skip to main content

Search for: All records

Creators/Authors contains: "Belokurov, Vasily"

Note: When clicking on a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, you will be taken to an external site maintained by the publisher. Some full text articles may not yet be available without a charge during the embargo (administrative interval).
What is a DOI Number?

Some links on this page may take you to non-federal websites. Their policies may differ from this site.

  1. ABSTRACT We use accurate estimates of aluminium abundance from the APOGEE Data Release 17 and Gaia Early Data Release 3 astrometry to select a highly pure sample of stars with metallicity −1.5 ≲ [Fe/H] ≲ 0.5 born in-situ in the Milky Way proper. The low-metallicity ([Fe/H]  ≲ −1.3) in-situ component we dub Aurora is kinematically hot with an approximately isotropic velocity ellipsoid and a modest net rotation. Aurora stars exhibit large scatter in metallicity and in many element abundance ratios. The median tangential velocity of the in-situ stars increases sharply with metallicity between [Fe/H] = −1.3 and −0.9, the transition that we call the spin-up. The observed and theoretically expected age–metallicity correlations imply that this increase reflects a rapid formation of the MW disc over ≈1–2 Gyr. The transformation of the stellar kinematics as a function of [Fe/H] is accompanied by a qualitative change in chemical abundances: the scatter drops sharply once the Galaxy builds up a disc during later epochs corresponding to [Fe/H] > −0.9. Results of galaxy formation models presented in this and other recent studies strongly indicate that the trends observed in the MW reflect generic processes during the early evolution of progenitors of MW-sized galaxies: a period ofmore »chaotic pre-disc evolution, when gas is accreted along cold narrow filaments and when stars are born in irregular configurations, and subsequent rapid disc formation. The latter signals formation of a stable hot gaseous halo around the MW progenitor, which changes the mode of gas accretion and allows development of coherently rotating disc.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 9, 2023
  2. ABSTRACT

    Gaia provided the largest ever catalogue of white dwarf stars. We use this catalogue, along with the third public data release of the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF), to identify new eclipsing white dwarf binaries. Our method exploits light-curve statistics and the box least-squares algorithm to detect periodic light-curve variability. The search revealed 18 new binaries, of which 17 are eclipsing. We use the position in the Gaia H-R diagram to classify these binaries and find that the majority of these white dwarfs have MS companions. We identify one system as a candidate eclipsing white dwarf–brown dwarf binary and a further two as extremely low-mass white dwarf binaries. We also provide identification spectroscopy for 17 of our 18 binaries. Running our search method on mock light curves with real ZTF sampling, we estimate our efficiency of detecting objects with light curves similar to the ones of the newly discovered binaries. Many more binaries are to be found in the ZTF footprint as the data releases grow, so our survey is ongoing.

  3. Abstract Most binaries are undetected. Astrometric reductions of a system using the assumption that the object moves like a single point mass can be biased by unresolved binary stars. The discrepancy between the centre of mass of the system (which moves like a point mass) and the centre of light (which is what we observe) introduces additional motion. We explore the extent to which binary systems affect single object models fit to astrometric data. This tells us how observations are diluted by binaries and which systems cause the largest discrepancies - but also allows us to make inferences about the binarity of populations based on observed astrometric error. By examining a sample of mock observations, we show that binaries with periods close to one year can mimic parallax and thus bias distance measurements, whilst long period binaries can introduce significant apparent proper motion. Whilst these changes can soak up some of the error introduced by the binary, the total deviation from the best fitting model can be translated into a lower limit on the on-sky separation of the pair. Throughout we link these predictions to data from the Gaia satellite, whilst leaving the conclusions generalizable to other surveys.
  4. ABSTRACT Deciphering the distribution of metals throughout galaxies is fundamental in our understanding of galaxy evolution. Nearby, low-metallicity, star-forming dwarf galaxies, in particular, can offer detailed insight into the metal-dependent processes that may have occurred within galaxies in the early Universe. Here, we present VLT/MUSE observations of one such system, JKB 18, a blue diffuse dwarf galaxy with a metallicity of only 12 + log(O/H)=7.6 ± 0.2 (∼0.08 Z⊙). Using high spatial resolution integral-field spectroscopy of the entire system, we calculate chemical abundances for individual H ii regions using the direct method and derive oxygen abundance maps using strong-line metallicity diagnostics. With large-scale dispersions in O/H, N/H, and N/O of ∼0.5–0.6 dex and regions harbouring chemical abundances outside this 1σ distribution, we deem JKB 18 to be chemically inhomogeneous. We explore this finding in the context of other chemically inhomogeneous dwarf galaxies and conclude that neither the accretion of metal-poor gas, short mixing time-scales or self-enrichment from Wolf–Rayet stars are accountable. Using a galaxy-scale, multiphase, hydrodynamical simulation of a low-mass dwarf galaxy, we find that chemical inhomogeneities of this level may be attributable to the removal of gas via supernovae and the specific timing of the observations with respect to star formation activity. This study not only draws attentionmore »to the fact that dwarf galaxies can be chemically inhomogeneous, but also that the methods used in the assessment of this characteristic can be subject to bias.« less
  5. Abstract The S2 stream is a kinematically cold stream that is plunging downwards through the Galactic disc. It may be part of a hotter and more diffuse structure called the Helmi stream. We present a multi-instrument chemical analysis of the stars in the metal-poor S2 stream using both high- and low-resolution spectroscopy, complemented with a re-analysis of the archival data to give a total sample of 62 S2 members. Our high-resolution program provides α-elements (C, Mg, Si, Ca and Ti), iron-peak elements (V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Ni), n-capture process elements (Sr, Ba) and other elements such as Li, Na, Al, and Sc for a subsample of S2 objects. We report coherent abundance patterns over a large metallicity spread (∼1 dex) confirming that the S2 stream was produced by a disrupted dwarf galaxy. The combination of S2’s α-elements displays a mildly decreasing trend with increasing metallicity which can be tentatively interpreted as a “knee” at [Fe/H]<−2. At the low metallicity end, the n-capture elements in S2 may be dominated by r-process production however several stars are Ba-enhanced, but unusually poor in Sr. Moreover, some of the low-[Fe/H] stars appear to be carbon-enhanced. We interpret the observed abundance patterns with the help ofmore »chemical evolution models that demonstrate the need for modest star-formation efficiency and low wind efficiency confirming that the progenitor of S2 was a primitive dwarf galaxy.« less
  6. Abstract Using Gaia DR2, we trace the Anticenter Stream (ACS) in various stellar populations across the sky and find that it is kinematically and spatially decoupled from the Monoceros Ring. Using stars from lamost and segue, we show that the ACS is systematically more metal-poor than Monoceros by 0.1 dex with indications of a narrower metallicity spread. Furthermore, the ACS is predominantly populated of old stars ($\sim 10\, \rm {Gyr}$), whereas Monoceros has a pronounced tail of younger stars ($6-10\, \rm {Gyr}$) as revealed by their cumulative age distributions. Put together, all of this evidence support predictions from simulations of the interaction of the Sagittarius dwarf with the Milky Way, which argue that the Anticenter Stream (ACS) is the remains of a tidal tail of the Galaxy excited during Sgr’s first pericentric passage after it crossed the virial radius, whereas Monoceros consists of the composite stellar populations excited during the more extended phases of the interaction. Importantly, the ACS can be viewed as a stand-alone fossil of the chemical enrichment history of the Galactic disc.
  7. ABSTRACT For stars with unresolved companions, motions of the centre of light and that of mass decouple, causing a single-source astrometric model to perform poorly. We show that such stars can be easily detected with the reduced χ2 statistic, or renormalized unit weight error (RUWE), provided as part of Gaia DR2. We convert RUWE into the amplitude of the image centroid wobble, which, if scaled by the source distance, is proportional to the physical separation between companions (for periods up to several years). We test this idea on a sample of known spectroscopic binaries and demonstrate that the amplitude of the centroid perturbation scales with the binary period and the mass ratio as expected. We apply this technique to the Gaia DR2 data and show how the binary fraction evolves across the Hertzsprung–Russell diagram. The observed incidence of unresolved companions is high for massive young stars and drops steadily with stellar mass, reaching its lowest levels for white dwarfs. We highlight the elevated binary fraction for the nearby blue stragglers and blue horizontal branch stars. We also illustrate how unresolved hierarchical triples inflate the relative velocity signal in wide binaries. Finally, we point out a hint of evidence for themore »existence of additional companions to the hosts of extrasolar hot Jupiters.« less
  8. ABSTRACT We present two catalogues of active galactic nucleus (AGN) candidates selected from the latest data of two all-sky surveys – Data Release 2 of the Gaia mission and the unWISE catalogue of the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). We train a random forest classifier to predict the probability of each source in the Gaia–unWISE joint sample being an AGN, PRF, based on Gaia astrometric and photometric measurements and unWISE photometry. The two catalogues, which we designate C75 and R85, are constructed by applying different PRF threshold cuts to achieve an overall completeness of 75 per cent (≈90 per cent at GaiaG ≤ 20 mag) and reliability of 85 per cent, respectively. The C75 (R85) catalogue contains 2734 464 (2182 193) AGN candidates across the effective 36 000 deg2 sky, of which ≈0.91 (0.52) million are new discoveries. Photometric redshifts of the AGN candidates are derived by a random forest regressor using Gaia and WISE magnitudes and colours. The estimated overall photometric redshift accuracy is 0.11. Cross-matching the AGN candidates with a sample of known bright cluster galaxies, we identify a high-probability strongly lensed AGN candidate system, SDSS J1326+4806, with a large image separation of 21${^{\prime\prime}_{.}}$06. All the AGN candidates in our catalogues will have ∼5-yr long light curves from Gaiamore »by the end of the mission, and thus will be a great resource for AGN variability studies. Our AGN catalogues will also be helpful in AGN target selections for future spectroscopic surveys, especially those in the Southern hemisphere. The C75 catalogue can be downloaded at https://www.ast.cam.ac.uk/~ypshu/AGN_Catalogues.html.« less