skip to main content

Search for: All records

Creators/Authors contains: "Geller, Aaron M."

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 present a robust methodology for identifying photometric binaries in star clusters. Using Gaia DR3, Pan-STARRS, and Two Micron All Sky Survey data, we self-consistently define the cluster parameters and binary demographics for the open clusters (OCs) NGC 2168 (M35), NGC 7789, NGC 6819, NGC 2682 (M67), NGC 188, and NGC 6791. These clusters span in age from ∼200 Myr (NGC 2168) to more than ∼8 Gyr (NGC 6791) and have all been extensively studied in the literature. We use the Bayesian Analysis of Stellar Evolution software suite to derive the age, distance, reddening, metallicity, binary fraction, and binary mass-ratio posterior distributions for each cluster. We perform a careful analysis of our completeness and also compare our results to previous spectroscopic surveys. For our sample of main-sequence stars with masses between 0.6 and 1M, we find that these OCs have similar binary fractions that are also broadly consistent with the field multiplicity fraction. Within the clusters, the binary fraction increases dramatically toward the cluster centers, likely a result of mass segregation. Furthermore nearly all clusters show evidence of mass segregation within the single and binary populations. The OC binary fraction increases significantly with cluster age in our sample, possibly due to a combination of mass-segregation and cluster-dissolution processes. We also find a hint of an anticorrelation between binary fraction and cluster central density as well as total cluster mass, possibly due to an increasing frequency of higher-energy close stellar encounters that inhibit long-period binary survival and/or formation.

    more » « less
  2. Abstract

    M35 is a young open cluster and home to an extensive binary population. Using Gaia Data Release 3, Pan-STARRS, and Two Micron All Sky Survey photometry with the Bayesian statistical software, BASE-9, we derive precise cluster parameters, identify single and binary cluster members, and extract their masses. We identify 571 binaries down to GaiaG= 20.3 and a lower limit on the binary frequency offb= 0.41 ± 0.02. We extend the binary demographics by many magnitudes faint-ward of previous (radial-velocity) studies of this cluster and further away from the cluster center (1.°78, roughly 10 core radii). We find the binary stars to be more centrally concentrated than the single stars in the cluster. Furthermore, we find strong evidence for mass segregation within the binary population itself, with progressively more-massive binary samples becoming more and more centrally concentrated. For the single stars, we find weaker evidence for mass segregation; only the most massive single stars (>2.5M) appear more centrally concentrated. Given the cluster age of ∼200 Myr, and our derived half-mass relaxation time for the cluster of 230 ± 84 Myr, we estimate ∼47% of the binary stars and ∼12% of single stars in the cluster have had time to become dynamically mass segregated. Importantly, when we investigate only stars with mass segregation timescales greater than the cluster age, we still find the binaries to be more centrally concentrated than the singles, suggesting the binaries may have formed with a primordially different spatial distribution from that of the single stars.

    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    We study the effects of general relativity (GR) on the evolution and alignment of circumbinary disks around binaries on all scales. We implement relativistic apsidal precession of the binary into the hydrodynamics codephantom. We find that the effects of GR can suppress the stable polar alignment of a circumbinary disk, depending on how the relativistic binary apsidal precession timescale compares to the disk nodal precession timescale. Studies of circumbinary disk evolution typically ignore the effects of GR, which is an appropriate simplification for low-mass or widely separated binary systems. In this case, polar alignment occurs, provided that the disks initial misalignment is sufficiently large. However, systems with a very short relativistic precession timescale cannot polar align and instead move toward coplanar alignment. In the intermediate regime where the timescales are similar, the outcome depends upon the properties of the disk. Polar alignment is more likely in the wavelike disk regime (where the disk viscosity parameter is less than the aspect ratio,α<H/r), since the disk is in good radial communication. In the viscous disk regime, disk breaking is more likely. Multiple rings can destructively interact with one another, resulting in short disk lifetimes and the disk moving toward coplanar alignment. Around main-sequence star or stellar mass black hole binaries, polar alignment may be suppressed far from the binary, but in general, the inner parts of the disk can align to polar. Polar alignment may be completely suppressed for disks around supermassive black holes for close binary separations.

    more » « less
  4. Abstract

    We present Firefly, a new browser-based interactive tool for visualizing 3D particle data sets. On a typical personal computer, Firefly can simultaneously render and enable real-time interactions with ≳10 million particles, and can interactively explore data sets with billions of particles using the included custom-built octree render engine. Once created, viewing a Firefly visualization requires no installation and is immediately usable in most modern internet browsers simply by visiting a URL. As a result, a Firefly visualization works out-of-the-box on most devices including smartphones and tablets. Firefly is primarily developed for researchers to explore their own data, but can also be useful to communicate results to researchers and/or collaborators and as an effective public outreach tool. Every element of the user interface can be customized and disabled, enabling easy adaptation of the same visualization for different audiences with little additional effort. Creating a new Firefly visualization is simple with the provided Python data preprocessor that translates input data to a Firefly-compatible format and provides helpful methods for hosting instances of Firefly both locally and on the internet. In addition to visualizing the positions of particles, users can visualize vector fields (e.g., velocities) and also filter and color points by scalar fields. We share three examples of Firefly applied to astronomical data sets: (1) the FIRE cosmological zoom-in simulations, (2) the SDSS galaxy catalog, and (3) Gaia Data Release 3. A gallery of additional interactive demos is available

    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    Mutually misaligned circumbinary planets may form in a warped or broken gas disk or from later planet–planet interactions. With numerical simulations and analytic estimates we explore the dynamics of two circumbinary planets with a large mutual inclination. A coplanar inner planet causes prograde apsidal precession of the binary and the stationary inclination for the outer planet is higher for larger outer planet orbital radius. In this case a coplanar outer planet always remains coplanar. On the other hand, a polar inner planet causes retrograde apsidal precession of the binary orbit and the stationary inclination is smaller for larger outer planet orbital radius. For a range of outer planet semimajor axes, an initially coplanar orbit is librating meaning that the outer planet undergoes large tilt oscillations. Circumbinary planets that are highly inclined to the binary are difficult to detect—it is unlikely for a planet to have an inclination below the transit detection limit in the presence of a polar inner planet. These results suggest that there could be a population of circumbinary planets that are undergoing large tilt oscillations.

    more » « less
  6. Abstract

    Sub-subgiant stars (SSGs) fall below the subgiant branch and/or red of the giant branch in open and globular clusters, an area of the color–magnitude diagram (CMD) not populated by standard stellar evolution tracks. One hypothesis is that SSGs result from rapid rotation in subgiants or giants due to tidal synchronization in a close binary. The strong magnetic fields generated inhibit convection, which in turn produces large starspots, radius inflation, and lower-than-expected average surface temperatures and luminosities. Here we cross-reference a catalog of active giant binaries (RS CVns) in the field with Gaia EDR3. Using the Gaia photometry and parallaxes, we precisely position the RS CVns in a CMD. We identify stars that fall below a 14 Gyr, metal-rich isochrone as candidate field SSGs. Out of a sample of 1723 RS CVn, we find 448 SSG candidates, a dramatic expansion from the 65 SSGs previously known. Most SSGs have rotation periods of 2–20 days, with the highest SSG fraction found among RS CVn with the shortest periods. The ubiquity of SSGs among this population indicates that SSGs are a normal phase in evolution for RS CVn-type systems, not rare by-products of dynamical encounters found only in dense star clusters as some have suggested. We present our catalog of 1723 active giants, including Gaia photometry and astrometry, and rotation periods from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite and International Variable Star Index (VSX). This catalog can serve as an important sample to study the impacts of magnetic fields in evolved stars.

    more » « less
  7. null (Ed.)
  8. null (Ed.)
  9. ABSTRACT At least $70\, {\rm per\, cent}$ of massive OBA-type stars reside in binary or higher order systems. The dynamical evolution of these systems can lend insight into the origins of extreme phenomena such as X-ray binaries and gravitational wave sources. In one such dynamical process, the Eccentric Kozai–Lidov (EKL) mechanism, a third companion star alters the secular evolution of a binary system. For dynamical stability, these triple systems must have a hierarchical configuration. We explore the effects of a distant third companion’s gravitational perturbations on a massive binary’s orbital configuration before significant stellar evolution has taken place (≤10 Myr). We include tidal dissipation and general relativistic precession. With large (38 000 total) Monte Carlo realizations of massive hierarchical triples, we characterize imprints of the birth conditions on the final orbital distributions. Specifically, we find that the final eccentricity distribution over the range of 0.1–0.7 is an excellent indicator of its birth distribution. Furthermore, we find that the period distributions have a similar mapping for wide orbits. Finally, we demonstrate that the observed period distribution for approximately 10-Myr-old massive stars is consistent with EKL evolution. 
    more » « less