection

    CERN Document Server

    Werner, K

    2011-01-01

    This paper is focused on the transition phase between central stars and white dwarfs, i.e. objects in the effective temperature range 100,000 - 200,000 K. We confine our review to hydrogen-deficient stars because the common H-rich objects are subject of the paper by Ziegler et al. in these proceedings. We address the claimed iron-deficiency in PG1159 stars and [WC] central stars. The discovery of new Ne VII and Ne VIII lines in PG1159 stars suggests that the identification of O VII and O VIII lines that are used for spectral classification of [WCE] stars is wrong. We then present evidence for two distinct post-AGB evolutionary sequences for H-deficient stars based on abundance analyses of the He-dominated O(He) stars and the hot DO white dwarf KPD0005+5106. Finally, we report on evidence for an H-deficient post-super AGB evolution sequence represented by the hottest known, carbon/oxygen-atmosphere white dwarf H1504+65 and the recently discovered carbon-atmosphere "hot DQ" white dwarfs.

  6. On a possible white-dwarf companion to HD 74389

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The discovery of a new white dwarf about 20 arcsec east of the A-type star HD 74389 is reported. A physical association is not highly probable. Because of the importance of binaries with degenerate components, attention is drawn to this star in the hope of stimulating further observations

  7. Mass-radius Relations for Helium White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    CİVELEK, R.; KIZILOĞLU, N.

    2000-01-01

    We studied the static mass-radius relation of white dwarf stars with masses greater than 0.45 M\\odot. We assumed pure degenerate helium interiors at a finite temperature with luminosity-mass ratio due to neutrino energy loss. We compared the obtained M-R relation with those of other writers.

  8. Bose-Einstein condensation in helium white dwarf stars. I

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mosquera, M.E. [Faculty of Astronomy and Geophysics, University of La Plata, Paseo del Bosque s.n., La Plata (Argentina); Department of Physics, University of La Plata, c.c. 67 1900, La Plata (Argentina); Civitarese, O., E-mail: osvaldo.civitarese@fisica.unlp.edu.a [Department of Physics, University of La Plata, c.c. 67 1900, La Plata (Argentina); Benvenuto, O.G.; De Vito, M.A. [Faculty of Astronomy and Geophysics, University of La Plata, Paseo del Bosque s.n., La Plata (Argentina); Instituto de Astrofisica La Plata, CCT (Argentina)

    2010-01-18

    The formation of a Bose-Einstein condensate in the interior of helium white dwarfs stars is discussed. Following the proposal made by Gabadadze and Rosen, we have explored the consequences of such a mechanism by calculating the cooling time of the stars. We have found that it is shorter than the value predicted by the standard model.

  9. Bose-Einstein condensation in helium white dwarf stars. I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The formation of a Bose-Einstein condensate in the interior of helium white dwarfs stars is discussed. Following the proposal made by Gabadadze and Rosen, we have explored the consequences of such a mechanism by calculating the cooling time of the stars. We have found that it is shorter than the value predicted by the standard model.

  10. Chandra Grating Spectroscopy of Three Hot White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adamczak, J.; Werner, K.; Rauch, T.; Schuh, S.; Drake, J. J.; Kruk, J. W.

    2013-01-01

    High-resolution soft X-ray spectroscopic observations of single hot white dwarfs are scarce. With the Chandra Low-Energy Transmission Grating, we have observed two white dwarfs, one is of spectral type DA (LB1919) and the other is a non-DA of spectral type PG1159 (PG1520+525). The spectra of both stars are analyzed, together with an archival Chandra spectrum of another DA white dwarf (GD246). Aims. The soft X-ray spectra of the two DA white dwarfs are investigated in order to study the effect of gravitational settling and radiative levitation of metals in their photospheres. LB1919 is of interest because it has a significantly lower metallicity than DAs with otherwise similar atmospheric parameters. GD246 is the only white dwarf known that shows identifiable individual iron lines in the soft X-ray range. For the PG1159 star, a precise effective temperature determination is performed in order to confine the position of the blue edge of the GW Vir instability region in the HRD. Methods. The Chandra spectra are analyzed with chemically homogeneous as well as stratified NLTE model atmospheres that assume equilibrium between gravitational settling and radiative acceleration of chemical elements. Archival EUV and UV spectra obtained with EUVE, FUSE, and HST are utilized to support the analysis. Results. No metals could be identified in LB1919. All observations are compatible with a pure hydrogen atmosphere. This is in stark contrast to the vast majority of hot DA white dwarfs that exhibit light and heavy metals and to the stratified models that predict significant metal abundances in the atmosphere. For GD246 we find that neither stratified nor homogeneous models can fit the Chandra spectrum. The Chandra spectrum of PG1520+525 constrains the effective temperature to T(sub eff) = 150 000 +/- 10 000 K. Therefore, this nonpulsating star together with the pulsating prototype of the GWVir class (PG1159-035) defines the location of the blue edge of the GWVir instability region. The result is in accordance with predictions from nonadiabatic stellar pulsation models. Such models are therefore reliable tools to investigate the interior structure of GW Vir variables. Conclusions. Our soft X-ray study reveals that the understanding of metal abundances in hot DA white dwarf atmospheres is still incomplete. On the other hand, model atmospheres of hydrogen-deficient PG1159-type stars are reliable and reproduce well the observed spectra from soft X-ray to optical wavelengths.

  11. Properties of an eclipsing double white dwarf binary NLTT 11748

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present high-quality ULTRACAM photometry of the eclipsing detached double white dwarf binary NLTT 11748. This system consists of a carbon/oxygen white dwarf and an extremely low mass (<0.2 M ☉) helium-core white dwarf in a 5.6 hr orbit. To date, such extremely low-mass white dwarfs, which can have thin, stably burning outer layers, have been modeled via poorly constrained atmosphere and cooling calculations where uncertainties in the detailed structure can strongly influence the eventual fates of these systems when mass transfer begins. With precise (individual precision ≈1%), high-cadence (≈2 s), multicolor photometry of multiple primary and secondary eclipses spanning >1.5 yr, we constrain the masses and radii of both objects in the NLTT 11748 system to a statistical uncertainty of a few percent. However, we find that overall uncertainty in the thickness of the envelope of the secondary carbon/oxygen white dwarf leads to a larger (≈13%) systematic uncertainty in the primary He WD's mass. Over the full range of possible envelope thicknesses, we find that our primary mass (0.136-0.162 M ☉) and surface gravity (log (g) = 6.32-6.38; radii are 0.0423-0.0433 R ☉) constraints do not agree with previous spectroscopic determinations. We use precise eclipse timing to detect the Rømer delay at 7σ significance, providing an additional weak constraint on the masses and limiting the eccentricity to ecos ω = (– 4 ± 5) × 10–5. Finally, we use multicolor data to constrain the secondary's effective temperature (7600 ± 120 K) and cooling age (1.6-1.7 Gyr).

  12. Properties of an eclipsing double white dwarf binary NLTT 11748

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaplan, David L.; Walker, Arielle N. [Physics Department, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI 53211 (United States); Marsh, Thomas R.; Bours, Madelon C. P.; Breedt, Elmé [Department of Physics, University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL (United Kingdom); Bildsten, Lars [Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics and Department of Physics, Kohn Hall, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106 (United States); Copperwheat, Chris M. [Astrophysics Research Institute, Liverpool John Moores University, IC2, Liverpool Science Park, 146 Brownlow Hill, Liverpool L3 5RF (United Kingdom); Dhillon, Vik S.; Littlefair, Stuart P. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S3 7RH (United Kingdom); Howell, Steve B. [NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035 (United States); Shporer, Avi [California Institute of Technology, 1200 East California Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Steinfadt, Justin D. R., E-mail: kaplan@uwm.edu [Department of Physics, Broida Hall, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 93106 (United States)

    2014-01-10

    We present high-quality ULTRACAM photometry of the eclipsing detached double white dwarf binary NLTT 11748. This system consists of a carbon/oxygen white dwarf and an extremely low mass (<0.2 M {sub ☉}) helium-core white dwarf in a 5.6 hr orbit. To date, such extremely low-mass white dwarfs, which can have thin, stably burning outer layers, have been modeled via poorly constrained atmosphere and cooling calculations where uncertainties in the detailed structure can strongly influence the eventual fates of these systems when mass transfer begins. With precise (individual precision ≈1%), high-cadence (≈2 s), multicolor photometry of multiple primary and secondary eclipses spanning >1.5 yr, we constrain the masses and radii of both objects in the NLTT 11748 system to a statistical uncertainty of a few percent. However, we find that overall uncertainty in the thickness of the envelope of the secondary carbon/oxygen white dwarf leads to a larger (≈13%) systematic uncertainty in the primary He WD's mass. Over the full range of possible envelope thicknesses, we find that our primary mass (0.136-0.162 M {sub ☉}) and surface gravity (log (g) = 6.32-6.38; radii are 0.0423-0.0433 R {sub ☉}) constraints do not agree with previous spectroscopic determinations. We use precise eclipse timing to detect the Rømer delay at 7σ significance, providing an additional weak constraint on the masses and limiting the eccentricity to ecos ω = (– 4 ± 5) × 10{sup –5}. Finally, we use multicolor data to constrain the secondary's effective temperature (7600 ± 120 K) and cooling age (1.6-1.7 Gyr).

  13. ZZ Ceti stars: a new class of pulsating white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The existence of the ZZ Ceti stars as a new, distinct class of variable stars is proven by means of a photometric survey for rapid luminosity variations among white dwarfs. The null results of the survey are used to show that the ZZ Ceti stars are all DA white dwarfs that fall in a restricted region centered at (B-V) = +0.20 in the two-color diagram. A light curve and power spectrum of the light curve is presented for all ZZ Ceti stars. In general, the ZZ Ceti stars have complex, multi-periodic light curves. The periods fall in the range from about 200 s to 1000 s, and the luminosity variations range from about 0.01 mag to 0.30 mag in amplitude. These variables are single, physically similar stars pulsating in nonradial g-modes. Only three mechanisms - rotation, excitation of multiple nonradial modes, and coupling between modes - are sufficient to explain virtually all of the photometric complexities exhibited by the ZZ Ceti variables. The ZZ Ceti stars are found to be normal white dwarfs which occur in the temperature range from about 10500 K to 13500 K on the DA cooling sequence. The onset of variability among DA white dwarfs is shown to be an evolutionary effect; it is shown that at least 40% of all DA white dwarfs will cool to become ZZ Ceti variables. The ZZ Ceti stars are by far the most numerous intrinsic variables in the galaxy.Time-resolved Stroemgren photometry is used to examine the changes of the effective temperature, the radius, and the effective surface gravity with time during a pulsation in order to evaluate the relative contributions of these parameters to the total luminosity variation

  14. Searching for white dwarfs candidates in Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Large amount of observational spectroscopic data are recently available from different observational projects, like Sloan Digital Sky Survey. It's become more urgent to identify white dwarfs stars based on data itself i.e. without modelling white dwarf atmospheres. In particular, existing methods of white dwarfs identification presented in Kleinman et al. (2004) and in Eisenstein et al. (2006) did not allow to find all the white dwarfs in examined data. We intend to test various criteria of searching for white dwarf candidates, based on photometric and spectral features.

  15. Dynamical Tides in Compact White Dwarf Binaries: Helium Core White Dwarfs, Tidal Heating, and Observational Signatures

    CERN Document Server

    Fuller, Jim

    2012-01-01

    Tidal dissipation in compact white dwarf (WD) binary systems significantly influences the physical conditions (such as surface temperature and rotation rate) of the WDs prior to mass transfer or merger. In these systems, the dominant tidal effects involve the excitation of gravity waves and their dissipation in the outer envelope of the star. We calculate the amplitude of tidally excited gravity waves in low-mass (0.3M_\\odot) helium-core (He) WDs as a function of the tidal forcing frequency \\omega. Like carbon-oxygen (CO) WDs studied in our previous paper, we find that the dimensionless tidal torque F(\\omega) (inversely proportional to the effective tidal quality factor) has an erratic dependence on \\omega. On average, F(\\omega) scales approximately as \\omega^6, and is several orders of magnitude smaller for He WDs than for CO WDs. We find that tidal torques can begin to synchronize the WD rotation when the orbital period is less than about a hour, although a nearly constant asynchronization is maintained eve...

  16. THE MASS OF THE WHITE DWARF IN GW LIBRA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report a mass and rotational broadening (vsin i) for the pulsating white dwarf (WD) component of the WZ Sge type Dwarf Nova GW Lib based on high-resolution Very Large Telescope spectroscopy that resolves the Mg II 4481 A absorption feature. Its gravitational redshift combined with WD mass-radius models provides us with a direct measurement of the WD mass of M 1 = 0.84 ± 0.02 M sun. The line is clearly resolved and if associated with rotational broadening gives vsin i = 87.0 ± 3.4 km s-1, equivalent to a spin period of 97 ± 12 s.

  17. A THIRD HOT WHITE DWARF COMPANION DETECTED BY KEPLER

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We have found a system listed in the Kepler Binary Catalog (Porb = 3.273 days) that we have determined is comprised of a low-mass, thermally bloated, hot white dwarf orbiting an A star of about 2.3 Msun. In this work, we designate the object, KIC 10657664, simply as 'KHWD3' (Kepler Hot White Dwarf 3). We use the transit depth of ∼0.66%, the eclipse depth of ∼1.9%, and regular smooth periodic variations at the orbital frequency and twice the orbital frequency to analyze the system parameters. The smooth periodic variations are identified with the classical ellipsoidal light variation (ELV) and illumination (ILL) effects, and the newly utilized Doppler boosting (DB) effect. Given the measured values of R/a and inclination angle of the binary, both the ELV and DB effects are mostly sensitive to the mass ratio, q = M2/M1, of the binary. The two effects yield values of q which are somewhat inconsistent-presumably due to unidentified systematic effects-but which nonetheless provide a quite useful set of possibilities for the mass of the white dwarf (either 0.26 ± 0.04 Msun or 0.37 ± 0.08 Msun). All of the other system parameters are determined fairly robustly. In particular, we show that the white dwarf has a radius of 0.15 ± 0.01 Rsun, which is extremely bloated over the radius it would have as a fully degenerate object, and an effective temperature Teff≅14,500 K. Binary evolution scenarios and models for this system are discussed. We suggest that the progenitor binary was comprised of a primary of mass ∼2.2 Msun (the progenitor of the current hot white dwarf) and a secondary of mass ∼1.4 Msun (the progenitor of the current A star in the system). We compare this new system with three other white dwarfs in binaries that likely were formed via stable Roche-lobe overflow (KOI-74, KOI-81, and the inner Regulus binary).

  18. The atmospheres of cool white dwarfs of spectral type DA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In order to interpret the Stroemgren uvby colors of the cool hydrogen-rich DA white dwarfs observed by Graham (1972), model atmospheres have been constructed in the range 7,000 <= Tsub(eff) <= 12,000 K and 7 <= log g <= 8.5. Metal abundances Esub(M) = Esub(M)(S) and Esub(M) = Esub(M)(S)/100 were assumed. The models include energy transport by convection and line-blanketing from Balmer and metal lines; all are corrected to constant energy flux. The theoretical colors derived are thoroughly discussed in view of the assumptions involved in the calculations. It is shown that the hydrogen-rich white dwarfs under consideration have gravities given by log g = 8.3, and that the metal abundances are reduced by at least a factor of 100 compared to the solar value. (orig.)

  19. Discovery of five new massive pulsating white dwarf stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castanheira, B. G.; Kepler, S. O.; Kleinman, S. J.; Nitta, A.; Fraga, L.

    2013-03-01

    Using the SOuthern Astrophysical Research telescope (SOAR) Optical Imager at the SOAR 4.1 m telescope, we report on the discovery of five new massive pulsating white dwarf stars. Our results represent an increase of about 20 per cent in the number of massive pulsators. We have detected both short and long periods, low and high amplitude pulsation modes, covering the whole range of the ZZ Ceti instability strip. In this paper, we present a first seismological study of the new massive pulsators based on the few frequencies detected. Our analysis indicates that these stars have masses higher than average, in agreement with the spectroscopic determinations. In addition, we study for the first time the ensemble properties of the pulsating white dwarf stars with masses above 0.8 M?. We found a bimodal distribution of the main pulsation period with the effective temperature for the massive DAVs, which indicates mode selection mechanisms.

  20. Models for Type I supernovae - Partially incinerated white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutherland, P. G.; Wheeler, J. C.

    1984-05-01

    White dwarf models are calculated for the explosions and light curves of Type I supernovae using full hydrodynamics and radiative diffusion. Comparison is made to recent observations. The models are based on the instantaneous thermonuclear burning of part or all of a degenerate carbon/oxygen/helium core. The Rayleigh-Taylor instability at the points of density/composition discontinuity is explored. The effects of radioactive decay of 56Ni and 56Co are incorporated by means of an absorption treatment of γ-rays. It is concluded that despite the qualitative appeal of the picture in which binary mass accretion raises a carbon-oxygen white dwarf to the Chandrasekhar limit, the demand to produce supernovae of the observed characteristics is not easily reconciled quantitatively with current calculations of hydrogen accretion.

  1. Quantum gases and white dwarfs with quantum gravity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This paper addresses the effect of a generalized uncertainty principle produced by different approaches of quantum gravity within the Planck scale on statistical and thermodynamical properties of ideal fermion and boson gases. The partition function and some thermodynamical properties are investigated. The Bose–Einstein condensation and the ground state properties of fermion gases are also considered. The target approach is extended to a white dwarf as an application. The modified mass-radius relation is calculated. A decrease in the pressure of degenerate fermions due to the presence of quantum gravity leads to a contraction in the star radius. It is also found that the gravity background does not result in any change in white dwarf stability. (paper)

  2. Weak magnetic fields in white dwarfs and their direct progenitors?

    OpenAIRE

    Jordan, S; Bagnulo, S.; Landstreet, J.; Fossati, L.; Valyanin, G. G.; Monin, D.; Wade, G. A.; Werner, K.; O'Toole, S. J.

    2012-01-01

    We have carried out a re-analysis of polarimetric data of central stars of planetary nebulae, hot subdwarfs, and white dwarfs taken with FORS1 (FOcal Reducer and low dispersion Spectrograph) on the VLT (Very Large Telescope), and added a large number of new observations in order to increase the sample. A careful analysis of the observations using only one wavelength calibration for the polarimetrically analysed spectra and for all positions of the retarder plate of the spectrograph is crucial...

  3. Stellar archaeology with Gaia: the Galactic white dwarf population

    CERN Document Server

    Gaensicke, Boris; Barstow, Martin; Bono, Giuseppe; Burleigh, Matt; Casewell, Sarah; Dhillon, Vik; Farihi, Jay; Garcia-Berro, Enrique; Geier, Stephan; Gentile-Fusillo, Nicola; Hermes, JJ; Hollands, Mark; Istrate, Alina; Jordan, Stefan; Knigge, Christian; Manser, Christopher; Marsh, Tom; Nelemans, Gijs; Pala, Anna; Raddi, Roberto; Tauris, Thomas; Toloza, Odette; Veras, Dimitri; Werner, Klaus; Wilson, David

    2015-01-01

    Gaia will identify several 1e5 white dwarfs, most of which will be in the solar neighborhood at distances of a few hundred parsecs. Ground-based optical follow-up spectroscopy of this sample of stellar remnants is essential to unlock the enormous scientific potential it holds for our understanding of stellar evolution, and the Galactic formation history of both stars and planets.

  4. Progenitors of the Accretion-Induced Collapse of White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Kwiatkowski, Damian

    2015-01-01

    Recent calculations of accretion-induced collapse of an oxygen-neon-magnesium white dwarf into a neutron star [Piro & Thompson 2014] allow for a potentially detectable transient electromagnetic signal. Motivated by these results, I present theoretical rates and physical properties of binary stars that can produce accretion-induced collapse. The rates are presented for various types of host galaxies (e.g. old ellipticals versus spirals) and are differentiated by the donor star type (e.g. large...

  5. S. Chandrasekhar: White Dwarfs, $H^-$ ion,.., Black holes, Gravitational waves

    OpenAIRE

    Gupta, Patrick Das

    2011-01-01

    This is a concise review, addressed to undergraduate students, of S. Chandrasekhar's oeuvre in astrophysics, ranging from his early studies on white dwarfs using relativistic quantum statistics to topics as diverse as dynamical friction, negative hydrogen ion, fluid dynamical instabilities, black holes and gravitational waves. The exposition is based on simple physical explanations in the context of observational astronomy. Black holes and their role as central engines of active, compact, hig...

  6. The cool magnetic DAZ white dwarf NLTT 10480

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kawka, Adela; Vennes, Stephane

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 532, August (2011), A7/1-A7/8. ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA300030908; GA AV ČR IAA301630901; GA ČR GAP209/10/0967; GA MŠk(CZ) LC06014 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : white dwarfs * individual star NLTT 10480 Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.587, year: 2011

  7. New white dwarf and subdwarf stars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12

    CERN Document Server

    Kepler, S O; Koester, Detlev; Ourique, Gustavo; Romero, Alejandra Daniela; Reindl, Nicole; Kleinman, Scot J; Eisenstein, Daniel J; Valois, A Dean M; Amaral, Larissa A

    2015-01-01

    We report the discovery of 6576 new spectroscopically confirmed white dwarf and subdwarf stars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12. We obtain Teff, log g and mass for hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf stars (DAs) and helium atmosphere white dwarf stars (DBs), estimate the calcium/helium abundances for the white dwarf stars with metallic lines (DZs) and carbon/helium for carbon dominated spectra DQs. We found one central star of a planetary nebula, one ultra-compact helium binary (AM CVn), one oxygen line dominated white dwarf, 15 hot DO/PG1159s, 12 new cataclysmic variables, 36 magnetic white dwarf stars, 54 DQs, 115 helium dominated white dwarfs, 148 white dwarf+main sequence star binaries, 236 metal polluted white dwarfs, 300 continuum spectra DCs, 230 hot subdwarfs, 2936 new hydrogen dominated white dwarf stars, and 2675 cool hydrogen dominated subdwarf stars. We calculate the mass distribution of all 5883 DAs with S/N>15 in DR12, including the ones in DR7 and DR10, with an average S/N=26, correc...

  8. New white dwarf and subdwarf stars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kepler, S. O.; Pelisoli, I.; Koester, D.; Ourique, G.; Romero, A. D.; Reindl, N.; Kleinman, S. J.; Eisenstein, D. J.; Valois, A. D. M.; Amaral, L. A.

    2016-02-01

    We report the discovery of 6576 new spectroscopically confirmed white dwarf and subdwarf stars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12. We obtain Teff, log g and mass for hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf stars (DAs) and helium atmosphere white dwarf stars (DBs), estimate the calcium/helium abundances for the white dwarf stars with metallic lines (DZs) and carbon/helium for carbon-dominated spectra (DQs). We found one central star of a planetary nebula, one ultracompact helium binary (AM CVn), one oxygen line-dominated white dwarf, 15 hot DO/PG1159s, 12 new cataclysmic variables, 36 magnetic white dwarf stars, 54 DQs, 115 helium-dominated white dwarfs, 148 white dwarf + main-sequence star binaries, 236 metal-polluted white dwarfs, 300 continuum spectra DCs, 230 hot subdwarfs, 2936 new hydrogen-dominated white dwarf stars, and 2675 cool hydrogen-dominated subdwarf stars. We calculate the mass distribution of all 5883 DAs with S/N ? 15 in DR12, including the ones in DR7 and DR10, with an average S/N = 26, corrected to the 3D convection scale, and also the distribution after correcting for the observed volume, using 1/Vmax.

  9. Magnetic White Dwarfs from the SDSS. The First Data Release

    OpenAIRE

    Schmidt, Gary D.

    2003-01-01

    Beyond its goals related to the extragalactic universe, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) is an effective tool for identifying stellar objects with unusual spectral energy distributions. Here we report on the 53 new magnetic white dwarfs discovered during the first two years of the survey, including 38 whose data are made public in the 1500 square-degree First Data Release. Discoveries span the magnitude range 16.3 < 20.5, and based on the recovery rate for previously-known magnetic white d...

  10. Theoretical radial pulsation analyses of DA white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A linear, nonadiabatic, radial pulsation analysis of DA white dwarfs in the range of effective temperatures: 7 X 1034 K has been performed. The 0.6 M/sun mass/, 0.013 R/sub sun mass/ model envelopes consist of layers of pure hydrogen (masses of approx.10-15M/sub star/ to approx.10-8M/sub star/) overlying layers of pure helium and then pure carbons. The authors find that these envelopes are unstable to radial pulsations with periods less than 1.0s and that the cause of the instability is the k-mechanism operating in the hydrogen and the helium partial ionization regions. Convection is assumed to be frozen in so that it does not contribute to either driving or damping. The blue edge is at approx.1.23 X 104 K, and the red edge is approx.7 X 103 K. The most unstable modes exceed mode 20 (19 nodes). These results are in excellent agreement with other radial studies of DA white dwarfs and suggest that these oscillations should be observable in white dwarfs just to the blue and just to the red of the observational blue and red edges of the ZZ Ceti nonradial variables

  11. THE SPECTRAL TYPES OF WHITE DWARFS IN MESSIER 4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present the spectra of 24 white dwarfs in the direction of the globular cluster Messier 4 obtained with the Keck/LRIS and Gemini/GMOS spectrographs. Determining the spectral types of the stars in this sample, we find 24 type DA and 0 type DB (i.e., atmospheres dominated by hydrogen and helium, respectively). Assuming the ratio of DA/DB observed in the field with effective temperature between 15,000-25,000 K, i.e., 4.2:1, holds for the cluster environment, the chance of finding no DBs in our sample simply due to statistical fluctuations is only 6 x 10-3. The spectral types of the ∼100 white dwarfs previously identified in open clusters indicate that DB formation is strongly suppressed in that environment. Furthermore, all the ∼10 white dwarfs previously identified in other globular clusters are exclusively type DA. In the context of these two facts, this finding suggests that DB formation is suppressed in the cluster environment in general. Though no satisfactory explanation for this phenomenon exists, we discuss several possibilities.

  12. Atmospheric parameters and carbon abundance for hot DB white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Koester, Detlev; Gänsicke, Boris T

    2014-01-01

    Atmospheric parameters for hot DB (helium atmosphere) white dwarfs near effective temperatures of 25000K are extremely difficult to determine from optical spectroscopy. This is particularly unfortunate, because this is the range of variable DBV or V777 Her stars. Accurate atmospheric parameters are needed to help or confirm the asteroseismic analysis of these objects. Another important aspect is the new class of white dwarfs - the hot DQ - detected by Dufour et al. (2007), with spectra dominated by carbon lines. The analysis shows that their atmospheres are pure carbon. The origin of these stars is not yet understood, but they may have an evolutionary link with the hotter DBs as studied here. Our aim is to determine accurate atmospheric parameters and element abundances and study the implications for the evolution white dwarfs of spectral classes DB and hot DQ. High resolution UV spectra of five DBs are studied with model atmospheres. We determine stellar parameters and abundances or upper limits of C and Si....

  13. Describing SGRs/AXPs as fast and magnetized white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Malheiro, M

    2013-01-01

    Over the last decade, observational evidence has mounted that SGRs/AXPs belong to a particular class of pulsars. Furthermore, fast and very magnetic white dwarfs have been observed, and recently two SGRs with low magnetic fields $B\\sim(10^{12}-10^{13})$ G, namely SGR 0418+5729 and Swift J1822.3-1606 were discovered with a period of $P\\sim9.08$ s and $P\\sim8.44$ s, respectively. These new discoveries opens the question of the nature of SGRs/AXPs, emerging alternative scenarios, in particular the white dwarf (WD) pulsar model. These astronomical observations have based an alternative description of the SGRs/AXPs expressed on rotating highly magnetized and very massive WDs. In this new description, several observational properties are easy understood and well explained as a consequence of the large radius of a massive white dwarf that manifests a new scale of mass density, moment of inertia, rotational energy, and magnetic dipole moment in comparison with the case of neutron stars. In this contribution, we will ...

  14. Evidence for Terrestrial Planetary System Remnants at White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Farihi, J

    2010-01-01

    The last several years have brought about a dynamic shift in the view of exoplanetary systems in the post-main sequence, perhaps epitomized by the evidence for surviving rocky planetary bodies at white dwarfs. Coinciding with the launch of the Spitzer Space Telescope, both space- and ground-based data have supported a picture whereby asteroid analogs persist at a significant fraction of cool white dwarfs, and are prone to tidal disruption when passing close to the compact stellar remnant. The ensuing debris can produce a detectable infrared excess, and the material gradually falls onto the star, polluting the atmosphere with heavy elements that can be used to determine the bulk composition of the destroyed planetary body. Based on the observations to date, the parent bodies inferred at white dwarfs are best described as asteroids, and have a distinctly rocky composition similar to material found in the inner Solar System. Their minimum masses are typical of large asteroids, and can approach or exceed the mass...

  15. Towards an Understanding of the Atmospheres of Cool White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kowalski, P. M.; Saumon, D.; Holberg, J.; Leggett, S.

    2013-01-01

    Cool white dwarfs with Teff < 6000 K are the remnants of the oldest stars that existed in our Galaxy. Their atmospheres, when properly characterized, can provide valuable information on white dwarf evolution and ultimately star formation through the history of the Milky Way. Understanding the atmospheres of these stars requires joined observational effort and reliable atmosphere modeling. We discuss and analyze recent observations of the near-ultraviolet (UV) and near-infrared (IR) spectrum of several cool white dwarfs including DQ/DQp stars showing carbon in their spectra. We present fits to the entire spectral energy distribution (SED) of selected cool stars, showing that the current pure-hydrogen atmosphere models are quite reliable, especially in the near-UV spectral region. Recently, we also performed an analysis of the coolest known DQ/DQp stars investigating further the origin of the rm C2 Swan bands-like spectral features that characterize the DQp stars. We show that the carbon abundances derived for DQp stars fit the trend of carbon abundance with Teff seen in normal cool DQ stars. This further supports the recent conclusion of Kowalski (2010a) that DQp stars are DQ stars with pressure distorted Swan bands. However, we encounter some difficulties in reproducing the IR part of the SED of stars having a mixed He/H atmosphere. This indicates limitations in current models of the opacity in dense He/H fluids.

  16. High-energy emission of fast rotating white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Ikhsanov, N R

    2005-01-01

    The process of energy release in the magnetosphere of a fast rotating, magnetized white dwarf can be explained in terms of the canonical spin-powered pulsar model. Applying this model to the white dwarf companion of the low mass close binary AE Aquarii leads us to the following conclusions. First, the system acts as an accelerator of charged particles whose energy is limited to E_p < 3 TeV and which are ejected from the magnetosphere of the primary with the rate L_kin < 10^{32} erg/s. Due to the curvature radiation of the accelerated primary electrons the system should appear as a source of soft gamma-rays (~ 100 keV) with the luminosity < 3x10^{27} erg/s. The TeV emission of the system is dominated by the inverse Compton scattering of optical photons on the ultrarelativistic electrons. The optical photons are mainly contributed by the normal companion and the stream of material flowing through the magnetosphere of the white dwarf. The luminosity of the TeV source depends on the state of the system (...

  17. Progenitors of the Accretion-Induced Collapse of White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kwiatkowski, Damian

    2015-01-01

    Recent calculations of accretion-induced collapse of an oxygen-neon-magnesium white dwarf into a neutron star [Piro & Thompson 2014] allow for a potentially detectable transient electromagnetic signal. Motivated by these results, I present theoretical rates and physical properties of binary stars that can produce accretion-induced collapse. The rates are presented for various types of host galaxies (e.g. old ellipticals versus spirals) and are differentiated by the donor star type (e.g. large giant star versus compact helium-rich donor). Results presented in this thesis may help to guide near-future electromagnetic transient search campaigns to find likely candidates for accretion-induced collapse events. My predictions are based on binary evolution calculations that include the most recent updates on mass accretion and secular mass growth of white dwarfs. I find that the most likely systems that undergo accretion-induced collapse consist of an ONeMg white dwarf with a Hertzsprung gap star or a red giant ...

  18. Examining Flare Rates in Close M dwarf + White Dwarf binary pairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, Dylan P.; West, Andrew A.; Becker, Andrew C.

    2015-01-01

    We present a preliminary study to examine the statistical flare rates for M dwarfs with close white dwarf companions (WD+dM; typical separations disruption, tidal effects, and/or angular momentum exchange; increased stellar activity has long been attributed to an increase in stellar rotation. We examine the difference between the flare rates observed in close WD+dM binary systems and field M dwarfs. Our sample consists of a subset of 202 (70 of which are magnetically active) close WD+dM pairs from Morgan et al. that were observed in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Stripe 82, a transient observing mode where multi-epoch observations in the Sloan ugriz bands were obtained. We present results that will assist in identifying and categorizing transient phenomena and limiting expensive follow-up observations for future time-domain studies, such as LSST.

  19. COOL WHITE DWARFS IDENTIFIED IN THE SECOND DATA RELEASE OF THE UKIRT INFRARED DEEP SKY SURVEY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We have paired the second data release of the Large Area Survey of the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey with the fifth data release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to identify 10 cool white dwarf candidates, from their photometry and astrometry. Of these 10, one was previously known to be a very cool white dwarf. We have obtained optical spectroscopy for seven of the candidates using the GMOS-N spectrograph on Gemini North, and have confirmed all seven as white dwarfs. Our photometry and astrometry indicate that the remaining two objects are also white dwarfs. The model analysis of the photometry and available spectroscopy shows that the seven confirmed new white dwarfs, and the two new likely white dwarfs, have effective temperatures in the range of T eff = 5400-6600 K. Our analysis of the previously known white dwarf confirms that it is cool, with T eff = 3800 K. The cooling age for this dwarf is 8.7 Gyr, while that for the nine ∼ 6000 K white dwarfs is 1.8-3.6 Gyr. We are unable to determine the masses of the white dwarfs from the existing data, and therefore we cannot constrain the total ages of the white dwarfs. The large cooling age for the coolest white dwarf in the sample, combined with its low estimated tangential velocity, suggests that it is an old member of the thin disk, or a member of the thick disk of the Galaxy, with an age of 10-11 Gyr. The warmer white dwarfs appear to have velocities typical of the thick disk or even halo; these may be very old remnants of low-mass stars, or they may be relatively young thin-disk objects with unusually high space motion.

  20. GW Librae: A unique laboratory for pulsations in an accreting white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Toloza, O; Hermes, J J; Townsley, D M; Schreiber, M R; Szkody, P; Pala, A; Beuermann, K; Bildsten, L; Breedt, E; Cook, M; Godon, P; Henden, A A; Hubeny, I; Knigge, C; Long, K S; Marsh, T R; de Martino, D; Mukadam, A S; Myers, G; Nelson, P; Oksanen, A; Patterson, J; Sion, E M; Zorotovic, M

    2016-01-01

    Non-radial pulsations have been identified in a number of accreting white dwarfs in cataclysmic variables. These stars offer insight into the excitation of pulsation modes in atmospheres with mixed compositions of hydrogen, helium, and metals, and the response of these modes to changes in the white dwarf temperature. Among all pulsating cataclysmic variable white dwarfs, GW Librae stands out by having a well-established observational record of three independent pulsation modes that disappeared when the white dwarf temperature rose dramatically following its 2007 accretion outburst. Our analysis of HST ultraviolet spectroscopy taken in 2002, 2010 and 2011, showed that pulsations produce variations in the white dwarf effective temperature as predicted by theory. Additionally in May~2013, we obtained new HST/COS ultraviolet observations that displayed unexpected behaviour: besides showing variability at ~275s, which is close to the post-outburst pulsations detected with HST in 2010 and 2011, the white dwarf exhi...

  1. Revisiting the Impact of Axions in the Cooling of White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Melendez, Brenda; Althaus, Leandro

    2012-01-01

    It has been shown that the shape of the luminosity function of white dwarfs can be a powerful tool to check for the possible existence of DFSZ-axions. In particular, Isern et al. (2008) showed that, if the axion mass is of the order of a few meV, then the white dwarf luminosity function is sensitive enough to detect their existence. For axion masses of about $m_a > 5$ meV the axion emission can be a primary cooling mechanism for the white dwarf and the feedback of the axion emission into the thermal structure of the white dwarf needs to be considered. Here we present computations of white dwarf cooling sequences that take into account the effect of axion emission in a self consistent way by means of full stellar evolution computations. Then, we study and discuss the impact of the axion emission in the white dwarf luminosity function.

  2. An independent test of the photometric selection of white dwarf candidates using LAMOST DR3

    OpenAIRE

    Fusillo, N.P. Gentile; Rebassa-Mansergas, A.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Liu, X. -W.; Ren, J. J.; Koester, D.; Zhan, Y.; Hou, Y.; Wang, Y.; Yang, M.

    2015-01-01

    In Gentile Fusillo et al. (2015) we developed a selection method for white dwarf candidates which makes use of photometry, colours and proper motions to calculate a probability of being a white dwarf (Pwd). The application of our method to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) data release 10 resulted in nearly 66,000 photometrically selected objects with a derived Pwd, approximately 21000 of which are high confidence white dwarf candidates. Here we present an independent test of our selection ...

  3. A photometric selection of White Dwarf candidates in SDSS DR10

    OpenAIRE

    Fusillo, Nicola Pietro Gentile; Gaensicke, Boris T.; Greiss, Sandra

    2015-01-01

    We present a method which uses cuts in colour-colour and reduced proper motion-colour space to select white dwarfs without the recourse to spectroscopy while allowing an adjustable compromise between completeness and efficiency. Rather than just producing a list of white dwarf candidates, our method calculates a probability of being a white dwarf (Pwd) for any object with available multi band photometry and proper motion. We applied this method to all objects in the SDSS DR10 photometric foot...

  4. The impact of chemical differentiation of white dwarfs on thermonuclear supernovae

    OpenAIRE

    Bravo Guil, Eduardo; Althaus, Leandro Gabriel; García-Berro Montilla, Enrique; Domínguez, Inmaculada

    2010-01-01

    Aims. Gravitational settling of 22Ne in cooling white dwarfs can affect the outcome of thermonuclear supernovae. We investigate how the supernova energetics and nucleosynthesis are in turn influenced by this process. We use realistic chemical profiles derived from state-of-the-art white dwarf cooling sequences. The cooling sequences provide a link between the white dwarf chemical structure and the age of the supernova progenitor system. Methods. The cooling sequence of a 1 M whit...

  5. The fate of accreting white dwarfs: type I supernovae vs. collapse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The fate of accreting white dwarfs is examined with respect to thermonuclear explosion or collapse. The paper was presented to the conference on ''The early universe and its evolution'', Erice, Italy 1986. Effects of accretion and the fate of white dwarfs, models for type 1a and 1b supernovae, collapse induced by carbon deflagration at high density, and fate of double white dwarfs, are all discussed. (U.K.)

  6. A search for white dwarfs in the Galactic plane: the field and the open cluster population

    OpenAIRE

    Raddi, R; Catalan, S.; Gaensicke, B.T.; Hermes, J. J.; R. Napiwotzki; Koester, D.; Tremblay, P. -E.; Barentsen, G.; Farnhill, H.J.; Mohr-Smith, M.; Drew, J. E.; De Groot, P. J.; Guzman-Ramirez, L.; Parker, Q.A.; Steeghs, D.

    2016-01-01

    We investigated the prospects for systematic searches of white dwarfs at low Galactic latitudes, using the VLT Survey Telescope (VST) H$\\alpha$ Photometric Survey of the Galactic plane and Bulge (VPHAS+). We targeted 17 white dwarf candidates along sightlines of known open clusters, aiming to identify potential cluster members. We confirmed all the 17 white dwarf candidates from blue/optical spectroscopy, and we suggest five of them to be likely cluster members. We estimated progenitor ages a...

  7. On the maximum mass of general relativistic uniformly rotating white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs are analyzed within the framework of general relativity. Hartle's formalism is applied to construct self-consistently the internal and external solutions to the Einstein equations. The mass, the radius, the moment of inertia and quadrupole moment of rotating white dwarfs have been calculated as a function of both the central density and rotation period of the star. The maximum mass of rotating white dwarfs for stable configurations has been obtained. (author)

  8. On the Maximum Mass of General Relativistic Uniformly Rotating White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Boshkayev, Kuantay; Ruffini, Remo; 10.1142/S0218301311040177

    2012-01-01

    The properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs are analyzed within the framework of general relativity. Hartle's formalism is applied to construct self-consistently the internal and external solutions to the Einstein equations. The mass, the radius, the moment of inertia and quadrupole moment of rotating white dwarfs have been calculated as a function of both the central density and rotation period of the star. The maximum mass of rotating white dwarfs for stable configurations has been obtained.

  9. Hot C-rich white dwarfs: testing the DB-DQ transition through pulsations

    OpenAIRE

    Córsico, A. H.; Romero, A. D.; Althaus, L. G.; García-Berro, E.

    2009-01-01

    Hot DQ white dwarfs constitute a new class of white dwarf stars, uncovered recently within the framework of the SDSS project. Recently, three hot DQ white dwarfs have been reported to exhibit photometric variability with periods compatible with pulsation g-modes. Here, we present a nonadiabatic pulsation analysis of the recently discovered carbon-rich hot DQ white dwarf stars. One of our main aims is to test the convective-mixing picture for the origin of hot DQs through the pulsational prope...

  10. Cool White Dwarfs Identified in the Second Data Release of the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey

    CERN Document Server

    Lodieu, N; Bergeron, P; Nitta, A; 10.1088/0004-637X/692/2/1506

    2009-01-01

    We have paired the Second Data Release of the Large Area Survey of the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey with the Fifth Data Release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to identify ten cool white dwarf candidates, from their photometry and astrometry. Of these ten, one was previously known to be a very cool white dwarf. We have obtained optical spectroscopy for seven of the candidates using the GMOS-N spectrograph on Gemini North, and have confirmed all seven as white dwarfs. Our photometry and astrometry indicates that the remaining two objects are also white dwarfs. Model analysis of the photometry and available spectroscopy shows that the seven confirmed new white dwarfs, and the two new likely white dwarfs, have effective temperatures in the range Teff = 5400-6600 K. Our analysis of the previously known white dwarf confirms that it is cool, with Teff = 3800 K. The cooling age for this dwarf is 8.7 Gyr, while that of the nine ~6000 K white dwarfs is 1.8-3.6 Gyr. We are unable to determine the masses of the white ...

  11. GASEOUS MATERIAL ORBITING THE POLLUTED, DUSTY WHITE DWARF HE 13492305

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present new spectroscopic observations of the polluted, dusty, helium-dominated atmosphere white dwarf star HE 13492305. Optical spectroscopy reveals weak Ca II infrared triplet emission indicating that metallic gas debris orbits and is accreted by the white dwarf. Atmospheric abundances are measured for magnesium and silicon while upper limits for iron and oxygen are derived from the available optical spectroscopy. HE 13492305 is the first gas disk-hosting white dwarf star identified among previously known polluted white dwarfs. Further characterization of the parent body polluting this star will require ultraviolet spectroscopy.

  12. DISCOVERY OF TWO NEW PULSATING DA (ZZ CETI) WHITE DWARFS

    CERN Document Server

    Chabrier, G; Fontaine, G; Saumon, D S; Chabrier, Gilles; Brassard, Pierre; Fontaine, Gilles; Saumon, Didier

    2001-01-01

    We present new cooling sequences, color-magnitude diagrams, and color-color diagrams for cool white dwarfs with pure hydrogen atmospheres down to an effective temperature $\\te=1500$ K. We include a more detailed treatment of the physics of the fully-ionized interior, particularly an improved discussion of the thermodynamics of the temperature-dependent ion-ion and ion-electron contributions of the quantum, relativistic electron-ion plasma. The present calculations also incorporate accurate boundary conditions between the degenerate core and the outermost layers as well as updated atmosphere models including the H$_2$-H$_2$ induced-dipole absorption. We examine the differences on the cooling time of the star arising from uncertainties in the initial carbon-oxygen profile and the core-envelope $L$-$T_c$ relation. The maximum time delay due to crystallization-induced chemical fractionation remains substantial, from $\\sim 1.0$ Gyr for 0.5 and 1.2 $\\msol$ white dwarfs to $\\sim 1.5$ Gyr for 0.6 to 0.8 $\\msol$ white...

  13. Discovery of a Magnetic White Dwarf/Probable Brown Dwarf Short-Period Binary

    CERN Document Server

    Schmidt, G D; Silvestri, N M; Cushing, M C; Liebert, J; Smith, P S

    2005-01-01

    The magnetic white dwarf SDSS J121209.31+013627.7 exhibits a weak, narrow Halpha emission line whose radial velocity and strength are modulated on a period of ~90 minutes. Though indicative of irradiation on a nearby companion, no cool continuum component is evident in the optical spectrum, and IR photometry limits the absolute magnitude of the companion to M_J > 13.37. This is equivalent to an isolated L5 dwarf, with T_eff < 1700 K. Consideration of possible evolutionary histories suggests that, until ~0.6 Gyr ago, the brown dwarf orbited a ~1.5 M_sun main seqeunce star with P ~ 1 yr, a ~ 1 AU, thus resembling many of the gaseous superplanets being found in extrasolar planet searches. Common envelope evolution when the massive star left the main sequence reduced the period to only a few hours, and ensuing angular momentum loss has further degraded the orbit. The binary is ripe for additional observations aimed at better studying brown dwarfs and the effects of irradiation on their structure.

  14. Search for carbon stars and DZ white dwarfs in SDSS spectra survey through machine learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Si, JianMin; Luo, ALi; Li, YinBi; Zhang, JianNan; Wei, Peng; Wu, YiHong; Wu, FuChao; Zhao, YongHeng

    2014-01-01

    Carbon stars and DZ white dwarfs are two types of rare objects in the Galaxy. In this paper, we have applied the label propagation algorithm to search for these two types of stars from Data Release Eight (DR8) of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), which is verified to be efficient by calculating precision and recall. From nearly two million spectra including stars, galaxies and QSOs, we have found 260 new carbon stars in which 96 stars have been identified as dwarfs and 7 identified as giants, and 11 composition spectrum systems (each of them consists of a white dwarf and a carbon star). Similarly, using the label propagation method, we have obtained 29 new DZ white dwarfs from SDSS DR8. Compared with PCA reconstructed spectra, the 29 findings are typical DZ white dwarfs. We have also investigated their proper motions by comparing them with proper motion distribution of 9,374 white dwarfs, and found that they satisfy the current observed white dwarfs by SDSS generally have large proper motions. In addition, we have estimated their effective temperatures by fitting the polynomial relationship between effective temperature and g-r color of known DZ white dwarfs, and found 12 of the 29 new DZ white dwarfs are cool, in which nine are between 6,000 K and 6,600 K, and three are below 6,000 K.

  15. Explosion of white dwarfs harboring hybrid CONe cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravo, E.; Gil-Pons, P.; Gutiérrez, J. L.; Doherty, C. L.

    2016-04-01

    Recently, it has been found that off-center carbon burning in a subset of intermediate-mass stars does not propagate all the way to the center, resulting in a class of hybrid CONe cores. The implications of a significant presence of carbon in the resulting massive degenerate cores have not been thoroughly explored so far. Here, we consider the possibility that stars hosting these hybrid CONe cores might belong to a close binary system and, eventually, become white dwarfs accreting from a nondegenerate companion at rates leading to a supernova explosion. We computed the hydrodynamical phase of the explosion of Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarfs harboring hybrid cores, assuming that the explosion starts at the center; this explosion occurs either as a detonation, as may be expected in some degenerate merging scenarios, or as a deflagration that afterward transitions into a delayed detonation. We assume these hybrid cores are made of a central CO volume, of mass MCO, surrounded by an ONe shell. We show that, in the case of a pure detonation, a medium-sized carbon-rich region, MCO (activated during the ensuing cooling and shrinking phase of the remnant. In contrast, and somehow paradoxically, delayed detonations do not leave remnants other than for the minimum MCO we explored of MCO = 0.2 M⊙, and even in this case the remnant is as small as 0.13 M⊙. The ejecta produced by these delayed detonations are characterized by slightly smaller masses of 56Ni and substantially smaller kinetic energies than the ejecta obtained for a delayed detonation of a "normal" CO white dwarf. The optical emission expected from these explosions most likely do not match the observational properties of typical Type Ia supernovae, although they make interesting candidates for the subluminous class of SN2002cx-like or SNIax.

  16. The Discovery of the Most Metal-Rich White Dwarf: Composition of a Tidally Disrupted Extrasolar Dwarf Planet

    OpenAIRE

    Dufour, P; Kilic, M.; Fontaine, G.; Bergeron, P.; Lachapelle, F. -R.; Kleinman, S. J.; S. K. Leggett

    2010-01-01

    Cool white dwarf stars are usually found to have an outer atmosphere that is practically pure in hydrogen or helium. However, a small fraction have traces of heavy elements that must originate from the accretion of extrinsic material, most probably circumstellar matter. Upon examining thousands of Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra, we discovered that the helium-atmosphere white dwarf SDSS J073842.56+183509.6 shows the most severe metal pollution ever seen in the outermost layers of such stars....

  17. V2051 Oph: a white dwarf eclipsing cataclysmic variable

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Some initial results are reported of a programme of spectroscopy and UBV photometry of the eclipsing cataclysmic variable V2051 Oph. An orbital period of 89.9 min is determined and strong evidence is found that the white dwarf component is eclipsed. Flickering activity is strong, but the orbital photometric hump is variable in strength. The spectrum is dominated by strong Balmer emission lines, with weaker He I lambda 4471 emission. All emission lines are double peaked and are severely distorted during eclipse. (author)

  18. BPM 31594: A new Southern-Hemisphere variable white dwarf

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The results to date of a Southern Hemisphere search for new members of the ZZ Ceti class of variable stars are presented. BPM 31594 was found to be variable and is a probable member of this class. This star exhibited a change in period by a factor of 2 in one day, and this change is discussed with respect to mode changes in nonradially oscillating white dwarf models. It is found that mode changes do not easily give a factor of 2 change in the observed period

  19. The Frequency of Debris Disks at White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Barber, Sara D.; Patterson, Adam J.; Kilic, Mukremin; Leggett, S. K.; Dufour, P.; Bloom, J. S.; Starr, D. L.

    2012-01-01

    We present near- and mid-infrared photometry and spectroscopy from PAIRITEL, IRTF, and Spitzer of a metallicity-unbiased sample of 117 cool, hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs from the Palomar-Green survey and find five with excess radiation in the infrared, translating to a 4.3+2.7-1.2% frequency of debris disks. This is slightly higher than, but consistent with the results of previous surveys. Using an initial-final mass relation, we apply this result to the progenitor stars of our sample and...

  20. Evidence for the White Dwarf Nature of Mira B

    OpenAIRE

    Sokoloski, J. L.; Bildsten, Lars

    2010-01-01

    The nature of the accreting companion to Mira --- the prototypical pulsating asymptotic giant branch star --- has been a matter of debate for more than 25 years. Here we use a quantitative analysis of the rapid optical brightness variations from this companion, Mira B, which we observed with the Nickel telescope at Lick Observatory, to show that it is a white dwarf (WD). The amplitude of aperiodic optical variations on time scales of minutes to tens of minutes (approximately 0.2 mag) is consi...

  1. Death by Dynamics: Planetoid-Induced Explosions on White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    di Stefano, Rosanne; Fisher, Robert; Guillochon, James; Steiner, James F.

    2015-01-01

    At intervals as short as ten thousand years, each white dwarf (WD) passes within a solar radius of a planetoid, i.e., a comet, asteroid, or planet. Gravitational tidal forces tear the planetoid apart; its metal-rich debris falls onto the WD, enriching the atmosphere. A third of WDs exhibit atmospheric "pollution". For roughly every hundred planetoid disruptions, a planetoid collides with a WD. We simulate a small number of collisions, in which "death-by-dynamics" refers to the fate of the pla...

  2. White dwarfs in an ungravity-inspired model

    CERN Document Server

    Bertolami, Orfeu

    2016-01-01

    An ungravity-inspired model is employed to examine the astrophysical parameters of white dwarf stars (WDs) using polytropic and degenerate gas approaches. Based on the observed properties such as mass, radius, and luminosity of selected WDs, namely, Sirius B and $\\epsilon$ Reticulum, bounds on the characteristic length and scaling dimension of the ungravity (UG) model are estimated. The UG effect on the Chandrasekhar limit for WDs is shown. The UG model is examined in the study of ultra-massive WDs, e.g., EUVE J1746-706. In the contact of UG inspired model, a new location for some WDs on the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram is found.

  3. Electrical conductivity of plasmas of DB white dwarf atmospheres

    OpenAIRE

    Sreckovic, V. A.; Ignjatovic, Lj. M.; Mihajlov, A. A.; Dimitrijevic, M.S.

    2012-01-01

    The static electrical conductivity of non-ideal, dense, partially ionized helium plasma was calculated over a wide range of plasma parameters: temperatures $1\\cdot 10^{4}\\textrm{K} \\lesssim T \\lesssim 1\\cdot 10^{5}\\textrm{K}$ and mass density $1 \\times 10^{-6} \\textrm{g}/\\textrm{cm}^{3} \\lesssim \\rho \\lesssim 2 \\textrm{g}/\\textrm{cm}^{3}$. Calculations of electrical conductivity of plasma for the considered range of plasma parameters are of interest for DB white dwarf atmospheres with effecti...

  4. Explosion of white dwarfs harboring hybrid CONe cores

    CERN Document Server

    Bravo, E; Gutiérrez, J L; Doherty, C L

    2016-01-01

    Recently, it has been found that off-centre carbon burning in a subset of intermediate-mass stars does not propagate all the way to the center, resulting in a class of hybrid CONe cores. Here, we consider the possibility that stars hosting these hybrid CONe cores might belong to a close binary system and, eventually, become white dwarfs accreting from a non-degenerate companion at rates leading to a supernova explosion. We have computed the hydrodynamical phase of the explosion of Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarfs harboring hybrid cores, assuming that the explosion starts at the center, either as a detonation (as may be expected in some degenerate merging scenarios) or as a deflagration (that afterwards transitions into a delayed detonation). We assume these hybrid cores are made of a central CO volume, of mass M(CO), surrounded by an ONe shell. We show that, in case of a pure detonation, a medium-sized CO-rich region, M(CO)<0.4 Msun, results in the ejection of a small fraction of the mantle while leaving a ...

  5. Improved synthetic spectra of helium-core white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Rohrmann, R D; Althaus, L G; Benvenuto, O G

    2002-01-01

    We examine the emergent fluxes from helium-core white dwarfs following their evolution from the end of pre-white dwarf stages down to advanced cooling stages. For this purpose, we include a detailed treatment of the physics of the atmosphere, particularly an improved representation of the state of the gas by taking into account non-ideal effects according to the so-called occupation probability formalism. The present calculations also incorporate hydrogen line opacity from Lyman, Balmer and Paschen series, pseudo-continuum absorptions and new updated induced-dipole absorption from H$_2$-H$_2$, H$_2$-He and H-He pairs. We find that the non-ideal effects and line absorption alter the appearance of the stellar spectrum and have a significant influence upon the photometric colours in the UBVRI-JHKL system. This occurs specially for hot models $T_{\\rm eff}\\ga 8000$ due to line and pseudo-continuum opacities, and for cool models $T_{\\rm eff}\\la 4000$ where the perturbation of atoms and molecules by neighbour partic...

  6. White Dwarfs for Calibrating the Dark Energy Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allyn Smith, J.; Wester, William; Tucker, Douglas Lee; Fix, Mees B.; Tremblay, Pier-Emmanuel; Gulledge, Deborah J.; McDonald, Christopher P.; Allam, Sahar S.; James, David

    2016-01-01

    The Dark Energy Survey (DES) is surveying some 5000 square degrees in the southern hemisphere in the grizY filter system using the new Dark Energy Camera. In order to verify meeting photometric calibration requirements, we are obtaining imaging of several hundred white dwarfs (confirmed and candidates) to select nearly 100 or more hydrogen atmosphere (DA) white dwarfs for spectroscopy in the DES footprint. The spectra that are obtained will be extracted and used to derive synthetic spectra that can be compared with DES measurements from imaging in each of the DES grizY filters. This comparison should be able to verify and help calibrate the survey to a level better than 2% photometrically and to better than 0.5% in colors. We will discuss the observational and modeling effort required to develop a well-characterized DAs sample and present some preliminary results. This set would form the basis of a larger set of southern hemisphere survey calibration stars, and additionally serve as a legacy calibration set in the upcoming era of the LSST survey and the giant segmented mirror observatories. These stars will be used to establish and monitor the color zero points for the DES photometric system and can be used to search for systematic errors in the color zero points over the DES footprint. These stars will also be used as some of the primary standards for the DES photometric system which will allow nightly atmospheric monitoring during DES operations.

  7. SGRs and AXPs: Massive Rotating White Dwarfs versus Magnetars

    CERN Document Server

    Malheiro, Manuel; Ruffini, Remo

    2011-01-01

    The recent observations of SGR 0418+5729 offer an authentic Rosetta Stone for deciphering the energy source of Soft Gamma Ray Repeaters (SGRs) and Anomalous X-ray Pulsars (AXPs). The "magnetar" model, appeals to a yet untested new energy source in astrophysical systems: bulk magnetic energy. It leads for SGR 0418+5729 to results in contradiction with observations. It is shown how a consistent model for SGRs and AXPs can be expressed in terms of canonical physics and astrophysics within massive, fast rotating, and highly magnetized white dwarfs. The pioneering work of B. Paczynski (1990) on 1E 2259+586 is extended and further developed to describe the observed properties of all known SGRS and AXPs by assuming spin-down powered massive, fast rotating, and highly magnetized white dwarfs. Within this model, we obtain the theoretical prediction for the lower limit of the first time derivative of the rotational period of SGR 0418+5729, $\\dot{P} \\geq L_X P^3/(4\\pi^2 I)=1.18\\times 10^{-16}$ s/s being $L_X$ and $P$ th...

  8. Thermonuclear Supernova Explosions From Hybrid White Dwarf Progenitors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willcox, Donald E.; Townsley, Dean; Calder, Alan; Denissenkov, Pavel; Herwig, Falk

    2016-01-01

    Motivated by recent results in stellar evolution in which convective boundary mixing in SAGB stars can give rise to hybrid white dwarf (WD) stars with a C-O core inside an O-Ne shell, we simulate thermonuclear (Type Ia) supernovae from these hybrid progenitors. We use the FLASH code to perform multidimensional simulations in the deflagration to detonation transition (DDT) explosion paradigm from progenitor models produced with the MESA stellar evolution code that include the thermal energetics of the Urca process. We performed a suite of DDT simulations over a range of ignition conditions and compare to previous results from a suite of C-O white dwarfs. Despite significant variability within each suite, distinguishing trends are apparent in their Ni-56 yields and the kinetic properties of their ejecta. We comment on the feasibility of these hybrid WD explosions as the source of some classes of observed subluminous events. This research was supported in part by the U.S. Department of Energy under grant DE-FG02-87ER40317 and by resources at the Institute for Advanced Computational Science at Stony Brook University. The software used in this work was in part developed by the DOE-supported ASC/Alliances Center for Astrophysical Thermonuclear Flashes at the University of Chicago.

  9. Are There Unstable Planetary Systems Around White Dwarfs?

    CERN Document Server

    Debes, J H; Debes, John H.; Sigurdsson, Steinn

    2002-01-01

    The presence of planets around solar-type stars suggests that many white dwarfs should have relic planetary systems. While planets closer than $\\sim$ 5~AU will most likely not survive the post-main sequence lifetime of its parent star, any planet with semimajor axis $>$ 5~AU will survive, and its semimajor axis will increase as the central star loses mass. Since the stability of adjacent orbits to mutual planet-planet perturbations depends on the ratio of the planet mass to the central star's mass, some planets in previously stable orbits around a star undergoing mass loss will become unstable. We show that when mass loss is slow, systems of two planets that are marginally stable can become unstable to close encounters, while for three planets the timescale for close approaches decreases significantly with increasing mass ratio. These processes could explain the presence of anomalous IR excesses around white dwarfs that cannot be explained by close companions, such as G29-38, and may also be an important fact...

  10. An Ultramassive 1.28 M$_\\odot$ White Dwarf in NGC 2099

    CERN Document Server

    Cummings, Jeffrey D; Tremblay, P -E; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico; Bergeron, P

    2016-01-01

    With the Keck I Low-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer we have observed nine white dwarf candidates in the very rich open cluster NGC 2099 (M37). The spectroscopy shows seven to be DA white dwarfs, one to be a DB white dwarf, and one to be a DZ white dwarf. Three of these DA white dwarfs are consistent with singly evolved cluster membership: an ultramassive (1.28$^{+0.05}_{-0.08}$ M$_\\odot$) and two intermediate-mass (0.70 and 0.75 M$_\\odot$) white dwarfs. Analysis of their cooling ages allows us to calculate their progenitor masses and establish new constraints on the initial-final mass relation. The intermediate-mass white dwarfs are in strong agreement with previous work over this mass regime. The ultramassive white dwarf has $V$ = 24.5, $\\sim$2 mag fainter than the other two remnants. The spectrum of this star has lower quality, so the derived stellar properties (e.g., T$_{\\rm eff}$, log g) have uncertainties that are several times higher than the brighter counterparts. We measure these uncertainties and est...

  11. GW Librae: A unique laboratory for pulsations in an accreting white dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toloza, O.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Hermes, J. J.; Townsley, D. M.; Schreiber, M. R.; Szkody, P.; Pala, A.; Beuermann, K.; Bildsten, L.; Breedt, E.; Cook, M.; Godon, P.; Henden, A. A.; Hubeny, I.; Knigge, C.; Long, K. S.; Marsh, T. R.; de Martino, D.; Mukadam, A. S.; Myers, G.; Nelson, P.; Oksanen, A.; Patterson, J.; Sion, E. M.; Zorotovic, M.

    2016-04-01

    Non-radial pulsations have been identified in a number of accreting white dwarfs in cataclysmic variables. These stars offer insight into the excitation of pulsation modes in atmospheres with mixed compositions of hydrogen, helium, and metals, and the response of these modes to changes in the white dwarf temperature. Among all pulsating cataclysmic variable white dwarfs, GW Librae stands out by having a well-established observational record of three independent pulsation modes that disappeared when the white dwarf temperature rose dramatically following its 2007 accretion outburst. Our analysis of HST ultraviolet spectroscopy taken in 2002, 2010 and 2011, showed that pulsations produce variations in the white dwarf effective temperature as predicted by theory. Additionally in May 2013, we obtained new HST/COS ultraviolet observations that displayed unexpected behaviour: besides showing variability at ≃275 s, which is close to the post-outburst pulsations detected with HST in 2010 and 2011, the white dwarf exhibits high-amplitude variability on a ≃4.4 h time-scale. We demonstrate that this variability is produced by an increase of the temperature of a region on white dwarf covering up to ≃30 per cent of the visible white dwarf surface. We argue against a short-lived accretion episode as the explanation of such heating, and discuss this event in the context of non-radial pulsations on a rapidly rotating star.

  12. A white dwarf cooling age of 8 Gyr for NGC 6791 from physical separation processes

    CERN Document Server

    García-Berro, Enrique; Althaus, Leandro G; Renedo, Isabel; Lorén-Aguilar, Pablo; Córsico, Alejandro H; Rohrmann, René D; Salaris, Maurizio; Isern, Jordi

    2010-01-01

    NGC 6791 is a well studied open cluster1 that it is so close to us that can be imaged down to very faint luminosities. The main sequence turn-off age (~8 Gyr) and the age derived from the termination of the white dwarf cooling sequence (~6 Gyr) are significantly different. One possible explanation is that as white dwarfs cool, one of the ashes of helium burning, 22Ne, sinks in the deep interior of these stars. At lower temperatures, white dwarfs are expected to crystallise and phase separation of the main constituents of the core of a typical white dwarf, 12C and 16O, is expected to occur. This sequence of events is expected to introduce significant delays in the cooling times, but has not hitherto been proven. Here we report that, as theoretically anticipated, physical separation processes occur in the cores of white dwarfs, solving the age discrepancy for NGC 6791.

  13. SWIFT J1644+57: A WHITE DWARF TIDALLY DISRUPTED BY A 104 M? BLACK HOLE?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We propose that the remarkable object Swift J1644+57, in which multiple recurring hard X-ray flares were seen over a span of several days, is a system in which a white dwarf was tidally disrupted by an intermediate-mass black hole. Disruption of a white dwarf rather than a main-sequence star offers a number of advantages in understanding the multiple, and short, timescales seen in the light curve of this system. In particular, the short internal dynamical timescale of a white dwarf offers a more natural way of understanding the short rise times (?100 s) observed. The relatively long intervals between flares (?5 104 s) may also be readily understood as the period between successive pericenter passages of the remnant white dwarf. In addition, the expected jet power is larger when a white dwarf is disrupted. If this model is correct, the black hole responsible must have a mass ?5 M?.

  14. Radius constraints from high-speed photometry of 20 low-mass white dwarf binaries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We carry out high-speed photometry on 20 of the shortest-period, detached white dwarf binaries known and discover systems with eclipses, ellipsoidal variations (due to tidal deformations of the visible white dwarf), and Doppler beaming. All of the binaries contain low-mass white dwarfs with orbital periods of less than four hr. Our observations identify the first eight tidally distorted white dwarfs, four of which are reported for the first time here. We use these observations to place empirical constraints on the mass-radius relationship for extremely low-mass (?0.30 M ?) white dwarfs. We also detect Doppler beaming in several of these binaries, which confirms their high-amplitude radial-velocity variability. All of these systems are strong sources of gravitational radiation, and long-term monitoring of those that display ellipsoidal variations can be used to detect spin-up of the tidal bulge due to orbital decay.

  15. Transit surveys for Earths in the habitable zones of white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Agol, Eric

    2011-01-01

    To date the search for habitable Earth-like planets has primarily focused on nuclear burning stars. I propose that this search should be expanded to cool white dwarf stars that have expended their nuclear fuel. I define the continuously habitable zone of white dwarfs, and show that it extends from ~0.005 to 0.02 AU for white dwarfs with masses from 0.4 to 0.9 solar masses, temperatures less than 10,000 K, and habitable durations of at least 3 Gyr. As they are similar in size to Earth, white d...

  16. An irradiated brown-dwarf companion to an accreting white dwarf

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández Santisteban, Juan V.; Knigge, Christian; Littlefair, Stuart P.; Breton, Rene P.; Dhillon, Vikram S.; Gänsicke, Boris T.; Marsh, Thomas R.; Pretorius, Magaretha L.; Southworth, John; Hauschildt, Peter H.

    2016-05-01

    Interacting compact binary systems provide a natural laboratory in which to study irradiated substellar objects. As the mass-losing secondary (donor) in these systems makes a transition from the stellar to the substellar regime, it is also irradiated by the primary (compact accretor). The internal and external energy fluxes are both expected to be comparable in these objects, providing access to an unexplored irradiation regime. The atmospheric properties of donors are largely unknown, but could be modified by the irradiation. To constrain models of donor atmospheres, it is necessary to obtain accurate observational estimates of their physical properties (masses, radii, temperatures and albedos). Here we report the spectroscopic detection and characterization of an irradiated substellar donor in an accreting white-dwarf binary system. Our near-infrared observations allow us to determine a model-independent mass estimate for the donor of 0.055 ± 0.008 solar masses and an average spectral type of L1 ± 1, supporting both theoretical predictions and model-dependent observational constraints that suggest that the donor is a brown dwarf. Our time-resolved data also allow us to estimate the average irradiation-induced temperature difference between the dayside and nightside of the substellar donor (57 kelvin) and the maximum difference between the hottest and coolest parts of its surface (200 kelvin). The observations are well described by a simple geometric reprocessing model with a bolometric (Bond) albedo of less than 0.54 at the 2σ confidence level, consistent with high reprocessing efficiency, but poor lateral heat redistribution in the atmosphere of the brown-dwarf donor. These results add to our knowledge of binary evolution, in that the donor has survived the transition from the stellar to the substellar regime, and of substellar atmospheres, in that we have been able to test a regime in which the irradiation and the internal energy of a brown dwarf are comparable.

  17. Calcium-Rich Gap Transients: Tidal Detonations of White Dwarfs?

    CERN Document Server

    Sell, P H; Kotak, R; Knigge, C; Sand, D J

    2015-01-01

    We hypothesize that at least some of the recently discovered class of calcium-rich gap transients are tidal detonation events of white dwarfs (WDs) by black holes (BHs) or possibly neutron stars. We show that the properties of the calcium-rich gap transients agree well with the predictions of the tidal detonation model. Under the predictions of this model, we use a follow-up X-ray observation of one of these transients, SN 2012hn, to place weak upper limits on the detonator mass of this system that include all intermediate-mass BHs (IMBHs). As these transients are preferentially in the stellar haloes of galaxies, we discuss the possibility that these transients are tidal detonations of WDs caused by random flyby encounters with IMBHs in dwarf galaxies or globular clusters. This possibility has been already suggested in the literature but without connection to the calcium-rich gap transients. In order for the random flyby cross-section to be high enough, these events would have to be occurring inside these den...

  18. THE FREQUENCY OF DEBRIS DISKS AT WHITE DWARFS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barber, Sara D.; Patterson, Adam J.; Kilic, Mukremin [Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Oklahoma, 440 W. Brooks St., Norman, OK 73019 (United States); Leggett, S. K. [Gemini Observatory, 670 N. A' ohoku Place, Hilo, HI 96720 (United States); Dufour, P. [Departement de Physique, Universite de Montreal, C.P. 6128, Succursale Centre-Ville, Montreal, Quebec H3C 3J7 (Canada); Bloom, J. S.; Starr, D. L., E-mail: barber@nhn.ou.edu [Department of Astronomy, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)

    2012-11-20

    We present near- and mid-infrared photometry and spectroscopy from PAIRITEL, IRTF, and Spitzer of a metallicity-unbiased sample of 117 cool, hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs (WDs) from the Palomar-Green survey and find five with excess radiation in the infrared, translating to a 4.3{sup +2.7} {sub -1.2}% frequency of debris disks. This is slightly higher than, but consistent with the results of previous surveys. Using an initial-final mass relation, we apply this result to the progenitor stars of our sample and conclude that 1-7 M {sub Sun} stars have at least a 4.3% chance of hosting planets; an indirect probe of the intermediate-mass regime eluding conventional exoplanetary detection methods. Alternatively, we interpret this result as a limit on accretion timescales as a fraction of WD cooling ages; WDs accrete debris from several generations of disks for {approx}10 Myr. The average total mass accreted by these stars ranges from that of 200 km asteroids to Ceres-sized objects, indicating that WDs accrete moons and dwarf planets as well as solar system asteroid analogs.

  19. THE FREQUENCY OF DEBRIS DISKS AT WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present near- and mid-infrared photometry and spectroscopy from PAIRITEL, IRTF, and Spitzer of a metallicity-unbiased sample of 117 cool, hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs (WDs) from the Palomar-Green survey and find five with excess radiation in the infrared, translating to a 4.3+2.7–1.2% frequency of debris disks. This is slightly higher than, but consistent with the results of previous surveys. Using an initial-final mass relation, we apply this result to the progenitor stars of our sample and conclude that 1-7 M ☉ stars have at least a 4.3% chance of hosting planets; an indirect probe of the intermediate-mass regime eluding conventional exoplanetary detection methods. Alternatively, we interpret this result as a limit on accretion timescales as a fraction of WD cooling ages; WDs accrete debris from several generations of disks for ∼10 Myr. The average total mass accreted by these stars ranges from that of 200 km asteroids to Ceres-sized objects, indicating that WDs accrete moons and dwarf planets as well as solar system asteroid analogs.

  20. The cool DC white dwarf Stein 2051B

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wegner, G.; Yackovich, F. H.

    1983-01-01

    Visual scans from the Kitt-Peak 2.1-m telescope and UV spectra from the IUE satellite are combined in a spectroscopic study of the bright DC white dwarf, Stein 2051B. With a cooling age near 2 billion years, and a resulting atmospheric mass of hydrogen of the order of 6 x 10 to the 17th g, the accretion rate over the star's lifetime is less than 2 x 10 to the -25th solar masses/year. This is far below the predictions of standard accretion theories, and requires unreasonably strong suppression of hydrogen accretion in this star if the accretion-diffusion theory is to account for the carbon abundance found. It is suggested that the carbon may have been brought to the surface by convective mixing.

  1. Compact objects for everyone: I. White dwarf stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Based upon previous discussions on the structure of compact stars geared towards undergraduate physics students, a real experiment involving two upper-level undergraduate physics students, a beginning physics graduate and two advanced graduate students was conducted. A recent addition to the physics curriculum at Florida State University, The Physics of Stars, sparked quite a few students' interests in the subject matter involving stellar structure. This, coupled with Stars and statistical physics by Balian and Blaizot (1999 Am. J. Phys. 67 1189) and Neutron stars for undergraduates by Silbar and Reddy (2004 Am. J. Phys. 72 892), is the cornerstone of this small research group who tackled solving the structure equations for compact objects in the summer of 2004. Through the use of a simple finite-difference algorithm coupled to Microsoft Excel and Maple, solutions to the equations for stellar structure are presented in the Newtonian regime appropriate to the physics of white dwarf stars

  2. Dynamical Tides in Compact White Dwarf Binaries: Influence of Rotation

    CERN Document Server

    Fuller, Jim

    2014-01-01

    Tidal interactions play an important role in the evolution and ultimate fate of compact white dwarf (WD) binaries. Not only do tides affect the pre-merger state (such as temperature and rotation rate) of the WDs, but they may also determine which systems merge and which undergo stable mass transfer. In this paper, we attempt to quantify the effects of rotation on tidal angular momentum transport in binary stars, with specific calculations applied to WD stellar models. We incorporate the effect of rotation using the traditional approximation, in which the dynamically excited gravity waves within the WDs are transformed into gravito-inertial Hough waves. The Coriolis force has only a minor effect on prograde gravity waves, and previous results predicting the tidal spin-up and heating of inspiraling WDs are not significantly modified. However, rotation strongly alters retrograde gravity waves and inertial waves, with important consequences for the tidal spin-down of accreting WDs. We identify new dynamical tidal...

  3. Constraints on the gravitational constant from observations of white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recently some authors have questioned whether Newton's law of gravitation is actually true on scales less than 1 km. The available constraints on the gravitational constant show that its laboratory value G0 may differ from the value at infinity Gsub(infinity) by approximately 40%. Long (1976) reported experimental evidence for departures from Newton's law. In this note it is shown that the difference between G0 and Gsub(infinity) modifies the mass-radius relation of degenerate stars. The observations of white dwarfs are consistent with the theory of stellar evolution only if G0 differs from Gsub(infinity) by not more than approximately 10%. This estimate may be improved by a higher accuracy of observations. (Auth.)

  4. LOW MASS STELLAR AND SUBSTELLAR COMPANIONSHIP AMONG NEARBY WHITE DWARFS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Radiszcz

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This work is a systematic, deep search for stellar and substellar objects orbiting nearby white dwarfs (WDs. The scienti c interest spans testing speci c predictions of common envelope evolutionary phase models, as well as providing constraints to planetary system evolution in advanced stages of its parent star (Livio & Soker 1984; Willes & Wu 2005. Additionally, we seek to explore the hypothesis about the origin of metal lines in hydrogen WDs, produced by the accretion of tidal disturbed asteroidal or cometary material. This could be linked to the presence of a undetected substellar object that perturbed the orbits of these asteroids or comets (Debes & Sigurdsson 2002. Here, we show preliminary results of this project.

  5. A search for white dwarfs in the Galactic plane: the field and the open cluster population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raddi, R.; Catalán, S.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Hermes, J. J.; Napiwotzki, R.; Koester, D.; Tremblay, P.-E.; Barentsen, G.; Farnhill, H. J.; Mohr-Smith, M.; Drew, J. E.; Groot, P. J.; Guzman-Ramirez, L.; Parker, Q. A.; Steeghs, D.; Zijlstra, A.

    2016-04-01

    We investigated the prospects for systematic searches of white dwarfs at low Galactic latitudes, using the VLT Survey Telescope H α Photometric Survey of the Galactic plane and Bulge (VPHAS+). We targeted 17 white dwarf candidates along sightlines of known open clusters, aiming to identify potential cluster members. We confirmed all the 17 white dwarf candidates from blue/optical spectroscopy, and we suggest five of them to be likely cluster members. We estimated progenitor ages and masses for the candidate cluster members, and compare our findings to those for other cluster white dwarfs. A white dwarf in NGC 3532 is the most massive known cluster member (1.13 M⊙), likely with an oxygen-neon core, for which we estimate an 8.8_{-4.3}^{+1.2} M⊙ progenitor, close to the mass-divide between white dwarf and neutron star progenitors. A cluster member in Ruprecht 131 is a magnetic white dwarf, whose progenitor mass exceeded 2-3 M⊙. We stress that wider searches, and improved cluster distances and ages derived from data of the ESA Gaia mission, will advance the understanding of the mass-loss processes for low- to intermediate-mass stars.

  6. An independent test of the photometric selection of white dwarf candidates using LAMOST DR3

    CERN Document Server

    Fusillo, N P Gentile; Gänsicke, B T; Liu, X -W; Ren, J J; Koester, D; Zhan, Y; Hou, Y; Wang, Y; Yang, M

    2015-01-01

    In Gentile Fusillo et al. (2015) we developed a selection method for white dwarf candidates which makes use of photometry, colours and proper motions to calculate a probability of being a white dwarf (Pwd). The application of our method to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) data release 10 resulted in nearly 66,000 photometrically selected objects with a derived Pwd, approximately 21000 of which are high confidence white dwarf candidates. Here we present an independent test of our selection method based on a sample of spectroscopically confirmed white dwarfs from the LAMOST (Large Sky Area Multi-Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope) survey. We do this by cross matching all our $\\sim$66,000 SDSS photometric white dwarf candidates with the over 4 million spectra available in the third data release of LAMOST. This results in 1673 white dwarf candidates with no previous SDSS spectroscopy, but with available LAMOST spectra. Among these objects we identify 309 genuine white dwarfs. We find that our Pwd can efficiently di...

  7. TOWARD A SPECTROSCOPIC CENSUS OF WHITE DWARFS WITHIN 40 pc OF THE SUN

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present the preliminary results of a survey aimed at significantly increasing the range and completeness of the local census of spectroscopically confirmed white dwarfs. The current census of nearby white dwarfs is reasonably complete only to about 20 pc of the Sun, a volume that includes around 130 white dwarfs, a sample too small for detailed statistical analyses. This census is largely based on follow-up investigations of stars with very large proper motions. We describe here the basis of a method that will lead to a catalog of white dwarfs within 40 pc of the Sun and north of the celestial equator, thus increasing by a factor of eight the extent of the northern sky census. White dwarf candidates are identified from the SUPERBLINK proper motion database, allowing us to investigate stars down to a proper motion limit μ > 40 mas yr–1, while minimizing the kinematic bias for nearby objects. The selection criteria and distance estimates are based on a combination of color-magnitude and reduced proper motion diagrams. Our follow-up spectroscopic observation campaign has so far uncovered 193 new white dwarfs, among which we identify 127 DA (including 9 DA+dM and 4 magnetic), 1 DB, 56 DC, 3 DQ, and 6 DZ stars. We perform a spectroscopic analysis on a subsample of 84 DAs, and provide their atmospheric parameters. In particular, we identify 11 new white dwarfs with spectroscopic distances within 25 pc of the Sun, including five candidates to the D < 20 pc subset.

  8. The fraction of DA white dwarfs with kilo-Gauss magnetic fields

    CERN Document Server

    Jordan, S; Napiwotzki, R; Schmid, H M; Solanki, S K

    2006-01-01

    Current estimates for white dwarfs with fields in excess of 1MG are about 10%; according to our first high-precision circular-polarimetric study of 12 bright white dwarfs with the VLT (Aznar Cuadrado et al. 2004) this number increases up to about 25% in the kG regime. With our new sample of 10 white dwarf observations (plus one sdO star) we wanted to improve the sample statistics to determine the incident of kG magnetic fields in white dwarfs. In one of our objects (LTT7987) we detected a statistically significant (97% confidence level) longitudinal magnetic field varying between (-1+-0.5)kG and (+1+-0.5$)kG. This would be the weakest magnetic field ever found in a white dwarf, but at this level of accuracy, systematic errors cannot completely be ruled out. Together with previous investigations, the fraction of kG magnetic fields in white dwarfs amounts to about 11-15%, which is close to the current estimations for highly magnetic white dwarfs (>1MG).

  9. New phase diagrams for dense carbon-oxygen mixtures and white dwarf evolution

    CERN Document Server

    Althaus, Leandro G; Isern, Jordi; Córsico, Alejandro H; Bertolami, Marcelo M Miller

    2011-01-01

    Cool white dwarfs are reliable and independent stellar chronometers. The most common white dwarfs have carbon-oxygen dense cores. Consequently, the cooling ages of very cool white dwarfs sensitively depend on the adopted phase diagram of the carbon-oxygen binary mixture. A new phase diagram of dense carbon-oxygen mixtures appropriate for white dwarf interiors has been recently obtained using direct molecular dynamics simulations. In this paper, we explore the consequences of this phase diagram in the evolution of cool white dwarfs. To do this we employ a detailed stellar evolutionary code and accurate initial white dwarf configurations, derived from the full evolution of progenitor stars. We use two different phase diagrams, that of Horowitz et al. (2010), which presents an azeotrope, and the phase diagram of Segretain & Chabrier (1993), which is of the spindle form. We computed the evolution of 0.593 and 0.878M_sun white dwarf models during the crystallization phase, and we found that the energy released...

  10. TRANSIT SURVEYS FOR EARTHS IN THE HABITABLE ZONES OF WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    To date the search for habitable Earth-like planets has primarily focused on nuclear burning stars. I propose that this search should be expanded to cool white dwarf stars that have expended their nuclear fuel. I define the continuously habitable zone of white dwarfs and show that it extends from ∼0.005 to 0.02 AU for white dwarfs with masses from 0.4 to 0.9 Msun, temperatures less than ∼104 K, and habitable durations of at least 3 Gyr. As they are similar in size to Earth, white dwarfs may be deeply eclipsed by terrestrial planets that orbit edge-on, which can easily be detected with ground-based telescopes. If planets can migrate inward or reform near white dwarfs, I show that a global robotic telescope network could carry out a transit survey of nearby white dwarfs placing interesting constraints on the presence of habitable Earths. If planets were detected, I show that the survey would favor detection of planets similar to Earth: similar size, temperature, and rotation period, and host star temperatures similar to the Sun. The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope could place even tighter constraints on the frequency of habitable Earths around white dwarfs. The confirmation and characterization of these planets might be carried out with large ground and space telescopes.

  11. A Second Case of Outbursts in a Pulsating White Dwarf Observed by Kepler

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermes, J. J.; Montgomery, M. H.; Bell, Keaton J.; Chote, P.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Kawaler, Steven D.; Clemens, J. C.; Dunlap, Bart H.; Winget, D. E.; Armstrong, D. J.

    2015-09-01

    We present observations of a new phenomenon in pulsating white dwarf stars: large-amplitude outbursts at timescales much longer than the pulsation periods. The cool ({T}{eff} = 11,060 K), hydrogen-atmosphere pulsating white dwarf PG 1149+057 was observed nearly continuously for more than 78.8 day by the extended Kepler mission in K2 Campaign 1. The target showed 10 outburst events, recurring roughly every 8 day and lasting roughly 15 hr, with maximum flux excursions up to 45% in the Kepler bandpass. We demonstrate that the outbursts affect the pulsations and therefore must come from the white dwarf. Additionally, we argue that these events are not magnetic reconnection flares, and are most likely connected to the stellar pulsations and the relatively deep surface convection zone. PG 1149+057 is now the second cool pulsating white dwarf to show this outburst phenomenon, after the first variable white dwarf observed in the Kepler mission, KIC 4552982. Both stars have the same effective temperature, within the uncertainties, and are among the coolest known pulsating white dwarfs of typical mass. These outbursts provide fresh observational insight into the red edge of the DAV instability strip and the eventual cessation of pulsations in cool white dwarfs.

  12. A search for white dwarfs in the Galactic plane: the field and the open cluster population

    CERN Document Server

    Raddi, R; Gaensicke, B T; Hermes, J J; Napiwotzki, R; Koester, D; Tremblay, P -E; Barentsen, G; Farnhill, J H; Mohr-Smith, M; Drew, J E; Groot, P J; Guzman-Ramirez, L; Parker, Q A; Steeghs, D; Zijlstra, A

    2016-01-01

    We investigated the prospects for systematic searches of white dwarfs at low Galactic latitudes, using the VLT Survey Telescope (VST) H$\\alpha$ Photometric Survey of the Galactic plane and Bulge (VPHAS+). We targeted 17 white dwarf candidates along sightlines of known open clusters, aiming to identify potential cluster members. We confirmed all the 17 white dwarf candidates from blue/optical spectroscopy, and we suggest five of them to be likely cluster members. We estimated progenitor ages and masses for the candidate cluster members, and compared our findings to those for other cluster white dwarfs. A white dwarf in NGC 3532 is the most massive known cluster member (1.13 M$_{\\odot}$), likely with an oxygen-neon core, for which we estimate an $8.8_{-4.3}^{+1.2}$ M$_{\\odot}$ progenitor, close to the mass-divide between white dwarf and neutron star progenitors. A cluster member in Ruprecht 131 is a magnetic white dwarf, whose progenitor mass exceeded 2-3 M$_{\\odot}$. We stress that wider searches, and improved...

  13. Absolute far-ultraviolet spectrophotometry of hot subluminous stars from Voyager

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holberg, J. B.; Ali, B.; Carone, T. E.; Polidan, R. S.

    1991-01-01

    Observations, obtained with the Voyager ultraviolet spectrometers, are presented of absolute fluxes for two well-known hot subluminous stars: BD + 28 deg 4211, an sdO, and G191 - B2B, a hot DA white dwarf. Complete absolute energy distributions for these two stars, from the Lyman limit at 912 A to 1 micron, are given. For BD + 28 deg 4211, a single power law closely represents the entire observed energy distribution. For G191 - B2B, a pure hydrogen model atmosphere provides an excellent match to the entire absolute energy distribution. Voyager absolute fluxes are discussed in relation to those reported from various sounding rocket experiments, including a recent rocket observation of BD + 28 deg 4211.

  14. Constraining the Surface Inhomogeneity and Settling Times of Metals on Accreting White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Montgomery, M H; Von Hippel, T

    2008-01-01

    Due to the short settling times of metals in DA white dwarf atmospheres, any white dwarfs with photospheric metals must be actively accreting. It is therefore natural to expect that the metals may not be deposited uniformly on the surface of the star. We present calculations showing how the temperature variations associated with white dwarf pulsations lead to an observable diagnostic of the surface metal distribution, and we show what constraints current data sets are able to provide. We also investigate the effect that time-variable accretion has on the metal abundances of different species, and we show how this can lead to constraints on the gravitational settling times.

  15. Spectroscopy of the white-dwarf companions of PSR~0655+64 and 0820+02

    OpenAIRE

    van Kerkwijk, M.H.; Kulkarni, S.R.

    1995-01-01

    We present spectra of the white-dwarf companions of the radio pulsars 0655+64 and 0820+02. For the latter, we find a spectrum showing strong lines of hydrogen, i.e., that of a DA star. From modelling these lines, the mass of a white dwarf can, in principle, be determined accurately, thus leading to constraints on the evolution of the binary and the mass of the neutron star. Our present spectrum is not of sufficient quality to set a strong limit, but it does indicate that the white dwarf most ...

  16. The DB gap and a new class of pulsating white dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Shibahashi H.

    2013-01-01

    The recent systematic surveys providing enormously massive datasets of white dwarfs show that there is still a deficit of a factor of 2.5 in the DA/non-DA ratio within the temperature range of 30 000 K < Teff < 45 000 K, which has been regarded as the “DB gap” meaning a range with almost no helium atmosphere white dwarfs. Since all white dwarfs have to evolve through this temperature range along almost the identical sequence on the color-magnitude diagram, this implies that most of the helium...

  17. Do R Coronae Borealis Stars Form from Double White Dwarf Mergers?

    OpenAIRE

    Staff, Jan E.; Menon, Athira; Herwig, Falk; Even, Wesley; Fryer, Chris L.; Motl, Patrick M.; Geballe, Tom; Pignatari, Marco; Clayton, Geoffrey C; Tohline, Joel E

    2012-01-01

    A leading formation scenario for R Coronae Borealis (RCB) stars invokes the merger of degenerate He and CO white dwarfs (WD) in a binary. The observed ratio of 16O/18O for RCB stars is in the range of 0.3-20 much smaller than the solar value of ~500. In this paper, we investigate whether such a low ratio can be obtained in simulations of the merger of a CO and a He white dwarf. We present the results of five 3-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations of the merger of a double white dwarf system w...

  18. Pulsating low-mass white dwarfs in the frame of new evolutionary sequences: III. The pre-ELM white dwarf instability strip

    CERN Document Server

    Córsico, A H; Serenelli, A M; Kepler, S O; Jeffery, C S; Corti, M A

    2016-01-01

    Two low-mass pre-white dwarfs, which could be precursors of ELM white dwarfs, have been observed to show multiperiodic photometric variations. They could constitute a new class of pulsating low-mass pre-white dwarf stars. We present a detailed nonadiabatic pulsation study of such stars, employing full evolutionary sequences of low-mass He-core pre-white dwarf models. We have considered models in which element diffusion is accounted for and also models in which it is neglected. We confirm and explore in detail a new instability strip in the domain of low gravities and low effective temperatures of the $T_{\\rm eff}-\\log g$ diagram, where low-mass pre-white dwarfs are currently found. The destabilized modes are radial and nonradial $p$ and $g$ modes excited by the $\\kappa-\\gamma$ mechanism acting mainly at the zone of the second partial ionization of He, with non-negligible contributions from the region of the first partial ionization of He and the partial ionization of H. The computations with element diffusion...

  19. The habitability and detection of Earth-like planets orbiting cool white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Fossati, L; Haswell, C A; Patel, M R; Busuttil, R; Kowalski, P M; Shulyak, D V; Sterzik, M F

    2012-01-01

    Since there are several ways planets can survive the giant phase of the host star, we examine the habitability and detection of planets orbiting white dwarfs. As a white dwarf cools from 6000 K to 4000 K, a planet orbiting at 0.01 AU would remain in the Continuous Habitable Zone (CHZ) for ~8 Gyr. We show that photosynthetic processes can be sustained on such planets. The DNA-weighted UV radiation dose for an Earth-like planet in the CHZ is less than the maxima encountered on Earth, hence non-magnetic white dwarfs are compatible with the persistence of complex life. Polarisation due to a terrestrial planet in the CHZ of a cool white dwarf is 10^2 (10^4) times larger than it would be in the habitable zone of a typical M-dwarf (Sun-like star). Polarimetry is thus a viable way to detect close-in rocky planets around white dwarfs. Multi-band polarimetry would also allow reveal the presence of a planet atmosphere, providing a first characterisation. Planets in the CHZ of a 0.6 M_sun white dwarf will be distorted by...

  20. THE HABITABILITY AND DETECTION OF EARTH-LIKE PLANETS ORBITING COOL WHITE DWARFS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fossati, L.; Haswell, C. A.; Patel, M. R.; Busuttil, R. [Department of Physical Sciences, Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA (United Kingdom); Bagnulo, S. [Armagh Observatory, College Hill, Armagh BT61 9DG (United Kingdom); Kowalski, P. M. [GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, Telegrafenberg, D-14473 Potsdam (Germany); Shulyak, D. V. [Institute of Astrophysics, Georg-August-University, Friedrich-Hund-Platz 1, D-37077 Goettingen (Germany); Sterzik, M. F., E-mail: l.fossati@open.ac.uk, E-mail: C.A.Haswell@open.ac.uk, E-mail: M.R.Patel@open.ac.uk, E-mail: r.busuttil@open.ac.uk, E-mail: sba@arm.ac.uk, E-mail: kowalski@gfz-potsdam.de, E-mail: denis.shulyak@gmail.com, E-mail: msterzik@eso.org [European Southern Observatory, Casilla 19001, Santiago 19 (Chile)

    2012-09-20

    Since there are several ways planets can survive the giant phase of the host star, we examine the habitability and detection of planets orbiting white dwarfs. As a white dwarf cools from 6000 K to 4000 K, a planet orbiting at 0.01 AU would remain in the continuous habitable zone (CHZ) for {approx}8 Gyr. We show that photosynthetic processes can be sustained on such planets. The DNA-weighted UV radiation dose for an Earth-like planet in the CHZ is less than the maxima encountered on Earth, and hence non-magnetic white dwarfs are compatible with the persistence of complex life. Polarization due to a terrestrial planet in the CHZ of a cool white dwarf (CWD) is 10{sup 2} (10{sup 4}) times larger than it would be in the habitable zone of a typical M-dwarf (Sun-like star). Polarimetry is thus a viable way to detect close-in rocky planets around white dwarfs. Multi-band polarimetry would also allow us to reveal the presence of a planet atmosphere, providing a first characterization. Planets in the CHZ of a 0.6 M{sub Sun} white dwarf will be distorted by Roche geometry, and a Kepler-11d analog would overfill its Roche lobe. With current facilities a super-Earth-sized atmosphereless planet is detectable with polarimetry around the brightest known CWD. Planned future facilities render smaller planets detectable, in particular by increasing the instrumental sensitivity in the blue.

  1. THE HABITABILITY AND DETECTION OF EARTH-LIKE PLANETS ORBITING COOL WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Since there are several ways planets can survive the giant phase of the host star, we examine the habitability and detection of planets orbiting white dwarfs. As a white dwarf cools from 6000 K to 4000 K, a planet orbiting at 0.01 AU would remain in the continuous habitable zone (CHZ) for ∼8 Gyr. We show that photosynthetic processes can be sustained on such planets. The DNA-weighted UV radiation dose for an Earth-like planet in the CHZ is less than the maxima encountered on Earth, and hence non-magnetic white dwarfs are compatible with the persistence of complex life. Polarization due to a terrestrial planet in the CHZ of a cool white dwarf (CWD) is 102 (104) times larger than it would be in the habitable zone of a typical M-dwarf (Sun-like star). Polarimetry is thus a viable way to detect close-in rocky planets around white dwarfs. Multi-band polarimetry would also allow us to reveal the presence of a planet atmosphere, providing a first characterization. Planets in the CHZ of a 0.6 M☉ white dwarf will be distorted by Roche geometry, and a Kepler-11d analog would overfill its Roche lobe. With current facilities a super-Earth-sized atmosphereless planet is detectable with polarimetry around the brightest known CWD. Planned future facilities render smaller planets detectable, in particular by increasing the instrumental sensitivity in the blue.

  2. Type Ia supernovae from merging white dwarfs. I. Prompt detonations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Merging white dwarfs are a possible progenitor of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). Numerical models suggest that a detonation might be initiated before the stars have coalesced to form a single compact object. Here we study such prompt detonations by means of numerical simulations, modeling the disruption and nucleosynthesis of the stars until the ejecta reach the coasting phase, and generating synthetic light curves and spectra. Three models are considered with primary masses 0.96 M ☉, 1.06 M ☉, and 1.20 M ☉. Of these, the 0.96 M ☉ dwarf merging with a 0.81 M ☉ companion, with an 56Ni yield of 0.58 M ☉, is the most promising candidate for reproducing common SNe Ia. The more massive mergers produce unusually luminous SNe Ia with peak luminosities approaching those attributed to 'super-Chandrasekhar' mass SNe Ia. While the synthetic light curves and spectra of some of the models resemble observed SNe Ia, the significant asymmetry of the ejecta leads to large orientation effects. The peak bolometric luminosity varies by more than a factor of two with the viewing angle, and the velocities of the spectral absorption features are lower when observed from angles where the light curve is brightest. The largest orientation effects are seen in the ultraviolet, where the flux varies by more than an order of magnitude. The set of three models roughly obeys a width-luminosity relation, with the brighter light curves declining more slowly in the B band. Spectral features due to unburned carbon from the secondary star are also seen in some cases.

  3. A search for radio pulsars around low-mass white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Van Leeuwen, J; Meyer, S; Stairs, I; Leeuwen, Joeri van; Ferdman, Robert D.; Meyer, Sol; Stairs, Ingrid

    2006-01-01

    Low-mass white dwarfs can either be produced in low-mass X-ray binaries by stable mass transfer to a neutron star, or in a common-envelope phase with a heavier white dwarf companion. We have searched 8 low-mass white dwarf candidates recently identified in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey for radio pulsations from pulsar companions, using the Green Bank Telescope at 340MHz. We have found no pulsations down to flux densities of 0.6-0.8 mJy/kpc^2 and conclude that a given low-mass helium-core white dwarf has a probability of < 0.18+-0.05 of being in a binary with a radio pulsar.

  4. A determination of the white-dwarf masses in wide binary radio-pulsar systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The paper concerns a determination of the mass of the white dwarf in wide binary radio-pulsar systems, including the mass of neutron star PSR 1855 + 09. The binary pulsars considered consist of systems with long orbital periods, low mass functions and circular orbits. The determination of the white-dwarf mass is based on a constraint to the orbital solution, i.e. that the giant progenitor of the present white dwarf secondary should have filled its Roche lobe while spinning up the pulsar companion by mass transfer. Employment of this constraint leads to the mass of the white dwarf in these type of binary pulsars, and to an upper limit of approx. 1.2 M solar mass to PSR 1855 + 09. (U.K.)

  5. The Effects of Element Diffusion on the Pulsational Properties of Variable DA White Dwarf Stars

    CERN Document Server

    Corsico, A H; Althaus, L G; Serenelli, A M

    2002-01-01

    We explore the effects of element diffusion due to gravitational settling and thermal and chemical diffusion on the pulsational properties of DA white dwarfs. To this end, we employ an updated evolutionary code coupled with a pulsational, finite difference code for computing the linear, non-radial g-modes in the adiabatic approximation. We follow the evolution of a 0.55 \\msun white dwarf model in a self-consistent way with the evolution of chemical abundance distribution as given by time dependent diffusion processes. Results are compared with the standard treatment of diffusive equilibrium in the trace element approximation. Appreciable differences are found between the two employed treatments. We conclude that time dependent element diffusion plays an important role in determining the whole oscillation pattern and the temporal derivative of the periods in DAV white dwarfs. In addition, we discuss the plausibility of the standard description employed in accounting for diffusion in most of white dwarf asteros...

  6. VizieR Online Data Catalog: White dwarf candidates in SDSS DR10 (Gentile Fusillo+, 2015)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentile Fusillo, N. P.; Gansicke, B. T.; Greiss, S.

    2015-05-01

    This table contains all SDSS objects for which we calculated probabilities of being white dwarfs. For objects with available SDSS spectroscopy it also includes the result of our classification based on spectral type. (2 data files).

  7. WhiteDwarf.org - Establishing a permanent endowment for the Whole Earth Telescope

    CERN Document Server

    Metcalfe, T S

    2002-01-01

    White Dwarf Research Corporation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to scientific research and public education on topics relevant to white dwarf stars. It was founded in 1999 in Austin, Texas to help fulfill the need for an alternative research center where scarce funding dollars could be used more efficiently, and to provide a direct link between astronomers who study white dwarf stars and the general public. Due to its administrative simplicity, WDRC can facilitate the funding of multi-institutional and international collaborations, provide seamless grant portability, minimize overhead rates, and actively seek non-governmental funding sources. I describe the motivation for, and current status of, one of the long-term goals of WDRC: to establish a permanent endowment for the operation of the Whole Earth Telescope. I pay particular attention to fund-raising efforts through the website at http://WhiteDwarf.org/donate/

  8. A New Very Cool White Dwarf Discovered by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    CERN Document Server

    Harris, H C; Liebert, J; Vanden Berk, Daniel E; Anderson, S F; Knapp, G R; Fan, X; Margon, B; Munn, J A; Nichol, R C; Pier, J R; Schneider, D P; Smith, J A; Winget, D E; York, D G; Brinkmann, J; Burles, S M; Chen, B; Connolly, A J; Csabai, I; Frieman, Joshua A; Gunn, J E; Hennessy, G S; Hindsley, R B; Ivezic, Z; Kent, S; Lamb, D Q; Lupton, R H; Newberg, H J; Schlegel, D J; Smee, S; Strauss, M A; Thakar, A R; Uomoto, A; Yanny, B

    2001-01-01

    Early data taken during commissioning of the SDSS have resulted in the discovery of a very cool white dwarf. It appears to have stronger collision induced absorption from molecular hydrogen than any other known white dwarf, suggesting it has a cooler temperature than any other. While its distance is presently unknown, it has a surprisingly small proper motion, making it unlikely to be a halo star. An analysis of white dwarf cooling times suggests that this object may be a low-mass star with a helium core. The SDSS imaging and spectroscopy also recovered LHS 3250, the coolest previously known white dwarf, indicating that the SDSS will be an effective tool for identifying these extreme objects.

  9. The polluted atmospheres of cool white dwarfs and the magnetic field connection

    CERN Document Server

    Kawka, A

    2014-01-01

    We present an analysis of X-Shooter spectra of the polluted hydrogen-rich white dwarfs (DAZ) NLTT 888 and NLTT 53908. The spectra of NLTT 53908 show strong, Zeeman-split calcium lines (CaII H&K and Ca I $\\lambda 4226$) and the star appears to be a close relative of the polluted magnetic white dwarf (DAZH) NLTT 10480, while the spectra of NLTT 888 show narrow lines of calcium and iron. A comparison of the DAZ NLTT 888 and the DAZH NLTT 53908 with other class members illustrates the diversity of environment and formation circumstances surrounding these objects. In particular, we find that the incidence of magnetism in old, polluted white dwarfs significantly exceeds that found in the general white dwarf population which suggests an hypothetical link between a crowded planetary system and magnetic field generation.

  10. An upper limit to the secular variation of the gravitational constant from white dwarf stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A variation of the gravitational constant over cosmological ages modifies the main sequence lifetimes and white dwarf cooling ages. Using an state-of-the-art stellar evolutionary code we compute the effects of a secularly varying G on the main sequence ages and, employing white dwarf cooling ages computed taking into account the effects of a running G, we place constraints on the rate of variation of Newton's constant. This is done using the white dwarf luminosity function and the distance of the well studied open Galactic cluster NGC 6791. We derive an upper bound ?/G ? ?1.8 10?12 yr?1. This upper limit for the secular variation of the gravitational constant compares favorably with those obtained using other stellar evolutionary properties, and can be easily improved if deep images of the cluster allow to obtain an improved white dwarf luminosity function

  11. The ELM Survey. VII. Orbital Properties of Low Mass White Dwarf Binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Brown, Warren R; Kilic, Mukremin; Kenyon, Scott J; Prieto, Carlos Allende

    2016-01-01

    We present the discovery of 15 extremely low mass (5 < log{g} < 7) white dwarf candidates, 9 of which are in ultra-compact double-degenerate binaries. Our targeted ELM Survey sample now includes 76 binaries. The sample has a lognormal distribution of orbital periods with a median period of 5.4 hr. The velocity amplitudes imply that the binary companions have a normal distribution of mass with 0.76 Msun mean and 0.25 Msun dispersion. Thus extremely low mass white dwarfs are found in binaries with a typical mass ratio of 1:4. Statistically speaking, 95% of the white dwarf binaries have a total mass below the Chandrasekhar mass and thus are not Type Ia supernova progenitors. Yet half of the observed binaries will merge in less than 6 Gyr due to gravitational wave radiation; probable outcomes include single massive white dwarfs and stable mass transfer AM CVn binaries.

  12. SPIRAL INSTABILITY CAN DRIVE THERMONUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS IN BINARY WHITE DWARF MERGERS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kashyap, Rahul; Fisher, Robert [Department of Physics, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, 285 Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth, MA 02740 (United States); García-Berro, Enrique; Aznar-Siguán, Gabriela [Departament de Física Aplicada, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, c/Esteve Terrades, 5, E-08860 Castelldefels (Spain); Ji, Suoqing [Department of Physics, Broida Hall, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA 93106–9530 (United States); Lorén-Aguilar, Pablo [School of Physics, University of Exeter, Stocker Road, Exeter EX4 4QL (United Kingdom)

    2015-02-10

    Thermonuclear, or Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia), originate from the explosion of carbon–oxygen white dwarfs, and serve as standardizable cosmological candles. However, despite their importance, the nature of the progenitor systems that give rise to SNe Ia has not been hitherto elucidated. Observational evidence favors the double-degenerate channel in which merging white dwarf binaries lead to SNe Ia. Furthermore, significant discrepancies exist between observations and theory, and to date, there has been no self-consistent merger model that yields a SNe Ia. Here we show that a spiral mode instability in the accretion disk formed during a binary white dwarf merger leads to a detonation on a dynamical timescale. This mechanism sheds light on how white dwarf mergers may frequently yield SNe Ia.

  13. The White Dwarf Population in the 2QZ and Sloan Surveys

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vennes, S.; Kawka, Adela; Croom, S.M.; Boyle, B.J.; Smith, R.J.; Shanks, T.; Outram, P.; Miller, L.; Loaring, N.

    Dordrecht : Springer, 2005 - (Sion, E.), s. 49-60 ISBN 1-4020-3693-0 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : white dwarf * stellar population Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  14. Spiral Disk Instability Can Drive Thermonuclear Explosions in Binary White Dwarf Mergers

    CERN Document Server

    Kashyap, Rahul; Garca-Berro, Enrique; Aznar-Sigun, Gabriela; Ji, Suoqing; Lorn-Aguilar, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Thermonuclear, or Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia), originate from the explosion of carbon-oxygen white dwarfs, and serve as standardizable cosmological candles. However, despite their importance, the nature of the progenitor systems which give rise to SNe Ia has not been hitherto elucidated. Observational evidence favors the double-degenerate channel, in which merging white dwarf binaries lead to SNe Ia. Furthermore, significant discrepancies exist between observations and theory, and to date, there has been no self-consistent merger model which yields a SNe Ia. Here we show that a spiral mode instability in the accretion disk formed during a binary white dwarf merger leads to a detonation on a dynamical timescale. This mechanism sheds light on how white dwarf mergers may frequently yield SNe Ia.

  15. Enigmas from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7 Kleinman White Dwarf Catalog

    CERN Document Server

    Liebert, James; Wickramasinghe, Dayal; Smith, Paul

    2015-01-01

    We report results from a continuation of our searches for high field magnetic white dwarfs paired in a detached binary with non degenerate companions. We made use of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7 catalog of Kleinman et al. (2013) with 19,712 spectroscopically-identified white dwarfs. These include 1,735 white dwarf plus M dwarf detached pairs (almost 10\\% of the Kleinman at al.'s list). No new pairs were found, although we did recover the polar (AM~Herculis system) ST\\,LMi in a low state of accretion. With the larger sample the original situation reported ten years ago remains intact now at a much higher level of statistical significance: in the selected SDSS sample, high field magnetic white dwarfs are not found in an apparently-detached pairing with an M dwarf, unless they are a magnetic CV in a low state of accretion. This finding strengthens the case that the fields in the isolated high field magnetic white dwarfs are generated by stellar mergers but also raises questions on the nature of the progenito...

  16. Cool White Dwarfs Found in the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey

    OpenAIRE

    Leggett, S.K.; Lodieu, N.; Tremblay, P. -E.; Bergeron, P.; Nitta, A.

    2011-01-01

    We present the results of a search for cool white dwarfs in the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope (UKIRT) Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS) Large Area Survey (LAS). The UKIDSS LAS photometry was paired with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) to identify cool hydrogen-rich white dwarf candidates by their neutral optical colors and blue near-infrared colors, as well as faint Reduced Proper Motion magnitudes. Optical spectroscopy was obtained at Gemini Observatory, and showed the majority of th...

  17. On the evolution of rapidly rotating massive white dwarfs towards supernovae or collapses

    OpenAIRE

    Yoon, S.C.; Langer, N.

    2005-01-01

    A recent study by Yoon & Langer (2004a) indicated that the inner cores of rapidly accreting (Mdot > 10^{-7} M_sun/yr) CO white dwarfs may rotate differentially, with a shear rate near the threshold value for the onset of the dynamical shear instability. Such differentially rotating white dwarfs obtain critical masses for thermonuclear explosion or electron-capture induced collapse which significantly exceed the canonical Chandrasekhar limit. Here, we construct two-dimensional differentially r...

  18. The Future Evolution of White Dwarf Stars Through Baryon Decay and Time Varying Gravitational Constant

    OpenAIRE

    Ketchum, Jacob A.; Adams, Fred C.

    2008-01-01

    Motivated by the possibility that the fundamental ``constants'' of nature could vary with time, this paper considers the long term evolution of white dwarf stars under the combined action of proton decay and variations in the gravitational constant. White dwarfs are thus used as a theoretical laboratory to study the effects of possible time variations, especially their implications for the future history of the universe. More specifically, we consider the gravitational constant $G$ to vary ac...

  19. An atlas of optical spectra of DZ white dwarfs and related objects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An atlas of optical spectra and equivalent width measurements for DZ stars and several related objects is described. These data should improve abundance measurements for Ca/He, Mg/He, and Fe/He in these stars and provide tests for calculations of accretion, diffusion, and radiative transfer in white-dwarf atmospheres. Also reported is the possible detection of He I (3888-A) in three DZ white dwarfs, 0246 + 735, 1705 + 030, and 2215 + 388. 25 refs

  20. Tidally-Induced Apsidal Precession in Double White Dwarfs: a new mass measurement tool with LISA

    OpenAIRE

    Valsecchi, Francesca; Farr, Will M.; Willems, Bart; Deloye, Christopher . J.; Kalogera, Vassiliki

    2011-01-01

    Galactic interacting double white dwarfs (DWD) are guaranteed gravitational wave (GW) sources for the GW detector LISA, with more than 10^4 binaries expected to be detected over the mission's lifetime. Part of this population is expected to be eccentric, and here we investigate the potential for constraining the white dwarf (WD) properties through apsidal precession in these binaries. We analyze the tidal, rotational, and general relativistic contributions to apsidal precession by using detai...

  1. Ancient planetary systems are orbiting a large fraction of white dwarf stars

    OpenAIRE

    Zuckerman, B.; Melis, C.; Klein, B.; Koester, D.; Jura, M.

    2010-01-01

    Infrared studies have revealed debris likely related to planet formation in orbit around ~30% of youthful, intermediate mass, main sequence stars. We present evidence, based on atmospheric pollution by various elements heavier than helium, that a comparable fraction of the white dwarf descendants of such main sequence stars are orbited by planetary systems. These systems have survived, at least in part, through all stages of stellar evolution that precede the white dwarf. During the time inte...

  2. Understanding the Oldest White Dwarfs: Atmospheres of Cool WDs as Extreme Physics Laboratories

    OpenAIRE

    Piotr Kowalski

    2010-01-01

    Reliable modeling of the atmospheres of cool white dwarfs is crucial for understanding the atmospheric evolution of these stars and for accurate white dwarfs cosmochronology. Over the last decade {\\it ab initio} modeling entered many research fields and has been successful in predicting properties of various materials under extreme conditions. In many cases the investigated physical regimes are difficult or even impossible to access by experimental methods, and first principles quantum mechan...

  3. The DB gap and a new class of pulsating white dwarfs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shibahashi H.

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The recent systematic surveys providing enormously massive datasets of white dwarfs show that there is still a deficit of a factor of 2.5 in the DA/non-DA ratio within the temperature range of 30?000?K < Teff < 45?000?K, which has been regarded as the DB gap meaning a range with almost no helium atmosphere white dwarfs. Since all white dwarfs have to evolve through this temperature range along almost the identical sequence on the color-magnitude diagram, this implies that most of the helium atmosphere DO stars once evolve into hydrogen atmosphere hot DA stars in the temperature range of the DB gap and then back to helium atmosphere DB stars. Possible scenarios for this chameleon-like disguises of white dwarfs with helium dominant atmospheres are described and a new class of pulsating white dwarfs, named the hot-DAV stars, is predicted from these scenarios. One pulsating DA white dwarf, being consistent with the prediction, has been discovered indeed.

  4. Physical Properties of the Current Census of Northern White Dwarfs within 40 pc of the Sun

    CERN Document Server

    Limoges, M -M; Lépine, S

    2015-01-01

    We present a detailed description of the physical properties of our current census of white dwarfs within 40 pc of the Sun, based on an exhaustive spectroscopic survey of northern hemisphere candidates from the SUPERBLINK proper motion database. Our method for selecting white dwarf candidates is based on a combination of theoretical color-magnitude relations and reduced proper motion diagrams. We reported in an earlier publication the discovery of nearly 200 new white dwarfs, and we present here the discovery of an additional 133 new white dwarfs, among which we identify 96 DA, 3 DB, 24 DC, 3 DQ, and 7 DZ stars. We further identify 178 white dwarfs that lie within 40 pc of the Sun, representing a 40% increase of the current census, which now includes 492 objects. We estimate the completeness of our survey at between 66 and 78%, allowing for uncertainties in the distance estimates. We also perform a homogeneous model atmosphere analysis of this 40 pc sample and find a large fraction of massive white dwarfs, in...

  5. Finding rocky asteroids around white dwarfs by their periodic thermal emission

    CERN Document Server

    Lin, Henry

    2014-01-01

    Since old white dwarfs are exceptionally dim, the contrast between the thermal emission of an orbiting object and a white dwarf is dramatically enhanced compared to a main sequence host. Furthermore, rocky objects much smaller than the moon have no atmospheres and are tidally locked to the white dwarf if they orbit near the Roche zone. We show that this leads to temperature contrasts between their day and night side of order unity that should lead to temporal variations in infrared flux over an orbital period of ~ 0.2 to ~ 2 days. Ground based telescopes could detect objects with a mass as small as 1% of the lunar mass $M_L$ around Sirius B with a few hours of exposure. The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) may be able to detect objects as small as $10^{-3} M_L$ around most nearby white dwarfs. The tightest constraints will typically be placed on 12,000 K white dwarfs, whose Roche zone coincides with the dust sublimation zone. Constraining the abundance of minor planets around white dwarfs as a function of th...

  6. A Search for Rocky Planets in Close Orbits around White Dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debes, John; Sandhaus, Phoebe; Ely, Justin

    2015-12-01

    The search for transiting habitable exoplanets has broadened to include several types of stars that are smaller than the Sun in order to increase the observed transit depth and hence the atmospheric signal of the planet. Of all current spectral types, white dwarfs are the most favorable for this type of investigation. The fraction of white dwarfs that possess close-in rocky planets is unknown, but several large angle surveys of stars have the photometric precision and cadence to discover at least one if they are common. Ultraviolet observations of white dwarfs may allow for detection of molecular oxygen or ozone in the atmosphere of a terrestrial planet. We use archival Hubble Space Telescope data from the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph to search for transiting rocky planets around UV-bright white dwarfs. In the process, we discovered unusual variability in the pulsating white dwarf GD~133, which shows slow sinusoidal variations in the UV. While we detect no planets around our small sample of targets, we do place stringent limits on the possibility of transiting planets, down to sub-lunar radii. We also point out that non-transiting small planets in thermal equilibrium are detectable around hotter white dwarfs through infrared excesses, and identify two candidates.

  7. Astero-archaeology: Reading the galactic history recorded in the white dwarf stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Galactic history is written in its oldest stars, the white dwarfs. Although still some years away from reading the details of that history, significant limits can already be placed on both the Galactic age and star formation history. The following is a complete analysis of the problem, starting with a fresh exploration of the physics of white dwarf stars. An extensive grid of numerical model sequences is presented and these are used to describe in detail the behavior of the white dwarf stars as a function of mass, core composition, surface layer masses and compositions, and uncertainties in the constitutive physics. These model sequences are used to decode the information contained in the white dwarf luminosity function. A theoretical context is established for current and future observations by presenting luminosity functions computed with differing choices for the input white dwarf evolutionary sequences, the assumed age of the local disk, the star formation rate as a function of time, and the possibility of scale height inflation of the disk with time. Finally, white dwarf cosmochronology is discussed within the context of other, conflicting, methods of cosmochronology. How this work can help resolve these conflicts and shed light on fundamental problems in galaxy formation and cosmology

  8. Xuv spectroscopic observation of the white dwarf star HZ 43

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A soft x-ray objective grating spectrometer utilizing grazing incidence optics was designed for astronomical observations, assembled at Stanford, calibrated, and flown in 1983. The target was the hot white dwarf star HZ 43, which is of particular interest because it is one of the two brightest nonsolar extreme ultraviolet sources in the sky. The emission is thought to be thermal in origin, with an effective temperature of 60,000 degrees. The basic experimental configuration involved a confocal, coaxial pail of nested Woelter-Schwarzschild Type I telescopes, an annulus of free standing gold 500 I/mm transmission gratings, and a microchannel plate detector in the focal plane with proximity focused resistive anode readout. The telescopes were manufactured using the single diamond point turning technique at Lawrence Livermore National Lab. The point response function was measured in the visible. The angular size (full width at half maximum) was 25 arc seconds with a sharp central core of less than 5 arc second angular extent. The transmission gratings were supplied by the co-investigators at the Astronomical Institute of the Netherlands. The instrument as a whole was calibrated in a vacuum facility at U. C. Berkeley

  9. On the consequences of low-mass white dwarf mergers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The theory of binary star evolution suggests that about 10 percent of all main-sequence binary systems should evolve into a close pair of light white dwarfs which merge within a Hubble time. This paper explores the consequences of such mergers on the assumption that a merger can be approximated by a mass-transfer event which occurs on a time scale shorter than that given by the Eddington accretion limit. The evolution of He + He mergers and of CO + He and of hybrid + He mergers are discussed. The birthrate of helium degenerate pairs which merge in less than a Hubble time is estimated, and the space density of low-luminosity merger products currently present in the Galaxy is predicted. It is shown that the evolutionary tracks of models of simulated mergers pass through the region in the H-R diagram occupied by subdwarfs, but that the predicted space density of merger products exceeds by over a factor of three the space density of subdwarf estimated form the known sample of such stars. 61 refs

  10. White dwarfs as the maximal soft x-ray scatterers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this paper, we explore the effect of density on the structure formation and the electromagnetic wave (EMw) elastic scattering on quantum plasmas, using the generalized quantum hydrodynamic model valid for a wide range of the plasma density and relativistic degeneracy. It is found that the electron quantum diffraction effect caused by the Bohm potential has a fundamental effect on the ion correlations in a degenerate electron fluid and crystallization in quantum plasmas in the solid-density regime and beyond. The ion correlations and structure formation are shown to be fundamentally affected by the plasma density and the relativistic degeneracy parameters. Moreover, distinct behavior is shown to exist between the non-relativistic and relativistic matter density regimes, regarding the normalized EMw elastic scattering cross-sections. It is theoretically discovered that the maximal Thomson scattering coincides with the average density of a typical white dwarf corresponding to the soft X-ray wavelength regime. Current research can be very useful in plasma optical diagnostic methods for a wide range of electron number-density from warm dense matter and inertial confinement fusion to the astrophysical compact objects

  11. Probing dark matter crests with white dwarfs and IMBHs

    CERN Document Server

    Amaro-Seoane, Pau; Schödel, Rainer; Davidson, Emily; Cuadra, Jorge

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs (WDs) are the most promising captors of dark matter (DM) particles in the crests that are expected to build up in the cores of dense stellar clusters. The DM particles could reach sufficient densities in WD cores to liberate energy through self-annihilation. The extinction associated with our Galactic Centre, the most promising region where to look for such effects, makes it impossible to detect the potential associated luminosity of the DM-burning WDs. However, in smaller stellar systems which are close enough to us and not heavily extincted, such as $\\omega-$Cen, we may be able to detect DM-burning WDs. We investigate the prospects of detection of DM-burning WDs in a stellar cluster harbouring an IMBH, which leads to higher densities of DM at the centre as compared with clusters without one. We calculate the capture rate of WIMPs by a WD around an IMBH and estimate the luminosity that a WD would emit depending on its distance to the center of the cluster. Direct-summation $N-$body simulations o...

  12. The thermonuclear explosion of Chandrasekhar mass white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Niemeyer, J C

    1996-01-01

    The flame born in the deep interior of a white dwarf that becomes a Type Ia supernova is subject to several instabilities. We briefly review these instabilities and the corresponding flame acceleration. We discuss the conditions necessary for each of the currently proposed explosion mechanisms and the attendant uncertainties. A grid of critical masses for detonation in the range 10^7 - 2 \\times 10^9 g cm^{-3} is calculated and its sensitivity to composition explored. Prompt detonations are physically improbable and appear unlikely on observational grounds. Simple deflagrations require some means of boosting the flame speed beyond what currently exists in the literature. ``Active turbulent combustion'' and multi-point ignition are presented as two plausible ways of doing this. A deflagration that moves at the ``Sharp-Wheeler'' speed, 0.1 g_{\\rm eff} t, is calculated in one dimension and shows that a healthy explosion is possible in a simple deflagration if the front moves with the speed of the fastest floating...

  13. Linear tides in inspiraling white dwarf binaries: resonance locks

    CERN Document Server

    Burkart, Joshua; Arras, Phil; Weinberg, Nevin N

    2012-01-01

    We calculate the tidal response of helium and carbon/oxygen (C/O) white dwarf (WD) binaries inspiraling due to gravitational wave emission. We show that resonance locks, previously considered in binaries with an early-type star, occur universally in WD binaries. In a resonance lock, the orbital and spin frequencies evolve in lockstep, so that the tidal forcing frequency is approximately constant and a particular normal mode remains resonant, producing efficient tidal dissipation and nearly synchronous rotation. Resonance locks in WDs can occur not only with global standing modes, but even when damping is so efficient that the resonant tidal response is a traveling wave. We derive simple analytic formulas for the tidal quality factor Q and tidal heating rate during a g-mode resonance lock, and verify our results numerically. We find that Q ~ 3 * 10^6 for orbital periods ~ 1 - 2 hr in C/O WDs, and Q ~ 3 * 10^8 for P_orb ~ 3 - 10 hr in helium WDs. Typically tidal heating occurs sufficiently close to the surface ...

  14. White dwarf axions, PAMELA data, and flipped-SU(5)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recently, there are two hints arising from physics beyond the standard model. One is a possible energy loss mechanism due to emission of very weakly interacting light particles from white dwarf stars, with a coupling strength ∼0.7x10-13, and another is the high energy positrons observed by the PAMELA satellite experiment. We construct a supersymmetric flipped-SU(5) model, SU(5)xU(1)X with appropriate additional symmetries, [U(1)H]gaugex[U(1)RxU(1)Γ]globalxZ2, such that these are explained by a very light electrophilic axion of mass 0.5 meV from the spontaneously broken U(1)Γ and two component cold dark matters from Z2 parity. We show that in the flipped-SU(5) there exists a basic mechanism for allowing excess positrons through the charged SU(5) singlet leptons, but not allowing antiproton excess due to the absence of the SU(5) singlet quarks. We show the discovery potential of the charged SU(5) singlet E at the LHC experiments by observing the electron and positron spectrum. With these symmetries, we also comment on the mass hierarchy between the top and bottom quarks.

  15. SEISMOLOGY OF A MASSIVE PULSATING HYDROGEN ATMOSPHERE WHITE DWARF

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kepler, S. O.; Pelisoli, Ingrid; Pecanha, Viviane; Costa, J. E. S. [Instituto de Fisica, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil); Fraga, Luciano [Southern Observatory for Astrophysical Research, Casilla 603, La Serena (Chile); Hermes, J. J.; Winget, D. E.; Castanheira, Barbara [Department of Astronomy and McDonald Observatory, University of Texas, Austin, TX 78712-1083 (United States); Corsico, A. H.; Romero, A. D.; Althaus, Leandro [Facultad de Ciencias Astronomicas y Geofisicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata (Argentina); Kleinman, S. J.; Nitta, A. [Gemini Observatory, Northern Operations Center, 670 North A' ohoku Place, Hilo, HI 96720 (United States); Koester, D. [Institut fuer Theoretische Physik und Astrophysik, Universitaet Kiel, D-24098 Kiel (Germany); Kuelebi, Baybars [Institut de Ciencies de L' Espai, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelon and Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia, c/Gran Capita 2-4, Edif. Nexus 104, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain); Jordan, Stefan [Astronomisches Rechen-Institut, ZAH, Moenchhofstr. 12-14, D-69120 Heidelberg (Germany); Kanaan, Antonio, E-mail: kepler@if.ufrgs.br [Departamento de Fisica, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Florianopolis, SC (Brazil)

    2012-10-01

    We report our observations of the new pulsating hydrogen atmosphere white dwarf SDSS J132350.28+010304.22. We discovered periodic photometric variations in frequency and amplitude that are commensurate with nonradial g-mode pulsations in ZZ Ceti stars. This, along with estimates for the star's temperature and gravity, establishes it as a massive ZZ Ceti star. We used time-series photometric observations with the 4.1 m SOAR Telescope, complemented by contemporary McDonald Observatory 2.1 m data, to discover the photometric variability. The light curve of SDSS J132350.28+010304.22 shows at least nine detectable frequencies. We used these frequencies to make an asteroseismic determination of the total mass and effective temperature of the star: M{sub *} = 0.88 {+-} 0.02 M{sub Sun} and T{sub eff} = 12, 100 {+-} 140 K. These values are consistent with those derived from the optical spectra and photometric colors.

  16. Blue Straggler-White Dwarf binaries in Galactic field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ekanayake, Gemunu B.; Wilhelm, Ronald J.

    2016-01-01

    The mass transfer in close binaries has been identified as the most probable formation channel for field blue straggler stars (BSSs). The companions to these BSSs are white dwarf stars (WDs) and can be detected at ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths in the spectral energy distribution of the binary, if the mass transfer happened recently so that WD is young and hot.We chose a sample of 2,188 BSSs in the temperature range of 7,000 - 9000 K. and surface gravity, Log g > 3.8, using the Sloan Stellar Parameter Pipeline, from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS).From this, a sub-sample of 80 UV excess field BSSs were identified using UV photometry from the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX). By using a chi-square minimization technique we fit the observed SED of these UVe-BSSs to set of combined BS+WD models to find the best fitting WD parameters. By considering our fitting results and the theoretical estimates of mass-temperature relation for BSSs , we find that the likely companions to our sample of UVe-BSSs are He WDs. This means that the most likely scenario of formation of these UVe-BSSs is mass transfer onto a normal main sequence star from a red giant star.

  17. A DOUBLE WHITE-DWARF COOLING SEQUENCE IN {omega} CENTAURI

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bellini, A.; Anderson, J. [Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Dr., Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States); Salaris, M. [Astrophysics Research Institute, Liverpool John Moores University, Twelve Quays House, Egerton Wharf, Birkenhead CH41 1LD (United Kingdom); Cassisi, S. [Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, Osservatorio Astronomico di Collurania, via Mentore Maggini, I-64100 Teramo (Italy); Bedin, L. R. [Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova, v.co dell' Osservatorio 5, I-35122, Padova (Italy); Piotto, G. [Dipartimento di Fisica e Astronomia ' Galileo Galilei' , Universita di Padova, v.co dell' Osservatorio 3, I-35122, Padova (Italy); Bergeron, P., E-mail: bellini@stsci.edu [Departement de Physique, Universite de Montreal, C.P. 6128, Succ. Centre-Ville, Montreal, Quebec H3C 3J7 (Canada)

    2013-06-01

    We have applied our empirical-point-spread-function-based photometric techniques on a large number of calibration-related WFC3/UVIS UV-B exposures of the core of {omega} Cen, and found a well-defined split in the bright part of the white-dwarf cooling sequence (WDCS). The redder sequence is more populated by a factor of {approx}2. We can explain the separation of the two sequences and their number ratio in terms of the He-normal and He-rich subpopulations that had been previously identified along the cluster main sequence. The blue WDCS is populated by the evolved stars of the He-normal component ({approx}0.55 M{sub Sun} CO-core DA objects), while the red WDCS hosts the end products of the He-rich population ({approx}0.46 M{sub Sun} objects, and {approx}10% CO-core and {approx}90% He-core WDs). The He-core WDs correspond to He-rich stars that missed the central He ignition, and we estimate their fraction by analyzing the population ratios along the cluster horizontal branch.

  18. Death by Dynamics: Planetoid-Induced Explosions on White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Di Stefano, Rosanne; Guillochon, James; Steiner, James F

    2015-01-01

    At intervals as short as ten thousand years, each white dwarf (WD) passes within a solar radius of a planetoid, i.e., a comet, asteroid, or planet. Gravitational tidal forces tear the planetoid apart; its metal-rich debris falls onto the WD, enriching the atmosphere. A third of WDs exhibit atmospheric "pollution". For roughly every hundred planetoid disruptions, a planetoid collides with a WD. We simulate a small number of collisions, in which "death-by-dynamics" refers to the fate of the planetoid. We also compute the energies and likely durations of a broad sample of collision events, and identify detection strategies at optical and X-ray wavelengths. Collisions with the most massive planetoids can be detected in external galaxies. Some may trigger nuclear burning. If one in $\\sim 10^7-10^8$ of WD-planetoid collisions creates the conditions needed for a Type Ia supernova (SN~Ia), "death-by-dynamics" would also refer to the fate of the WD, and could provide a novel channel for the production of SN~Ia. We con...

  19. Hubble Space Telescope observations of white dwarfs in detached binaries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    I describe three programs of Hubble Space Telescope (HST) observations of white dwarfs (WDs) in detached binaries. (1) I summarize the HST UV spectroscopy of the Hyades eclipsing binary V471 Tauri, containing a dK main-sequence star and a hot WD. By phasing time-resolved STIS spectra on the 9.25-min rotation period of the WD, we have shown that there are two opposite spots on the WD where there is magnetic accretion from the K star's wind. (2) Several programs of direct imaging and FGS astrometry are yielding high-precision visual orbits and dynamical masses, including the famous systems of Sirius and Procyon, as well as three fainter binaries in which both components are DC WDs. (3) Finally I discuss the bizarre nucleus of the low-surface-brightness planetary nebula EGB 6. The central star is associated with a compact emission-line nebula, which HST imaging shows is associated with a resolved dM companion. Why there should be a compact nebula around the cool star is puzzling; we speculate that it could be an accretion disk of material captured from the outflow that produced the surrounding faint PN. In a recent development, Spitzer has detected a 24 μm excess from EGB 6, indicating a dust component at a temperature of ∼260 K; the location of this dust relative to the hot and cool stars and the compact nebula remains uncertain at present.

  20. A Third Hot White Dwarf Companion Detected by Kepler

    CERN Document Server

    Carter, Joshua A; Fabrycky, Daniel

    2010-01-01

    We have found a system listed in the Kepler Binary Catalog (3.273 day period; Prsa et al. 2010) that we have determined is comprised of a low-mass, thermally-bloated, hot white dwarf orbiting an A star of about 2.3 solar masses. In this work we designate the object, KIC 10657664, simply as KHWD3. We use the transit depth of ~0.66%, the eclipse depth of ~1.9%, and regular smooth periodic variations at the orbital frequency and twice the orbital frequency to analyze the system parameters. The smooth periodic variations are identified with the classical ellipsoidal light variation and illumination effects, and the newly utilized Doppler boosting effect. Given the measured values of R/a and inclination angle of the binary, both the ELV and DB effects are mostly sensitive to the mass ratio, q = M_2/M_1, of the binary. The two effects yield values of q which are somewhat inconsistent - presumably due to unidentified systematic effects - but which nonetheless provide a quite useful set of possibilities for the mass ...

  1. Global Models of Runaway Accretion in White Dwarf Debris Disks

    CERN Document Server

    Metzger, Brian D; Bochkarev, Konstantin V

    2012-01-01

    A growing sample of white dwarfs (WDs) with metal-enriched atmospheres are accompanied by excess infrared emission, indicating that they are encircled by a compact dusty disk of solid debris. Such `WD debris disks' are thought to originate from the tidal disruption of asteroids or other minor bodies, but the precise mechanism(s) responsible for transporting matter to the WD surface remains unclear, especially in those systems with the highest inferred metal accretion rates dM_Z/dt ~ 1e8-1e10 g/s. Here we present global time-dependent calculations of the coupled evolution of the gaseous and solid components of WD debris disks. Solids transported inwards (initially due to PR drag) sublimate at tens of WD radii, producing a source of gas that accretes onto the WD surface and viscously spreads outwards in radius, where it overlaps with the solid disk. If the aerodynamic coupling between the solids and gaseous disks is sufficiently strong (and/or the gas viscosity sufficiently weak), then gas builds up near the su...

  2. Near-UV absorption in very cool DA white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The atmospheres of very cool, hydrogen-rich white dwarfs (WDs) (Teff < 6000 K) are challenging to model because of the increased complexity of the equation of state, chemical equilibrium, and opacity sources in a low-temperature, weakly ionized dense gas. In particular, many models that assume relatively simple models for the broadening of atomic levels and mostly ideal gas physics overestimate the flux in the blue part of their spectra. A solution to this problem that has met with some success is that additional opacity at short wavelengths comes for the extreme broadening of the Lyman ? line of atomic H by collisions primarily with H2. For the purpose of validating this model more rigorously, we acquired Hubble Space Telescope STIS spectra of eight very cool WDs (five DA and three DC stars). Combined with their known parallaxes, BVRIJHK, and Spitzer IRAC photometry, we analyze their entire spectral energy distribution (from 0.24 to 9.3 ?m) with a large grid of model atmospheres and synthetic spectra. We find that the red wing of the Lyman ? line reproduces the rapidly decreasing near-UV flux of these very cool stars very well. We determine better constrained values of Teff and gravity as well as upper limits to the helium abundance in their atmospheres.

  3. Near-UV absorption in very cool DA white dwarfs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Saumon, D. [Los Alamos National Laboratory, P.O. Box 1663, Mail Stop F663, Los Alamos, NM 87545 (United States); Holberg, J. B. [Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Sonett Space Sciences Building, 1541 East University Boulevard, Tucson, AZ 85721-0063 (United States); Kowalski, P. M., E-mail: dsaumon@lanl.gov, E-mail: holberg@argus.lpl.arizona.edu, E-mail: p.kowalski@fz-juelich.de [Institute of Energy and Climate Research (IEK-6), Forschungszentrum Jlich, Wilhelm-Johnen-Strasse, D-52425 Jlich (Germany)

    2014-07-20

    The atmospheres of very cool, hydrogen-rich white dwarfs (WDs) (T{sub eff} < 6000 K) are challenging to model because of the increased complexity of the equation of state, chemical equilibrium, and opacity sources in a low-temperature, weakly ionized dense gas. In particular, many models that assume relatively simple models for the broadening of atomic levels and mostly ideal gas physics overestimate the flux in the blue part of their spectra. A solution to this problem that has met with some success is that additional opacity at short wavelengths comes for the extreme broadening of the Lyman ? line of atomic H by collisions primarily with H{sub 2}. For the purpose of validating this model more rigorously, we acquired Hubble Space Telescope STIS spectra of eight very cool WDs (five DA and three DC stars). Combined with their known parallaxes, BVRIJHK, and Spitzer IRAC photometry, we analyze their entire spectral energy distribution (from 0.24 to 9.3 ?m) with a large grid of model atmospheres and synthetic spectra. We find that the red wing of the Lyman ? line reproduces the rapidly decreasing near-UV flux of these very cool stars very well. We determine better constrained values of T{sub eff} and gravity as well as upper limits to the helium abundance in their atmospheres.

  4. Electrical conductivity of plasmas of DB white dwarf atmospheres

    CERN Document Server

    Sreckovic, V A; Mihajlov, A A; Dimitrijevic, M S; 10.1111/j.1365-2966.2010.16702.x

    2012-01-01

    The static electrical conductivity of non-ideal, dense, partially ionized helium plasma was calculated over a wide range of plasma parameters: temperatures $1\\cdot 10^{4}\\textrm{K} \\lesssim T \\lesssim 1\\cdot 10^{5}\\textrm{K}$ and mass density $1 \\times 10^{-6} \\textrm{g}/\\textrm{cm}^{3} \\lesssim \\rho \\lesssim 2 \\textrm{g}/\\textrm{cm}^{3}$. Calculations of electrical conductivity of plasma for the considered range of plasma parameters are of interest for DB white dwarf atmospheres with effective temperatures $1\\cdot 10^{4}\\textrm{K} \\lesssim T_{eff} \\lesssim 3\\cdot 10^{4}\\textrm{K}$. Electrical conductivity of plasma was calculated by using the modified random phase approximation and semiclassical method, adapted for the case of dense, partially ionized plasma. The results were compared with the unique existing experimental data, including the results related to the region of dense plasmas. In spite of low accuracy of the experimental data, the existing agreement with them indicates that results obtained in th...

  5. Turbulent Mixing on Helium-Accreting White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Piro, Anthony L

    2015-01-01

    An attractive scenario for producing Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is a double detonation, where detonation of an accreted helium layer triggers ignition of a C/O core. Whether or not such a mechanism can explain some or most SNe Ia depends on the properties of the helium burning, which in turn is set by the composition of the surface material. Using a combination of semi-analytic and simple numerical models, I explore when turbulent mixing due to hydrodynamic instabilities during the accretion process can mix C/O core material up into the accreted helium. Mixing is strongest at high accretion rates, large white dwarf (WD) masses, and slow spin rates. The mixing would result in subsequent helium burning that better matches the observed properties of SNe Ia. In some cases, there is considerable mixing that can lead to more than 50% C/O in the accreted layer at the time of ignition. These results will hopefully motivate future theoretical studies of such strongly mixed conditions. Mixing also has implications for...

  6. A DOUBLE WHITE-DWARF COOLING SEQUENCE IN ω CENTAURI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We have applied our empirical-point-spread-function-based photometric techniques on a large number of calibration-related WFC3/UVIS UV-B exposures of the core of ω Cen, and found a well-defined split in the bright part of the white-dwarf cooling sequence (WDCS). The redder sequence is more populated by a factor of ∼2. We can explain the separation of the two sequences and their number ratio in terms of the He-normal and He-rich subpopulations that had been previously identified along the cluster main sequence. The blue WDCS is populated by the evolved stars of the He-normal component (∼0.55 M☉ CO-core DA objects), while the red WDCS hosts the end products of the He-rich population (∼0.46 M☉ objects, and ∼10% CO-core and ∼90% He-core WDs). The He-core WDs correspond to He-rich stars that missed the central He ignition, and we estimate their fraction by analyzing the population ratios along the cluster horizontal branch.

  7. Type Ia supernovae from exploding oxygen-neon white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Marquardt, Kai S; Ruiter, Ashley J; Seitenzahl, Ivo R; Ohlmann, Sebastian T; Kromer, Markus; Pakmor, Ruediger; Roepke, Friedrich K

    2015-01-01

    The progenitor problem of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is still unsolved. Most of these events are thought to be explosions of carbon-oxygen (CO) white dwarfs (WDs), but for many of the explosion scenarios, particularly those involving the externally triggered detonation of a sub-Chandrasekhar mass WD (sub-M Ch WD), there is also a possibility of having an oxygen-neon (ONe) WD as progenitor. We simulate detonations of ONe WDs and calculate synthetic observables from these models. The results are compared with detonations in CO WDs of similar mass and observational data of SNe Ia. We perform hydrodynamic explosion simulations of detonations in initially hydrostatic ONe WDs for a range of masses below the Chandrasekhar mass (M Ch), followed by detailed nucleosynthetic postprocessing with a 384-isotope nuclear reaction network. The results are used to calculate synthetic spectra and light curves, which are then compared with observations of SNe Ia. We also perform binary evolution calculations to determine the nu...

  8. COSMOLOGICAL FAST RADIO BURSTS FROM BINARY WHITE DWARF MERGERS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kashiyama, Kazumi; Mszros, Peter [Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Department of Physics, Center for Particle and Gravitational Astrophysics, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802 (United States); Ioka, Kunihito, E-mail: kzk15@psu.edu, E-mail: nnp@psu.edu, E-mail: kunihito.ioka@kek.jp [Theory Center, Institute of Particle and Nuclear Studies, KEK, Department of Particle and Nuclear Physics, the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (Sokendai), Tsukuba 305-0801 (Japan)

    2013-10-20

    Recently, Thornton et al. reported the detection of four fast radio bursts (FRBs). The dispersion measures indicate that the sources of these FRBs are at cosmological distance. Given the large full sky event rate ?10{sup 4} sky{sup 1} day{sup 1}, the FRBs are a promising target for multi-messenger astronomy. Here we propose double degenerate, binary white-dwarf (WD) mergers as the source of FRBs, which are produced by coherent emission from the polar region of a rapidly rotating, magnetized massive WD formed after the merger. The basic characteristics of the FRBs, such as the energetics, emission duration and event rate, can be consistently explained in this scenario. As a result, we predict that some FRBs can accompany type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) or X-ray debris disks. Simultaneous detection could test our scenario and probe the progenitors of SNe Ia, and moreover would provide a novel constraint on the cosmological parameters. We strongly encourage future SN and X-ray surveys that follow up FRBs.

  9. The not-so-extreme white dwarf of the CV GD 552

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    GD 552 is a cataclysmic binary which was previously believed to be composed of an M-star and a white dwarf, the latter having an extreme mass of 1.4 solar masses. In a recent paper we showed that this is not compatible with new observational evidence and presented an alternative model in which the white dwarf has a typical mass and the companion is a brown dwarf, making the system a likely member of the elusive group of CVs which have already evolved through minimum orbital period. Here we present additional spectroscopical evidence supporting this conclusion by means of skew mapping.

  10. The not-so-extreme white dwarf of the CV GD 552

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Unda-Sanzana, E; Hinojosa-Goni [Instituto de Astronomia, Universidad Catolica del Norte, Antofagasta (Chile); Marsh, T R; Gaensicke, B T [Department of Physics, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK CV4 7AL (United Kingdom); Maxted, P F L [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Keele University, Keele, Staffordshire ST5 5BG (United Kingdom); Morales-Rueda, L [Department of Astrophysics, University of Nijmegen, 6500 GL Nijmegen (Netherlands); Dhillon, V S; Thoroughgood, T D; Watson, C A [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S3 7RH (United Kingdom); Tremou, E, E-mail: eundas@almagesto.or, E-mail: rhg002@ucn.c, E-mail: t.r.marsh@warwick.ac.u, E-mail: boris.gaensicke@warwick.ac.u, E-mail: pflm@astro.keele.ac.u, E-mail: lmr@astro.ru.n, E-mail: vik.dhillon@sheffield.ac.u, E-mail: C.Watson@sheffield.ac.u, E-mail: etremo@physics.auth.g [Department of Physics, Sect. of Astrophysics, Astronomy and Mechanics, University of Thessaloniki, 541 24 Thessaloniki (Greece)

    2009-06-01

    GD 552 is a cataclysmic binary which was previously believed to be composed of an M-star and a white dwarf, the latter having an extreme mass of 1.4 solar masses. In a recent paper we showed that this is not compatible with new observational evidence and presented an alternative model in which the white dwarf has a typical mass and the companion is a brown dwarf, making the system a likely member of the elusive group of CVs which have already evolved through minimum orbital period. Here we present additional spectroscopical evidence supporting this conclusion by means of skew mapping.

  11. Pulsating low-mass white dwarfs in the frame of new evolutionary sequences. III. The pre-ELM white dwarf instability strip

    Science.gov (United States)

    Córsico, A. H.; Althaus, L. G.; Serenelli, A. M.; Kepler, S. O.; Jeffery, C. S.; Corti, M. A.

    2016-04-01

    Context. Many low-mass (M⋆/M⊙ ≲ 0.45) and extremely low-mass (ELM, M⋆/M⊙ ≲ 0.18-0.20) white-dwarf stars are currently being found in the field of the Milky Way. Some of these stars exhibit long-period gravity-mode (g-mode) pulsations, and constitute the class of pulsating white dwarfs called ELMV stars. In addition, two low-mass pre-white dwarfs, which could be precursors of ELM white dwarfs, have been observed to show multiperiodic photometric variations. They could constitute a new class of pulsating low-mass pre-white dwarf stars. Aims: Motivated by this finding, we present a detailed nonadiabatic pulsation study of such stars, employing full evolutionary sequences of low-mass He-core pre-white dwarf models. Methods: Our pulsation stability analysis is based on a set of low-mass He-core pre-white dwarf models with masses ranging from 0.1554 to 0.2724 M⊙, which were derived by computing the nonconservative evolution of a binary system consisting of an initially 1 M⊙ ZAMS star and a 1.4 M⊙ neutron star companion. We have considered models in which element diffusion is accounted for and also models in which it is neglected. Results: We confirm and explore in detail a new instability strip in the domain of low gravities and low effective temperatures of the Teff - log g diagram, where low-mass pre-white dwarfs are currently found. The destabilized modes are radial and nonradial p and g modes excited by the κ - γ mechanism acting mainly at the zone of the second partial ionization of He, with non-negligible contributions from the region of the first partial ionization of He and the partial ionization of H. The computations with element diffusion are unable to explain the pulsations observed in the two known pulsating pre-white dwarfs, suggesting that element diffusion might be inhibited at these stages of the pre-white dwarf evolution. Our nonadiabatic models without diffusion, on the other hand, naturally explain the existence and range of periods of the pulsating pre-white dwarf star WASP J1628+10B, although they fail to explain the pulsations of WASP J0247-25B, the other known member of the class, indicating that the He abundance in the driving region of this star might be substantially higher than predicted by our models. Conclusions: Discoveries of additional members of this new class of pulsating stars and their analysis in the context of the theoretical background presented in this paper will shed new light on the evolutionary history of their progenitor stars.

  12. An Ultramassive 1.28 M⊙ White Dwarf in NGC 2099

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cummings, Jeffrey D.; Kalirai, Jason S.; Tremblay, P.-E.; Ramirez-Ruiz, Enrico; Bergeron, P.

    2016-03-01

    With the Keck I Low-Resolution Imaging Spectrometer we have observed nine white dwarf candidates in the very rich open cluster NGC 2099 (M37). The spectroscopy shows seven to be DA white dwarfs, one to be a DB white dwarf, and one to be a DZ white dwarf. Three of these DA white dwarfs are consistent with singly evolved cluster membership: an ultramassive (1.28{}-0.08+0.05 {M}⊙ ) and two intermediate-mass (0.70 and 0.75 {M}⊙ ) white dwarfs. Analysis of their cooling ages allows us to calculate their progenitor masses and establish new constraints on the initial-final mass relation. The intermediate-mass white dwarfs are in strong agreement with previous work over this mass regime. The ultramassive white dwarf has V = 24.5, ˜2 mag fainter than the other two remnants. The spectrum of this star has lower quality, so the derived stellar properties (e.g., {T}{{eff}}, log g) have uncertainties that are several times higher than the brighter counterparts. We measure these uncertainties and establish the star’s final mass as the highest-mass white dwarf discovered thus far in a cluster, but we are unable to calculate its progenitor mass because at this high mass and cooler {T}{{eff}} its inferred cooling age is highly sensitive to its mass. At the highest temperatures, however, this sensitivity of cooling age to an ultramassive white dwarf’s mass is only moderate. This demonstrates that future investigations of the upper-mass end of the initial-final mass relation must identify massive, newly formed white dwarfs (i.e., in young clusters with ages 50-150 Myr). Based on observations with the W.M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, and NASA, was made possible by the generous financial support of the W.M. Keck Foundation.

  13. White dwarf atmosphere models with Ly-$\\alpha$ opacity in the analysis of the white dwarf cooling sequence of NGC 6397

    CERN Document Server

    Kowalski, Piotr M

    2007-01-01

    We discuss the importance of pure hydrogen white dwarf atmosphere models with Ly-$\\rm \\alpha$ far red wing opacity in the analysis of the white dwarf cooling sequence of the globular cluster NGC 6397. Our recently improved atmosphere models account for the previously missing opacity from the Ly-$\\rm \\alpha$ hydrogen line broadened by collisions of the absorbing hydrogen atoms with molecular and atomic hydrogen. These models are the first that well reproduce the UV colors and spectral energy distributions of cool white dwarfs with $T_{\\rm eff}<6000 \\rm K$ observed in the Galactic Disk. Fitting the observed $F814W$ magnitude and $F606W-F814W$ color we obtained a value for the true distance modulus, $\\mu=12.00 \\pm 0.02$, that is in agreement with recent analyses. We show that the stars at the end of the cooling sequence appear to be $\\rm \\sim 160 K$ cooler when models that account for Ly-$\\rm \\alpha$ opacity are used. This indicates that the age of NGC 6397 derived from the white dwarf cooling sequence using ...

  14. On the Number of Comets Around White Dwarf Stars: Orbit Survival During the Late Stages of Stellar Evolution

    OpenAIRE

    Parriott, Joel; Alcock, Charles

    1997-01-01

    The accretion of comets onto DA white dwarfs can produce observable metal absorption lines. We show here that comet systems around the progenitor main sequence star are vulnerable to being lost during asymptotic giant branch mass loss, if the mass loss is sufficiently asymmetric to impart modest linear momentum to the white dwarf. This may have bearing on the frequency of observation of heavy elements in white dwarf stars, and on inferences regarding the frequency of comet systems, if the imp...

  15. The Luminosity Function of Magnitude and Proper-Motion Selected Samples. The case of White-Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Mendez, Rene. A.; Ruiz, Maria T.

    2000-01-01

    The luminosity function of white dwarfs is a powerful tool for studies of the evolution and formation of the Milky Way. The (theoretical) white dwarf cooling sequence provides a useful indicator of the evolutionary time scales involved in the chronometry and star formation history of the galactic disk, therefore, intrinsically faint (& old) white dwarfs in the immediate solar neighborhood can be used to determine an upper limit for the age of the galactic disk. In this paper we examine the fa...

  16. A photometric selection of White Dwarf candidates in SDSS DR10

    CERN Document Server

    Fusillo, Nicola Pietro Gentile; Greiss, Sandra

    2015-01-01

    We present a method which uses cuts in colour-colour and reduced proper motion-colour space to select white dwarfs without the recourse to spectroscopy while allowing an adjustable compromise between completeness and efficiency. Rather than just producing a list of white dwarf candidates, our method calculates a probability of being a white dwarf (Pwd) for any object with available multi band photometry and proper motion. We applied this method to all objects in the SDSS DR10 photometric footprint and to a few selected sources in DR7 which did not have reliable photometry in DR9 or DR10. This application results in a sample of 61969 DR10 and 3799 DR7 photometric sources with calculated Pwd from which it is possible to select a sample of ~23000 high-fidelity white dwarf candidates with Teff >~ 7000 K and <= 19. This sample contains over 14000 high confidence white dwarfs candidates which have not yet received spectroscopic follow-up. These numbers show that, to date, the spectroscopic coverage of white dwar...

  17. A PARAMETER-SPACE STUDY OF CARBON-OXYGEN WHITE DWARF MERGERS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The merger of two carbon-oxygen white dwarfs can lead to either a spectacular transient, stable nuclear burning or a massive, rapidly rotating white dwarf. Simulations of mergers have shown that the outcome strongly depends on whether the white dwarfs are similar or dissimilar in mass. In the similar-mass case, both white dwarfs merge fully and the remnant is hot throughout, while in the dissimilar case, the more massive, denser white dwarf remains cold and essentially intact, with the disrupted lower mass one wrapped around it in a hot envelope and disk. In order to determine what constitutes ''similar in mass'' and more generally how the properties of the merger remnant depend on the input masses, we simulated unsynchronized carbon-oxygen white dwarf mergers for a large range of masses using smoothed-particle hydrodynamics. We find that the structure of the merger remnant varies smoothly as a function of the ratio of the central densities of the two white dwarfs. A density ratio of 0.6 approximately separates similar and dissimilar-mass mergers. Confirming previous work, we find that the temperatures of most merger remnants are not high enough to immediately ignite carbon fusion. During subsequent viscous evolution, however, the interior will likely be compressed and heated as the disk accretes and the remnant spins down. We find from simple estimates that this evolution can lead to ignition for many remnants. For similar-mass mergers, this would likely occur under sufficiently degenerate conditions that a thermonuclear runaway would ensue.

  18. White Dwarfs in SDSS DR9 and DR10

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentile Fusillo, Nicola Pietro; Gnsicke, Boris; Koester, Detlev

    2015-06-01

    Currently the largest catalogue of spectroscopically identified WDs is based on the 7th Data Release (DR) of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and contains over 20000 WDs (Kleinman et al. 2013). However, only a fraction of all WDs in the photometric footprint of SDSS have been spectroscopically followed up. Using DR7 spectroscopy as a training sample, we developed a method to select high confidence photometric WD candidates. The novelty of our selection is that it allows us to assign to any object with multi-colour and proper motion data a well-defined "probability of being a white dwarf" (or a contaminant). Exploiting this selection method we compiled a catalogue (Gentile Fusillo et al. in prep) which currently covers the entire photometric footprint of SDSS, 14555sq deg, with a limiting magnitude of g ? 19. The catalogue contains over 20000 high-confidence WDs and WD candidates 11500 of which have not yet been followed up with Sloan spectroscopy. Even though, so far, our catalogue relies only SDSS we plan to extend the sky coverage as additional deep multi-colour large area surveys become available. DR10 includes over 1.4 million spectra taken with the new BOSS spectrograph, which improves over the original SDSS spectograph in both resolution and wavelength coverage, but has so far not been systematically mined for WD science. As part of this project, we also inspected over 8000 BOSS spectra of bright (g ? 19) colour selected sources and classified 1765 new WDs. We used this independent, spectroscopically confirmed sample to further validate our selection method. Finally we discuss possible application of our catalogue , focusing on the selection and follow up of 9 new DZs which show strong pollution from elements other than Ca and IR excess emission emission consistent with the presence of debris discs.

  19. Probing dark matter crests with white dwarfs and IMBHs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amaro-Seoane, P.; Casanellas, J.; Schödel, R.; Davidson, E.; Cuadra, J.

    2016-03-01

    White dwarfs (WDs) are the most promising captors of dark matter (DM) particles in the crests that are expected to build up in the cores of dense stellar clusters. The DM particles could reach sufficient densities in WD cores to liberate energy through self-annihilation. The extinction associated with our Galactic Centre makes it impossible to detect the potential associated luminosities, contrary to smaller stellar systems which are close enough to us and not heavily extincted, such as -Cen. We investigate the prospects of detection of DM-burning WDs in a stellar cluster harbouring an intermediate-mass black hole (IMBH), which leads to higher densities of DM at the centre. We calculate the capture rate and estimate the luminosity that a WD would emit depending on its distance to the centre of the cluster. Direct-summation N-body simulations of -Cen yield a non-negligible number of WDs in the range of radii of interest. We apply our assumption to published HST/ACS observations of stars in the center of -Cen and, although we are not able to identify any evident candidate, we proof that their bunching up at high luminosities would be unique. We predict that DM burning will lead to a truncation of the cooling sequence at the faint end. The detection of DM burning in future observations of dense stellar clusters could allow us to probe different models of DM distributions and characteristics. On the other hand, if DM-burning WDs really exist, their number and properties could give hints to the existence of IMBHs.

  20. A Study of Short-term White Dwarf Variability Using gPhoton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Michael; Fleming, Scott W.; Caton, Daniel B.; Million, Chase; Shiao, Bernie

    2016-01-01

    The Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) was a UV space telescope that operated from 2003 until 2013. A new project at MAST, gPhoton takes advantage of the microchannel-plate photon detector aboard GALEX, which catalogued and time-stamped every photon event by putting the one trillion photon events into a database. Utilizing associated open-source software, gPhoton can create coadd images, movies and light curves at user-defined spatial and temporal scales. As part of early science investigations with gPhoton, 364 white dwarf stars from the McCook-Sion catalog with ample GALEX coverage were photometrically inspected for inter-visit variations during an REU program at STScI. Out of the 364 white dwarfs that were studied, three previously documented pulsating white dwarf stars were confirmed in the UV and (at least) three new pulsating white dwarf stars were discovered. Follow-up observations are conducted at Appalachian State University using optical telescopes at the Dark Sky Observatory. We compare optical and UV light curves of these new white dwarf pulsators and show a selection of other variables found with gPhoton.

  1. A Search for Rocky Planets in Close Orbits around White Dwarfs with COS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandhaus, Phoebe; Debes, John H.; Ely, Justin; Hines, Dean C.

    2016-01-01

    The search for transiting habitable exoplanets has broadened to include several types of stars that are smaller than the Sun in order to increase the observed transit depth and hence the atmospheric signal of the planet. Of all current spectral types, white dwarfs are the most favorable for this type of investigation. The fraction of white dwarfs that possess close-in rocky planets is unknown, but several large angle surveys of stars have the photometric precision and cadence to discover at least one if they are common. Ultraviolet observations of white dwarfs may allow for detection of molecular oxygen or ozone in the atmosphere of a terrestrial planet. We use archival Hubble Space Telescope data from the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph to search for transiting rocky planets around UV-bright white dwarfs. In the process, we discovered unusual variability in the pulsating white dwarf GD~133, which shows slow sinusoidal variations in the UV. While we detect no planets around our small sample of targets, we do place stringent limits on the possibility of transiting planets, down to sub-lunar radii.

  2. UV Spectroscopy of the Hot, Helium-Core White Dwarf Companion in HR 1608

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres, Guillermo

    2003-07-01

    We propose to observe the FUV spectrum of the hot, helium-core white dwarf in the binary system HR 1608 in order to determine if there are suitable spectral lines to obtain a radial velocity orbit for the white dwarf star. The primary star in this system, with spectral type K0 IV, dominates the spectrum at visual wavelengths. At a temperature of around 25, 000 K, however, the white dwarf outshines the primary in the UV. The orbital motion of the primary star has been monitored for seven years with the CfA Digital Speedometer at Oak Ridge Observatory in Harvard, MA. In addition, the Hipparcos team noted excess scatter in the astrometric solution which, though unexplained at the time, we now know to be due to the orbital motion. Combining the astrometric and spectroscopic data, we have solved for the orbital elements, including the inclination of the system. In order to obtain a dynamical mass for the star, the orbital motion of both stars must be observed, thus the need for monitoring the white dwarf in the UV. As the first step in this endeavor, we propose to obtain a STIS spectrum of the white dwarf star to discover if there are spectral lines with which its radial velocity could be measured precisely enough to calculate a dynamical mass.

  3. A Nearby Old Halo White Dwarf Candidate from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

    CERN Document Server

    Hall, Patrick B; Harris, Hugh C; Awal, Akshay; Leggett, S K; Kilic, Mukremin; Anderson, Scott F; Gates, Evalyn

    2008-01-01

    We report the discovery of a nearby, old, halo white dwarf candidate from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. SDSS J110217.48+411315.4 has a proper motion of 1.75 arcsec/year and redder optical colors than all other known featureless (type DC) white dwarfs. We present SDSS imaging and spectroscopy of this object, along with near-infrared photometry obtained at the United Kingdom Infra-Red Telescope. Fitting its photometry with up-to-date model atmospheres, we find that its overall spectral energy distribution is fit reasonably well with a pure hydrogen composition and T_eff~3800 K (assuming log g=8). That temperature and gravity would place this white dwarf at 35 pc from the Sun with a tangential velocity of 290 km/s and space velocities consistent with halo membership; furthermore, its combined main sequence and white dwarf cooling age would be ~11 Gyr. However, if this object is a massive white dwarf, it could be a younger object with a thick disk origin. Whatever its origin, the optical colors of this object are...

  4. Discovery of Two New Thermally Bloated Low-Mass White Dwarfs Among the Kepler Binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Rappaport, S; Levine, A; Sanchis-Ojeda, R; Gandolfi, D; Nowak, G; Palle, E; Prsa, A

    2015-01-01

    We report the discovery of two new low-mass, thermally bloated, hot white dwarfs among the Kepler sample of eclipsing binaries. These are KIC 9164561 and KIC 10727668 with orbital periods of 1.2670 and 2.3058 days, respectively. The current primary in both systems is an A star of about 2 Msun. This brings the number of similar binaries among the Kepler sample to six, and the two new systems have the shortest orbital periods among them. The white dwarf in KIC 9164561 has the largest thermal bloating, compared to its cold degenerate radius, of about a factor of 14. We utilize RV measurements of the A star in KIC 9164561 to determine the white dwarf mass rather accurately: 0.197 +/- 0.005 Msun. The mass of the white dwarf in KIC 10727668 is based on the Doppler boosting signal in the Kepler photometry, and is less accurately determined to be 0.266 +/- 0.035 Msun. Based on the inferred radii and effective temperatures of these two white dwarfs we are able to make an independent theoretical estimate of their masse...

  5. Effects of strong magnetic fields and rotation on white dwarf structure

    CERN Document Server

    Franzon, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    In this paper we compute relativistic stars models for the structure of white dwarfs under the influence of strong magnetic field and rotation. The magnetic field is assumed to be poloidal and axisymmetric. We find a maximum mass for a static magnetized white dwarf of about 2.13 $\\rm{M_{\\odot}}$ in the Newtonian case and a value of 2.09 $\\rm{M_{\\odot}}$ taking into account general relativistic effects. We also present properties of uniformly rotating white dwarfs and we show that the maximum mass is shifted from a mass of $\\sim$ 1.40 $\\rm{M_{\\odot}}$ for non-rotating white dwarf to $\\sim$ 1.45 $\\rm{M_{\\odot}}$ in the keplerian limit. We present also results for rotating magnetized white dwarfs calculated in a self$-$consistent way by solving the Maxwell and Einstein equations together. The maximum field strength obtained is about $10^{15}\\,$G at the center of the star in the static and $10^{14}\\,$G in the rotating case.

  6. ANCIENT PLANETARY SYSTEMS ARE ORBITING A LARGE FRACTION OF WHITE DWARF STARS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Infrared studies have revealed debris likely related to planet formation in orbit around ?30% of youthful, intermediate mass, main-sequence stars. We present evidence, based on atmospheric pollution by various elements heavier than helium, that a comparable fraction of the white dwarf descendants of such main-sequence stars are orbited by planetary systems. These systems have survived, at least in part, through all stages of stellar evolution that precede the white dwarf. During the time interval (?200 million years) that a typical polluted white dwarf in our sample has been cooling it has accreted from its planetary system the mass of one of the largest asteroids in our solar system (e.g., Vesta or Ceres). Usually, this accreted mass will be only a fraction of the total mass of rocky material that orbits these white dwarfs; for plausible planetary system configurations we estimate that this total mass is likely to be at least equal to that of the Sun's asteroid belt, and perhaps much larger. We report abundances of a suite of eight elements detected in the little studied star G241-6 that we find to be among the most heavily polluted of all moderately bright white dwarfs.

  7. THE WHITE DWARFS WITHIN 20 PARSECS OF THE SUN: KINEMATICS AND STATISTICS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present the kinematical properties, distribution of spectroscopic subtypes, and stellar population subcomponents of the white dwarfs within 20 pc of the Sun. We find no convincing evidence of halo white dwarfs in the total 20 pc sample of 129 white dwarfs nor is there convincing evidence of genuine thick disk subcomponent members within 20 parsecs. Virtually, the entire 20 pc sample likely belongs to the thin disk. The total DA to non-DA ratio of the 20 pc sample is 1.6, a manifestation of deepening envelope convection which transforms DA stars with sufficiently thin H surface layers into non-DAs. The addition of five new stars to the 20 pc sample yields a revised local space density of white dwarfs of (4.9 0.5) x 10-3 pc-3 and a corresponding mass density of (3.3 0.3) x 10-3 M sun pc-3. We find that at least 15% of the white dwarfs within 20 parsecs of the Sun (the DAZ and DZ stars) have photospheric metals that possibly originate from accretion of circumstellar material (debris disks) around them. If this interpretation is correct, this suggests the possibility that the same percentage have planets or asteroid-like bodies orbiting them.

  8. A second case of outbursts in a pulsating white dwarf observed by Kepler

    CERN Document Server

    Hermes, J J; Bell, Keaton J; Chote, P; Gaensicke, B T; Kawaler, Steven D; Clemens, J C; Dunlap, B H; Winget, D E; Armstrong, D J

    2015-01-01

    We present observations of a new phenomenon in pulsating white dwarf stars: large-amplitude outbursts at timescales much longer than the pulsation periods. The cool (Teff = 11,010 K), hydrogen-atmosphere pulsating white dwarf PG 1149+057 was observed nearly continuously for more than 78.8 d by the extended Kepler mission in K2 Campaign 1. The target showed 10 outburst events, recurring roughly every 8 d and lasting roughly 15 hr, with maximum flux excursions up to 45% in the Kepler bandpass. We demonstrate that the outbursts affect the pulsations and therefore must come from the white dwarf. Additionally, we argue that these events are not magnetic reconnection flares, and are most likely connected to the stellar pulsations and the relatively deep surface convection zone. PG 1149+057 is now the second cool pulsating white dwarf to show this outburst phenomenon, after the first variable white dwarf observed in the Kepler mission, KIC 4552982. Both stars have the same effective temperature, within the uncertain...

  9. WHITE-DWARF-MAIN-SEQUENCE BINARIES IDENTIFIED FROM THE LAMOST PILOT SURVEY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present a set of white-dwarf-main-sequence (WDMS) binaries identified spectroscopically from the Large sky Area Multi-Object fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST, also called the Guo Shou Jing Telescope) pilot survey. We develop a color selection criteria based on what is so far the largest and most complete Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) DR7 WDMS binary catalog and identify 28 WDMS binaries within the LAMOST pilot survey. The primaries in our binary sample are mostly DA white dwarfs except for one DB white dwarf. We derive the stellar atmospheric parameters, masses, and radii for the two components of 10 of our binaries. We also provide cooling ages for the white dwarf primaries as well as the spectral types for the companion stars of these 10 WDMS binaries. These binaries tend to contain hot white dwarfs and early-type companions. Through cross-identification, we note that nine binaries in our sample have been published in the SDSS DR7 WDMS binary catalog. Nineteen spectroscopic WDMS binaries identified by the LAMOST pilot survey are new. Using the 3? radial velocity variation as a criterion, we find two post-common-envelope binary candidates from our WDMS binary sample

  10. THE LONG-TERM EVOLUTION OF DOUBLE WHITE DWARF MERGERS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this paper, we present a model for the long-term evolution of the merger of two unequal mass C/O white dwarfs (WDs). After the dynamical phase of the merger, magnetic stresses rapidly redistribute angular momentum, leading to nearly solid-body rotation on a viscous timescale of 10–4-1 yr, long before significant cooling can occur. Due to heating during the dynamical and viscous phases, the less massive WD is transformed into a hot, slowly rotating, and radially extended envelope supported by thermal pressure. Following the viscous phase of evolution, the maximum temperature near the envelope base may already be high enough to begin off-center convective carbon burning. If not, Kelvin-Helmholtz contraction of the inner region of the envelope on a thermal timescale of 103-104 yr compresses the base of the envelope, again yielding off-center burning. As a result, the long-term evolution of the merger remnant is similar to that seen in previous calculations: the burning shell diffuses inward over ∼104 yr, eventually yielding a high-mass O/Ne WD or a collapse to a neutron star, rather than a Type Ia supernova. During the cooling and shell-burning phases, the merger remnant radiates near the Eddington limit. Given the double WD merger rate of a few per 1000 yr, a few dozen of these ∼1038 erg s–1 sources should exist in a Milky Way type galaxy. While the end result is similar to that of previous studies, the physical picture and the dynamical state of the matter in our model differ from previous work. Furthermore, substantial remaining uncertainties related to the convective structure near the photosphere and mass loss during the thermal evolution may significantly affect our conclusions. Thus, future work within the context of the physical model presented here is required to better address the eventual fate of double WD mergers, including those for which one or both of the components is a He WD.

  11. Cool White Dwarfs from the SuperCOSMOS and Sloan Digital Sky Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hambly, N. C.; Digby, A. P.; Oppenheimer, B. R.

    2005-07-01

    We have used datamining techniques in the SuperCOSMOS Science Archive (http://surveys.roe.ac.uk/ssa) to obtain a large, well defined proper motion and magnitude selected sample of cool white dwarfs. Using accurate 5-colour photometry from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR1 and SuperCOSMOS Sky Survey photometry and astrometry, we demonstrate the power of reduced proper motion in obtaining a sample of >700 white dwarfs. We examine the characteristics of these objects in various two-colour diagrams in conjunction with new model atmosphere predictions recently computed in the SDSS photometric system. Ultimately, we intend to analyse these data with techniques similar to those already used to examine the subdwarf luminosity function (Digby et al. 2003). In this way, we aim to decompose the contribution of thin disk, thick disk and spheroid white dwarfs in the sample to enable computation of accurate luminosity functions for those respective populations.

  12. Discovery of ZZ Cetis in detached white dwarf plus main-sequence binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Pyrzas, S; Hermes, J J; Copperwheat, C M; Rebassa-Mansergas, A; Dhillon, V S; Littlefair, S P; Marsh, T R; Parsons, S G; Savoury, C D J; Schreiber, M R; Barros, S C C; Bento, J; Breedt, E; Kerry, P

    2014-01-01

    We present the first results of a dedicated search for pulsating white dwarfs (WDs) in detached white dwarf plus main-sequence binaries. Candidate systems were selected from a catalogue of WD+MS binaries, based on the surface gravities and effective temperatures of the WDs. We observed a total of 26 systems using ULTRACAM mounted on ESO's 3.5m New Technology Telescope (NTT) at La Silla. Our photometric observations reveal pulsations in seven WDs of our sample, including the first pulsating white dwarf with a main-sequence companion in a post common envelope binary, SDSSJ1136+0409. Asteroseismology of these new pulsating systems will provide crucial insight into how binary interactions, particularly the common envelope phase, affect the internal structure and evolution of WDs. In addition, our observations have revealed the partially eclipsing nature of one of our targets, SDSSJ1223-0056.

  13. Strengthening the Case for Asteroidal Accrection: Evidence for Subtle and Diverse Disks at White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Farihi, J; Lee, J -E; Zuckerman, B

    2010-01-01

    Spitzer Space Telescope IRAC 3-8 micron and AKARI IRC 2-4 micron photometry are reported for ten white dwarfs with photospheric heavy elements; nine relatively cool stars with photospheric calcium, and one hotter star with a peculiar high carbon abundance. A substantial infrared excess is detected at HE 2221-1630, while modest excess emissions are identified at HE 0106-3253 and HE 0307+0746, implying these latter two stars have relatively narrow (Delta r < 0.1 Rsol) rings of circumstellar dust. A likely 7.9 micron excess is found at PG 1225-079 and may represent, together with G166-58, a sub-class of dust ring with a large inner hole. The existence of attenuated disks at white dwarfs substantiates the connection between their photospheric heavy elements and the accretion of disrupted minor planets, indicating many polluted white dwarfs may harbor orbiting dust, even those lacking an obvious infrared excess.

  14. Pulsations of Pre-White Dwarfs with Hydrogen-dominated Atmospheres

    CERN Document Server

    Maeda, Kazuhiro

    2014-01-01

    We carried out a fully non-adiabatic analysis for nonradial oscillations of pre-white dwarfs evolved from the post-Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) with hydrogen-dominated envelopes. It is shown that nuclear reactions in the hydrogen burning-shell excite low-degree g-modes in the period range of about 40-200 s for the pre-white dwarf models with Teff=40,000 K - 300,000 K. It is also shown that the amount of hydrogen {has} a significant influence on the instability domain of such pre-white dwarfs in the Hertzsprung-Russel (H-R) diagram. Thus, the thickness of hydrogen-dominated envelopes may be well constrained by observing the presence of the g-mode oscillations.

  15. The Star Formation History of the Solar Neighbourhood from the White Dwarf Luminosity Function

    CERN Document Server

    Rowell, Nicholas

    2013-01-01

    The termination in the white dwarf luminosity function is a standard diagnostic tool for measuring the total age of nearby stellar populations. In this paper, an algorithm is presented for inverting the full white dwarf luminosity function to obtain a maximum likelihood estimate of the time varying star formation rate of the host stellar population. Tests with synthetic data demonstrate that the algorithm converges over a wide class of underlying star formation rate forms. The algorithm successfully estimates the moving average star formation rate as a function of lookback time in the presence of realistic measurement noise, though suffers from degeneracies around discontinuities in the underlying star formation rate. The inversion results are most sensitive to the choice of white dwarf cooling models, with the models produced by different groups giving quite different results. The results are relatively insensitive to the progenitor metallicity, initial mass function, initial-final mass relation and ratio of...

  16. The Future Evolution of White Dwarf Stars Through Baryon Decay and Time Varying Gravitational Constant

    CERN Document Server

    Ketchum, Jacob A

    2008-01-01

    Motivated by the possibility that the fundamental ``constants'' of nature could vary with time, this paper considers the long term evolution of white dwarf stars under the combined action of proton decay and variations in the gravitational constant. White dwarfs are thus used as a theoretical laboratory to study the effects of possible time variations, especially their implications for the future history of the universe. More specifically, we consider the gravitational constant $G$ to vary according to the parametric relation $G = G_0 (1 + t/t_\\ast)^{-p}$, where the time scale $t_\\ast$ is the same order as the proton lifetime. We then study the long term fate and evolution of white dwarf stars. This treatment begins when proton decay dominates the stellar luminosity, and ends when the star becomes optically thin to its internal radiation.

  17. Accretion of a Terrestrial-Like Minor Planet by a White Dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Melis, Carl; Dufour, P; Zuckerman, B; Burgasser, Adam J; Bergeron, P; Bochanski, J; Simcoe, R

    2011-01-01

    We present optical and infrared characterization of the polluted DAZ white dwarf GALEX J193156.8+011745. Imaging and spectroscopy from the ultraviolet to the thermal infrared indicates that the white dwarf hosts excess infrared emission consistent with the presence of an orbiting dusty debris disk. In addition to the five elements previously identified, our optical echelle spectroscopy reveals chromium and manganese and enables restrictive upper limits on several other elements. Synthesis of all detections and upper limits suggests that the white dwarf has accreted a differentiated parent body. We compare the inferred bulk elemental composition of the accreted parent body to expectations for the bulk composition of an Earth-like planet stripped of its crust and mantle and find relatively good agreement. At least two processes could be important in shaping the final bulk elemental composition of rocky bodies during the late phases of stellar evolution: irradiation and interaction with the dense stellar wind.

  18. Excess Infrared Radiation from the Massive DAZ White Dwarf GD 362: A Debris Disk?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilic, Mukremin; von Hippel, Ted; Leggett, S. K.; Winget, D. E.

    2005-10-01

    We report the discovery of excess K-band radiation from the massive DAZ white dwarf star GD 362. Combining infrared photometric and spectroscopic observations, we show that the excess radiation cannot be explained by a stellar or substellar companion, and is likely to be caused by a debris disk. This would be only the second such system known, discovered 18 years after G29-38, the only single white dwarf currently known to be orbited by circumstellar dust. Both of these systems favor a model with accretion from a surrounding debris disk to explain the metal abundances observed in DAZ white dwarfs. Nevertheless, observations of more DAZs in the mid-infrared are required to test if this model can explain all DAZs. Based on observations obtained with the Infrared Telescope Facility, which is operated by the University of Hawaii under Cooperative Agreement NCC 5-538 with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Office of Space Science, Planetary Astronomy Program.

  19. Excess Infrared Radiation from a Massive DAZ White Dwarf: GD362 - a Debris Disk?

    CERN Document Server

    Kilic, M; Leggett, S K; Winget, D E; Kilic, Mukremin; Hippel, Ted von

    2005-01-01

    We report the discovery of excess K-band radiation from a massive DAZ white dwarf star, GD362. Combining infrared photometric and spectroscopic observations, we show that the excess radiation cannot be explained by a stellar or substellar companion, and is likely to be caused by a debris disk. This would be only the second such system known, discovered 18 years after G29-38, the only single white dwarf currently known to be orbited by circumstellar dust. Both of these systems favor a model with accretion from a surrounding debris disk to explain the metal abundances observed in DAZ white dwarfs. Nevertheless, observations of more DAZs in the mid-infrared are required to test if this model can explain all DAZs.

  20. Observational Constraints on the Origin of Metals in Cool DA-type White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Chary, R R; Becklin, E E

    1998-01-01

    We present ISOCAM 7 micron and 15 micron observations of 12 nearby white dwarfs, 6 of which have been found to have metals such as Ca, Mg and Fe in their photospheres. Our purpose was to search for an excess of infrared emission above the stellar photospheres. We find that none of the white dwarfs other than G29-38 shows a detectable infrared excess and this places strong constraints on the existence of a dusty disk around these stars. We conclude that ongoing accretion of the interstellar medium seems an unlikely explanation for the existence of metals in the photospheres of cool hydrogen atmosphere white dwarfs. The excess associated with G29-38 is 3.8+/-1.0 mJy and 2.9+/-0.6 mJy at 7 micron and 15 micron respectively. The broadband spectrum of this star strengthens the hypothesis that the infrared excess arises from a disk of particulate matter surrounding the white dwarf rather than from a cool brown dwarf companion.

  1. The formation of high-field magnetic white dwarfs from common envelopes

    CERN Document Server

    Nordhaus, J; Spiegel, D S; Metzger, B D; Blackman, E G

    2010-01-01

    The origin of highly-magnetized white dwarfs has remained a mystery since their initial discovery. Recent observations indicate that the formation of high-field magnetic white dwarfs is intimately related to strong binary interactions during post-main-sequence phases of stellar evolution. If a low-mass companion, such as a planet, brown dwarf, or low-mass star is engulfed by a post-main-sequence giant, the hydrodynamic drag in the envelope of the giant leads to a reduction of the companion's orbit. Sufficiently low-mass companions in-spiral until they are shredded by the strong gravitational tides near the white dwarf core. Subsequent formation of a super-Eddington accretion disk from the disrupted companion inside a common envelope can dramatically amplify magnetic fields via a dynamo. Here, we show that these disk-generated fields are sufficiently strong to explain the observed range of magnetic field strengths for isolated, high-field magnetic white dwarfs. A higher-mass binary analogue may also contribute...

  2. The Post-Merger Magnetized Evolution of White Dwarf Binaries: The Double-Degenerate Channel of Sub-Chandrasekhar Type Ia Supernovae and the Formation of Magnetized White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Ji, Suoqing; Garcia-Berro, Enrique; Tzeferacos, Petros; Jordan, George; Lee, Dongwook; Loren-Aguilar, Pablo; Cremer, Pascal; Behrends, Jan

    2013-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) play a crucial role as standardizable cosmological candles, though the nature of their progenitors is a subject of active investigation. Recent observational and theoretical work has pointed to merging white dwarf binaries, referred to as the double-degenerate channel, as the possible progenitor systems for some SNe Ia. Additionally, recent theoretical work suggests that mergers which fail to detonate may produce magnetized, rapidly-rotating white dwarfs. In this paper, we present the first multidimensional simulations of the post-merger evolution of white dwarf binaries to include the effect of the magnetic field. In these systems, the two white dwarfs complete a final merger on a dynamical timescale, and are tidally disrupted, producing a rapidly-rotating white dwarf merger surrounded by a hot corona and a thick, differentially-rotating disk. The disk is strongly susceptible to the magnetorotational instability (MRI), and we demonstrate that this leads to the rapid growth of an i...

  3. A cage-related foot pad dermatitis in dwarf and normal-sized single comb white Leghorn layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burger, R A; Arscott, G H

    1984-08-01

    Studies were conducted to determine if wire cage floors were involved in producing a foot pad dermatitis in dwarf and normal-sized Single Comb White Leghorn layers. Dermatitis scores were found to be higher for dwarf birds reared in cages versus litter floors. The use of plastic-coated cage floor inserts and wooden perches reduced the incidence of dermatitis in caged dwarf birds. Normal-sized layers consistently exhibited a lower incidence of dermatitis than did dwarf hens. PMID:6483717

  4. The period structure and stability of the pulsating white dwarf L 19-2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Observations made in 1983-85 confirm the earlier detection of a slight inequality in the splitting of the frequency triplet near 192s of the pulsating DA white dwarf L 19-2. If interpreted as second-order splitting of rotationally-perturbed non-radial g-mode pulsations, the measured value, 2.0 x 10-6 mHz, is in rough agreement with outdated theoretical calculations which should be repeated with more realistic white dwarf models. The new observations are also used to set an upper limit on the rate of period change of the 192s oscillation. (author)

  5. Spectropolarimetry and Infrared Photometry of Magnetic White Dwarfs: Vacuum Polarization Effect or Magnetic CIA?

    CERN Document Server

    Gnedin, Y N; Larionov, V M; Naidenov, I D; Natsvlishvili, T M; Piotrovich, M Y; Gnedin, Yu. N.

    2004-01-01

    We present brief review of two probable physical mechanisms that can explain the results of photometric and spectropolarimetric observations of magnetic white dwarfs: vacuum polarization effect into a strong magnetic field and, so-called, magnetic collision induced absorption (magnetic CIA). Both mechanisms provide observed rotation of polarization ellipse and suppression of spectral energy distributions. The results of spectropolarimetric observations of magnetic white dwarfs made at Russian BTA-6m and the results of the near infrared photometric observations with Russian-Italian AZT-24 telescope located at Campo Imperatore are also presented.

  6. Effects of the magnetic fields on the helium white dwarfs structure

    CERN Document Server

    Manka, R; Brzezina, A; Bednarek, I

    2001-01-01

    In this paper the effect of the magnetic field on the form of the equation of state and helium white dwarfs structure are discussed. The influence of the temperature and magnetic field on white dwarfs parameters have been investigated. The mass-radius relations for different parameters were obtained. The occurrence of unstable branches in the mass-radius relation are presented for the temperature equals T=3 10^8 K and for different values of the strength of magnetic field. Theoretical model of the star with two Landau levels is obtained.

  7. Infrared emission from highly irradiated planets in orbit around hot white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debes, John H.; Sandhaus, Phoebe

    2016-01-01

    An intensive search for terrestrial mass planets in the habitable zone around white dwarfs is currently in progress. Before such planets become habitable, they reside in regions that receive significant insolation from their host white dwarf as it cools from high effective temperatures. A consequence of this is that such irradiated planets are potentially observable in the infrared. We detail how these planets may be currently observable, and future possibilities for constraining the frequency of planets in short period orbits around post-main sequence stars.

  8. IRTF Observations of White Dwarfs with Possible Near-Infrared Excess

    OpenAIRE

    Farihi, J.

    2009-01-01

    Near-infrared photometry and spectroscopy is obtained for a heterogeneous sample of nearby white dwarfs with possible excess flux as identified primarily in the Two Micron All Sky Survey. Among the sample of 43 stars are a number of white dwarfs that are either metal-rich, magnetic, or binary suspects. With a few notable exceptions in four (or possibly five) distinct categories, the newly obtained JHK photometric data fail to corroborate the putative excesses, with K_IRTF - K_2MASS = +0.31 ma...

  9. The Discovery of a Debris Disk Around the DAV White Dwarf PG 1541+651

    OpenAIRE

    Kilic, Mukremin; Patterson, Adam J.; Barber, Sara; Leggett, S. K.; Dufour, P.

    2011-01-01

    To search for circumstellar disks around evolved stars, we targeted roughly 100 DA white dwarfs from the Palomar Green survey with the Peters Automated Infrared Imaging Telescope (PAIRITEL). Here we report the discovery of a debris disk around one of these targets, the pulsating white dwarf PG 1541+651 (KX Draconis, hereafter PG1541). We detect a significant flux excess around PG1541 in the K-band. Follow-up near-infrared spectroscopic observations obtained at the NASA Infrared Telescope Faci...

  10. GD1212: Probing deep into the interior of a pulsating white dwarf star

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giammichele N.

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We present the first self-consistent seismic analysis of a white dwarf star, GD 1212, in the Kepler2 field. We precisely establish the fundamental parameters of the star using the forward method based on physically sound models. We unravel the internal structure as well as the rotation profile of GD1212 deeper than in any other ZZCeti stars studied so far. This opens up interesting prospects for future analyses of the white dwarf pulsators monitored in the Kepler and Kepler2 fields.

  11. Two new accreting, pulsating white dwarfs: SDSS J1457+51 and BW Sculptoris

    OpenAIRE

    Uthas, Helena; Patterson, Joseph; Kemp, Jonathan; Knigge, Christian; Monard, Berto; Rea, Robert; Bolt, Greg; McCormick, Jennie; Christie, Grant; Retter, Alon; Liu, Alex

    2011-01-01

    We report the discovery of rapid periodic signals in the light curves of two cataclysmic variables with prominent white-dwarf components in their spectra, SDSS J1457+51 and BW Sculptoris. These stars therefore appear to be new members of the GW Lib class of variable star, in which the fast periodic (and non-commensurate with the orbital period) signals are believed to arise from non-radial pulsations in the underlying white dwarf. The power spectra of both stars show complex signals with prim...

  12. Theoretical and observational review of results on nova explosions occurring on ONeMg white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The nova outburst is the second most violent explosion that occurs in a galaxy. This review presents the recent observational and theoretical studies that have demonstrated that there exist two classes of nova outburst. One type of nova occurs on a CO white dwarf and the other type of nova occurs on an ONeMg white dwarf. The second class of outbursts are much more violent and occur much more frequently then the first class of outbursts. Hydrodynamic simulations of both kinds of outbursts are in excellent agreement with the observations. 51 refs

  13. Soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars as highly magnetized white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Mukhopadhyay, Banibrata

    2016-01-01

    We show that the soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) can be explained as recently proposed highly magnetized white dwarfs (B-WDs). The radius and magnetic field of B-WDs are perfectly adequate to explain energies in SGRs/AXPs as the rotationally powered energy. While the highly magnetized neutron stars require an extra, observationally not well established yet, source of energy, the magnetized white dwarfs, yet following Chandrasekhar's theory (C-WDs), exhibit large ultra-violet luminosity which is observationally constrained from a strict upper limit.

  14. THE POST-MERGER MAGNETIZED EVOLUTION OF WHITE DWARF BINARIES: THE DOUBLE-DEGENERATE CHANNEL OF SUB-CHANDRASEKHAR TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE AND THE FORMATION OF MAGNETIZED WHITE DWARFS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ji Suoqing; Fisher, Robert T. [University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Department of Physics, 285 Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth, MA 02740 (United States); Garcia-Berro, Enrique [Departament de Fisica Aplicada, Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, c/Esteve Terrades, 5, E-08860 Castelldefels (Spain); Tzeferacos, Petros; Jordan, George; Lee, Dongwook [Center for Astrophysical Thermonuclear Flashes, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637 (United States); Loren-Aguilar, Pablo [School of Physics, University of Exeter, Stocker Road, Exeter EX4 4QL (United Kingdom); Cremer, Pascal [Bethe Center for Theoretical Physics, Universitaet Bonn, Nussallee 12, D-53115 Bonn (Germany); Behrends, Jan [Fachbereich Physik, Freie Universitaet Berlin, Arnimallee 14, D-14195 Berlin (Germany)

    2013-08-20

    Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) play a crucial role as standardizable cosmological candles, though the nature of their progenitors is a subject of active investigation. Recent observational and theoretical work has pointed to merging white dwarf binaries, referred to as the double-degenerate channel, as the possible progenitor systems for some SNe Ia. Additionally, recent theoretical work suggests that mergers which fail to detonate may produce magnetized, rapidly rotating white dwarfs. In this paper, we present the first multidimensional simulations of the post-merger evolution of white dwarf binaries to include the effect of the magnetic field. In these systems, the two white dwarfs complete a final merger on a dynamical timescale, and are tidally disrupted, producing a rapidly rotating white dwarf merger surrounded by a hot corona and a thick, differentially rotating disk. The disk is strongly susceptible to the magnetorotational instability (MRI), and we demonstrate that this leads to the rapid growth of an initially dynamically weak magnetic field in the disk, the spin-down of the white dwarf merger, and to the subsequent central ignition of the white dwarf merger. Additionally, these magnetized models exhibit new features not present in prior hydrodynamic studies of white dwarf mergers, including the development of MRI turbulence in the hot disk, magnetized outflows carrying a significant fraction of the disk mass, and the magnetization of the white dwarf merger to field strengths {approx}2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 8} G. We discuss the impact of our findings on the origins, circumstellar media, and observed properties of SNe Ia and magnetized white dwarfs.

  15. THE POST-MERGER MAGNETIZED EVOLUTION OF WHITE DWARF BINARIES: THE DOUBLE-DEGENERATE CHANNEL OF SUB-CHANDRASEKHAR TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE AND THE FORMATION OF MAGNETIZED WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) play a crucial role as standardizable cosmological candles, though the nature of their progenitors is a subject of active investigation. Recent observational and theoretical work has pointed to merging white dwarf binaries, referred to as the double-degenerate channel, as the possible progenitor systems for some SNe Ia. Additionally, recent theoretical work suggests that mergers which fail to detonate may produce magnetized, rapidly rotating white dwarfs. In this paper, we present the first multidimensional simulations of the post-merger evolution of white dwarf binaries to include the effect of the magnetic field. In these systems, the two white dwarfs complete a final merger on a dynamical timescale, and are tidally disrupted, producing a rapidly rotating white dwarf merger surrounded by a hot corona and a thick, differentially rotating disk. The disk is strongly susceptible to the magnetorotational instability (MRI), and we demonstrate that this leads to the rapid growth of an initially dynamically weak magnetic field in the disk, the spin-down of the white dwarf merger, and to the subsequent central ignition of the white dwarf merger. Additionally, these magnetized models exhibit new features not present in prior hydrodynamic studies of white dwarf mergers, including the development of MRI turbulence in the hot disk, magnetized outflows carrying a significant fraction of the disk mass, and the magnetization of the white dwarf merger to field strengths ?2 108 G. We discuss the impact of our findings on the origins, circumstellar media, and observed properties of SNe Ia and magnetized white dwarfs

  16. HST+COS spectra of the double white dwarf CSS 41177 place the secondary inside the pulsational instability strip

    CERN Document Server

    Bours, Madelon; Gaensicke, Boris; Parsons, Steven

    2015-01-01

    We present Hubble Space Telescope + Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (HST+COS) data of the eclipsing double white dwarf binary CSS 41177. Due to the temperature difference between the two white dwarfs, the HST+COS far-ultraviolet data are dominated by the hot, primary white dwarf and allow us to precisely measure its temperature (T1). Using eclipse observations, we also tightly constrain the temperature of the cooler secondary white dwarf (T2). Our results, where T1 = 22439 +/- 59 K and T2 = 10876 +/- 32 K, with the uncertainties being purely statistical, place the secondary inside and close to the blue edge of the empirical instability strip for low temperature hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs. Dedicated high-speed photometry is encouraged to probe for the presence of pulsations, which will constrain the border of the instability strip as well as probe a new region of low gravity within the strip.

  17. Wave energy in white dwarf atmospheres. I - Magnetohydrodynamic energy spectra for homogeneous DB and layered DA stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Musielak, Zdzislaw E.

    1987-01-01

    The radiative damping of acoustic and MHD waves that propagate through white dwarf photospheric layers is studied, and other damping processes that may be important for the propagation of the MHD waves are calculated. The amount of energy remaining after the damping processes have occurred in different types of waves is estimated. The results show that lower acoustic fluxes should be expected in layered DA and homogeneous DB white dwarfs than had previously been estimated. Acoustic emission manifests itself in an enhancement of the quadrupole term, but this term may become comparable to or even lower than the dipole term for cool white dwarfs. Energy carried by the acoustic waves is significantly dissipated in deep photospheric layers, mainly because of radiative damping. Acoustically heated corona cannot exist around DA and DB white dwarfs in a range T(eff) = 10,000-30,000 K and for log g = 7 and 8. However, relatively hot and massive white dwarfs could be exceptions.

  18. COOL WHITE DWARFS FOUND IN THE UKIRT INFRARED DEEP SKY SURVEY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present the results of a search for cool white dwarfs in the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope (UKIRT) Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS) Large Area Survey (LAS). The UKIDSS LAS photometry was paired with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to identify cool hydrogen-rich white dwarf candidates by their neutral optical colors and blue near-infrared colors, as well as faint reduced proper motion magnitudes. Optical spectroscopy was obtained at Gemini Observatory and showed the majority of the candidates to be newly identified cool degenerates, with a small number of G- to K-type (sub)dwarf contaminants. Our initial search of 280 deg2 of sky resulted in seven new white dwarfs with effective temperature Teff ∼ 6000 K. The current follow-up of 1400 deg2 of sky has produced 13 new white dwarfs. Model fits to the photometry show that seven of the newly identified white dwarfs have 4120 K ≤Teff ≤ 4480 K, and cooling ages between 7.3 Gyr and 8.7 Gyr; they have 40 km s-1 ≤ vtan ≤ 85 km s-1 and are likely to be thick disk 10-11 Gyr-old objects. The other half of the sample has 4610 K ≤Teff ≤ 5260 K, cooling ages between 4.3 Gyr and 6.9 Gyr, and 60 km s-1 ≤ vtan ≤ 100 km s-1. These are either thin disk remnants with unusually high velocities, or lower-mass remnants of thick disk or halo late-F or G stars.

  19. Habitable planets around white and brown dwarfs: the perils of a cooling primary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Rory; Heller, René

    2013-03-01

    White and brown dwarfs are astrophysical objects that are bright enough to support an insolation habitable zone (IHZ). Unlike hydrogen-burning stars, they cool and become less luminous with time; hence their IHZ moves in with time. The inner edge of the IHZ is defined as the orbital radius at which a planet may enter a moist or runaway greenhouse, phenomena that can remove a planet's surface water forever. Thus, as the IHZ moves in, planets that enter it may no longer have any water and are still uninhabitable. Additionally, the close proximity of the IHZ to the primary leads to concern that tidal heating may also be strong enough to trigger a runaway greenhouse, even for orbital eccentricities as small as 10(-6). Water loss occurs due to photolyzation by UV photons in the planetary stratosphere, followed by hydrogen escape. Young white dwarfs emit a large amount of these photons, as their surface temperatures are over 10(4) K. The situation is less clear for brown dwarfs, as observational data do not constrain their early activity and UV emission very well. Nonetheless, both types of planets are at risk of never achieving habitable conditions, but planets orbiting white dwarfs may be less likely to sustain life than those orbiting brown dwarfs. We consider the future habitability of the planet candidates KOI 55.01 and 55.02 in these terms and find they are unlikely to become habitable. PMID:23537137

  20. The polluted atmospheres of cool white dwarfs and the magnetic field connection

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kawka, Adela; Vennes, Stephane

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 439, č. 1 (2014), L90-L94. ISSN 0035-8711 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/0217; GA ČR GA13-14581S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : white dwarfs * stars: abundances * stars: atmospheres Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 5.107, year: 2014

  1. An accurate mass and radius measurement for an ultracool white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Parsons, S G; Marsh, T R; Bergeron, P; Copperwheat, C M; Dhillon, V S; Bento, J; Littlefair, S P; Schreiber, M R

    2012-01-01

    Studies of cool white dwarfs in the solar neighbourhood have placed a limit on the age of the Galactic disk of 8-9 billion years. However, determining their cooling ages requires the knowledge of their effective temperatures, masses, radii, and atmospheric composition. So far, these parameters could only be inferred for a small number of ultracool white dwarfs for which an accurate distance is known, by fitting their spectral energy distributions (SEDs) in conjunction with a theoretical mass-radius relation. However, the mass-radius relation remains largely untested, and the derived cooling ages are hence model-dependent. Here we report direct measurements of the mass and radius of an ultracool white dwarf in the double-lined eclipsing binary SDSS J013851.54-001621.6. We find M(WD)=0.529+/-0.010Msol and R(WD)=0.0131+/-0.0003Rsol. Our measurements are consistent with the mass-radius relation and we determine a robust cooling age of 9.5 billion years for the 3570K white dwarf. We find that the mass and radius o...

  2. Black holes, white dwarfs and neutron stars: The physics of compact objects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The contents include: Star deaths and the formation of compact objects; White dwarfs; Rotation and magnetic fields; Cold equation of state above neutron drip; Pulsars; Accretion onto black holes; Supermassive stars and black holes; Appendices; and Indexes. This book discusses one aspect, compact objects, of astronomy and provides information of astrophysics or general relativity

  3. An experimental platform for creating white dwarf photospheres in the laboratory: Preliminary results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montgomery, M. H.; Falcon, Ross E.; Rochau, G. A.; Bailey, J. E.; Gomez, T. A.; Carlson, A. L.; Bliss, D. E.; Nagayama, T.; Stein, M.; Winget, D. E.

    2015-12-01

    We present the current status of the White Dwarf Photosphere Experiment at the Z Pulsed Power Facility at Sandia National Laboratories. This experiment has evolved into a unique platform for simultaneously measuring emission, absorption, and back-lighter continua spectra of plasmas with white dwarf (WD) photospheric compositions and conditions (Te?1 eV, ne?1016-1018e/cm3); our current experiments involve line profile measurements of hydrogen-corresponding to the most common surface composition in white dwarf stars, with future experiments planned for helium, carbon, and oxygen. These profiles will test line broadening theories used in white dwarf model atmospheres to infer the fundamental parameters (e.g., effective temperature and mass) of thousands of WDs. This experiment uses the large amount of x-rays generated from a z-pinch dynamic hohlraum to radiatively drive plasma formation in a gas cell. We reach significantly higher densities than the landmark study of Wiese et al. (1972), thereby putting competing line broadening theories to the test in a regime where their predictions strongly diverge. The simultaneous measurement of emission, absorption, and back-lighter continua in macroscopic plasmas represents a significant advance relative to hydrogen line profile experiments of the past.

  4. Precise atmospheric parameters for the shortest-period binary white dwarfs: gravitational waves, metals, and pulsations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gianninas, A.; Kilic, Mukremin [Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Oklahoma, 440 West Brooks Street, Norman, OK 73019 (United States); Dufour, P.; Bergeron, P. [Dpartement de Physique, Universit de Montral, C.P. 6128, Succ. Centre-Ville, Montral, Qubec H3C 3J7 (Canada); Brown, Warren R. [Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 (United States); Hermes, J. J., E-mail: alexg@nhn.ou.edu [Department of Physics, University of Warwick, Coventry CV4 7AL (United Kingdom)

    2014-10-10

    We present a detailed spectroscopic analysis of 61 low-mass white dwarfs and provide precise atmospheric parameters, masses, and updated binary system parameters based on our new model atmosphere grids and the most recent evolutionary model calculations. For the first time, we measure systematic abundances of He, Ca, and Mg for metal-rich, extremely low mass white dwarfs and examine the distribution of these abundances as a function of effective temperature and mass. Based on our preliminary results, we discuss the possibility that shell flashes may be responsible for the presence of the observed He and metals. We compare stellar radii derived from our spectroscopic analysis to model-independent measurements and find good agreement except for white dwarfs with T {sub eff} ? 10,000 K. We also calculate the expected gravitational wave strain for each system and discuss their significance to the eLISA space-borne gravitational wave observatory. Finally, we provide an update on the instability strip of extremely low mass white dwarf pulsators.

  5. Pulsating low-mass white dwarfs in the frame of new evolutionary sequences: I. Adiabatic properties

    CERN Document Server

    Crsico, A H

    2014-01-01

    The discovery of pulsations in some low-mass white dwarfs, including the so-called extremely low-mass white dwarfs, has opened the unprecedented opportunity of probing the internal structure of these ancient stars. We present a detailed adiabatic pulsational study of these stars based on a new set of He-core white-dwarf models with masses ranging from $0.1554$ to $0.4352 M_{\\odot}$ derived by computing the non-conservative evolution of a binary system consisting of an initially $1 M_{\\odot}$ ZAMS star and a $1.4 M_{\\odot}$ neutron star. We computed adiabatic radial ($\\ell= 0$) and non-radial ($\\ell= 1, 2$) $p$ and $g$ modes to assess the dependence of the pulsational properties of these objects on stellar parameters such as the stellar mass and the effective temperature, as well as the effects of element diffusion. We found that for white dwarf models with masses below $\\sim 0.18 M_{\\odot}$, $g$ modes mainly probe the core regions and $p$ modes the envelope, therefore pulsations offer the opportunity of const...

  6. The White Dwarfs within 25 Parsecs of the Sun: Kinematics and Spectroscopic Subtypes

    CERN Document Server

    Sion, E M; Oswalt, T D; McCook, G P; Wasatonic, R; Myszka, J

    2014-01-01

    We present the fractional distribution of spectroscopic subtypes, range and distribution of surface temperatures, and kinematical properties of the white dwarfs within 25pc of the sun. There is no convincing evidence of halo white dwarfs in the total 25 pc sample of 224 white dwarfs. There is also little to suggest the presence of genuine thick disk subcomponent members within 25 parsecs. It appears that the entire 25 pc sample likely belong to the thin disk. We also find no significant kinematic differences with respect to spectroscopic subtypes. The total DA to non-DA ratio of the 25 pc sample is 1.8, a manifestation of deepening envelope convection which transforms DA stars with sufficiently thin H surface layers into non-DAs. We compare this ratio with the results of other studies. We find that at least 11% of the white dwarfs within 25 parsecs of the sun (the DAZ and DZ stars) have photospheric metals that likely originate from accretion of circumstellar material (debris disks) around them. If this inter...

  7. The seismic properties of low-mass He-core white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Córsico, A H; Althaus, L G; Hermes, J J

    2012-01-01

    We present here a detailed pulsational study applied to low-mass He-core white dwarfs, based on full evolutionary models representative of these objects. The background stellar models on which our pulsational analysis was carried out were derived by taking into account the complete evolutionary history of the progenitor stars, with special emphasis on the diffusion processes acting during the white dwarf cooling phase. We computed nonradial $g$-modes to assess the dependence of the pulsational properties of these objects with stellar parameters such as the stellar mass and the effective temperature, and also with element diffusion processes. We also performed a g- and p-mode pulsational stability analysis on our models and found well-defined blue edges of the instability domain, where these stars should start to exhibit pulsations. We found substantial differences in the seismic properties of white dwarfs with $M_* \\gtrsim 0.20 M_{\\odot}$ and the extremely low-mass (ELM) white dwarfs ($M_* \\lesssim 0.20 M_{\\o...

  8. The Discovery of a Debris Disk Around the DAV White Dwarf PG 1541+651

    CERN Document Server

    Kilic, Mukremin; Barber, Sara; Leggett, S K; Dufour, P

    2011-01-01

    To search for circumstellar disks around evolved stars, we targeted roughly 100 DA white dwarfs from the Palomar Green survey with the Peters Automated Infrared Imaging Telescope (PAIRITEL). Here we report the discovery of a debris disk around one of these targets, the pulsating white dwarf PG 1541+651 (KX Draconis, hereafter PG1541). We detect a significant flux excess around PG1541 in the K-band. Follow-up near-infrared spectroscopic observations obtained at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF) and photometric observations with the warm Spitzer Space Telescope confirm the presence of a warm debris disk within 0.13-0.36 Rsun (11-32x the stellar radius) at an inclination angle of 60deg. At Teff = 11880 K, PG1541 is almost a twin of the DAV white dwarf G29-38, which also hosts a debris disk. All previously known dusty white dwarfs are of the DAZ/DBZ spectral type due to accretion of metals from the disk. High-resolution optical spectroscopy is needed to search for metal absorption lines in PG1541 and to...

  9. Comparing the white dwarf cooling sequences in 47 Tuc and NGC 6397

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richer, Harvey B.; Goldsbury, Ryan; Heyl, Jeremy [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z1 (Canada); Hurley, Jarrod [Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, VIC 3122 (Australia); Dotter, Aaron [Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University, Canberra (Australia); Kalirai, Jason S. [Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States); Woodley, Kristin A. [Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of California at Santa Cruz, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95064 (United States); Fahlman, Gregory G. [National Research Council, Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics, Victoria, BC, V9E 2E7 (Canada); Rich, R. Michael [Division of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095 (United States); Shara, Michael M., E-mail: richer@astro.ubc.ca, E-mail: rgoldsb@phas.ubc.ca, E-mail: heyl@phas.ubc.ca, E-mail: jhurley@swin.edu.au, E-mail: dotter@mso.anu.edu.au, E-mail: jkalirai@stsci.edu, E-mail: kwoodley@ucolick.org, E-mail: greg.fahlman@nrc-cnrc.gc.ca, E-mail: rmr@astro.ucla.edu, E-mail: mshara@amnh.org [Department of Astrophysics, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West and 79th Street, New York, NY 10024 (United States)

    2013-12-01

    Using deep Hubble Space Telescope imaging, color-magnitude diagrams are constructed for the globular clusters 47 Tuc and NGC 6397. As expected, because of its lower metal abundance, the main sequence of NGC 6397 lies well to the blue of that of 47 Tuc. A comparison of the white dwarf cooling sequences of the two clusters, however, demonstrates that these sequences are indistinguishable over most of their locia consequence of the settling out of heavy elements in the dense white dwarf atmosphere and the near equality of their masses. Lower quality data on M4 continues this trend to a third cluster whose metallicity is intermediate between these two. While the path of the white dwarfs in the color-magnitude diagram is nearly identical in 47 Tuc and NGC 6397, the numbers of white dwarfs along the path are not. This results from the relatively rapid relaxation in NGC 6397 compared to 47 Tuc and provides a cautionary note that simply counting objects in star clusters in random locations as a method of testing stellar evolutionary theory is likely dangerous unless dynamical considerations are included.

  10. The frequency and infrared brightness of circumstellar discs at white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Rocchetto, M; Gaensicke, B T; Bergfors, C

    2014-01-01

    White dwarfs whose atmospheres are polluted by terrestrial-like planetary debris have become a powerful and unique tool to study evolved planetary systems. This paper presents results for an unbiased Spitzer IRAC search for circumstellar dust orbiting a homogeneous and well-defined sample of 134 single white dwarfs. The stars were selected without regard to atmospheric metal content but were chosen to have 1) hydrogen rich atmospheres, 2) 17 000 K < T_eff < 25 000 K and correspondingly young post main-sequence ages of 15-270Myr, and 3) sufficient far-ultraviolet brightness for a corresponding Hubble Space Telescope COS Snapshot. Five white dwarfs were found to host an infrared bright dust disc, three previously known, and two reported here for the first time, yielding a nominal 3.7% of white dwarfs in this post-main sequence age range with detectable circumstellar dust. Remarkably, complementary HST observations indicate that a fraction of 27% show metals in their photosphere that can only be explained ...

  11. Consequence of total lepton number violation in strongly magnetized iron white dwarfs

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Belyaev, V. B.; Ricci, P.; Simkovic, F.; Adam, Jiří; Tater, Miloš; Truhlík, Emil

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 937, MAY (2015), s. 17-43. ISSN 0375-9474 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP203/11/0701; GA MŠk LG14004 Institutional support: RVO:61389005 Keywords : double charge exchange * degenerate Fermi gas * Stellar magnetic fields * white dwarfs Subject RIV: BE - Theoretical Physics Impact factor: 2.202, year: 2014

  12. Observable Signatures of the Accretion-Induced Collapse of White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Metzger, B D; Quataert, E; Thompson, T A

    2009-01-01

    Despite its probable occurrence in Nature, the accretion-induced collapse (AIC) of a white dwarf has not yet been directly observed (or, at least, it has not been unambiguously identified as such). In this contribution we summarize the observational signatures of AIC, emphasizing its possible role as both an optical and high-energy transient.

  13. The ages and colours of cool helium-core white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Serenelli, A M; Rohrmann, R D; Benvenuto, O G

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to explore the evolution of helium-core white dwarf stars in a self-consistent way with the predictions of detailed non-gray model atmospheres and element diffusion. To this end, we consider helium-core white dwarf models with stellar masses of 0.406, 0.360, 0.327, 0.292, 0.242, 0.196 and 0.169 solar masses and follow their evolution from the end of mass loss episodes during their pre-white dwarf evolution down to very low surface luminosities. We find that when the effective temperature decreases below 4000K, the emergent spectrum of these stars becomes bluer within time-scales of astrophysical interest. In particular, we analyse the evolution of our models in the colour-colour and colour-magnitude diagrams and we find that helium-core white dwarfs with masses ranging from approx. 0.18 to 0.3 solar masses can reach the turn-off in their colours and become blue again within cooling times much less than 15 Gyr and then remain brighter than M_V approx. 16.5. In view of these results,...

  14. Ancient planetary systems are orbiting a large fraction of white dwarf stars

    CERN Document Server

    Zuckerman, B; Klein, B; Koester, D; Jura, M

    2010-01-01

    Infrared studies have revealed debris likely related to planet formation in orbit around ~30% of youthful, intermediate mass, main sequence stars. We present evidence, based on atmospheric pollution by various elements heavier than helium, that a comparable fraction of the white dwarf descendants of such main sequence stars are orbited by planetary systems. These systems have survived, at least in part, through all stages of stellar evolution that precede the white dwarf. During the time interval (~200 million years) that a typical polluted white dwarf in our sample has been cooling it has accreted from its planetary system the mass of one of the largest asteroids in our solar system (e.g., Vesta or Ceres). Usually, this accreted mass will be only a fraction of the total mass of rocky material that orbits these white dwarfs; for plausible planetary system configurations we estimate that this total mass is likely to be at least equal to that of the Sun's asteroid belt, and perhaps much larger. We report abunda...

  15. Precise atmospheric parameters for the shortest-period binary white dwarfs: gravitational waves, metals, and pulsations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present a detailed spectroscopic analysis of 61 low-mass white dwarfs and provide precise atmospheric parameters, masses, and updated binary system parameters based on our new model atmosphere grids and the most recent evolutionary model calculations. For the first time, we measure systematic abundances of He, Ca, and Mg for metal-rich, extremely low mass white dwarfs and examine the distribution of these abundances as a function of effective temperature and mass. Based on our preliminary results, we discuss the possibility that shell flashes may be responsible for the presence of the observed He and metals. We compare stellar radii derived from our spectroscopic analysis to model-independent measurements and find good agreement except for white dwarfs with T eff ? 10,000 K. We also calculate the expected gravitational wave strain for each system and discuss their significance to the eLISA space-borne gravitational wave observatory. Finally, we provide an update on the instability strip of extremely low mass white dwarf pulsators.

  16. AN EMPIRICAL MEASURE OF THE RATE OF WHITE DWARF COOLING IN 47 TUCANAE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present an empirical determination of the white dwarf cooling sequence in the globular cluster 47 Tucanae. Using spectral models, we determine temperatures for 887 objects from Wide Field Camera 3 data, as well as 292 objects from data taken with the Advanced Camera for Surveys. We make the assumption that the rate of white dwarf formation in the cluster is constant. Stellar evolution models are then used to determine the rate at which objects are leaving the main sequence, which must be the same as the rate at which objects are arriving on the white dwarf sequence in our field. The result is an empirically derived relation between temperature (T eff) and time (t) on the white dwarf cooling sequence. Comparing this result to theoretical cooling models, we find general agreement with the expected slopes between 20,000 K and 30,000 K and between 6000 K and 20,000 K, but the transition to the Mestel cooling rate of T eff?t 0.4 is found to occur at hotter temperatures, and more abruptly than is predicted by any of these models.

  17. On the Einstein-Maxwell Equations of Equilibrium for White Dwarfs and Neutron Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rueda, Jorge A.; Ruffini, Remo

    2013-09-01

    We summarize recent progress in the formulation of a theory for white dwarfs and neutron stars taking into account the strong, weak, electromagnetic and gravitational interactions based on the general relativistic Thomas-Fermi equations of equilibrium and the Einstein-Maxwell equations.

  18. On the general relativistic Thomson-Fermi theory of white dwarfs and neutron stars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We present a review of the multi-year effort in the formulation of a self-consistent theory for the description of white dwarfs and neutron stars based on the general relativistic extension of the Thomas-Fermi model of the atom.

  19. THE CORE COMPOSITION OF A WHITE DWARF IN A CLOSE DOUBLE-DEGENERATE SYSTEM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report the identification of the double-degenerate system NLTT 16249 that comprises a normal, hydrogen-rich (DA) white dwarf and a peculiar, carbon-polluted white dwarf (DQ) showing photospheric traces of nitrogen. We disentangled the observed spectra and constrained the properties of both stellar components. In the evolutionary scenario commonly applied to the sequence of DQ white dwarfs, both carbon and nitrogen would be dredged up from the core. The C/N abundance ratio (?50) in the atmosphere of this unique DQ white dwarf suggests the presence of unprocessed material (14N) in the core or in the envelope. Helium burning in the DQ progenitor may have terminated early on the red giant branch after a mass-ejection event leaving unprocessed material in the core, although current mass estimates do not favor the presence of a low-mass helium core. Alternatively, some nitrogen in the envelope may have survived an abridged helium-core burning phase prior to climbing the asymptotic giant branch. Based on available data, we estimate a relatively short orbital period (P ?< 13 hr) and ongoing spectroscopic observations will help determine precise orbital parameters.

  20. Search for carbon stars and DZ white dwarfs in SDSS spectra survey

    CERN Document Server

    Si, Jianmin; Zhang, Jiannan; Wei, Peng; Wu, Yihong; Wu, Fuchao

    2013-01-01

    With more and more sky survey programs developed, overwhelming stellar spectra have been obtained and up to TB or PB level. So it is quite necessary to search for some type of objects or to build some catalogues completely for special stars using automatic methods. We used label propagation algorithm which is widely used in the area of information retrieval to search for carbon stars and cool DZ white dwarfs from the Sloan Digital Sky survey (SDSS) DR8. Performance of algorithm in searching for carbon stars stars was discussed by comparing with most complete catalogue to date and more carbon stars including 268 Carbon stars, 207 carbon star candidates and 11 composition spectrum systems consisting of a white dwarf and a carbon star were identified . In addition the algorithm was used to search for rare DZ white dwarfs and 30 new DZ white dwarfs were found, 13 of which might be around or bellow 6500K and 4 of which might be bellow 6000K.

  1. A new magnetic white dwarf discovered during the Large Bright Quasar Survey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A previously unknown magnetic white dwarf has been discovered as part of the Large, Bright Quasar Survey (Foltz et al., 1988). The absorption features are identified with transitions of hydrogen and are analyzed in the context of high-field Zeeman models to derive a polar dipole field strength of 24 x 10 to the 6th G at the stellar surface. 11 refs

  2. Discovery of a Bright, Extremely Low-Mass White Dwarf in a Close Double Degenerate System

    CERN Document Server

    Vennes, S; Kawka, A; Nemeth, P; Skinner, J N; Pigulski, A; Steslicki, M; Kolaczkowski, Z; Srodka, P; 10.1088/2041-8205/737/1/L16

    2011-01-01

    We report the discovery of a bright (V ~ 13.7), extremely low-mass white dwarf in a close double degenerate system. We originally selected GALEX J171708.5+675712 for spectroscopic follow-up among a group of white dwarf candidates in an ultraviolet-optical reduced proper-motion diagram. The new white dwarf has a mass of 0.18 M_solar and is the primary component of a close double degenerate system (P=0.246137 d, K_1 = 288 km/s) comprising a fainter white dwarf secondary with M_2 ~ 0.9 M_solar. Light curves phased with the orbital ephemeris show evidence of relativistic beaming and weaker ellipsoidal variations. The light curves also reveal secondary eclipses (depth ~ 8 mmag) while the primary eclipses appear partially compensated by the secondary gravitational deflection and are below detection limits. Photospheric abundance measurements show a nearly solar composition of Si, Ca, and Fe (0.1-1 solar), while the normal kinematics suggest a relatively recent formation history. Close binary evolutionary scenarios ...

  3. Consequence of total lepton number violation in strongly magnetized iron white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The influence of a neutrinoless electron to positron conversion on a cooling of strongly magnetized iron white dwarfs is studied. It is shown that they can be good candidates for soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars

  4. First axion bounds from a pulsating helium-rich white dwarf star

    CERN Document Server

    Battich, Tiara; Althaus, Leandro Gabriel; Bertolami, Marcelo Miguel Miller

    2016-01-01

    The Peccei-Quinn mechanism proposed to solve the CP problem of Quantum Chromodynamics has as consequence the existence of axions, hypothetical weakly interacting particles whose mass is constrained to be on the sub-eV range. If these particles exist and interact with electrons, they would be emitted from the dense interior of white dwarfs, becoming an important energy sink for the star. Due to their well known physics, white dwarfs are good laboratories to study the properties of fundamental particles such as the axions. We study the general effect of axion emission on the evolution of helium-rich white dwarfs and on their pulsational properties. To this aim, we calculate evolutionary helium-rich white dwarf models with axion emission, and asses the pulsational properties of this models. Our results indicate that the rates of change of pulsation periods are significantly affected by the existence of axions. We are able for the first time to independently constrain the mass of the axion from the study of pulsa...

  5. Quasi-periodic oscillations in accreting magnetic white dwarfs II. The asset of numerical modelling for interpreting observations

    CERN Document Server

    Busschaert, C; Michaut, C; Bonnet-Bidaud, J -M; Mouchet, M

    2015-01-01

    Magnetic cataclysmic variables are close binary systems containing a strongly magnetized white dwarf that accretes matter coming from an M-dwarf companion. High-energy radiation coming from those objects is emitted from the accretion column close to the white dwarf photosphere at the impact region. Its properties depend on the characteristics of the white dwarf and an accurate accretion column model allows the properties of the binary system to be inferred, such as the white dwarf mass, its magnetic field, and the accretion rate. We study the temporal and spectral behaviour of the accretion region and use the tools we developed to accurately connect the simulation results to the X-ray and optical astronomical observations. The radiation hydrodynamics code Hades was adapted to simulate this specific accretion phenomena. Classical approaches were used to model the radiative losses of the two main radiative processes: bremsstrahlung and cyclotron. The oscillation frequencies and amplitudes in the X-ray and optic...

  6. On the occurrence and detectability of Bose-Einstein condensation in helium white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It has been recently proposed that helium white dwarfs may provide promising conditions for the occurrence of the Bose-Einstein condensation. The argument supporting this expectation is that in some conditions attained in the core of these objects, the typical De Broglie wavelength associated with helium nuclei is of the order of the mean distance between neighboring nuclei. In these conditions the system should depart from classical behavior showing quantum effects. As helium nuclei are bosons, they are expected to condense. In order to explore the possibility of detecting the Bose-Einstein condensation in the evolution of helium white dwarfs we have computed a set of models for a variety of stellar masses and values of the condensation temperature. We do not perform a detailed treatment of the condensation process but mimic it by suppressing the nuclei contribution to the equation of state by applying an adequate function. As the cooling of white dwarfs depends on average properties of the whole stellar interior, this procedure should be suitable for exploring the departure of the cooling process from that predicted by the standard treatment. We find that the Bose-Einstein condensation has noticeable, but not dramatic effects on the cooling process only for the most massive white dwarfs compatible with a helium dominated interior ( ≈ 0.50Msun) and very low luminosities (say, Log(L/Lsun) < −4.0). These facts lead us to conclude that it seems extremely difficult to find observable signals of the Bose-Einstein condensation. Recently, it has been suggested that the population of helium white dwarfs detected in the globular cluster NGC 6397 is a good candidate for detecting signals of the Bose-Einstein condensation. We find that these stars have masses too low and are too bright to have an already condensed interior

  7. Transit detection limits for sub-stellar and terrestrial companions to white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The SuperWASP project is a ground-based ultra wide angle search for extra-solar planetary transits that has successfully detected 15 previously unknown planets in the last two years. We have used SuperWASP photometric data to investigate the transit characteristics of and detection limits for brown dwarfs, gas giants and terrestrial companions in orbit around white dwarfs. The relatively small size of a white dwarf host star (approximately 1 Earth radius), implies that any sub-stellar or gas giant companion will completely eclipse it, while terrestrial bodies smaller than the Moon will produce relatively large (> 1%) transits, detectable in good S/N light-curves. We performed extensive simulations using SuperWASP photometric data and we found that for Gaussian random noise we are sensitive to companions as small as the Moon. Our sensitivity drops in the presence of co-variant noise structure, nevertheless Earth-size bodies remain readily detectable in relatively low S/N data. We searched for eclipses and transit signals in a sample of 174 WASP targets, resulting from a cross-correlation of the McCook and Sion catalogue and the SuperWASP data archive. This study found no evidence for sub-stellar or planetary companions in close orbits around our sample of white dwarfs.

  8. Transit detection limits for sub-stellar and terrestrial companions to white dwarfs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Faedi, F; West, R; Burleigh, M R; Goad, M R [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, Leicester, LE1 RH7 (United Kingdom); Hebb, L, E-mail: ff20@star.le.ac.u [School of Physics and Astronomy, University of St Andrews, North Haugh, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9SS UK (United Kingdom)

    2009-06-01

    The SuperWASP project is a ground-based ultra wide angle search for extra-solar planetary transits that has successfully detected 15 previously unknown planets in the last two years. We have used SuperWASP photometric data to investigate the transit characteristics of and detection limits for brown dwarfs, gas giants and terrestrial companions in orbit around white dwarfs. The relatively small size of a white dwarf host star (approximately 1 Earth radius), implies that any sub-stellar or gas giant companion will completely eclipse it, while terrestrial bodies smaller than the Moon will produce relatively large (> 1%) transits, detectable in good S/N light-curves. We performed extensive simulations using SuperWASP photometric data and we found that for Gaussian random noise we are sensitive to companions as small as the Moon. Our sensitivity drops in the presence of co-variant noise structure, nevertheless Earth-size bodies remain readily detectable in relatively low S/N data. We searched for eclipses and transit signals in a sample of 174 WASP targets, resulting from a cross-correlation of the McCook and Sion catalogue and the SuperWASP data archive. This study found no evidence for sub-stellar or planetary companions in close orbits around our sample of white dwarfs.

  9. Relation between the X-ray and Optical Luminosities in Binary Systems with Accreting Nonmagnetic White Dwarfs

    OpenAIRE

    Revnivtsev, M.G.; Filippova, E. V.; Suleimanov, V.F.

    2014-01-01

    We investigate the relation between the optical (g-band) and X-ray (0.5-10 keV) luminosities of accreting nonmagnetic white dwarfs. According to the present-day counts of the populations of star systems in our Galaxy, these systems have the highest space density among the close binary systems with white dwarfs. We show that the dependence of the optical luminosity of accreting white dwarfs on their X-ray luminosity forms a fairly narrow one-parameter curve. The typical half-width of this curv...

  10. Search for carbon stars and DZ white dwarfs in SDSS spectra survey through machine learning

    OpenAIRE

    Si, Jianmin; Luo, Ali; Li, Yinbi; Zhang, Jiannan; Wei, Peng; Wu, Yihong; Wu, Fuchao; Zhao, Yongheng

    2013-01-01

    Carbon stars and DZ white dwarfs are two types of rare objects in the Galaxy. In this paper, we have applied the label propagation algorithm to search for these two types of stars from Data Release Eight (DR8) of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), which is verified to be efficient by calculating precision and recall. From nearly two million spectra including stars, galaxies and QSOs, we have found 260 new carbon stars in which 96 stars have been identified as dwarfs and 7 identified as gian...

  11. Compressional Heating of Accreting White Dwarfs in CV's

    OpenAIRE

    Townsley, Dean M.; Bildsten, Lars

    2001-01-01

    In recent years several Dwarf Novae (DN) systems have been observed in quiescence, when the accretion rate is low and the WD photosphere can be directly detected. The WDs are observed to cool after the DN outburst from high effective temperatures to lower effective temperatures (T_eff) thought to be indicative of the thermal state of the deep interior of the WD. Sion has argued that the most likely energy source for this quiescent luminosity is the gravitational compression of the WD interior...

  12. The white dwarf in dwarf nova SDSS J080434.20+510349.2: Entering the instability strip?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pavlenko, E, E-mail: pavlenko@crao.crimea.u [Crimean astrophysical observatory, Crimea 98409 (Ukraine)

    2009-06-01

    SDSS J080434.20+510349.2 is a WZ Sge type binary that displayed a rare outburst in 2006 (Pavlenko et al. 2007). During the long-lasting tail of the late stage of the outburst, the binary showed a two-humped or four-humped profile of the orbital light modulation. The amplitude of the orbital light curve decreased while the mean brightness decreased; moreover, that occurred approx 10 times faster during the fast outburst decline with respect to the late quiet state of slow outburst fading. There were no white dwarf pulsations detected in this system, neither 1 - 1.5 months prior to the outburst, nor in 1.5 - 2 months after the 2006 outburst. However, strong non-radial pulsations with period 12.6 minutes and a mean amplitude of 0.05m were first detected in the V band with the 2.6-m Shajn mirror telescope of the Crimean astrophysical observatory, approx 8 months after the outburst. The evolution of pulsations over two years, in 2006 - 2008, is considered. It is supposed that pulsations first appeared when the cooling white dwarf (after the outburst) entered the instability strip, although the possibility of temporary lack of pulsations at some occasions could not be excluded.

  13. The white dwarf in dwarf nova SDSS J080434.20+510349.2: Entering the instability strip?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    SDSS J080434.20+510349.2 is a WZ Sge type binary that displayed a rare outburst in 2006 (Pavlenko et al. 2007). During the long-lasting tail of the late stage of the outburst, the binary showed a two-humped or four-humped profile of the orbital light modulation. The amplitude of the orbital light curve decreased while the mean brightness decreased; moreover, that occurred ∼ 10 times faster during the fast outburst decline with respect to the late quiet state of slow outburst fading. There were no white dwarf pulsations detected in this system, neither 1 - 1.5 months prior to the outburst, nor in 1.5 - 2 months after the 2006 outburst. However, strong non-radial pulsations with period 12.6 minutes and a mean amplitude of 0.05m were first detected in the V band with the 2.6-m Shajn mirror telescope of the Crimean astrophysical observatory, ∼ 8 months after the outburst. The evolution of pulsations over two years, in 2006 - 2008, is considered. It is supposed that pulsations first appeared when the cooling white dwarf (after the outburst) entered the instability strip, although the possibility of temporary lack of pulsations at some occasions could not be excluded.

  14. THE DISCOVERY OF THE MOST METAL-RICH WHITE DWARF: COMPOSITION OF A TIDALLY DISRUPTED EXTRASOLAR DWARF PLANET

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cool white dwarf stars are usually found to have an outer atmosphere that is practically pure in hydrogen or helium. However, a small fraction have traces of heavy elements that must originate from the accretion of extrinsic material, most probably circumstellar matter. Upon examining thousands of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) spectra, we discovered that the helium-atmosphere white dwarf SDSS J073842.56+183509.6 shows the most severe metal pollution ever seen in the outermost layers of such stars. We present here a quantitative analysis of this exciting star by combining high signal-to-noise ratio follow-up spectroscopic and photometric observations with model atmospheres and evolutionary models. We determine the global structural properties of our target star, as well as the abundances of the most significant pollutants in its atmosphere, i.e., H, O, Na, Mg, Si, Ca, and Fe. The relative abundances of these elements imply that the source of the accreted material has a composition similar to that of Bulk Earth. We also report the signature of a circumstellar disk revealed through a large infrared excess in JHK photometry. Combined with our inferred estimate of the mass of the accreted material, this strongly suggests that we are witnessing the remains of a tidally disrupted extrasolar body that was as large as Ceres.

  15. The Discovery of the Most Metal-Rich White Dwarf: Composition of a Tidally Disrupted Extrasolar Dwarf Planet

    CERN Document Server

    Dufour, P; Fontaine, G; Bergeron, P; Lachapelle, F -R; Kleinman, S J; Leggett, S K

    2010-01-01

    Cool white dwarf stars are usually found to have an outer atmosphere that is practically pure in hydrogen or helium. However, a small fraction have traces of heavy elements that must originate from the accretion of extrinsic material, most probably circumstellar matter. Upon examining thousands of Sloan Digital Sky Survey spectra, we discovered that the helium-atmosphere white dwarf SDSS J073842.56+183509.6 shows the most severe metal pollution ever seen in the outermost layers of such stars. We present here a quantitative analysis of this exciting star by combining high S/N follow-up spectroscopic and photometric observations with model atmospheres and evolutionary models. We determine the global structural properties of our target star, as well as the abundances of the most significant pollutants in its atmosphere, i.e., H, O, Na, Mg, Si, Ca, and Fe. The relative abundances of these elements imply that the source of the accreted material has a composition similar to that of Bulk Earth. We also report the si...

  16. ON THE EFFECT OF EXPLOSIVE THERMONUCLEAR BURNING ON THE ACCRETED ENVELOPES OF WHITE DWARFS IN CATACLYSMIC VARIABLES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The detection of heavy elements at suprasolar abundances in the atmospheres of some accreting white dwarfs in cataclysmic variables (CVs), coupled with the high temperatures needed to produce these elements, requires explosive thermonuclear burning. The central temperatures of any formerly more massive secondary stars in CVs undergoing hydrostatic CNO burning are far too low to produce these elements. Evidence is presented that at least some CVs contain donor secondaries that have been contaminated by white dwarf remnant burning during the common envelope phase and are transferring this material back to the white dwarf. This scenario does not exclude the channel in which formerly more massive donor stars underwent CNO processing in systems with thermal timescale mass transfer. Implications for the progenitors of CVs are discussed and a new scenario for the white dwarf's accretion-nova-outburst is given

  17. Stable dwarf mutants of a high quality tall rice variety White Ponni

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    White Ponni has been a commercially superior rice variety for over a decade in South India. Even though it is a poor yielder with a yield potential of 3.0 Tons/ha. it is valued for its high quality rice with slender grain. Due to this, White Ponni fetches a very high price for the farmer. It is a medium duration rice variety with a growing period of about 150 days and is highly fertilizer non-responsive. Any seasonal heavy wind, rainfall and/or high fertilizer leads to lodging and results in a heavy loss to the farmer. Any improvement in this variety is a boon to the farmer. Hence an attempt has been made to reduce plant height using mutation techniques. The dried seeds of White Ponni rice were exposed to gamma rays irradiation with 100, 200 and 400 Gy doses. The M1 and M2 generations were raised. In M2 generation, the numbers of dwarf mutant plants were identified in different doses. These plants were harvested individually and the seeds were divided into five different groups. From July to September 1999, these seeds were raised for M3 generation, in monthly intervals of five months. A total of 16 families were raised in randomized block design with three replications. The various biometrical observations were recorded, including height. The data was subjected for identification of stable dwarf mutants through stability analysis of Ebernhart and Russel [1966]. The different dwarf mutants showed the mean performance from 112 to 132 cm. Two mutants from 100 Gy flowered 15 days earlier than the control. It also maintained the dwarf stature. Other traits like tiller number, panicle length and yield per plant were also more or less similar to that of White Ponni. The seasonal difference in plant height expression was noticed. Instability, genotypes with lowest standard deviation coupled with unit regression are considered as the most stable ones. Accordingly, the mutants viz., 10kR-1 and 10kR -4, 20 kR-2 and 20 kR-14 and 40 kR-1 and 40 kR-4, had unit regression along with non-significant deviation. The dwarfness of these mutants was stable over season and these mutants had a mean height reduction of 17.2% over the check, White Ponni. The individual stable mutants were raised family-wise for identification of dwarfing gene and further exploitation is in progress

  18. A photospheric metal line profile analysis of hot DA white dwarfs with circumstellar material

    CERN Document Server

    Dickinson, Nathan J; Welsh, Barry Y

    2012-01-01

    Some hot DA white dwarfs have circumstellar high ion absorption features in their spectra, in addition to those originating in the photosphere. In many cases, the line profiles of these absorbing components are unresolved. Given the importance of the atmospheric composition of white dwarfs to studies of stellar evolution, extra-solar planetary systems and the interstellar medium, we examine the effect of including circumstellar line profiles in the abundance estimates of photospheric metals in six DA stars. The photospheric C and Si abundances are reduced in five cases where the circumstellar contamination is strong, though the relative weakness of the circumstellar Si IV absorption introduces minimal contamination, resulting in a small change in abundance. The inability of previous, approximate models to reproduce the photospheric line profiles here demonstrates the need for a technique that accounts for the physical line profiles of both the circumstellar and photospheric lines when modelling these blended ...

  19. Thermodynamic functions, freezing transition, and phase diagram of dense carbon-oxygen mixtures in white dwarfs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Equations of state for dense carbon-oxygen (C-O) binary-ionic mixtures (BIM's) appropriate to the interiors of white dwarfs are investigated through Monte Carlo simulations, by solution of relevant integral equations and variational calculations in the density-functional formalism. It is thereby shown that the internal energies of the C-O BIM solids and fluids both obey precisely the linear mixing formulas. We then present an accurate calculation of the phase diagram associated with freezing transitions in such BIM materials, resulting in a novel prediction of an azeotropic diagram. Discontinuities of the mass density across the azeotropic phase boundaries are evaluated numerically for application to a study of white-dwarf evolution

  20. Towards a Network of Faint DA White Dwarfs as High-Precision Spectrophotometric Standards

    CERN Document Server

    Narayan, Gautham; Holberg, Jay B; Matheson, Thomas; Saha, Abhijit; Olszewski, Edward W; Claver, Jenna; Stubbs, Christopher W; Bohlin, Ralph C; Deustua, Susana; Rest, Armin

    2016-01-01

    We present initial results from a program aimed at establishing a network of hot DA white dwarfs to serve as spectrophotometric standards for present and future wide-field surveys. These stars span the equatorial zone and are faint enough to be conveniently observed throughout the year with large-aperture telescopes. Spectra of these white dwarfs are analyzed to generate a non-local-thermodynamic-equilibrium (NLTE) model atmosphere normalized to HST colors, including adjustments for wavelength-dependent interstellar extinction. Once established, this standard star network will serve ground-based observatories in both hemispheres as well as space-based instrumentation from the UV to the near IR. We demonstrate the effectiveness of this concept and show how two different approaches to the problem using somewhat different assumptions produce equivalent results. We discuss lessons learned and the resulting corrective actions applied to our program.

  1. Collapse of accreting carbon-oxygen white dwarfs induced by carbon deflagration at high density

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A critical condition is obtained for which carbon deflagration induces collapse of an accreting C + O white dwarf, not explosion. If the carbon deflagration is initiated at central density as high as 1010 g cm-3 and if the propagation of the deflagration wave is slower than ∼ 0.15 υ/sub s/ (υ/sub s/ is the sound speed), electron capture behind the burning front induces collapse to form a neutron star. This is the case for both conductive and convective deflagrations. Such a high central density can be reached if the white dwarf is sufficiently massive and cold at the onset of accretion and if the accretion rate is in the appropriate range. Models for Type Ia and Ib supernovae are also discussed. 66 refs., 8 figs

  2. Simulating the photometric study of pulsating white dwarf stars in the physics laboratory

    CERN Document Server

    Chote, Paul

    2015-01-01

    We have designed a realistic simulation of astronomical observing using a relatively low-cost commercial CCD camera and a microcontroller-based circuit that drives LEDs inside a light-tight box with time-varying intensities. As part of a laboratory experiment, students can acquire sequences of images using the camera, and then perform data analysis using a language such as MATLAB or Python to: (a) extract the intensity of the imaged LEDs, (b) perform basic calibrations on the time-series data, and (c) convert their data into the frequency domain where they can then identify the frequency structure. The primary focus is on studying light curves produced by the pulsating white dwarf stars. The exercise provides an introduction to CCD observing, a framework for teaching concepts in numerical data analysis and Fourier techniques, and connections with the physics of white dwarf stars.

  3. Many-body treatment of white dwarf and neutron stars on the brane

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brane-world models suggest modification of Newton's law of gravity on the 3-brane at submillimeter scales. The brane-world induced corrections are in higher powers of inverse distance and appear as additional terms with the Newtonian potential. The average interparticle distance in white dwarf and neutron stars is 10-10 cms and 10-13 cms, respectively, and therefore, the effect of submillimeter corrections needs to be investigated. We show, by carrying out simple many-body calculations, that the mass and mass-radius relationship of the white dwarf and neutron stars are not effected by submillimeter corrections. However, our analysis shows that the correction terms in the effective theory give rise to force akin to surface tension in normal liquids

  4. Toward a Network of Faint DA White Dwarfs as High-precision Spectrophotometric Standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narayan, G.; Axelrod, T.; Holberg, J. B.; Matheson, T.; Saha, A.; Olszewski, E.; Claver, J.; Stubbs, C. W.; Bohlin, R. C.; Deustua, S.; Rest, A.

    2016-05-01

    We present the initial results from a program aimed at establishing a network of hot DA white dwarfs to serve as spectrophotometric standards for present and future wide-field surveys. These stars span the equatorial zone and are faint enough to be conveniently observed throughout the year with large-aperture telescopes. The spectra of these white dwarfs are analyzed in order to generate a non-local-thermodynamic-equilibrium model atmosphere normalized to Hubble Space Telescope colors, including adjustments for wavelength-dependent interstellar extinction. Once established, this standard star network will serve ground-based observatories in both hemispheres as well as space-based instrumentation from the UV to the near IR. We demonstrate the effectiveness of this concept and show how two different approaches to the problem using somewhat different assumptions produce equivalent results. We discuss the lessons learned and the resulting corrective actions applied to our program.

  5. CONSTRAINING THE SPIN-DOWN TIMESCALE OF THE WHITE DWARF PROGENITORS OF TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Meng, Xiangcun [School of Physics and Chemistry, Henan Polytechnic University, Jiaozuo 454000 (China); Podsiadlowski, Philipp, E-mail: xiangcunmeng@hotmail.com [Department of Astronomy, Oxford University, Oxford OX1 3RH (United Kingdom)

    2013-12-01

    Justham and Di Stefano et al. proposed that the white dwarf progenitor of a Type Ia supernova (SN Ia) may have to spin down before it can explode. As the white dwarf spin-down timescale is not well known theoretically, here we try to constrain it empirically (within the framework of this spin-down model) for progenitor systems that contain a giant donor and for which circumbinary material has been detected after the explosion: we obtain an upper limit of a few 10{sup 7}yr. Based on the study of Di Stefano and Kilic, this means that it is too early to rule out the existence of a surviving companion in SNR 0509–67.5.

  6. Tidally-Induced Apsidal Precession in Double White Dwarfs: a new mass measurement tool with LISA

    CERN Document Server

    Valsecchi, Francesca; Willems, Bart; Deloye, Christopher J; Kalogera, Vassiliki

    2011-01-01

    Galactic interacting double white dwarfs (DWD) are guaranteed gravitational wave (GW) sources for the GW detector LISA, with more than 10^4 binaries expected to be detected over the mission's lifetime. While the majority of DWDs are expected to be circular, dynamical interactions in globular clusters can lead to a sub-population of eccentric DWDs detectable by LISA. Here we investigate the potential for constraining the white dwarf (WD) properties through apsidal precession in these binaries. We analyze the tidal, rotational, and general relativistic contributions to apsidal precession by using detailed He WD models, where the evolution of the star's interior is followed throughout the cooling phase. In agreement with previous studies of zero-temperature WDs, we find that apsidal precession in eccentric DWDs can lead to a detectable shift in the emitted GW signal when binaries with cool (old) components are considered. This shift increases significantly for hot (young) WDs. We find that apsidal motion in hot ...

  7. Derivation of the Stellar Formation History from White Dwarfs in the Solar Neighborhood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tremblay, P.-E.; Kalirai, J. S.; Soderblom, D. R.; Cignoni, M.; Cummings, J.

    2015-06-01

    The study of volume complete samples in the solar neighborhood is a powerful technique to learn about the stellar formation history and the initial mass function. We probe the local formation history from the volume complete sample of white dwarfs within 20 pc, where accurate cooling ages and masses have been determined. The observed initial-final mass relation and theoretical stellar isochrones are used to determine the initial stellar parameters of white dwarfs in the local sample. We correct for moderate biases that are necessary to transform our results to a global stellar formation rate, and compare to similar studies based on the properties of main-sequence and turnoff stars. Our results suggest an enhanced formation rate in the last 5 Gyr compared to the range 5 < Age (Gyr) < 10 for stars that are presently in the solar neighborhood.

  8. A possible solution to the Lyman/Balmer line problem in hot DA white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Preval, S P; Badnell, N R; Holberg, J B; Hubeny, I

    2014-01-01

    Arguably, the best method for determining the effective temperature ($T_{\\mathrm{eff}}$) and surface gravity (log $g$) of a DA white dwarf is by fitting the Hydrogen Lyman and Balmer absorption features. However, as has been shown for white dwarfs with $T_{\\mathrm{eff}}$>50,000K, the calculated value from the Lyman and Balmer lines are discrepant, which worsens with increasing temperature. Many different solutions have been suggested, ranging from the input physics used to calculate the models, to interstellar reddening. We will focus on the former, and consider three variables. The first is the atomic data used, namely the number of transitions included in line blanketing treatments and the photoionization cross sections. The second is the stark broadening treatment used to synthesise the Lyman and Balmer line profiles, namely the calculations performed by Lemke (1997) and Tremblay & Bergeron (2009). Finally, the third is the atmospheric content. The model grids are calculated with a pure H composition, ...

  9. The Physics of Crystallization from Globular Cluster White Dwarf Stars in NGC 6397

    CERN Document Server

    Winget, D E; Campos, Fabiola; Montgomery, M H; Girardi, Leo; Bergeron, P; Williams, Kurtis

    2009-01-01

    We explore the physics of crystallization in the deep interiors of white dwarf stars using the color-magnitude diagram and luminosity function constructed from proper motion cleaned Hubble Space Telescope photometry of the globular cluster NGC 6397. We demonstrate that the data are consistent with the theory of crystallization of the ions in the interior of white dwarf stars and provide the first empirical evidence that the phase transition is first order: latent heat is released in the process of crystallization as predicted by van Horn (1968). We outline how this data can be used to observationally constrain the value of Gamma = E_{Coulomb}/E_{thermal} near the onset of crystallization, the central carbon/oxygen abundance, and the importance of phase separation.

  10. White Dwarf Mergers on Adaptive Meshes I. Methodology and Code Verification

    CERN Document Server

    Katz, Max P; Calder, Alan C; Swesty, F Douglas; Almgren, Ann S; Zhang, Weiqun

    2015-01-01

    The Type Ia supernova progenitor problem is one of the most perplexing and exciting problems in astrophysics, requiring detailed numerical modeling to complement observations of these explosions. One possible progenitor that has merited recent theoretical attention is the white dwarf merger scenario, which has the potential to naturally explain many of the observed characteristics of Type Ia supernovae. To date there have been relatively few self-consistent simulations of merging white dwarf systems using mesh-based hydrodynamics. This is the first paper in a series describing simulations of these systems using a hydrodynamics code with adaptive mesh refinement. In this paper we describe our numerical methodology and discuss our implementation in the compressible hydrodynamics code CASTRO, which solves the Euler equations, and the Poisson equation for self-gravity, and couples the gravitational and rotation forces to the hydrodynamics. Standard techniques for coupling gravitation and rotation forces to the hy...

  11. Infrared absorption of dense helium and its importance in the atmospheres of cool white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kowalski, Piotr M

    2014-01-01

    Aims: Hydrogen deficient white dwarfs are characterized by very dense, fluid-like atmospheres of complex physics and chemistry that are still poorly understood. The incomplete description of these atmospheres by the models results in serious problems with the description of spectra of these stars and subsequent difficulties in derivation of their surface parameters. Here, we address the problem of infrared (IR) opacities in the atmospheres of cool white dwarfs by direct $ab$ $initio$ simulations of IR absorption of dense helium. Methods: We applied state-of-the-art density functional theory-based quantum molecular dynamics simulations to obtain the time evolution of the induced dipole moment. The IR absorption coefficients were obtained by the Fourier transform of the dipole moment time autocorrelation function. Results: We found that a dipole moment is induced due to three- and more-body simultaneous collisions between helium atoms in highly compressed helium. This results in a significant IR absorption that...

  12. Genetic-Algorithm-based Asteroseismological Analysis of the DBV White Dwarf GD 358

    CERN Document Server

    Metcalfe, T S; Winget, D E

    2000-01-01

    White dwarf asteroseismology offers the opportunity to probe the structure and composition of stellar objects governed by relatively simple physical principles. The observational requirements of asteroseismology have been addressed by the development of the Whole Earth Telescope (WET), but the analytical procedures still need to be refined before this technique can yield the complete physical insight that the data can provide. Toward this end, we have utilized a genetic-algorithm-based optimization method to fit our models to the observed pulsation frequencies of the DBV white dwarf GD 358 obtained with the WET in 1990. This new approach has finally exploited the sensitivity of our models to the core composition, and will soon yield some interesting constraints on nuclear reaction cross-sections.

  13. A possible evolutionary scenario of highly magnetized super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs: progenitors of peculiar type Ia supernovae

    OpenAIRE

    Das, Upasana; Mukhopadhyay, Banibrata; Rao, A. R.

    2013-01-01

    Several recently discovered peculiar type Ia supernovae seem to demand an altogether new formation theory that might help explain the puzzling dissimilarities between them and the standard type Ia supernovae. The most striking aspect of the observational analysis is the necessity of invoking super-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs having masses ~ 2.1-2.8M_sun, M_sun being the mass of Sun, as their most probable progenitors. Strongly magnetized white dwarfs having super-Chandrasekhar masses were alre...

  14. Formation of millisecond pulsars with CO white dwarf companions - II. Accretion, spin-up, true ages and comparison to MSPs with He white dwarf companions

    CERN Document Server

    Tauris, Thomas M; Kramer, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Millisecond pulsars (MSPs) are mainly characterised by their spin periods, B-fields and masses - quantities which are largely affected by previous interactions with a companion star in a binary system. In this paper, we investigate the formation mechanism of MSPs by considering the pulsar recycling process in both intermediate-mass X-ray binaries (IMXBs) and low-mass X-ray binaries (LMXBs). The IMXBs mainly lead to the formation of binary MSPs with a massive carbon-oxygen (CO) or an oxygen-neon-magnesium white dwarf (ONeMg WD) companion, whereas the LMXBs form recycled pulsars with a helium white dwarf (He WD) companion. We discuss the accretion physics leading to the spin-up line in the PPdot-diagram and demonstrate that such a line cannot be uniquely defined. We derive a simple expression for the amount of accreted mass needed for any given pulsar to achieve its equilibrium spin and apply this to explain the observed differences of the spin distributions of recycled pulsars with different types of companion...

  15. The frequency of occurrence of novae hosting an ONe white dwarf

    OpenAIRE

    Gil-Pons, P.; E. Garcia-Berro(IEEC-CSIC-UPC-UB, Barcelona, Spain); Jose, J.; Hernanz, M.; Truran, J W

    2003-01-01

    In this paper, we revisit the problem of the determination of the frequency of occurrence of galactic nova outbursts which involve an oxygen-neon (ONe) white dwarf. The improvement with respect to previous work on the subject derives from the fact that we use the results that our evolutionary calculations provide for the final mass and for the chemical profiles of intermediate-to-massive primary components of close binary systems. In particular, the final evolutionary stages, such as the carb...

  16. FORETELLINGS OF RAGNARÖK: WORLD-ENGULFING ASYMPTOTIC GIANTS AND THE INHERITANCE OF WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The search for planets around white dwarf stars, and evidence for dynamical instability around them in the form of atmospheric pollution and circumstellar disks, raises questions about the nature of planetary systems that can survive the vicissitudes of the asymptotic giant branch (AGB). We study the competing effects, on planets at several AU from the star, of strong tidal forces arising from the star's large convective envelope, and of the planets' orbital expansion due to stellar mass loss. We study, for the first time, the evolution of planets while following each thermal pulse on the AGB. For Jovian planets, tidal forces are strong, and can pull into the envelope planets initially at ∼3 AU for a 1 M☉ star and ∼5 AU for a 5 M☉ star. Lower-mass planets feel weaker tidal forces, and terrestrial planets initially within 1.5-3 AU enter the stellar envelope. Thus, low-mass planets that begin inside the maximum stellar radius can survive, as their orbits expand due to mass loss. The inclusion of a moderate planetary eccentricity slightly strengthens the tidal forces experienced by Jovian planets. Eccentric terrestrial planets are more at risk, since their eccentricity does not decay and their small pericenter takes them inside the stellar envelope. We also find the closest radii at which planets will be found around white dwarfs, assuming that any planet entering the stellar envelope is destroyed. Planets are in that case unlikely to be found inside ∼1.5 AU of a white dwarf with a 1 M☉ progenitor and ∼10 AU of a white dwarf with a 5 M☉ progenitor.

  17. Irradiated atmospheres of accreting magnetic white dwarfs with an application to the polar AM Herculis

    OpenAIRE

    Koenig, M.; Beuermann, K.; Gaensicke, B. T.

    2005-01-01

    We present a pilot study of atmospheres of accreting magnetic white dwarfs irradiated by intense fluxes at ultraviolet to infrared wavelengths. The model uses a standard LTE stellar atmosphere code which is expanded by introducing an angle-dependent external radiation source. The present results are obtained for an external source with the spectral shape of a 10000K blackbody and a freely adjustable spectral flux. The model provides an explanation for the observed largely filled-up Lyman line...

  18. A comparative analysis of the observed white dwarf cooling sequence from globular clusters★

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campos, Fabíola; Bergeron, P.; Romero, A. D.; Kepler, S. O.; Ourique, G.; Costa, J. E. S.; Bonatto, C. J.; Winget, D. E.; Montgomery, M. H.; Pacheco, T. A.; Bedin, L. R.

    2016-03-01

    We report our study of features at the observed red end of the white dwarf cooling sequences for three Galactic globular clusters: NGC 6397, 47 Tucanae and M 4. We use deep colour-magnitude diagrams constructed from archival Hubble Space Telescope (Advanced Camera for Surveys) to systematically investigate the blue turn at faint magnitudes and the age determinations for each cluster. We find that the age difference between NGC 6397 and 47 Tuc is 1.98^{+0.44}_{-0.26} Gyr, consistent with the picture that metal-rich halo clusters were formed later than metal-poor halo clusters. We self-consistently include the effect of metallicity on the progenitor age and the initial-to-final mass relation. In contrast with previous investigations that invoked a single white dwarf mass for each cluster, the data show a spread of white dwarf masses that better reproduce the shape and location of the blue turn. This effect alone, however, does not completely reproduce the observational data - the blue turn retains some mystery. In this context, we discuss several other potential problems in the models. These include possible partial mixing of H and He in the atmosphere of white dwarf stars, the lack of a good physical description of the collision-induced absorption process and uncertainties in the opacities at low temperatures. The latter are already known to be significant in the description of the cool main sequence. Additionally, we find that the present-day local mass function of NGC 6397 is consistent with a top-heavy type, while 47 Tuc presents a bottom-heavy profile.

  19. The Contribution of Halo White Dwarf Binaries to the LISA Signal

    OpenAIRE

    Ruiter, Ashley J.; Belczynski, Krzysztof; Benacquista, Matthew; Holley-Bockelmann, Kelly

    2007-01-01

    Galactic double white dwarfs were postulated as a source of confusion limited noise for LISA, the future space-based gravitational wave observatory. Until very recently, the Galactic population consisted of a relatively well studied disk population, a somewhat studied smaller bulge population and a mostly unknown, but potentially large halo population. It has been argued that the halo population may produce a signal that is much stronger (factor of ~5 in spectral amplitude) than the disk popu...

  20. VLT/X-shooter observations and the chemical composition of cool white dwarfs

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kawka, Adela; Vennes, Stephane

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 538, February (2012), A13/1-A13/11. ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA300030908; GA AV ČR IAA301630901; GA ČR GAP209/10/0967; GA MŠk(CZ) LC06014 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : white dwarfs * atmospheres * abundance Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 5.084, year: 2012

  1. The formation of low-mass helium white dwarfs in close binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Istrate, Alina G

    2014-01-01

    Recently, a large number of low-mass (<0.30 M_sun) helium white dwarfs (He WDs) have been discovered as a result of several surveys campaigns such as WASP, ELM, Kepler or SDSS. The far majority of them have as companion another compact object. There appears to be discrepancies between current theoretical modelling of low-mass He WDs and a number of key observational cases indicating that some details of their formation scenario yet remain to be understood.

  2. Light Curves and Spectra from a Thermonuclear Explosion of a White Dwarf Merger

    OpenAIRE

    Van Rossum, Daniel R.; Kashyap, Rahul; Fisher, Robert; Wollaeger, Ryan T.; Garcia-Berro, Enrique; Aznar-Siguan, Gabriela; Ji, Suoqing; Loren-Aguilar, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Double-degenerate (DD) mergers of carbon-oxygen (CO) white dwarfs have recently emerged as a leading candidate for normal Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). However, many outstanding questions surround DD mergers, including the characteristics of their light curves and spectra. We have recently identified a spiral instability in the post-merger phase of DD mergers, and demonstrated that this instability self-consistently leads to detonation in some cases. We call this the spiral merger SN Ia model....

  3. Cooling sequences and color-magnitude diagrams for cool white dwarfs with hydrogen-atmospheres

    OpenAIRE

    Chabrier, Gilles; Brassard, Pierre; Gilles FONTAINE; Saumon, Didier

    2000-01-01

    We present new cooling sequences, color-magnitude diagrams, and color-color diagrams for cool white dwarfs with pure hydrogen atmospheres down to an effective temperature $\\te=1500$ K. We include a more detailed treatment of the physics of the fully-ionized interior, particularly an improved discussion of the thermodynamics of the temperature-dependent ion-ion and ion-electron contributions of the quantum, relativistic electron-ion plasma. The present calculations also incorporate accurate bo...

  4. A white dwarf-neutron star relativistic binary model for soft gamma-ray repeaters

    OpenAIRE

    Cuesta, Herman J. Mosquera

    2004-01-01

    A scenario for SGRs is introduced in which gravitational radiation reaction effects drive the dynamics of an ultrashort orbital period X-ray binary embracing a high-mass donor white dwarf (WD) to a rapidly rotating low magnetised massive neutron star (NS) surrounded by a thick, dense and massive accretion torus. Driven by GR reaction, sparsely, the binary separation reduces, the WD overflows its Roche lobe and the mass transfer drives unstable the accretion disk around the NS. As the binary c...

  5. Significantly super-Chandrasekhar limiting mass white dwarfs as progenitors for peculiar over-luminous type Ia supernovae

    CERN Document Server

    Mukhopadhyay, Banibrata

    2015-01-01

    Since 2012, we have initiated developing systematically the simplistic to rigorous models to prove that highly super-Chandrasekhar, as well as highly sub-Chandrasekhar, limiting mass white dwarfs are possible to exist. We show that the mass of highly magnetized or modified Einstein's gravity induced white dwarfs could be significantly super-Chandrasekhar and such white dwarfs could altogether have a different mass-limit. On the other hand, type Ia supernovae (SNeIa), a key to unravel the evolutionary history of the universe, are believed to be triggered in white dwarfs having mass close to the Chandrasekhar-limit. However, observations of several peculiar, over- and under-luminous SNeIa argue for exploding masses widely different from this limit. We argue that explosions of super-Chandrasekhar limiting mass white dwarfs result in over-luminous SNeIa. We arrive at this revelation, first by considering simplistic, spherical, Newtonian white dwarfs with constant magnetic fields. Then we relax the Newtonian assum...

  6. A search for variable white dwarfs in large area time domain surveys: a pilot study in SDSS Stripe 82

    CERN Document Server

    Fusillo, Nicola Pietro Gentile; Gänsicke, Boris T

    2015-01-01

    We present a method to reliably select variable white dwarfs from large area time domain surveys and apply this method in a pilot study to search for pulsating white dwarfs in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Stripe 82. From a sample 400 high-confidence white dwarf candidates, we identify 24 which show significant variability in their multi-epoch Stripe 82 data. Using colours, we further selected a sample of pulsating white dwarf (ZZ Ceti) candidates and obtained high cadence follow up for six targets. We confirm five of our candidates as cool ZZ Cetis, three of which are new discoveries. Among our 24 candidates we also identify: one eclipsing binary, two magnetic white dwarfs and one pulsating PG1159 star. Finally we discuss the possible causes for the variability detected in the remaining targets. Even with sparse multi-epoch data over the limited area of Stripe 82, we demonstrate that our selection method can successfully identify various types of variable white dwarfs and efficiently select high-confidence ZZ...

  7. A WHITE DWARF MERGER AS PROGENITOR OF THE ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSAR 4U 0142+61?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It has been recently proposed that massive, fast-rotating, highly magnetized white dwarfs could describe the observational properties of some of soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs). Moreover, it has also been shown that high-field magnetic white dwarfs can be the outcome of white dwarf binary mergers. The products of these mergers consist of a hot central white dwarf surrounded by a rapidly rotating disk. Here we show that the merger of a double degenerate system can explain the characteristics of the peculiar AXP 4U 0142+61. This scenario accounts for the observed infrared excess. We also show that the observed properties of 4U 0142+6 are consistent with an approximately 1.2 M? white dwarf, remnant of the coalescence of an original system made of two white dwarfs of masses 0.6 M? and 1.0 M?. Finally, we infer a post-merging age ?WD ? 64 kyr and a magnetic field B ? 2 108 G. Evidence for such a magnetic field may come from the possible detection of the electron cyclotron absorption feature observed between the B and V bands at ?1015 Hz in the spectrum of 4U 0142+61

  8. A WHITE DWARF MERGER AS PROGENITOR OF THE ANOMALOUS X-RAY PULSAR 4U 0142+61?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rueda, J. A.; Boshkayev, K.; Izzo, L.; Ruffini, R. [Dipartimento di Fisica and ICRA, Sapienza Universita di Roma, P.le Aldo Moro 5, I-00185 Rome (Italy); Loren-Aguilar, P. [School of Physics, University of Exeter, Stocker Road, Exeter EX4 4QL (United Kingdom); Kuelebi, B. [Institut de Ciencies de l' Espai (CSIC), Facultat de Ciencies, Campus UAB, Torre C5-parell, E-08193 Bellaterra (Spain); Aznar-Siguan, G.; Garcia-Berro, E., E-mail: jorge.rueda@icra.it, E-mail: enrique.garcia-berro@upc.edu [Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia, c/Gran Capita 2-4, Edif. Nexus 104, E-08034 Barcelona (Spain)

    2013-08-01

    It has been recently proposed that massive, fast-rotating, highly magnetized white dwarfs could describe the observational properties of some of soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs). Moreover, it has also been shown that high-field magnetic white dwarfs can be the outcome of white dwarf binary mergers. The products of these mergers consist of a hot central white dwarf surrounded by a rapidly rotating disk. Here we show that the merger of a double degenerate system can explain the characteristics of the peculiar AXP 4U 0142+61. This scenario accounts for the observed infrared excess. We also show that the observed properties of 4U 0142+6 are consistent with an approximately 1.2 M{sub Sun} white dwarf, remnant of the coalescence of an original system made of two white dwarfs of masses 0.6 M{sub Sun} and 1.0 M{sub Sun }. Finally, we infer a post-merging age {tau}{sub WD} Almost-Equal-To 64 kyr and a magnetic field B Almost-Equal-To 2 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 8} G. Evidence for such a magnetic field may come from the possible detection of the electron cyclotron absorption feature observed between the B and V bands at Almost-Equal-To 10{sup 15} Hz in the spectrum of 4U 0142+61.

  9. Refining our knowledge of the white dwarf mass-radius relation

    CERN Document Server

    Barstow, M A; Burleigh, M R; Casewell, S L; Farihi, J; Holberg, J B; Hubeny, I

    2015-01-01

    The presence of a white dwarf in a resolved binary system, such as Sirius, provides an opportunity to combine dynamical information about the masses, from astrometry and spectroscopy, with a gravitational red-shift measurement and spectrophotometry of the white dwarf atmosphere to provide a test of theoretical mass-radius relations of unprecedented accuracy. We demonstrated this with the first Balmer line spectrum of Sirius B to be obtained free of contamination from the primary, with STIS on HST. However, we also found an unexplained discrepancy between the spectroscopic and gravitational red-shift mass determinations. With the recovery of STIS, we have been able to revisit our observations of Sirius B with an improved observation strategy designed to reduce systematic errors on the gravitational red-shift measurement. We provide a preliminary report on the refined precision of the Sirius B mass-radius measurements and the extension of this technique to a larger sample of white dwarfs in resolved binaries. T...

  10. Sub-Chandrasekhar White Dwarf Mergers as the Progenitors of Type Ia Supernovae

    CERN Document Server

    van Kerkwijk, Marten H; Justham, Stephen

    2010-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae are generally thought to be due to the thermonuclear explosions of carbon-oxygen white dwarfs with masses near the Chandrasekhar mass. This scenario, however, has two long-standing problems. First, the explosions do not naturally produce the correct mix of elements, but have to be finely tuned to proceed from sub-sonic deflagration to super-sonic detonation. Second, population models and observations give formation rates of near-Chandrasekhar white dwarfs that are far too small. Here, we suggest that type Ia supernovae instead result from mergers of roughly equal-mass carbon-oxygen white dwarfs, including those that produce sub-Chandrasekhar mass remnants. Numerical studies of such mergers have shown that the remnants consist of rapidly rotating cores that contain most of the mass and are hottest in the center, surrounded by dense, small disks. We argue that the disks accrete quickly, and that the resulting compressional heating likely ignites the carbon. This ignition occurs at densities f...

  11. The effects of metallicity on the Galactic disk population of white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Cojocaru, Ruxandra; Isern, Jordi; García-Berro, Enrique

    2014-01-01

    It has been known for a long time that stellar metallicity plays a significant role in the determination of the ages of the different Galactic stellar populations, when main sequence evolutionary tracks are employed. Here we analyze the role that metallicity plays on the white dwarf luminosity function of the Galactic disk, which is often used to determine its age. We employ a Monte Carlo population synthesis code that accounts for the properties of the population of Galactic disk white dwarfs. Our code incorporates the most up-to-date evolutionary cooling sequences for white dwarfs with hydrogen-rich and hydrogen-deficient atmospheres for both carbon-oxygen and oxygen-neon cores. We use two different models to assess the evolution of the metallicity, one in which the adopted metallicity is constant with time, but with a moderate dispersion, and a second one in which the metallicity increases with time. We found that our theoretical results are in a very satisfactory agreement with the observational luminosit...

  12. What Can the Accretion Induced Collapse of White Dwarfs Really Explain?

    CERN Document Server

    Fryer, C L; Herant, M; Colgate, S A

    1999-01-01

    The accretion induced collapse (AIC) of a white dwarf into a neutron star has been invoked to explain gamma-ray bursts, Type Ia supernovae, and a number of problematic neutron star populations and specific binary systems. The ejecta from this collapse has also been claimed as a source of r-process nucleosynthesis. So far, most AIC studies have focussed on determining the event rates from binary evolution models and less attention has been directed toward understanding the collapse itself. However, the collapse of a white dwarf into a neutron star is followed by the ejection of rare neutron-rich isotopes. The observed abundance of these chemical elements may set a more reliable limit on the rate at which AICs have taken place over the history of the galaxy. In this paper, we present a thorough study of the collapse of a massive white dwarf in 1- and 2-dimensions and determine the amount and composition of the ejected material. We discuss the importance of the input physics (equation of state, neutrino transpor...

  13. Do R Coronae Borealis Stars Form from Double White Dwarf Mergers?

    CERN Document Server

    Staff, Jan E; Herwig, Falk; Even, Wesley; Fryer, Chris L; Motl, Patrick M; Geballe, Tom; Pignatari, Marco; Clayton, Geoffrey C; Tohline, Joel E

    2012-01-01

    A leading formation scenario for R Coronae Borealis (RCB) stars invokes the merger of degenerate He and CO white dwarfs (WD) in a binary. The observed ratio of 16O/18O for RCB stars is in the range of 0.3-20 much smaller than the solar value of ~500. In this paper, we investigate whether such a low ratio can be obtained in simulations of the merger of a CO and a He white dwarf. We present the results of five 3-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations of the merger of a double white dwarf system where the total mass is 0.9 Mdot and the initial mass ratio (q) varies between 0.5 and 0.99. We identify in simulations with $q\\lesssim0.7$ a feature around the merged stars where the temperatures and densities are suitable for forming 18O. However, more 16O is being dredged-up from the C- and O-rich accretor during the merger than the amount of 18O that is produced. Therefore, on a dynamical time scale over which our hydrodynamics simulation runs, a 16O/18O ratio of ~2000 in the "best" case is found. If the conditions fou...

  14. A comparative analysis of the observed white dwarf cooling sequence from globular clusters

    CERN Document Server

    Campos, Fabíola; Romero, A D; Kepler, S O; Ourique, G; Costa, J E S; Bonatto, C J; Winget, D E; Montgomery, M H; Pacheco, T A; Bedin, L R

    2015-01-01

    We report our study of features at the observed red end of the white dwarf cooling sequences for three Galactic globular clusters: NGC\\,6397, 47\\,Tucanae and M\\,4. We use deep colour-magnitude diagrams constructed from archival Hubble Space Telescope (ACS) to systematically investigate the blue turn at faint magnitudes and the age determinations for each cluster. We find that the age difference between NGC\\,6397 and 47\\,Tuc is 1.98$^{+0.44}_{-0.26}$\\,Gyr, consistent with the picture that metal-rich halo clusters were formed later than metal-poor halo clusters. We self-consistently include the effect of metallicity on the progenitor age and the initial-to-final mass relation. In contrast with previous investigations that invoked a single white dwarf mass for each cluster, the data shows a spread of white dwarf masses that better reproduce the shape and location of the blue turn. This effect alone, however, does not completely reproduce the observational data - the blue turn retains some mystery. In this contex...

  15. Soft gamma-ray repeaters and anomalous X-ray pulsars as highly magnetized white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Mukhopadhyay, Banibrata

    2016-01-01

    We explore the possibility that soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) and anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) are powered by highly magnetized white dwarfs (B-WDs). We take a sample of SGRs and AXPs and provide the possible parameter space in mass, radius, and surface magnetic field based on their observed properties (period and its derivative) and the assumption that these sources obey the mass-radius relation derived for the B-WDs. The radius and magnetic field of B-WDs are adequate to explain energies in SGRs/AXPs as the rotationally powered energy. In addition, B-WDs also adequately explain the perplexing radio transient GCRT J1745-3009 as a white dwarf pulsar. Note that the radius and magnetic fields of B-WDs are neither extreme (unlike of highly magnetized neutron stars) nor ordinary (unlike of magnetized white dwarfs, yet following the Chandrasekhar's mass-radius relation (C-WDs)). In order to explain SGRs/AXPs, while the highly magnetized neutron stars require an extra, observationally not well established yet, ...

  16. Panchromatic Calibration of Astronomical Observations with State-of-the-Art White Dwarf Model Atmospheres

    CERN Document Server

    Rauch, T

    2012-01-01

    Theoretical spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of white dwarfs provide a powerful tool for cross-calibration and sensitivity control of instruments from the far infrared to the X-ray energy range. Such SEDs can be calculated from fully metal-line blanketed NLTE model-atmospheres that are e.g. computed by the Tuebingen NLTE model-atmosphere package (TMAP) that has arrived at a high level of sophistication. TMAP was successfully employed for the reliable spectral analysis of many hot, compact post-AGB stars. High-quality stellar spectra obtained over a wide energy range establish a data base with a large number of spectral lines of many successive ions of different species. Their analysis allows to determine effective temperatures, surface gravities, and element abundances of individual (pre-)white dwarfs with very small error ranges. We present applications of TMAP SEDs for spectral analyses of hot, compact stars in the parameter range from (pre-) white dwarfs to neutron stars and demonstrate the improvement...

  17. ASYMMETRY AND THE NUCLEOSYNTHETIC SIGNATURE OF NEARLY EDGE-LIT DETONATION IN WHITE DWARF CORES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Most of the leading explosion scenarios for Type Ia supernovae involve the nuclear incineration of a white dwarf star through a detonation wave. Several scenarios have been proposed as to how this detonation may actually occur, but the exact mechanism and environment in which it takes place remain unknown. We explore the effects of an off-center initiated detonation on the spatial distribution of the nucleosynthetic yield products in a toy model—a pre-expanded near Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarf. We find that a single-point near edge-lit detonation results in asymmetries in the density and thermal profiles, notably the expansion timescale, throughout the supernova ejecta. We demonstrate that this asymmetry of the thermodynamic trajectories should be common to off-center detonations where a small amount of the star is burned prior to detonation. The sensitivity of the yields on the expansion timescale results in an asymmetric distribution of the elements synthesized as reaction products. We tabulate the shift in the center of mass of the various elements produced in our model supernova and find an odd-even pattern for elements past silicon. Our calculations show that off-center single-point detonations in carbon-oxygen white dwarfs are marked by significant composition asymmetries in their remnants which bear potentially observable signatures in both velocity and coordinate space, including an elemental nickel mass fraction that varies by a factor of 2-3 from one side of the remnant to the other.

  18. Asymmetry and the Nucleosynthetic Signature of Nearly Edge-lit Detonation in White Dwarf Cores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamulak, David A.; Meakin, Casey A.; Seitenzahl, Ivo R.; Truran, James W.

    2012-01-01

    Most of the leading explosion scenarios for Type Ia supernovae involve the nuclear incineration of a white dwarf star through a detonation wave. Several scenarios have been proposed as to how this detonation may actually occur, but the exact mechanism and environment in which it takes place remain unknown. We explore the effects of an off-center initiated detonation on the spatial distribution of the nucleosynthetic yield products in a toy model—a pre-expanded near Chandrasekhar-mass white dwarf. We find that a single-point near edge-lit detonation results in asymmetries in the density and thermal profiles, notably the expansion timescale, throughout the supernova ejecta. We demonstrate that this asymmetry of the thermodynamic trajectories should be common to off-center detonations where a small amount of the star is burned prior to detonation. The sensitivity of the yields on the expansion timescale results in an asymmetric distribution of the elements synthesized as reaction products. We tabulate the shift in the center of mass of the various elements produced in our model supernova and find an odd-even pattern for elements past silicon. Our calculations show that off-center single-point detonations in carbon-oxygen white dwarfs are marked by significant composition asymmetries in their remnants which bear potentially observable signatures in both velocity and coordinate space, including an elemental nickel mass fraction that varies by a factor of 2-3 from one side of the remnant to the other.

  19. DB white dwarfs in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 10 and 12

    CERN Document Server

    Koester, Detlev

    2015-01-01

    White dwarfs with helium-dominated atmospheres comprise approximately 20% of all white dwarfs. Among the open questions are the total masses and the origin of the hydrogen traces observed in a large number and the nature of the deficit of DBs in the range from 30000 - 45000K. We use the largest-ever sample (by a factor of 10) provided by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) to study these questions. The photometric and spectroscopic data of 1107 helium-rich objects from the SDSS are analyzed using theoretical model atmospheres. Along with the effective temperature and surface gravity, we also determine hydrogen and calcium abundances or upper limits for all objects. The atmosphere models are extended with envelope calculations to determine the extent of the helium convection zones and thus the total amount of hydrogen and calcium present. When accounting for problems in determining surface gravities at low Teff, we find an average mass for helium-dominated white dwarfs of 0.606+-0.004 Msun, which is very simil...

  20. NORMAL TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE FROM VIOLENT MERGERS OF WHITE DWARF BINARIES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    One of the most important questions regarding the progenitor systems of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) is whether mergers of two white dwarfs can lead to explosions that reproduce observations of normal events. Here we present a fully three-dimensional simulation of a violent merger of two carbon-oxygen white dwarfs with masses of 0.9 M☉ and 1.1 M☉ combining very high resolution and exact initial conditions. A well-tested combination of codes is used to study the system. We start with the dynamical inspiral phase and follow the subsequent thermonuclear explosion under the plausible assumption that a detonation forms in the process of merging. We then perform detailed nucleosynthesis calculations and radiative transfer simulations to predict synthetic observables from the homologously expanding supernova ejecta. We find that synthetic color light curves of our merger, which produces about 0.62 M☉ of 56Ni, show good agreement with those observed for normal SNe Ia in all wave bands from U to K. Line velocities in synthetic spectra around maximum light also agree well with observations. We conclude that violent mergers of massive white dwarfs can closely resemble normal SNe Ia. Therefore, depending on the number of such massive systems available these mergers may contribute at least a small fraction to the observed population of normal SNe Ia.

  1. Magnetized Moving Mesh Merger of a Carbon-Oxygen White Dwarf Binary

    CERN Document Server

    Zhu, Chenchong; van Kerkwijk, Marten H; Chang, Philip

    2015-01-01

    White dwarf binary mergers are possible progenitors to a number of unusual stars and transient phenomena, including type Ia supernovae. To date, simulations of mergers have not included magnetic fields, even though they are believed to play a significant role in the evolution of the merger remnant. We simulated a 0.625 - 0.65 $M_{\\odot}$ carbon-oxygen white dwarf binary merger in the magnetohydrodynamic moving mesh code Arepo. Each white dwarf was given an initial dipole field with a surface value of $\\sim10^3$ G. As in simulations of merging double neutron star binaries, we find exponential field growth within Kelvin-Helmholtz instability-generated vortices during the coalescence of the two stars. The final field has complex geometry, and a strength $>10^{10}$ G at the center of the merger remnant. Its energy is $\\sim2\\times10^{47}$ ergs, $\\sim0.2$% of the remnant's total energy. The strong field likely influences further evolution of the merger remnant by providing a mechanism for angular momentum transfer ...

  2. Supernova 2011fe from an Exploding Carbon-Oxygen White Dwarf Star

    CERN Document Server

    Nugent, Peter E; Cenko, S Bradley; Thomas, Rollin C; Kasen, Daniel; Howell, D Andrew; Bersier, David; Bloom, Joshua S; Kulkarni, S R; Kandrashoff, Michael T; Filippenko, Alexei V; Silverman, Jeffrey M; Marcy, Geoffrey W; Howard, Andrew W; Isaacson, Howard T; Maguire, Kate; Suzuki, Nao; Tarlton, James E; Pan, Yen-Chen; Bildsten, Lars; Fulton, Benjamin J; Parrent, Jerod T; Sand, David; Podsiadlowski, Philipp; Bianco, Federica B; Dilday, Benjamin; Graham, Melissa L; Lyman, Joe; James, Phil; Kasliwal, Mansi M; Law, Nicholas M; Quimby, Robert M; Hook, Isobel M; Walker, Emma S; Mazzali, Paolo; Pian, Elena; Ofek, Eran O; Gal-Yam, Avishay; Poznanski, Dovi

    2011-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) have been used empirically as standardized candles to reveal the accelerating universe even though fundamental details, such as the nature of the progenitor system and how the star explodes, remained a mystery. There is consensus that a white dwarf star explodes after accreting matter in a binary system, but the secondary could be anything from a main sequence star to a red giant, or even another white dwarf. The uncertainty stems from the fact that no recent SN Ia has been discovered close enough to detect the stars before explosion. Here we report early observations of SN 2011fe (PTF11kly) in M101 at a distance of 6.4 Mpc, the closest SN Ia in the past 25 years. We find that the exploding star was likely a carbon-oxygen white dwarf, and from the lack of an early shock we conclude that the companion was most likely a main sequence star. Early spectroscopy shows high-velocity oxygen that varies on a time scale of hours and extensive mixing of newly synthesized intermediate mass ele...

  3. Pulsating low-mass white dwarfs in the frame of new evolutionary sequences: II. Nonadiabatic analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Crsico, Alejandro H

    2016-01-01

    Low-mass ($M_{\\star}/M_{\\sun} \\lesssim 0.45$) white dwarfs, including the so called extremely low-mass white dwarfs (ELM, $M_{\\star}/M_{\\sun } \\lesssim 0.18-0.20$), are being currently discovered in the field of our Galaxy through dedicated photometric surveys. The fact that some of them pulsate opens the unparalleled chance for sounding their interiors. We present a detailed nonadiabatic pulsational analysis of such stars based on a new set of He-core white-dwarf models with masses ranging from $0.1554$ to $0.4352 M_{\\sun}$ derived by computing the non-conservative evolution of a binary system consisting of an initially $1 M_{\\sun}$ ZAMS star and a $1.4 M_{\\sun}$ neutron star. We have computed nonadiabatic radial modes and nonradial g and p modes to assess the dependence of the pulsational stability properties of these objects with stellar parameters such as the stellar mass, the effective temperature, and the convective efficiency. We found that a dense spectrum of unstable radial modes and nonradial g and ...

  4. Metal Accretion onto White Dwarfs. I. The Approximate Approach Based on Estimates of Diffusion Timescales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontaine, G.; Brassard, P.; Dufour, P.; Tremblay, P.-E.

    2015-06-01

    The accretion-diffusion picture is the model par excellence for describing the presence of planetary debris polluting the atmospheres of relatively cool white dwarfs. Some important insights into the process may be derived using an approximate approach which combines static stellar models with estimates of diffusion timescales at the base of the outer convection zone or, in its absence, at the photosphere. Until recently, and to our knowledge, values of diffusion timescales in white dwarfs have all been obtained on the basis of the same physics as that developed initially by Paquette et al., including their diffusion coefficients and thermal diffusion coefficients. In view of the recent exciting discoveries of a plethora of metals (including some never seen before) polluting the atmospheres of an increasing number of cool white dwarfs, we felt that a new look at the estimates of settling timescales would be worthwhile. We thus provide improved estimates of diffusion timescales for all 27 elements from Li to Cu in the periodic table in a wide range of the surface gravity-effective temperature domain and for both DA and non-DA stars.

  5. Precise Atmospheric Parameters for the Shortest Period Binary White Dwarfs: Gravitational Waves, Metals, and Pulsations

    CERN Document Server

    Gianninas, A; Kilic, Mukremin; Brown, Warren R; Bergeron, P; Hermes, J J

    2014-01-01

    We present a detailed spectroscopic analysis of 61 low mass white dwarfs and provide precise atmospheric parameters, masses, and updated binary system parameters based on our new model atmosphere grids and the most recent evolutionary model calculations. For the first time, we measure systematic abundances of He, Ca and Mg for metal-rich extremely low mass white dwarfs and examine the distribution of these abundances as a function of effective temperature and mass. Based on our preliminary results, we discuss the possibility that shell flashes may be responsible for the presence of the observed He and metals. We compare stellar radii derived from our spectroscopic analysis to model-independent measurements and find good agreement except for those white dwarfs with Teff < 10,000 K. We also calculate the expected gravitational wave strain for each system and discuss their significance to the eLISA space-borne gravitational wave observatory. Finally, we provide an update on the instability strip of extremely ...

  6. Likely detection of water-rich asteroid debris in a metal-polluted white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Raddi, R; Koester, D; Farihi, J; Hermes, J J; Scaringi, S; Breedt, E; Girven, J

    2015-01-01

    The cool white dwarf SDSS J124231.07+522626.6 exhibits photospheric absorption lines of 8 distinct heavy elements in medium resolution optical spectra, notably including oxygen. The Teff = 13000 K atmosphere is helium-dominated, but the convection zone contains significant amounts of hydrogen and oxygen. The four most common rock-forming elements (O, Mg, Si, and Fe) account for almost all the accreted mass, totalling at least 1.2e+24 g, similar to the mass of Ceres. The time-averaged accretion rate is 2e+10 g/s, one of the highest rates inferred among all known metal-polluted white dwarfs. We note a large oxygen excess, with respect to the most common metal oxides, suggesting that the white dwarf accreted planetary debris with a water content of ~38 per cent by mass. This star, together with GD 61, GD 16, and GD 362, form a small group of outliers from the known population of evolved planetary systems accreting predominantly dry, rocky debris. This result strengthens the hypothesis that, integrated over the c...

  7. Variability in Hot Carbon-Dominated Atmosphere (hot DQ) White Dwarfs: Rapid Rotation?

    CERN Document Server

    Williams, Kurtis A; Winget, D E; Falcon, Ross E; Bierwagon, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Hot white dwarfs with carbon-dominated atmospheres (hot DQs) are a cryptic class of white dwarfs. In addition to their deficiency of hydrogen and helium, most of these stars are highly magnetic, and a large fraction vary in luminosity. This variability has been ascribed to nonradial pulsations, but increasing data call this explanation into question. We present studies of short-term variability in seven hot DQ white dwarfs. Three (SDSS J1426+5752, SDSS J2200-0741, and SDSS J2348-0942) were known to be variable. Their photometric modulations are coherent over at least two years, and we find no evidence for variability at frequencies that are not harmonics. We present the first time-series photometry for three additional hot DQs (SDSS J0236-0734, SDSS J1402+3818, and SDSS J1615+4543); none are observed to vary, but the signal-to-noise is low. Finally, we present high speed photometry for SDSS J0005-1002, known to exhibit a 2.1 d photometric variation; we do not observe any short-term variability. Monoperiodicit...

  8. An irradiated brown-dwarf companion to an accreting white dwarf

    CERN Document Server

    Santisteban, Juan V Hernández; Littlefair, Stuart P; Breton, Rene P; Dhillon, Vikram S; Gänsicke, Boris T; Marsh, Thomas R; Pretorius, Magaretha L; Southworth, John; Hauschildt, Peter H

    2016-01-01

    Brown dwarfs and giant planets orbiting close to a host star are subjected to significant irradiation that can modify the properties of their atmospheres. In order to test the atmospheric models that are used to describe these systems, it is necessary to obtain accurate observational estimates of their physical properties (masses, radii, temperatures, albedos). Interacting compact binary systems provide a natural laboratory for studying strongly irradiated sub-stellar objects. As the mass-losing secondary in these systems makes a critical, but poorly understood transition from the stellar to the sub-stellar regime, it is also strongly irradiated by the compact accretor. In fact, the internal and external energy fluxes are both expected to be comparable in these objects, providing access to an unexplored irradiation regime. However, the atmospheric properties of such donors have so far remained largely unknown. Here, we report the direct spectroscopic detection and characterisation of an irradiated sub-stellar...

  9. The rms-flux relation in accreting white dwarfs: another nova-like variable and the first dwarf nova

    CERN Document Server

    Van de Sande, M; Knigge, C

    2015-01-01

    We report on the detection of the linear rms-flux relation in two accreting white dwarf binary systems: V1504 Cyg and KIC 8751494. The rms-flux relation relates the absolute root-mean-square (rms) variability of the light curve to its mean flux. The light curves analysed were obtained with the Kepler satellite at a 58.8 s cadence. The rms-flux relation was previously detected in only one other cataclysmic variable, MV Lyr. This result reenforces the ubiquity of the linear rms-flux relation as a characteristic property of accretion-induced variability, since it has been observed in several black hole binaries, neutron star binaries and active galactic nuclei. Moreover, its detection in V1504 Cyg is the first time the rms-flux relation has been detected in a dwarf nova-type CV during quiescence. This result, together with previous studies, hence points towards a common physical origin of accretion-induced variability, independent of the size, mass, or type of the central accreting compact object.

  10. Using Close White Dwarf + M Dwarf Stellar Pairs to Constrain the Flare Rates in Close Stellar Binaries

    CERN Document Server

    Morgan, Dylan P; Becker, Andrew C

    2016-01-01

    We present a study of the statistical flare rates of M dwarfs (dMs) with close white dwarf (WD) companions (WD+dM; typical separations < 1 au). Our previous analysis demonstrated that dMs with close WD companions are more magnetically active than their field counterparts. One likely implication of having a close binary companion is increased stellar rotation through disk-disruption, tidal effects, and/or angular momentum exchange; increased stellar rotation has long been associated with an increase in stellar activity. Previous studies show a strong correlation between dMs that are magnetically active (showing H{\\alpha} in emission) and the frequency of stellar flare rates. We examine the difference between the flare rates observed in close WD+dM binary systems and field dMs. Our sample consists of a subset of 181 close WD+dM pairs from Morgan et al. (2012) observed in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Stripe 82, where we obtain multi-epoch observations in the Sloan ugriz-bands. We find an increase in the overa...

  11. Merger of binary white dwarf-neutron stars: Simulations in full general relativity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We perform fully general relativistic simulations to address the inspiral and merger of binary white dwarf-neutron stars. The initial binary is in a circular orbit at the Roche critical separation. The goal is to determine the ultimate fate of such systems. We focus on binaries whose total mass exceeds the maximum mass (Mmax) a cold, degenerate equation of state can support against gravitational collapse. The time and length scales span many orders of magnitude, making fully general relativistic hydrodynamic simulations computationally prohibitive. For this reason, we model the white dwarf as a ''pseudo--white dwarf'' as in our binary white dwarf-neutron star (WDNS) head-on collisions study [V. Paschalidis, Z. Etienne, Y. T. Liu, and S. L. Shapiro, Phys. Rev. D 83, 064002 (2011)]. Our general relativistic hydrodynamic simulations of a pseudo-WDNS (pWDNS) system with a 0.98M· white dwarf and a 1.4M· neutron star show that the merger remnant is a spinning Thorne-Zytkow-like object (TZlO) surrounded by a massive disk. The final total rest mass exceeds Mmax, but the remnant does not collapse promptly. To assess whether the object will ultimately collapse after cooling, we introduce radiative thermal cooling. We first apply our cooling algorithm to TZlOs formed in pWDNS head-on collisions, and show that these objects collapse and form black holes on the cooling time scale, as expected. However, when we cool the spinning TZlO formed in the merger of a circular-orbit pWDNS binary, the remnant does not collapse, demonstrating that differential rotational support is sufficient to prevent collapse. Given that the final total mass exceeds Mmax for our cold equation of state, magnetic fields and/or viscosity may redistribute angular momentum, ultimately leading to delayed collapse to a black hole. We infer that the merger of realistic massive WDNS binaries likely will lead to the formation of spinning TZlOs that undergo delayed collapse.

  12. Tidal disruption and ignition of white dwarfs by moderately massive black holes

    CERN Document Server

    Rosswog, S; Hix, R

    2008-01-01

    We present a numerical investigation of the tidal disruption of white dwarfs by moderately massive black holes, with particular reference to the centers of dwarf galaxies and globular clusters. Special attention is given to the fate of white dwarfs of all masses that approach the black hole close enough to be disrupted and severely compressed to such extent that explosive nuclear burning can be triggered. Consistent modeling of the gas dynamics together with the nuclear reactions allows for a realistic determination of the explosive energy release. In the most favorable cases, the nuclear energy release may be comparable to that of typical type Ia supernovae. Although the explosion will increase the mass fraction escaping on hyperbolic orbits, a good fraction of the debris remains to be swallowed by the hole, causing a bright soft X-ray flare lasting for about a year. Such transient signatures, if detected, would be a compelling testimony for the presence of a moderately mass black hole (below $10^5 M_\\odot$)...

  13. Habitable Planets Around White and Brown Dwarfs: The Perils of a Cooling Primary

    CERN Document Server

    Barnes, Rory

    2012-01-01

    White and brown dwarfs are astrophysical objects that are bright enough to support an insolation habitable zone (IHZ). Unlike hydrogen-burning stars, they cool and become less luminous with time, and hence their IHZ moves in with time. The inner edge of the IHZ is defined as the orbital radius at which a planet may enter a moist or runaway greenhouse, phenomena that can remove a planet's surface water forever. Thus, as the IHZ moves in, planets that enter it may no longer have any water, and are still uninhabitable. Additionally, the close proximity of the IHZ to the primary leads to concern that tidal heating may also be strong enough to trigger a runaway greenhouse, even for orbital eccentricities as small as 10^-6. Water loss occurs due to photolyzation by UV photons in the planetary stratosphere, followed by hydrogen escape. Young white dwarfs emit a large amount of these photons as their surface temperatures are over 10^4 K. The situation is less clear for brown dwarfs, as observational data do not const...

  14. A Binary Scenario for the Formation of Strongly Magnetized White Dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Nordhaus, J

    2011-01-01

    Since their initial discovery, the origin of isolated white dwarfs (WDs) with magnetic fields in excess of $\\sim$1 MG has remained a mystery. Recently, the formation of these high-field magnetic WDs has been observationally linked to strong binary interactions incurred during post-main-sequence evolution. Planetary, brown dwarf or stellar companions located within a few AU of main-sequence stars may become engulfed during the primary's expansion off the main sequence. Sufficiently low-mass companions in-spiral inside a common envelope until they are tidally shredded near the natal white dwarf. Formation of an accretion disk from the disrupted companion provides a source of turbulence and shear which act to amplify magnetic fields and transport them to the WD surface. We show that these disk-generated fields explain the observed range of magnetic field strengths for isolated, high-field magnetic WDs. Additionally, we discuss a high-mass binary analogue which generates a strongly-magnetized WD core inside a pre...

  15. Magnetic field effects on the mass-radius relation of white dwarfs} Magnetic fields and the M-R relation of white dwarfs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvear Terrero, D.; Castillo García, M.; Manreza Paret, D.; Horvath, J. E.; Pérez Martínez, A.

    2015-11-01

    We study the anisotropic equation of state (EoS) in both strong and weak magnetic field approximations, taking into account the statistical, vacuum, and Maxwell contributions. In the strong field regime, we perform a polytropic parametrization to the anisotropic EoS, showing that the polytropic index Γ remains close to 4/3 and never reaches the value Γ=2. We solve the Tolman-Oppenheimer-Volkoff (TOV) equations with anisotropic pressures, discarding the super-Chandrasekhar masses for magnetized white dwarfs (WD). Also, we find the solutions of the anisotropic structure equations (considering cylindrical metric), which allows us to confirm the same bound of {B ˜ 1013} G from scalar virial theorem, since beyond this value there are no physical solutions.

  16. WD0837+185: THE FORMATION AND EVOLUTION OF AN EXTREME MASS-RATIO WHITE-DWARF-BROWN-DWARF BINARY IN PRAESEPE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    There is a striking and unexplained dearth of brown dwarf companions in close orbits (? (B9). The high mass of the white dwarf means the substellar companion must have been engulfed by the B star's envelope while it was on the late asymptotic giant branch (AGB). Hence, the initial separation of the system was ?2 AU, with common envelope evolution reducing the separation to its current value. The initial and final orbital separations allow us to constrain the combination of the common envelope efficiency (?) and binding energy parameters (?) for the AGB star to ?? ? 3. We examine the various formation scenarios and conclude that the substellar object was most likely captured by the white dwarf progenitor early in the life of the cluster, rather than forming in situ.

  17. Whiting 1: the youngest globular cluster associated with the Sagittarius dwarf spheroidal galaxy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carraro, G.; Zinn, R.; Moni Bidin, C.

    2007-04-01

    Context: Recently, Carraro (2005) drew attention to the remarkable star cluster Whiting 1 by showing that it lies about 40 kpc from the Sun and is therefore unquestionably a member of the Galactic halo (b=-60.6 deg). Its Color Magnitude Diagram (CMD) indicated that Whiting 1 is very young (~5 Gyr) for a globular cluster. It is very likely that Whiting 1 originated in a dwarf galaxy that has since been disrupted by the Milky Way. Aims: The main goals of this investigation were to constrain better the age, metallicity, and distance of Whiting 1 and to assess whether it belongs to a stellar stream from the Sagittarius dwarf spheroidal galaxy (Sgr dSph). Methods: Deep CCD photometry in the BVI pass-bands obtained with the VLT is used to improve the quality of the CMD and to determine the cluster's luminosity function and surface density profile. High-resolution spectrograms obtained with Magellan are used to measure the cluster's radial velocity and to place limits on its possible metallicity. The measurements of distance and radial velocity are used to test the cluster's membership in the stellar streams from the Sgr dSph. Results: From our CMD of Whiting 1, we derive new estimates for the cluster's age (6.5+1.0-0.5 Gyr), metallicity (Z=0.0040.001, [Fe/H] = -0.65), and distance (29.4+1.8-2.0 kpc). From echelle spectrograms of three stars, we obtain -130.61.8 km s-1 for the cluster's radial velocity and show from measurements of two infra-red CaII lines that the [Fe/H] of the cluster probably lies in the range -1.1 to -0.4. Both the luminosity function and the surface density profile suggest that the cluster has undergone tidal stripping by the Milky Way. We demonstrate that the position of Whiting 1 on the sky, its distance from the Sun, and its radial velocity are identical to within the errors of both the theoretical predictions of the trailing stream of stars from the Sgr dSph galaxy and the previous observations of the M giant stars that delineate the streams. Conclusions: With the addition of Whiting 1, there is now strong evidence that 6 globular clusters formed within the Sgr dSph. Whiting 1 is particularly interesting because it is the youngest and among the most metal rich. The relatively young age of Whiting 1 demonstrates that this dwarf galaxy was able to form star clusters for a period of at least 6 Gyr, and the age and metallicity of Whiting 1 are consistent with the age-metallicity relationship in the main body of the Sgr dSph. The presence now of Whiting 1 in the Galactic halo provides additional support for the view that the young halo clusters originated in dwarf galaxies that have been accreted by the Milky Way. Based on observations with the ESO VLT at the Paranal Observatory, under the program 76.D-0128. This paper includes data gathered with the 6.5 m Magellan Telescopes located at Las Campanas Observatory, Chile. Tables of the individual photometric measurements are available at CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or via http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/466/181

  18. Kepler monitoring of an L dwarf I. The photometric period and white light flares

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    We report on the results of 15 months of monitoring the nearby field L1 dwarf WISEP J190648.47+401106.8 (W1906+40) with the Kepler mission. Supporting observations with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array and Gemini North Telescope reveal that the L dwarf is magnetically active, with quiescent radio and variable H? emission. A preliminary trigonometric parallax shows that W1906+40 is at a distance of 16.35?0.34+0.36 pc, and all observations are consistent with W1906+40 being an old disk star just above the hydrogen-burning limit. The star shows photometric variability with a period of 8.9 hr and an amplitude of 1.5%, with a consistent phase throughout the year. We infer a radius of 0.92 0.07RJ and sin i > 0.57 from the observed period, luminosity (103.67 0.03 L ?), effective temperature (2300 75 K), and vsin i (11.2 2.2 km s1). The light curve may be modeled with a single large, high latitude dark spot. Unlike many L-type brown dwarfs, there is no evidence of other variations at the ? 2% level, either non-periodic or transient periodic, that mask the underlying rotation period. We suggest that the long-lived surface features may be due to starspots, but the possibility of cloud variations cannot be ruled out without further multi-wavelength observations. During the Gemini spectroscopy, we observed the most powerful flare ever seen on an L dwarf, with an estimated energy of ?1.6 1032 erg in white light emission. Using the Kepler data, we identify similar flares and estimate that white light flares with optical/ultraviolet energies of 1031 erg or more occur on W1906+40 as often as 1-2 times per month.

  19. VLT/X-shooter observations and the chemical composition of cool white dwarfs

    CERN Document Server

    Kawka, Adela

    2011-01-01

    We present a model atmosphere analysis of cool hydrogen-rich white dwarfs observed at the Very Large Telescope (VLT) with the X-shooter spectrograph. The intermediate-dispersion and high signal-to-noise ratio of the spectra allowed us to conduct a detailed analysis of hydrogen and heavy element line profiles. In particular, we tested various prescriptions for hydrogen Balmer line broadening parameters and determined the effective temperature and surface gravity of each star. Three objects (NLTT 1675, 6390 and 11393) show the presence of heavy elements (Mg, Al, Ca, or Fe). Our abundance analysis revealed a relatively high iron to calcium ratio in NLTT 1675 and NLTT 6390. We also present an analysis of spectropolarimetric data obtained at the VLT using the focal reducer and low dispersion spectrograph (FORS) and we established strict upper limits on the magnetic field strengths in three of the DAZ white dwarfs and determined the longitudinal magnetic field strength in the DAZ NLTT 10480. The class of DAZ white ...

  20. SHORT-PERIOD g-MODE PULSATIONS IN LOW-MASS WHITE DWARFS TRIGGERED BY H-SHELL BURNING

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Córsico, A. H.; Althaus, L. G., E-mail: acorsico@fcaglp.unlp.edu.ar [Grupo de Evolución Estelar y Pulsaciones, Facultad de Ciencias Astronómicas y Geofísicas, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Paseo del Bosque s/n, 1900 La Plata (Argentina)

    2014-09-20

    The detection of pulsations in white dwarfs with low mass offers the possibility of probing their internal structures through asteroseismology and placing constraints on the binary evolutionary processes involved in their formation. In this Letter, we assess the impact of stable H burning on the pulsational stability properties of low-mass He-core white dwarf models resulting from binary star evolutionary calculations. We found that besides a dense spectrum of unstable radial modes and nonradial g and p modes driven by the κ mechanism due to the partial ionization of H in the stellar envelope, some unstable g modes with short pulsation periods are also powered by H burning via the ε mechanism of mode driving. This is the first time that ε destabilized modes are found in models representative of cool white dwarf stars. The short periods recently detected in the pulsating low-mass white dwarf SDSS J111215.82+111745.0 could constitute the first evidence of the existence of stable H burning in these stars, in particular in the so-called extremely low-mass white dwarfs.