Calendar

Jun
27
Tue
Colloquium PhD Defense: Laura Mayorga
Jun 27 @ 2:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Colloquium PhD Defense: Laura Mayorga @ Domenici Hall 102

The Orbital and Planetary Phase Variations of Jupiter-Sized Planets: Characterizing Present and Future Giants

Laura Mayorga, NMSU

It is commonly said that exoplanet science is 100 years behind planetary science. While we may be able to travel to an exoplanet in the future, inferring the properties of exoplanets currently relies on extracting as much information as possible from a limited dataset. In order to further our ability to characterize, classify, and understand exoplanets as both a population and as individuals, this thesis makes use of multiple types of observations and simulations.

Firstly, direct-imaging is a technique long used in planetary science and is only now becoming feasible for exoplanet characterization. We present our results from analyzing Jupiter’s phase curve with Cassini/ISS to instruct the community in the complexity of exoplanet atmospheres and the need for further model development. The planet yields from future missions may be overestimated by today’s models. We also discuss the need for optimal bandpasses to best differentiate between planet classes.

Secondly, photometric surveys are still the best way of conducting population surveys of exoplanets. In particular, the Kepler dataset remains one of the highest precision photometric datasets and many planetary candidates remain to be characterized. We present techniques by which more information, such as a planet’s mass, can be extracted from a transit light curve without expensive ground- or space-based follow-up observations.

Finally, radial-velocity observations have revealed that many of the larger “planets” may actually be brown dwarfs. To understand the distinction between a brown dwarf and an exoplanet or a star, we have developed a simple, semi-analytic viscous disk model to study brown dwarf evolutionary history. We present the rudimentary framework and discuss its performance compared to more detailed numerical simulations as well as how additional physics and development can determine the potential observational characteristics that will differentiate between various formation scenarios.

Exoplanet science has already uncovered a plethora of previously unconsidered phenomenon. To increase our understanding of our own planet, as well as the other various possible end cases, will require a closer inspection of our own solar system, the nuanced details of exoplanet data, refined simulations, and laboratory astrophysics.

Sep
1
Fri
Colloquium: Isak Wold (Host: Moire Prescott)
Sep 1 @ 3:15 pm – 4:15 pm
Colloquium: Isak Wold (Host: Moire Prescott) @ BX102

A Faint Flux-Limited LAE Sample at z = 0.3

Isak Wold, UT Austin

Observational surveys of Lya emitters (LAEs) have proven to be an efficient method to identify and study large numbers of galaxies over a wide redshift range. To understand what types of galaxies are selected in LAE surveys – and how this evolves with redshift – it is important to establish a low-redshift reference sample that can be directly compared to high-redshift samples.  The lowest redshift where a direct Lya survey is currently possible is at a redshift of z~0.3 via the Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX ) FUV grism data. Using the z~0.3 GALEX sample as an anchor point, it has been suggested that at low redshifts high equivalent width (EW) LAEs become less prevalent and that the amount of escaping Lya emission declines rapidly.  A number of explanations for these trends have been suggested including increasing dust content, increasing neutral column density, and/or increasing metallicity of star-forming galaxies at lower redshifts. However, the published z~0.3 GALEX sample is pre-selected from bright NUV objects.  Thus, objects with strong Lya emission but faint continuum (high-EW LAEs) could be missed.  In this talk, I will present my efforts to re-reduce the deepest archival GALEX FUV grism data and obtain a sample that is not biased against high-EW LAEs.  I will discuss the implications of this new sample on the evolutionary trends listed above.

Jan
7
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Jan 7 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA

Jan
14
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Jan 14 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA

Jan
21
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Jan 21 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA

Jan
23
Wed
Colloquium Thesis Defense: Lauren Kahre
Jan 23 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Colloquium Thesis Defense: Lauren Kahre

Extinction Mapping and Dust-to-Gas Ratios of Nearby Galaxies

Lauren Kahre, NMSU

We present a study of the dust{to{gas ratios in 31 nearby (D >
10 Mpc) galaxies. Using Hubble Space Telescope broad band WFC3/UVIS UV and
optical images from the Treasury program LEGUS (Legacy ExtraGalactic UV
Survey) combined with archival HST/ACS data, we correct thousands of
individual stars for extinction across these galaxies using an
isochrone-matching (reddening-free Q) method. We generate extinction maps
for each galaxy from the individual stellar extinctions using both
adaptive and fixed resolution techniques, and correlate these maps with
neutral HI and CO gas maps from literature, including The HI Nearby Galaxy
Survey (THINGS) and the HERA CO-Line ExtraGalactic Survey (HERACLES). We
calculate dust-to-gas ratios and investigate variations in the dust-to-gas
ratio with galaxy metallicity. We find a power law relationship between
dust-to-gas ratio and metallicity. The single power law is consistent with
other studies of dust-to-gas ratio compared to metallicity, while the
broken power law shows a significantly shallower slope for low metallicity
galaxies than previously observed. We find a change in the relation when
H_2 is not included. This implies that underestimation of N_H2 in
low-metallicity dwarfs from a too-low CO-to-H2 conversion factor X_CO
could have produced too low a slope in the derived relationship between
dust-to-gas ratio and metallicity. We also
compare our extinctions to those derived from fitting the spectral energy
distribution (SED) using the Bayesian Extinction and Stellar Tool (BEAST)
for NGC 7793 and and systematically lower extinctions from SED-fitting as
compared to isochrone matching. Finally, we compare our extinction maps of
NGC 628 to maps of the dust obtained via IR emission from Aniano et al.
(2012) and find a factor of 2 difference in dust-to-gas ratios determined
from the two maps, consistent with previous work.

Jan
25
Fri
Colloquium: Dale Frail (Host: Sarah Kovac)
Jan 25 @ 3:15 pm – 4:15 pm
Colloquium: Dale Frail (Host: Sarah Kovac) @ BX102

Multi-Messenger EM-GW Astronomy: The View from the Radio End of the EM Spectrum

Dale Frail, NRAO

Abstract: With the discovery of gravitational waves and electromagnetic radiation from the binary neutron star merger GW170817, the era of GW multi-messenger astronomy has begun with style. I will describe the discovery, show where progress has been made in several areas, and then move on to describe a controversy regarding the origin of the afterglow emission. After explaining the importance of this issue, I will show how late-time radio observations have decisively resolved the issue. I will end with a discussion of the future, with an emphasis on the role of radio observations in finding and studying EM counterparts.

Jan
28
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Jan 28 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA

Feb
4
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Feb 4 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA

Feb
11
Mon
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting
Feb 11 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
PDS Atmospheres Node meeting @ AY 119

Detailed Node Meeting Schedule:

1/07: ELSA & Node
1/14: ELSA
1/21: nothing – MLK holiday
1/28: Node
2/04: ELSA
2/11: Node
2/18: ELSA
2/25: Node
3/04: ELSA
3/11: Node
3/18: ELSA (but Lynn not here, LPSC)
3/25: nothing – Spring Break
4/01: Node
4/08: ELSA
4/15: Node
4/22: ELSA
4/29: Node
5/06: nothing – Final Exams week
5/13: ELSA