The Astrophysical Journal Supplement publishes significant papers containing extensive data or calculations, or of very specialized interest. The Supplement contains many of the most frequently cited papers in the astronomical literature.
Number 1, 2014 September (1-4)
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These are the latest articles published in The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series.
Christopher N. Beaumont et al. 2014 ApJS 214 3
We present Brut, an algorithm to identify bubbles in infrared images of the Galactic midplane. Brut is based on the Random Forest algorithm, and uses bubbles identified by >35,000 citizen scientists from the Milky Way Project to discover the identifying characteristics of bubbles in images from the Spitzer Space Telescope. We demonstrate that Brut's ability to identify bubbles is comparable to expert astronomers. We use Brut to re-assess the bubbles in the Milky Way Project catalog, and find that 10%-30% of the objects in this catalog are non-bubble interlopers. Relative to these interlopers, high-reliability bubbles are more confined to the mid-plane, and display a stronger excess of young stellar objects along and within bubble rims. Furthermore, Brut is able to discover bubbles missed by previous searches—particularly bubbles near bright sources which have low contrast relative to their surroundings. Brut demonstrates the synergies that exist between citizen scientists, professional scientists, and machine learning techniques. In cases where "untrained" citizens can identify patterns that machines cannot detect without training, machine learning algorithms like Brut can use the output of citizen science projects as input training sets, offering tremendous opportunities to speed the pace of scientific discovery. A hybrid model of machine learning combined with crowdsourced training data from citizen scientists can not only classify large quantities of data, but also address the weakness of each approach if deployed alone.
O. Porth et al. 2014 ApJS 214 4
In this paper, we present an update to the open source MPI-AMRVAC simulation toolkit where we focus on solar and non-relativistic astrophysical magnetofluid dynamics. We highlight recent developments in terms of physics modules, such as hydrodynamics with dust coupling and the conservative implementation of Hall magnetohydrodynamics. A simple conservative high-order finite difference scheme that works in combination with all available physics modules is introduced and demonstrated with the example of monotonicity-preserving fifth-order reconstruction. Strong stability-preserving high-order Runge-Kutta time steppers are used to obtain stable evolutions in multi-dimensional applications, realizing up to fourth-order accuracy in space and time. With the new distinction between active and passive grid cells, MPI-AMRVAC is ideally suited to simulate evolutions where parts of the solution are controlled analytically or have a tendency to progress into or out of a stationary state. Typical test problems and representative applications are discussed with an outlook toward follow-up research. Finally, we discuss the parallel scaling of the code and demonstrate excellent weak scaling up to 30, 000 processors, allowing us to exploit modern peta-scale infrastructure.
Junko Ueda et al. 2014 ApJS 214 1
We present the 1 kpc resolution 12CO imaging study of 37 optically selected local merger remnants using new and archival interferometric maps obtained with ALMA, CARMA, the Submillimeter Array, and the Plateau de Bure Interferometer. We supplement a sub-sample with single-dish measurements obtained at the Nobeyama Radio Observatory 45 m telescope for estimating the molecular gas mass (10 7 – 11 M ☉) and evaluating the missing flux of the interferometric measurements. Among the sources with robust CO detections, we find that 80% (24/30) of the sample show kinematical signatures of rotating molecular gas disks (including nuclear rings) in their velocity fields, and the sizes of these disks vary significantly from 1.1 kpc to 9.3 kpc. The size of the molecular gas disks in 54% of the sources is more compact than the K-band effective radius. These small gas disks may have formed from a past gas inflow that was triggered by a dynamical instability during a potential merging event. On the other hand, the rest (46%) of the sources have gas disks that are extended relative to the stellar component, possibly forming a late-type galaxy with a central stellar bulge. Our new compilation of observational data suggests that nuclear and extended molecular gas disks are common in the final stages of mergers. This finding is consistent with recent major-merger simulations of gas-rich progenitor disks. Finally, we suggest that some of the rotation-supported turbulent disks observed at high redshifts may result from galaxies that have experienced a recent major merger.
Shunya Takekawa et al. 2014 ApJS 214 2
We have performed unbiased spectral line surveys at the 3 mm band toward the Galactic circumnuclear disk (CND) and Sgr A* using the Nobeyama Radio Observatory 45 m radio telescope. The target positions are two tangential points of the CND and the direction of Sgr A*. We have obtained three wide-band spectra that cover the frequency range from 81.3 GHz to 115.8 GHz, detecting 46 molecular lines from 30 species, including 10 rare isotopomers and 4 hydrogen recombination lines. Each line profile consists of multiple velocity components which arise from the CND, +50 km s –1 and +20 km s –1 giant molecular clouds (GMCs), and the foreground spiral arms. We define the specific velocity ranges that represent the CND and the GMCs toward each direction, and classify the detected lines into three categories: the CND, GMC, HBD types, based on the line intensities integrated over the defined velocity ranges. The CND and GMC types are the lines that mainly trace the CND and the GMCs, respectively. The HBD types possesses the both characteristics of the CND and GMC types. We also present lists of line intensities and other parameters, as well as intensity ratios, which must be useful to investigate the difference between the nuclear environments of our Galaxy and others.
Margaret J. Geller et al. 2014 ApJS 213 35
The SHELS (Smithsonian Hectospec Lensing Survey) is a complete redshift survey covering two well-separated fields (F1 and F2) of the Deep Lens Survey to a limiting R = 20.6. Here we describe the redshift survey of the F2 field (R.A. 2000 = 09 19 32.ˢ4 and decl. 2000 = +30°00'00''). The survey includes 16,294 new redshifts measured with the Hectospec on the MMT. The resulting survey of the 4 deg 2 F2 field is 95% complete to R = 20.6, currently the densest survey to this magnitude limit. The median survey redshift is z = 0.3; the survey provides a view of structure in the range 0.1 z 0.6. An animation displays the large-scale structure in the survey region. We provide a redshift, spectral index D n 4000, and stellar mass for each galaxy in the survey. We also provide a metallicity for each galaxy in the range 0.2 < z < 0.38. To demonstrate potential applications of the survey, we examine the behavior of the index D n 4000 as a function of galaxy luminosity, stellar mass, and redshift. The known evolutionary and stellar mass dependent properties of the galaxy population are cleanly evident in the data. We also show that the mass-metallicity relation previously determined from these data is robust to the analysis approach.