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Creators/Authors contains: "Dixon, Don"

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  1. Abstract We created the APOGEE-GALEX-Gaia catalog to study white dwarf (WD) binaries. This database aims to create a minimally biased sample of WD binary systems identified from a combination of GALEX, Gaia, and APOGEE data to increase the number of WD binaries with orbital parameters and chemical compositions. We identify 3414 sources as WD binary candidates, with nondegenerate companions of spectral types between F and M, including main-sequence stars, main-sequence binaries, subgiants, sub-subgiants, red giants, and red clump stars. Among our findings are (a) a total of 1806 systems having inferred WD radii R < 25 R ⊕ , which constitute a more reliable group of WD binary candidates within the main sample; (b) a difference in the metallicity distribution function between WD binary candidates and the control sample of most luminous giants ( M H < −3.0); (c) the existence of a population of sub-subgiants with WD companions; (d) evidence for shorter periods in binaries that contain WDs compared to those that do not, as shown by the cumulative distributions of APOGEE radial velocity shifts; (e) evidence for systemic orbital evolution in a sample of 252 WD binaries with orbital periods, based on differences in the period distribution between systems with red clump, main-sequence binary, and sub-subgiant companions and systems with main-sequence or red giant companions; and (f) evidence for chemical enrichment during common envelope (CE) evolution, shown by lower metallicities in wide WD binary candidates ( P > 100 days) compared to post-CE ( P < 100 days) WD binary candidates. 
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  2. Abstract

    We use time-resolved spectra from the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE) to examine the distribution of radial velocity (RV) variations in 249 stars identified as members of the Sagittarius (Sgr) dwarf spheroidal (dSph) galaxy by Hayes et al. We select Milky Way (MW) stars that have stellar parameters (log(g),Teff, and [Fe/H] ) similar to those of the Sagittarius members by means of a k-d tree of dimension 3. We find that the shape of the distribution of RV shifts in Sgr dSph stars is similar to that measured in their MW analogs, but the total fraction of RV variable stars in the Sgr dSph is larger by a factor of ∼2. After ruling out other explanations for this difference, we conclude that the fraction of close binaries in the Sgr dSph is intrinsically higher than in the MW. We discuss the implications of this result for the physical processes leading to the formation of close binaries in dwarf spheroidal and spiral galaxies.

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    We measure rotational broadening in spectra taken by the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE) survey to characterize the relationship between stellar multiplicity and rotation. We create a sample of 2786 giants and 24 496 dwarfs with stellar parameters and multiple radial velocities from the APOGEE pipeline, projected rotation speeds vsin i determined from our own pipeline, and distances, masses, and ages measured by Sanders & Das. We use the statistical distribution of the maximum shift in the radial velocities, ΔRVmax, as a proxy for the close binary fraction to explore the interplay between stellar evolution, rotation, and multiplicity. Assuming that the minimum orbital period allowed is the critical period for Roche Lobe overflow and rotational synchronization, we calculate theoretical upper limits on expected vsin i and ΔRVmax values. These expectations agree with the positive correlation between the maximum ΔRVmax and vsin i values observed in our sample as a function of log(g). We find that the fast rotators in our sample have a high occurrence of short-period [log(P/d) ≲ 4] companions. We also find that old, rapidly rotating main-sequence stars have larger completeness-corrected close binary fractions than their younger peers. Furthermore, rapidly rotating stars with large ΔRVmax consistently show differences of 1–10 Gyr between the predicted gyrochronological and measured isochronal ages. These results point towards a link between rapid rotation and close binarity through tidal interactions. We conclude that stellar rotation is strongly correlated with stellar multiplicity in the field, and caution should be taken in the application of gyrochronology relations to cool stars.

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  4. ABSTRACT Citizen science has helped astronomers comb through large data sets to identify patterns and objects that are not easily found through automated processes. The Milky Way Project (MWP), a citizen science initiative on the Zooniverse platform, presents internet users with infrared (IR) images from Spitzer Space Telescope Galactic plane surveys. MWP volunteers make classification drawings on the images to identify targeted classes of astronomical objects. We present the MWP second data release (DR2) and an updated data reduction pipeline written in python. We aggregate ∼3 million classifications made by MWP volunteers during the years 2012–2017 to produce the DR2 catalogue, which contains 2600 IR bubbles and 599 candidate bow shock driving stars. The reliability of bubble identifications, as assessed by comparison to visual identifications by trained experts and scoring by a machine-learning algorithm, is found to be a significant improvement over DR1. We assess the reliability of IR bow shocks via comparison to expert identifications and the colours of candidate bow shock driving stars in the 2MASS point-source catalogue. We hence identify highly reliable subsets of 1394 DR2 bubbles and 453 bow shock driving stars. Uncertainties on object coordinates and bubble size/shape parameters are included in the DR2 catalogue. Compared with DR1, the DR2 bubbles catalogue provides more accurate shapes and sizes. The DR2 catalogue identifies 311 new bow shock driving star candidates, including three associated with the giant H ii regions NGC 3603 and RCW 49. 
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