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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.

Searching for links between magnetic fields and stellar evolution. I. A survey of magnetic fields in open cluster A- and B-type stars with FORS1
Context: .About 5% of upper main sequence stars are permeated by astrong magnetic field, the origin of which is still matter of debate. Aims: . With this work we provide observational material to studyhow magnetic fields change with the evolution of stars on the mainsequence, and to constrain theory explaining the presence of magneticfields in A and B-type stars. Methods: . Using FORS1 inspectropolarimetric mode at the ESO VLT, we have carried out a survey ofmagnetic fields in early-type stars belonging to open clusters andassociations of various ages. Results: . We have measured themagnetic field of 235 early-type stars with a typical uncertainty of˜ 100 G. In our sample, 97 stars are Ap or Bp stars. For thesetargets, the median error bar of our field measurements was ˜ 80 G.A field has been detected in about 41 of these stars, 37 of which werenot previously known as magnetic stars. For the 138 normal A and B-typestars, the median error bar was 136 G, and no field was detected in anyof them.

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.

Deepsky delights.
Not Available

Metallicity distribution on the galactic disk
Depending mainly on UBVCCD data, the metallicities of 91 open starclusters nearby the galactic disk have been estimated using Cameron's[A&A 147 (1985b) 39] method. The metallicity radial gradient alongthe galactic plane is found to be -0.09 dex/kpc; which is in a very goodagreement with Panagia and Tosi [A&A 96 (1981) 306] and Carraro etal. [MNRAS 296 (1998) 1045]. Vertically on the galactic disk, withinabout 800 pc, the metallicity gradient is found to be so trivial. Anaverage age-metallicity relation has been examined, which confirms theprevious suggestion that the metallicity of a cluster depending mainlyon its position on the galactic disk more than its age.

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.

Morphological analysis of open clusters' propertiesII. Relationships projected onto the galactic plane
A morphological analysis study of open clusters' properties has beenachieved for a sample of 160 UBVCCD open star clusters of approximately128,000 stars near the galactic plane. The data was obtained and reducedfrom using the same reduction procedures, which makes this catalogue thelargest homogeneous source of open clusters' parameters.

The Distance Scale for Classical Cepheid Variables
New radii, derived from a modified version of the Baade-Wesselink (BW)method that is tied to published KHG narrowband spectrophotometry, arepresented for 13 bright Cepheids. The data yield a best-fittingperiod-radius relation given bylog=1.071(+/-0.025)+0.747(+/-0.028)logP0. In combination with other high-quality radiusestimates recently published by Laney & Stobie, the new data yield aperiod-radius relation described bylog=1.064(+/-0.0006)+0.750(+/-0.006)logP0, which simplifies to ~P3/4.The relationship is used to test the scale of Cepheid luminositiesinferred from cluster zero-age main-sequence (ZAMS) fitting, for whichwe present an updated list of calibrating Cepheids located in stellargroups. The cluster ZAMS-fitting distance scale tied to a Pleiadesdistance modulus of 5.56 is found to agree closely with the distancescale defined by Hipparcos parallaxes of cluster Cepheids and alsoyields Cepheid luminosities that are a good match to those inferred fromthe period-radius relation. The mean difference between absolute visualmagnitudes based on cluster ZAMS fitting,C, and those inferred for 23 clusterCepheids from radius and effective temperature estimates,BW, in the sense of C-BW is+0.019+/-0.029 s.e. There is no evidence to indicate the need for amajor revision to the Cepheid cluster distance scale. The absolutemagnitude differences are examined using available [Fe/H] data for thecluster Cepheid sample to test the metallicity dependence of theperiod-luminosity relation. Large scatter and a small range ofmetallicities hinder a reliable estimate of the exact relationship,although the data are fairly consistent with predictions from stellarevolutionary models. The derived dependence isΔMV(C-BW)=+0.06(+/-0.03)-0.43(+/-0.54)[ Fe/H].

Integrated photometric characteristics of galactic open star clusters
Integrated UBVRI photometric parameters of 140 galactic open clustershave been computed. Integrated I(V-R)0 and I(V-I)0colours as well as integrated parameters for 71 star clusters have beenobtained for the first time. These, in combination with published data,altogether 352 objects, are used to study the integrated photometriccharacteristics of the galactic open clusters. The I(MV)values range from -9.0 to -1.0 mag corresponding to a range in totalmass of the star clusters from ~ 25 to 4*E4 Msun.The integrated colours have a relatively narrow range, e.g., I(B-V){_0}varies from -0.4 to 1.2 mag. The scatter in integrated colours at agiven integrated magnitude can be understood in terms of differences infraction of red giants/supergiants in the clusters. The observedintegrated magnitudes and colours agree with the synthetic ones, exceptthe dependences of I(V-R)0 and I(V-I)0 colours forclusters younger than ~ 100 Myrs and also of the integrated magnitudesof oldest clusters. The large sample provides the most accurate agedependence of integrated magnitudes and colours determined so far. Theluminosity function of the I(MV) has a peak around -3.5 magand its slope indicates that only ~ 1% of the open clusters in thegalactic disc are brighter than I(MV)=-11 mag. No variationhas been found of integrated magnitude with galactocentric distance andmetallicity.

Elemental Abundances in CP Stars of Galactic Open Clusters
Not Available

Proper motions of open clusters within 1 kpc based on the TYCHO2 Catalogue
We present mean absolute proper motions of 112 open clusters, determinedusing the data from the Tycho2 Catalogue. For 28 clusters, this is thefirst determination of proper motion. The measurements made use of alarge number of stars (usually several tens) for each cluster. The totalnumber of stars studied in the fields of the 164 open clusters is 5016,of which 4006 were considered members. The mean proper motions of theclusters and membership probability of individual stars were obtainedfrom the proper motion data by applying the statistical method proposedby Sanders (\cite{Sanders71}). Based on observations of the ESAHipparcos satellite. Tables 1, 2 and 5 to 117 are only available inelectronic form at the CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/376/441

Morphological analysis of open clusters' propertiesI. Properties' estimations
A sample of 160 UBVCCD observations of open star clusters near thegalactic plane has been studied, and a catalogue of their propertiesobtained. The main photometrical properties have been re-estimated selfconsistently and the results have been compared with those of Lynga[Lynga, G., 1987. Catalog of Open Cluster Data, 5th Edition, StellarData Centers, Observatoire de Strasbourg, France].

Hipparcos Trigonometric Parallaxes and the Distance Scale for Open Star Clusters
Hipparcos trigonometric parallaxes are used to estimate the distances tothe maximum possible number of open star clusters (OSC); distance moduliare estimated for 45 clusters with maximum heliocentric distances ofabout 1000 pc. The latter value can serve as an estimate of the limit towhich it still makes sense to use Hipparcos trigonometric parallaxes todetermine the distances to small groups composed of 6-10 sufficientlybright stars. A systematic correction to the distance moduli of clustersfrom the homogeneous catalog of OSC parameters (Loktin et al. 1997,2000) is estimated, which turns out to be independent of the clusterage.

Spectroscopic investigations of classical Cepheids and main-sequence stars in galactic open clusters and associations. I. Association Cas OB2 and the small-amplitude Cepheid SU Cassiopeae
The small-amplitude Cepheid SU Cas and four membersof the association Cas OB2 (HD 16893, HD17327a and b, HD 17443) were investigated,using high-resolution CCD spectra. The following results were obtained:1) All these objects have the same metallicity values, close to that ofthe Sun; 2) Elemental abundance indicates that SU Cas is a post firstdredge-up star with an age from 1 108 to 1.45 108yr, and it is not crossing the Cepheid instability strip for the firsttime. The mean value of log g = 2.35 corresponds to pulsations in thefundamental tone, although errors in gravity estimations provideovertone pulsations. The questions about its pulsational mode andmembership in Cas OB2 remained open; 3) HD17327a is a slowly rotating HgMn-star with the highest heliumcontent among such objects, while HD 16893 also has a manganeseoverabundance and might be classified as an Am-star; 4) HD17327b and HD 17443 are rapidly rotating main-sequence stars,while HD 17443 has a helium content comparable with that of the Sun.

Absolute proper motions of open clusters. I. Observational data
Mean proper motions and parallaxes of 205 open clusters were determinedfrom their member stars found in the Hipparcos Catalogue. 360 clusterswere searched for possible members, excluding nearby clusters withdistances D < 200 pc. Members were selected using ground basedinformation (photometry, radial velocity, proper motion, distance fromthe cluster centre) and information provided by Hipparcos (propermotion, parallax). Altogether 630 certain and 100 possible members werefound. A comparison of the Hipparcos parallaxes with photometricdistances of open clusters shows good agreement. The Hipparcos dataconfirm or reject the membership of several Cepheids in the studiedclusters. Tables 1 and 2 are only available in electronic form at theCDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html

Statistical parallaxes and kinematical parameters of classical Cepheids and young star clusters
The statistical-parallax method is applied for the first time to spacevelocities of 270 classical Cepheids with proper motions adopted fromHIPPARCOS (1997) and TRC (Hog et al. 1998) catalogs and distances basedon the period-luminosity relation by Berdnikov et al. (1996). Thedistance scale of short-period Cepheids (with periods less than 9 days)is shown to require an average correction of 15-20%, whereas statisticalparallaxes of Cepheids with periods > 9 days are found to agree wellwith photometric distances. It is shown that the luminosities ofshort-period Cepheids must have been underestimated partly due to thecontamination of this subsample by a substantial (20 to 40%) fraction offirst-overtone pulsators. The statistical-parallax technique is alsoapplied for the first time to 117 open clusters younger than 100 millionyears and with proper motions reduced to the HIPPARCOS reference system.It is concluded that a 0.12-0.15 mag increase of the distance scales ofopen clusters and Cepheids would be sufficient to reconcile thestatistical-parallax results inferred for these two types of objects.Such approach leads to an LMC distance modulus of less than 18.40 mag,which agrees, within the errors, with the short distance scale for RRLyrae variables and is at variance with the conclusions by Feast andCatchpole (1998) and Feast et al. (1998), who argue that the LMCdistance modulus should be increased to 18.70 mag. The distance scalebased on the Cepheid period-luminosity relation by Berdnikov and Efremov(1985) seems to be a good compromise. Extragalactic distances, whichrely on long-period Cepheids, seem to require no substantial correction.In addition to statistical parallaxes, kinematical parameters have beeninferred for the combined sample consisting of Cepheids andopen-clusters: solar-motion components (U0 ,V0,W0) = (9, 12, 7) km/s (+/- 1 km/s); velocity-ellipsoid axes(σU; σV; σW) = (15.0,10.3, 8.5) km/s (+/- 1 km/s); the angular velocity of rotation of thesubsystem, ω0 = 28.7 +/- 1 km/s/kpc, the Oort constantA = 17.4 +/- 1.5 km/s, and the second derivative of angular velocity,⋰ω0= 1.15 +/- 0.2 km/s/kpc3.

Open clusters with Hipparcos. I. Mean astrometric parameters
New memberships, mean parallaxes and proper motions of all 9 openclusters closer than 300 pc (except the Hyades) and 9rich clusters between 300 and 500 pc have been computed using Hipparcosdata. Precisions, ranging from 0.2 to 0.5 mas for parallaxes and 0.1 to0.5 mas/yr for proper motions, are of great interest for calibratingphotometric parallaxes as well as for kinematical studies. Carefulinvestigations of possible biases have been performed and no evidence ofsignificant systematic errors on the mean cluster parallaxes has beenfound. The distances and proper motions of 32 more distant clusters,which may be used statistically, are also indicated. Based onobservations made with the ESA Hipparcos astrometry satellite

Le satellite Hipparcos. Une moisson de resultats astrophysiques.
Not Available

HIPPARCOS data for two open clusters containing cepheids
Using proper motion data from the Hipparcos satellite it is shown thatthe cepheids S Nor and U Sgr are members of the open clusters NGC 6087and M 25, respectively. The precision of the Hipparcos data is needed toconclusively carry out a membership test. Parallax data, also obtainedfrom Hipparcos, do not contradict the proper motion results.

Multicolour deep CCD photometric study of the moderately young southern open star clusters NGC 3228, NGC 4103, NGC 5662 and NGC 6087
CCD observations in the U, B, V, R and I passbands have been used togenerate colour-colour and deep colour-magnitude diagrams for the youngopen star clusters NGC 3228, NGC 4103, NGC 5662 and NGC 6087. The sampleconsists of about 2000 stars reaching down to V = 20 mag. Theinterstellar extinction across the face of the imaged cluster regionsseems to be uniform with average values of E(B-V) = 0.31, 0.34 and 0.22mag for NGC 4103, NGC 5662 and NGC 6087 respectively. The distances tothe clusters NGC 3228, NGC 4103, NGC 5662 and NGC 6087 have beenestimated as 0.5 +/- 0.05, 2.0 +/- 0.3, 0.8 +/- 0.1 and 1.0 +/- 0.1 kpcrespectively, while the corresponding ages estimated from thetheoretical stellar evolutionary isochrones fitted to the bright propermotion cluster members are ~ 100, 30, 80 and 65 Myr respectively.Present data are consistent with the membership of the Cepheid variableV Cen to NGC 5662 and of S Norm to NGC 6087. Heavy contamination byforeground and background field stars has unfortunately made itimpossible to reach definite conclusions about the faint luminosityfunction, and the data do not reach faint enough limits to investigatepre-main sequence stars. Tables 6 to 9 only available in electronic format CDS.

H_0: The Incredible Shrinking Constant, 1925-1975
The story of the Hubble constant logically begins just wehere theCurtis-Shapley debate on the distance scale of the universe ended, withHubble's discovery of Cepheid variables in several nebulae that we nowrecognize as galaxies within the Local Group, which settled the issue ofthe existence of external galaxies. Hubble's own values of H was in therange of 500-550 km/sec/Mpc. The "best buy" value shrank in severallarge steps beginning in 1952, each being predicated on the recognitionof some fundamental mistake in the previous distance scale calibrations.But it shrank more for some workers than for others, and by 1973 therewas a clear polarization between a "long" recognition that generalrelativity permits, indeed nearly requires, an expanding universe; thegradual elimination of alternative explanations of redshift-distancerelations; and the repelling of a late assault in the form of steadystate cosmology, within whose framework H_0 is a well-defined,never-varying number of only moderate importance. (SECTION: A Debate onThe Scale of the Universe)

The Progenitors of Classical Cepheid Variables
Properties are deduced for the main-sequence O and B-type stars thatwere the immediate progenitors to classical Cepheids belonging to thelocal sample of galactic calibrating clusters. The sample of suchclusters and stellar groups is presently large enough to allow thederivation of statistically-significant properties related to theirCepheid members. In particular, the turnoff point colour for a clusteris demonstrated to be linearly related to the pulsational period (Po) ofits associated Cepheid via the empirical relationship: (B=96V)o(turnoff) =3D =960.057 =96 0.113= log Po; the masses of stars at the redturnoff point for the cluster follow a semi-empirical relationshipdescribed by: log M(RTO)/Ms =3D +0.36 + 0.50 log Po. The adoptedrelationship for the Cepheid progenitors is: log M/Ms =3D +0.41 + 0.50log Po. The properties deduced for Cepheid progenitors as a consequenceof these relationships reveal intriguing information about classicalCepheids themselves.

BVRIJHK period-luminosity relations for Galactic classical Cepheids.
Not Available

Determination of absolute proper motions for stars in 21 open clusters.
Not Available

NGC 129 and the Cepheid DL CAS
The zeropoint of the Cepheid extragalactic distance scale is set by mainsequence fitting to the Pleiades. In order to optimize the fitting, itis necessary to know the difference in metallicity between the clusterbeing fitted and the Pleiades; a 0.1 dex difference in metallicity canlead to a 0.1 dex error in derived distance. We have obtained high-resolution echelle spectra of 15 of the Cepheids used to calibrate theperiod-luminosity relation and are finding a 0.5 dex spread inmetallicity. We have also obtained UBV photometry of NGC 129, NGC 6087,and NGC 5662 in order to go deeper down the main sequences of theseclusters and have obtained JK photometry of NGC 129 and NGC 6087 inorder to exploit the advantages of the flatter main sequences in K vsV-K. We present a new color-magnitude diagram for NGC 129 and anabundance analysis of DL Cas.

A deep UBVRI CCD photometric study of the moderately young southern open star cluster NGC 4755 = κ Crucis.
CCD observations in U, B, V, R and I passbands have been used togenerate (U-B), (B-V) colour-colour and deep V, (B-V); V, (U-B) and V,(V-I) colour-magnitude diagrams for the young open cluster NGC 4755. Thesample consists of 813 stars reaching down to V~20mag. There appears tobe non-uniform extinction over the face of the cluster with a mean valueof E(B-V)=0.41mag and a range of about 0.05mag. The true distancemodulus to the cluster has been estimated as 11.6+/-0.2mag. An age of~10Myr has been assigned to the post-main sequence (MS) cluster members.Ages of the post-MS and pre-MS stars indicate that massive(M>10Msun_) and low mass (M<2Msun_) stars inthe cluster are formed nearly at the same time from a molecular cloudwhich might have existed for a minimum period of about 6-7Myr.

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Observation and Astrometry data

Right ascension:16h18m48.00s
Apparent magnitude:5.4

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NGC 2000.0NGC 6087

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