Farm Cove Observatory

Pakuranga, New Zealand

Farm Cove Observatory

Pakuranga, New Zealand
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Myers G.,CBA San Mateo and AAVSO | Patterson J.,Columbia University | de Miguel E.,CBA Huelva | de Miguel E.,University of Huelva | And 6 more authors.
Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific | Year: 2017

CD Ind is one of only four confirmed asynchronous polars (APs). APs are strongly magnetic cataclysmic variables of the AM Herculis subclass with the characteristic that their white dwarfs rotate a few percent out of synchronism with their binary orbit. Theory suggests that nova eruptions disrupt previously synchronized states. Following the eruption, the system is expected to rapidly resynchronize over a timescale of centuries. The other three asynchronous polars—V1432 Aql, BY Cam, and V1500 Cyg—have resynchronization time estimates ranging from 100 to more than 3500 years, with all but one being less than 1200 years. We report on the analysis of over 46,000 observations of CD Ind taken between 2007 and 2016, combined with previous observations from 1996, and estimate a CD Ind resynchronization time of 6400 ± 800 years. We also estimate an orbital period of 110.820(1) minutes and a current (2016.4) white dwarf spin period of 109.6564 (1) minutes. © 2017. The Astronomical Society of the Pacific. All rights reserved.


Patterson J.,Columbia University | Oksanen A.,Hankasalmi Observatory | Kemp J.,Middlebury College | Monard B.,Klein Karoo Observatory | And 13 more authors.
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2017

We report a 20-yr campaign to track the 1.8 h photometric (and orbital) wave in the recurrent nova T Pyxidis. Before and after the 2011 eruption, the period increased on a time-scale P/P˙ = 3 × 105 yr. This suggests a mass transfer rate in quiescence of ~10-7M⊙ yr-1, in substantial agreement with the accretion rate based on the star's luminosity. During the eruption itself, a rapid period increase of 0.0054(7) per cent occurred. This is probably a measure of the mass ejected in the outburst. For a plausible choice of binary parameters, that mass is at least 3 × 10-5M⊙, and probably more. This represents > 300 yr of accretion at the pre-outburst rate, but the time between outbursts was only 45 yr. Thus, the erupting white dwarf (WD) seems to have ejected at least six times more mass than it accreted. If this eruption is typical, the WD must be eroding, rather than growing, in mass. Unless the present series of eruptions is a short-lived episode, the binary dynamics will evaporate the secondary in ~105 yr. This could be a major channel by which short-period cataclysmic variables are removed from the population. © 2016 The Authors.


Choi J.-Y.,Chungbuk National University | Shin I.-G.,Chungbuk National University | Park S.-Y.,Chungbuk National University | Han C.,Chungbuk National University | And 156 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2012

We present the analysis of the light curves of nine high-magnification single-lens gravitational microlensing events with lenses passing over source stars, including OGLE-2004-BLG-254, MOA-2007-BLG-176, MOA-2007-BLG-233/OGLE- 2007-BLG-302, MOA-2009-BLG-174, MOA-2010-BLG-436, MOA-2011-BLG-093, MOA-2011-BLG-274, OGLE-2011-BLG-0990/MOA-2011-BLG-300, and OGLE-2011-BLG-1101/ MOA-2011-BLG-325. For all of the events, we measure the linear limb-darkening coefficients of the surface brightness profile of source stars by measuring the deviation of the light curves near the peak affected by the finite-source effect. For seven events, we measure the Einstein radii and the lens-source relative proper motions. Among them, five events are found to have Einstein radii of less than 0.2 mas, making the lenses very low mass star or brown dwarf candidates. For MOA-2011-BLG-274, especially, the small Einstein radius of θE 0.08 mas combined with the short timescale of t E 2.7days suggests the possibility that the lens is a free-floating planet. For MOA-2009-BLG-174, we measure the lens parallax and thus uniquely determine the physical parameters of the lens. We also find that the measured lens mass of 0.84 M ⊙ is consistent with that of a star blended with the source, suggesting that the blend is likely to be the lens. Although we did not find planetary signals for any of the events, we provide exclusion diagrams showing the confidence levels excluding the existence of a planet as a function of the separation and mass ratio. © 2012. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Furusawa K.,Nagoya University | Udalski A.,University of Warsaw | Sumi T.,Osaka University | Bennett D.P.,University of Notre Dame | And 136 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2013

We analyze the planetary microlensing event MOA-2010-BLG-328. The best fit yields host and planetary masses of Mh = 0.11 ± 0.01 M Ȯ and Mp = 9.2 ± 2.2 M ⊕, corresponding to a very late M dwarf and sub-Neptune-mass planet, respectively. The system lies at D L = 0.81 ± 0.10 kpc with projected separation r ⊥ = 0.92 ± 0.16 AU. Because of the host's a priori unlikely close distance, as well as the unusual nature of the system, we consider the possibility that the microlens parallax signal, which determines the host mass and distance, is actually due to xallarap (source orbital motion) that is being misinterpreted as parallax. We show a result that favors the parallax solution, even given its close host distance. We show that future high-resolution astrometric measurements could decisively resolve the remaining ambiguity of these solutions. © 2013. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Street R.A.,LCOGT | Choi J.-Y.,Chungbuk National University | Tsapras Y.,LCOGT | Tsapras Y.,Queen Mary, University of London | And 136 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2013

We present an analysis of the anomalous microlensing event, MOA-2010-BLG-073, announced by the Microlensing Observations in Astrophysics survey on 2010 March 18. This event was remarkable because the source was previously known to be photometrically variable. Analyzing the pre-event source light curve, we demonstrate that it is an irregular variable over timescales >200 days. Its dereddened color, (V-I)S, 0, is 1.221 ± 0.051 mag, and from our lens model we derive a source radius of 14.7 ± 1.3 R⊙, suggesting that it is a red giant star. We initially explored a number of purely microlensing models for the event but found a residual gradient in the data taken prior to and after the event. This is likely to be due to the variability of the source rather than part of the lensing event, so we incorporated a slope parameter in our model in order to derive the true parameters of the lensing system. We find that the lensing system has a mass ratio of q = 0.0654 ± 0.0006. The Einstein crossing time of the event, tE = 44.3 ± 0.1 days, was sufficiently long that the light curve exhibited parallax effects. In addition, the source trajectory relative to the large caustic structure allowed the orbital motion of the lens system to be detected. Combining the parallax with the Einstein radius, we were able to derive the distance to the lens, DL = 2.8 ± 0.4 kpc, and the masses of the lensing objects. The primary of the lens is an M-dwarf with ML,1 = 0.16 ± 0.03 M⊙, while the companion has ML,2 = 11.0 ± 2.0 MJ, putting it in the boundary zone between planets and brown dwarfs. © 2013 The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Yee J.C.,Ohio State University | Hung L.-W.,Ohio State University | Hung L.-W.,University of California at Los Angeles | Bond I.A.,Massey University | And 144 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2013

We analyze MOA-2010-BLG-311, a high magnification (A max > 600) microlensing event with complete data coverage over the peak, making it very sensitive to planetary signals. We fit this event with both a point lens and a two-body lens model and find that the two-body lens model is a better fit but with only Δχ2 ∼ 80. The preferred mass ratio between the lens star and its companion is q = 10-3.7 ± 0.1, placing the candidate companion in the planetary regime. Despite the formal significance of the planet, we show that because of systematics in the data the evidence for a planetary companion to the lens is too tenuous to claim a secure detection. When combined with analyses of other high-magnification events, this event helps empirically define the threshold for reliable planet detection in high-magnification events, which remains an open question. © 2013. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Muraki Y.,Konan University | Han C.,Chungbuk National University | Bennett D.P.,University of Notre Dame | Suzuki D.,Nagoya University | And 136 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2011

We present the discovery and mass measurement of the cold, low-mass planet MOA-2009-BLG-266Lb, performed with the gravitational microlensing method. This planet has a mass of mp = 10.4 1.7 M⊕ and orbits a star of mass M ⊙ = 0.56 0.09 M⊙ at a semimajor axis of AU and an orbital period of yrs. The planet and host star mass measurements are enabled by the measurement of the microlensing parallax effect, which is seen primarily in the light curve distortion due to the orbital motion of the Earth. But the analysis also demonstrates the capability to measure the microlensing parallax with the Deep Impact (or EPOXI) spacecraft in a heliocentric orbit. The planet mass and orbital distance are similar to predictions for the critical core mass needed to accrete a substantial gaseous envelope, and thus may indicate that this planet is a "failed" gas giant. This and future microlensing detections will test planet formation theory predictions regarding the prevalence and masses of such planets. © 2011. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved..


Freeman M.,University of Auckland | Philpott L.C.,University of British Columbia | Abe F.,Nagoya University | Albrow M.D.,University of Canterbury | And 21 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2015

Recently Sumi et al. reported evidence for a large population of planetary-mass objects (PMOs) that are either unbound or orbit host stars in orbits ≤10 AU. Their result was deduced from the statistical distribution of durations of gravitational microlensing events observed by the MOA collaboration during 2006 and 2007. Here we study the feasibility of measuring the mass of an individual PMO through microlensing by examining a particular event, MOA-2011-BLG-274. This event was unusual as the duration was short, the magnification high, the source-size effect large, and the angular Einstein radius small. Also, it was intensively monitored from widely separated locations under clear skies at low air masses. Choi et al. concluded that the lens of the event may have been a PMO but they did not attempt a measurement of its mass. We report here a re-analysis of the event using re-reduced data. We confirm the results of Choi et al. and attempt a measurement of the mass and distance of the lens using the terrestrial parallax effect. Evidence for terrestrial parallax is found at a 3σ level of confidence. The best fit to the data yields the mass and distance of the lens as 0.80 ± 0.30 MJ and 0.80 ± 0.25 kpc respectively. We exclude a host star to the lens out to a separation ∼40 AU. Drawing on our analysis of MOA-2011-BLG-274 we propose observational strategies for future microlensing surveys to yield sharper results on PMOs including those down to super-Earth mass. © 2015. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Bennett D.P.,University of Notre Dame | Rhie S.H.,University of Notre Dame | Nikolaev S.,Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory | Gaudi B.S.,Ohio State University | And 73 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2010

We present a new analysis of the Jupiter+Saturn analog system, OGLE-2006-BLG-109Lb,c, which was the first double planet system discovered with the gravitational microlensing method. This is the only multi-planet system discovered by any method with measured masses for the star and both planets. In addition to the signatures of two planets, this event also exhibits a microlensing parallax signature and finite source effects that provide a direct measure of the masses of the star and planets, and the expected brightness of the host star is confirmed by Keck AO imaging, yielding masses of M * = 0.51+0.05?0.04 M⊙ Mb = 231 ± 19M, and Mc = 86 ± 7M. The Saturn-analog planet in this system had a planetary light-curve deviation that lasted for 11 days, and as a result, the effects of the orbital motion are visible in the microlensing light curve. We find that four of the six orbital parameters are tightly constrained and that a fifth parameter, the orbital acceleration, is weakly constrained. No orbital information is available for the Jupiter-analog planet, but its presence helps to constrain the orbital motion of the Saturn-analog planet. Assuming co-planar orbits, we find an orbital eccentricity of ε = 0.15+0.17?0.10 and an orbital inclination of i = 64° +4°?7° . The 95% confidence level lower limit on the inclination of i> 49° implies that this planetary system can be detected and studied via radial velocity measurements using a telescope of ≳30m aperture. © 2010. The American Astronomical Society.


Ryu Y.-H.,Chungbuk National University | Han C.,Chungbuk National University | Hwang K.-H.,Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network | Street R.,University of Warsaw | And 122 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2010

We report the result of the analysis of a dramatic repeating gravitational microlensing event OGLE-2009-BLG-092/MOA-2009-BLG-137, for which the light curve is characterized by two distinct peaks with perturbations near both peaks. We find that the event is produced by the passage of the source trajectory over the central perturbation regions associated with the individual components of a wide-separation binary. The event is special in the sense that the second perturbation, occurring ∼100 days after the first, was predicted by the real-time analysis conducted after the first peak, demonstrating that real-time modeling can be routinely done for binary and planetary events.With the data obtained from follow-up observations covering the second peak, we are able to uniquely determine the physical parameters of the lens system.We find that the event occurred on a bulge clump giant and itwas produced by a binary lens composed of a K- and M-type main-sequence stars. The estimated masses of the binary components are M1 = 0.69±0.11M⊙ and M2 = 0.36±0.06M⊙, respectively, and they are separated in projection by r⊥ = 10.9±1.3AU. The measured distance to the lens is DL = 5.6 ± 0.7 kpc. We also detect the orbital motion of the lens system. © 2010. The American Astronomical Society.

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