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|Blue Straggler Stars in Galactic Open Clusters and the Simple Stellar Population Model|
The presence of blue straggler stars (BSs) as secure members of Galacticopen clusters (OCs) poses a major challenge to the conventional pictureof simple stellar population (SSP) models. These are based on thestellar evolution theory of single stars, whereas the major formationmechanisms of BSs are all correlated with stellar interactions. We haveillustrated this in a previous study based on a small sample of old (age>=1 Gyr) Galactic OCs. However, for the purpose of demonstrating thecontributions of BSs to the conventional SSP models statistically andsystematically, a large database with sufficient coverage of age andmetallicity is definitely needed. The working sample now includes 100Galactic OCs with ages ranging from 0.1 to 10 Gyr. The contributions ofBSs to the integrated light of their host clusters are calculated on anindividual cluster basis. The general existence of BSs in our starcluster sample dramatically alters the predictions of conventional SSPmodels in terms of their integrated properties. Neglecting theconsequences of nonstandard evolutionary products, such as BSs, instellar populations, very large uncertainties can be made in analyzingtheir integrated spectral energy distributions at unresolvableconditions. The current work strongly suggests that when evolutionarypopulation synthesis technique is used to study the properties ofunresolved stellar populations in galaxies, the contributions of BSsshould be taken into account.
|On the current status of open-cluster parameters|
We aim to characterize the current status of knowledge on the accuracyof open-cluster parameters such as the age, reddening and distance.These astrophysical quantities are often used to study the globalcharacteristics of the Milky Way down to the very local stellarphenomena. In general, the errors of these quantities are neglected orset to some kind of heuristic standard value. We attempt to give somerealistic estimates for the accuracy of available cluster parameters byusing the independently derived values published in the literature. Intotal, 6437 individual estimates for 395 open clusters were used in ourstatistical analysis. We discuss the error sources depending ontheoretical as well as observational methods and compare our resultswith those parameters listed in the widely used catalogue by Dias et al.In addition, we establish a list of 72 open clusters with the mostaccurate known parameters which should serve as a standard table in thefuture for testing isochrones and stellar models.
|Kinematics of the Open Cluster System in the Galaxy|
Absolute proper motions and radial velocities of 202 open clusters inthe solar neighborhood, which can be used as tracers of the Galacticdisk, are used to investigate the kinematics of the Galaxy in the solarvicinity, including the mean heliocentric velocity components(u1,u2,u3) of the open cluster system,the characteristic velocity dispersions(σ1,σ2,σ3), Oortconstants (A,B) and the large-scale radial motion parameters (C,D) ofthe Galaxy. The results derived from the observational data of propermotions and radial velocities of a subgroup of 117 thin disk young openclusters by means of a maximum likelihood algorithm are:(u1,u2,u3) =(-16.1+/-1.0,-7.9+/-1.4,-10.4+/-1.5) km s-1,(σ1,σ2,σ3) =(17.0+/-0.7,12.2+/-0.9,8.0+/-1.3) km s-1,(A,B) =(14.8+/-1.0,-13.0+/-2.7) km s-1 kpc-1, and (C,D) =(1.5+/-0.7,-1.2+/-1.5) km s-1 k pc-1. A discussionon the results and comparisons with what was obtained by other authorsis given.
|Proper motion determination of open clusters based on the UCAC2 catalogue|
We present the kinematics of hundreds of open clusters, based on theUCAC2 Catalogue positions and proper motions. Membership probabilitieswere obtained for the stars in the cluster fields by applying astatistical method uses stellar proper motions. All open clusters withknown distance were investigated, and for 75 clusters this is the firstdetermination of the mean proper motion. The results, including the DSSimages of the cluster's fields with the kinematic members marked, areincorporated in the Open Clusters Catalogue supported on line by ourgroup.
|Astrophysical parameters of Galactic open clusters|
We present a catalogue of astrophysical data for 520 Galactic openclusters. These are the clusters for which at least three most probablemembers (18 on average) could be identified in the ASCC-2.5, a catalogueof stars based on the Tycho-2 observations from the Hipparcos mission.We applied homogeneous methods and algorithms to determine angular sizesof cluster cores and coronae, heliocentric distances, mean propermotions, mean radial velocities, and ages. For the first time we derivedistances for 200 clusters, radial velocities for 94 clusters, and agesof 196 clusters. This homogeneous new parameter set is compared withearlier determinations, where we find, in particular, that the angularsizes were systematically underestimated in the literature.
|Searching for Planetary Transits in Galactic Open Clusters: EXPLORE/OC|
Open clusters potentially provide an ideal environment for the searchfor transiting extrasolar planets, since they feature a relatively largenumber of stars of the same known age and metallicity at the samedistance. With this motivation, over a dozen open clusters are now beingmonitored by four different groups. We review the motivations andchallenges for open cluster transit surveys for short-period giantplanets. Our photometric monitoring survey of Galactic southern openclusters, the Extrasolar Planet Occultation Research/Open Clusters(EXPLORE/OC) project, was designed with the goals of maximizing thechance of finding and characterizing planets and of providing astatistically valuable astrophysical result in the case of nodetections. We use the EXPLORE/OC data from two open clusters, NGC 2660and NGC 6208, to illustrate some of the largely unrecognized issuesfacing open cluster surveys, including severe contamination by Galacticfield stars (>80%) and the relatively low number of cluster membersfor which high-precision photometry can be obtained. We discuss how acareful selection of open cluster targets under a wide range of criteriasuch as cluster richness, observability, distance, and age can meet thechallenges, maximizing chances to detect planet transits. In addition,we present the EXPLORE/OC observing strategy to optimize planetdetection, which includes high-cadence observing and continuouslyobserving individual clusters rather than alternating between targets.
|Comparison of the Luminosity Functions of Open Clusters Based on USNO-A1 Data|
The luminosity and mass functions of a group of Galactic open clustersare constructed by applying a statistical method to photometric datafrom the USNO-A1 catalog. Despite some limitations, this catalog can beused for statistical analyses in Galactic astronomy. Pairwisecomparisons of the derived cluster luminosity functions are performedfor five age intervals. The differences between the luminosity functionsof the open clusters are not statistically significant in most cases. Itis concluded that the luminosity functions are approximately universalthroughout a large volume in the solar neighborhood. Combined luminosityand mass functions are constructed for six age intervals. The slope ofthe mass spectrum may vary somewhat from cluster to cluster, and themean slope may be somewhat higher than the Salpetervalue.
|On the Galactic Disk Metallicity Distribution from Open Clusters. I. New Catalogs and Abundance Gradient|
We have compiled two new open cluster catalogs. In the first one, thereare 119 objects with ages, distances, and metallicities available, whilein the second one, 144 objects have both absolute proper motion andradial velocity data, of which 45 clusters also have metallicity dataavailable. Taking advantage of the large number of objects included inour sample, we present an iron radial gradient of about -0.063+/-0.008dex kpc-1 from the first sample, which is quite consistentwith the most recent determination of the oxygen gradient from nebulaeand young stars, about -0.07 dex kpc-1. By dividing clustersinto age groups, we show that the iron gradient was steeper in the past,which is consistent with the recent result from Galactic planetarynebulae data, and also consistent with inside-out galactic diskformation scenarios. Based on the cluster sample, we also discuss themetallicity distribution, cluster kinematics, and space distribution. Adisk age-metallicity relation could be implied by those properties,although we cannot give conclusive result from the age- metallicitydiagram based on the current sample. More observations are needed formetal-poor clusters. From the second catalog, we have calculated thevelocity components in cylindrical coordinates with respect to theGalactic standard of rest for 144 open clusters. The velocitydispersions of the older clusters are larger than those of youngclusters, but they are all much smaller than that of the Galactic thickdisk stars.
|Proper Motions of Open Star Clusters and the Rotation Rate of the Galaxy|
The mean proper motions of 167 Galactic open clusters withradial-velocity measurements are computed from the data of the Tycho-2catalog using kinematic and photometric cluster membership criteria. Theresulting catalog is compared to the results of other studies. The newproper motions are used to infer the Galactic rotation rate at the solarcircle, which is found to be ω0=+24.6±0.8 km s-1 kpc-1.Analysis of the dependence of the dispersion of ω0 estimates onheliocentric velocity showed that even the proper motions of clusterswith distances r>3 kpc contain enough useful information to be usedin kinematic studies demonstrating that the determination of propermotions is quite justified even for very distant clusters.
|Abundance Gradient from Open Clusters and Implications for the Galactic Disk Evolution|
We compile a new sample of 89 open clusters with ages, distances andmetallicities available. We derive a radial iron gradient of about-0.099±0.008 dexkpc (unweighted) for the whole sample, which issomewhat greater than the most recent determination of oxygen gradientfrom nebulae and young stars. By dividing the clusters into age groups,we show that the iron gradient was steeper in the past and has evolvedslowly in time. Current data show a substantial scatter of the clustermetallicities indicating that the Galactic disk has undergone a veryrapid, inhomogeneous enrichment.Also, based on a simple, but quitesuccessful model of chemical evolution of the Milky Way disk, we make adetailed calculation of the iron abundance gradient and its timeevolution. The predicted current iron gradient is about -0.072 dexkpc.The model also predicts a steady flattening of the iron gradient withtime, which agrees with the result from our open cluster sample.
|A study of spatial structure of galactic open star clusters|
In order to study the relation between the core and corona in galacticstar clusters, the spatial structure of 38 rich open star clusters hasbeen studied using radial density profiles derived from the photometricdata of the Digital Sky Survey. The shape of the radial density profileindicates that the corona, most probably, is the outer region around thecluster. It can exist from the very beginning of the cluster formationand dynamical evolution is not the reason for its occurrence. The studydoes not find any relation between cluster size and age but indicatesthat the clusters with galacto-centric distances >9.5 kpc have largersizes. Further, we find that the average value of the core radius is1.3+/- 0.7 pc and that of annular width of the corona is 5.6+/- 1.9 pc,while average values of densities of cluster members in the core andcorona are 15.4+/- 9.9 star/pc2 and 1.6+/- 0.99star/pc2 respectively. Average field star contaminations inthe core and corona are ~ 35% and 80% respectively. In spite of smallerdensities in the coronal region, it contains ~ 75% of the clustermembers due to its larger area in comparison to the core region. Thisclearly demonstrates the importance of the coronal region in studiesdealing with the entire stellar contents of open star clusters as wellas their dynamical evolution. In contrast to the cluster cores, thestructure of coronal regions differs significantly from one cluster toother.
|Some Revised Observational Constraints on the Formation and Evolution of the Galactic Disk|
Abstract image available at:http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?1997AJ....114.2556T&db_key=AST
|Chemical Evolution of the Galactic Disk: Evidence for a Gradient Perpendicular to the Galactic Plane|
Abstract image available at:http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?1995AJ....110.2813P&db_key=AST
|Catalogue of blue stragglers in open clusters.|
An extensive survey of blue straggler candidates in galactic openclusters of both hemispheres is presented. The blue stragglers wereselected considering their positions in the cluster colour-magnitudediagrams.They were categorized according to the accuracy of thephotometric measurements and membership probabilities. An amount of 959blue straggler candidates in 390 open clusters of all ages wereidentified and classified. A set of basic data is given for everycluster and blue straggler. The information is arranged in the form of acatalogue. Blue stragglers are found in clusters of all ages. Thepercentage of clusters with blue stragglers generally grows with age andrichness of the clusters. The mean ratio of the number of bluestragglers to the number of cluster main sequence stars is approximatelyconstant up to a cluster age of about 10^8.6^ yr and rises for olderclusters. In general, the blue stragglers show a remarkable degree ofcentral concentration.
|Photometric and CORAVEL observations of stars in the open cluster IC 2714.|
UBV photoelectric photometry for 204 stars in the field of the southernopen cluster IC 2714, supplemented by DDO and Washington photometry andCoravel radial velocities of 14 probable red giants, are presented. Theanalysis of the photometric and kinematical data yielded 132 probablemembers and 13 possible members. IC 2714 contains one variable star and11 red giant members, one of them being a spectroscopic binary. Two redgiants are either binaries or non-members. The reddening across thecluster is slightly variable, the mean value is E(B-V)=0.36. The clusterdistance-modulus is 11.68, corresponding to a distance of 1320(+/-120)pcand the mean radial velocity is -14.1+/-0.3km/s. The age, determined byfitting isochrones with core overshooting, turned out to be log t=8.5,corresponding to 3.2x10^8^yr. A metal abundance [Fe/H]=-0.12+/-0.09relative to the Sun and other fundamental parameters are determined. Theluminosity function of the bright members of IC 2714 is in goodagreement with that determined by Taff (1974).
|Integrated photometric properties of open clusters|
Galactic open clusters provide an abundant sample of stellar aggregatesof various sizes, ages and metal abundances, apt to constitute atemplate for comparison with star systems in other galaxies. In thispaper we present and discuss a standard methodology to synthesize U,B,Vfluxes and colours, and apply it to a set of 138 open clusters. Resultsare compared with previous ones available in the literature. We wereable to calibrate a mass-luminosity relation by which we evaluated themass of ~400 open clusters, leading to a well defined present-day massfunction. The number-complete sample of galactic open clusters presentedin Battinelli & Capuzzo-Dolcetta (1991) is enlarged of a 15%.
|New Photometric Variable Stars in the Field of Southern Open Clusters|
|Integrated parameters of open clusters|
Integrated magnitudes and colors of population I synthetic clusters havebeen derived using theoretical evolutionary tracks and an age-dependedntinitial mass function. A comparison of the theoretically obtainedintegrated parameters with the observational data of open clusters inthe Milky Way and clusters in the LMC has also been made. It is foundthat the observed dependences show a better agreement with thetheoretical dependences obtained in the present work than thetheoretical dependences obtained by earlier authors. It is alsoconcluded that the clusters in the LMC in general show a mean reddeningof E(B-V) = 0.12 mag.
|Young stellar-gas complexes in the Galaxy|
It is found that about 90 percent of OB-associations and o-b2 clusterssituated within 3 kpc of the sun can be united into complexes withdiameters of 150-700 pc. Almost all of these clusters contain giantmolecular clouds with a mass greater than about 100,000 solar masses. Anumber of complexes are associated with giant H I clouds; a few of thesmall complexes are situated in the HI caverns. The concentration ofOB-associations and young clusters in star complexes attests to theircommon origin in the supergiant gaseous clouds.
|A cluster analysis of open clusters|
The Galactic distribution of 361 open clusters is studied using acluster analysis method. It is shown that more than half of the clustersenter groups with characteristic dimensions of several hundred parsecs.To distinguish physical clusters from random condensations, criteriabased on age similarity, the color of the main-sequence blue end, andthe integrated color and radial velocity of the clusters are used. Theproximity of these values suggests a physical unity and common origin ofclusters in a group.
|Catalogue of UBV Photometry and MK Spectral Types in Open Clusters (Third Edition)|
|Open clusters and galactic structure|
A total of 610 references to 434 clusters are employed in thecompilation of a catalog of open clusters with color-magnitude diagramson the UBV or RGU systems. Estimates of reddening, distance modulus, ageand number of cluster members are included. Although the sample isconsidered representative of the discoverable clusters in the galaxy,the observed distribution is nonuniform because of interstellarobscuration. Cluster distribution in the galactic plane is found to bedominated by the locations of dust clouds rather than by spiralstructure. The distributions of clusters as a function of age andrichness class show that the lifetimes of poor clusters are much shorterthan rich ones, and that clusters in the outer disk survive longer thanthose in the inner disk. An outer disk age which is only about 50% theage of the globular clusters is indicated by cluster statistics. Thethickening of the galactic disk with increasing galactocentric distancemay be due to either a younger dynamical age or a lower gravitationalpotential in the outer regions.
|Uniform survey of clusters in the southern Milky Way.|
Abstract image available at:http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1975AJ.....80...11V
|The luminosity function of the zero-age main sequence.|
Abstract image available at:http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1974AJ.....79.1280T
|A catalogue of galactic star clusters observed in three colours|
Abstract image available at:http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1971A&AS....4..241B
|Structure of the Milky Way in Carina|
|Die räumliche Verteilung von 156 galaktischen Sternhaufen in Abhängigkeit von ihrem Alter. Mit 7 Textabbildungen|
|Dreifarben-Photometrie südlicher galaktischer Sternhaufen. IV. NGC 2324, 2360, 2362, 2610, Tr. 14, Tr. 16, IC 2714. Mit 12 Textabbildungen|
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