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Galaxies, Volume 8, Issue 3 (September 2020) – 18 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The dust grains of non-spherical shapes irradiated by anisotropic radiation are spun-up to extremely fast rotation and disrupted in small fragments by centrifugal stress. View this paper
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Article
Program and Results of Investigations Rapid Variability of the BL Lac Object 3C 371 in Radio and Optical Ranges
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 69; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030069 - 21 Sep 2020
Viewed by 856
Abstract
BL Lac object 3C 371 is variable in optical and radio range, according to long-term monitoring data, for example AAVSO (American Association of Variable Star Observers) and OVRO (Owens Valley Radio Observatory). In addition, some authors note intra-night variability. However, in terms of [...] Read more.
BL Lac object 3C 371 is variable in optical and radio range, according to long-term monitoring data, for example AAVSO (American Association of Variable Star Observers) and OVRO (Owens Valley Radio Observatory). In addition, some authors note intra-night variability. However, in terms of access, just a few works are devoted to this topic, and questions remain about intra-day variability in radio range. The purpose of the work is to search for fast variability in radio (5, 6.1, 6.7 GHz) and optical bands (V, R, I) using international cooperation in 2019 and 2020 observation sessions. The 16-m radio telescope VIRAC, in Latvia, as well as optical telescopes AZT-3 (Mayaki, Ukraine), VNT (Vihorlat, Slovakia), and Schmidt camera (Baldone, Latvia) were used. To analyze variability, the STFT method of spectrograms and Lomb–Scargle periodograms for non-uniform time series were used. As result of the work, there is no correlation between optical and radio observations, and no significant quasi-harmonic variability was detected in radio range, but there is irregular low amplitude variability. In the optical range, there is variability with a characteristic time of about seven days and possibly less. Cyclical variability of 3C 371 was found in the optical range, and intra-day variability in radio range is most likely absent, as there are irregular variations and noise. It is planned to continue joint radio-optical observations 3C 371 to accumulate the necessary statistics. Full article
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Article
Mean-Field Dynamo Model in Anisotropic Uniform Turbulent Flow with Short-Time Correlations
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030068 - 19 Sep 2020
Viewed by 962
Abstract
The mean-field model is one of the basic models of the dynamo theory, which describes the magnetic field generation in a turbulent astrophysical plasma. The first mean-field equations were obtained by Steenbeck, Krause and Rädler for two-scale turbulence under isotropy and uniformity assumptions. [...] Read more.
The mean-field model is one of the basic models of the dynamo theory, which describes the magnetic field generation in a turbulent astrophysical plasma. The first mean-field equations were obtained by Steenbeck, Krause and Rädler for two-scale turbulence under isotropy and uniformity assumptions. In this article we develop the path integral approach to obtain mean-field equations for a short-correlated random velocity field in anisotropic streams. By this model we analyse effects of anisotropy and show the relation between dynamo growth and anisotropic tensors of helicity/turbulent diffusivity. Considering particular examples and comparing results with isotropic cases we demonstrate several mean-field effects: super-exponential growth at initial times, complex dependence of harmonics growth on the helicity tensor structure, when generation is possible for near-zero component or near-zero helicity trace, increase of the averaged magnetic field inclined to the initial current density that leads to effective Lorentz back-reaction and violation of force-free conditions. Full article
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Article
A Relativistic Orbit Model for Temporal Properties of AGN
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030067 - 11 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1177
Abstract
We present a unified model for X-ray quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) seen in Narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLSy1) galaxies, γ-ray and optical band QPOs that are seen in Blazars. The origin of these QPOs is attributed to the plasma motion in corona or jets [...] Read more.
We present a unified model for X-ray quasi-periodic oscillations (QPOs) seen in Narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLSy1) galaxies, γ-ray and optical band QPOs that are seen in Blazars. The origin of these QPOs is attributed to the plasma motion in corona or jets of these AGN. In the case of X-ray QPOs, we applied the general relativistic precession model for the two simultaneous QPOs seen in NLSy1 1H 0707-945 and deduce orbital parameters, such the radius of the emission region, and spin parameter a for a circular orbit; we obtained the Carter’s constant Q, a, and the radius in the case of a spherical orbit solution. In other cases where only one X-ray QPO is seen, we localized the orbital parameters for NLSy1 galaxies REJ 1034+396, 2XMM J123103.2+110648, MS 2254.9-3712, Mrk 766, and MCG-06-30-15. By applying the lighthouse model, we found that a kinematic origin of the jet based γ-ray and optical QPOs, in a relativistic MHD framework, is possible. Based on the inbuilt Hamiltonian formulation with a power-law distribution in the orbital energy of the plasma consisting of only circular or spherical trajectories, we show that the resulting Fourier power spectral density (PSD) has a break corresponding to the energy at ISCO. Further, we derive connection formulae between the slopes in the PSD and that of the energy distribution. Overall, given the preliminary but promising results of these relativistic orbit models to match the observed QPO frequencies and PSD at diverse scales in the inner corona and the jet, it motivates us to build detailed models, including a transfer function for the energy spectrum in the corona and relativistic MHD jet models for plasma flow and its polarization properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Article
Short-Term X-ray Variability during Different Activity Phases of Blazars S5 0716+714 and PKS 2155-304
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030066 - 06 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 970
Abstract
We explored the statistical properties of short-term X-ray variability using long-exposure XMM-Newton data during high X-ray variability phases of blazars S5 0716+714 and PKS 2155-304. In general, the hardness ratio shows correlated variations with the source flux state (count rate), but in a [...] Read more.
We explored the statistical properties of short-term X-ray variability using long-exposure XMM-Newton data during high X-ray variability phases of blazars S5 0716+714 and PKS 2155-304. In general, the hardness ratio shows correlated variations with the source flux state (count rate), but in a few cases, mainly the bright phases, the trend is complex with both correlation and anti-correlation, indicating spectral evolution. Stationarity tests suggest the time series are non-stationarity or have trend stationarity. Except for one, none of the histogram fits resulted in a reduced-χ21 for a normal and log-normal profile but a normal profile is favored in general. On the contrary, the Anderson–Darling test favors log-normal with a test-statistic value lower for log-normal over normal for all the observations, even if out of significance limits. None of the IDs show linear RMS-flux relation. The contrary inferences from different widely used statistical methods indicate that a careful analysis is needed while the complex behavior of count rate with hardness ratio suggests spectral evolution over a few 10 s of kilo-seconds during bright phases of the sources. In these cases, the spectrum extracted from whole observation may not be meaningful for spectral studies and certainly not a true representation of the spectral state of the source. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Article
Habitable Zones in Binary Star Systems: A Zoology
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030065 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1163
Abstract
Several concepts have been brought forward to determine where terrestrial planets are likely to remain habitable in multi-stellar environments. Isophote-based habitable zones, for instance, rely on insolation geometry to predict habitability, whereas radiative habitable zones take the orbital motion of a potentially habitable [...] Read more.
Several concepts have been brought forward to determine where terrestrial planets are likely to remain habitable in multi-stellar environments. Isophote-based habitable zones, for instance, rely on insolation geometry to predict habitability, whereas radiative habitable zones take the orbital motion of a potentially habitable planet into account. Dynamically informed habitable zones include gravitational perturbations on planetary orbits, and full scale, self consistent simulations promise detailed insights into the evolution of select terrestrial worlds. All of the above approaches agree that stellar multiplicity does not preclude habitability. Predictions on where to look for habitable worlds in such environments can differ between concepts. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of current approaches and present simple analytic estimates for the various types of habitable zones in binary star systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Habitability of Planets in Stellar Binary Systems)
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Article
X-ray Flux and Spectral Variability of the TeV Blazars Mrk 421 and PKS 2155-304
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 64; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030064 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 913
Abstract
We reviewed X-ray flux and spectral variability properties studied to date by various X-ray satellites for Mrk 421 and PKS 2155-304, which are TeV emitting blazars. Mrk 421 and PKS 2155-304 are the most X-ray luminous blazars in the northern and southern hemispheres, [...] Read more.
We reviewed X-ray flux and spectral variability properties studied to date by various X-ray satellites for Mrk 421 and PKS 2155-304, which are TeV emitting blazars. Mrk 421 and PKS 2155-304 are the most X-ray luminous blazars in the northern and southern hemispheres, respectively. Blazars show flux and spectral variabilities in the complete electromagnetic spectrum on diverse timescales ranging from a few minutes to hours, days, weeks, months and even several years. The flux and spectral variability on different timescales can be used to constrain the size of the emitting region, estimate the super massive black hole mass, find the dominant emission mechanism in the close vicinity of the super massive black hole, search for quasi-periodic oscillations in time series data and several other physical parameters of blazars. Flux and spectral variability is also a dominant tool to explain jet as well as disk emission from blazars at different epochs of observations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
Article
X-ray and Gamma-ray Variability of NGC 1275
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030063 - 28 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1215
Abstract
Gamma-ray emission from the bright radio source 3C 84, associated with the Perseus cluster, is ascribed to the radio galaxy NGC 1275 residing at the centre of the cluster. Study of the correlated X-ray/gamma-ray emission from this active galaxy, and investigation of the [...] Read more.
Gamma-ray emission from the bright radio source 3C 84, associated with the Perseus cluster, is ascribed to the radio galaxy NGC 1275 residing at the centre of the cluster. Study of the correlated X-ray/gamma-ray emission from this active galaxy, and investigation of the possible disk-jet connection, are hampered because the X-ray emission, particularly in the soft X-ray band (2–10 keV), is overwhelmed by the cluster emission. Here we present a method to spectrally decouple the cluster and active galactic nucleus (AGN) emission in imaging X-ray detectors. We use three sets of simultaneous Niel Gehrels Swift XRT and NuStar data. These observations were made during the period 2015 November to 2017 February, when a huge increase in the gamma-ray emission was observed. We find that the gamma-ray emission shows a very high degree of variability (40%–50%) on time scales of 1–10 days, whereas the hard X-ray emission, associated with the AGN, shows a low variability (∼15%–30%), on various time scales in the range of 0.01–60 days. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Article
X-ray Spectral Evolution of High Energy Peaked Blazars
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030062 - 25 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 965
Abstract
The synchrotron hump of the high energy peaked blazars generally lies in the 0.1–10 keV range and such sources show extreme flux and spectral variability in X-ray bands. Various spectral studies showed that the X-ray spectra of high energy peaked blazars are curved [...] Read more.
The synchrotron hump of the high energy peaked blazars generally lies in the 0.1–10 keV range and such sources show extreme flux and spectral variability in X-ray bands. Various spectral studies showed that the X-ray spectra of high energy peaked blazars are curved and better described by the log-parabolic model. The curvature is attributed to the energy dependent statistical acceleration mechanism. In this work, we review the X-ray spectral studies of high energy peaked blazars. It is found that the log-parabolic model well describes the spectra in a wide energy interval around the peak. The log-parabolic model provides the possibility of investigating the correlation between the spectral parameters derived from it. Therefore, we compiled the studies of correlations between the various parameters derived from the log-parabolic model and their implications to describe the variability mechanism of blazars. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
Article
Observing Planetary and Pre-Planetary Nebulae with the James Webb Space Telescope
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030061 - 12 Aug 2020
Viewed by 1288
Abstract
Most stars in the Universe that leave the main sequence in a Hubble time will end their lives evolving through the Planetary Nebula (PN) evolutionary phase. The heavy mass loss which occurs during the preceding Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) phase is important across [...] Read more.
Most stars in the Universe that leave the main sequence in a Hubble time will end their lives evolving through the Planetary Nebula (PN) evolutionary phase. The heavy mass loss which occurs during the preceding Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) phase is important across astrophysics, dramatically changing the course of stellar evolution, contributing to the dust content of the interstellar medium, and influencing its chemical composition. The evolution from the AGB phase to the PN phases remains poorly understood, especially the dramatic transformation that occurs in the morphology of the mass-ejecta as AGB stars enter the post-AGB phase and their round circumstellar envelopes evolve into pre-PNe (PPNe) and then to PNe. The majority of PPNe and PNe deviate strongly from spherical symmetry. Strong binary interactions most likely play a fundamental role in influencing this evolutionary phase, but the details of these interactions remain shrouded in mystery. Thus, understanding the formation and evolution of these objects is of wide astrophysical importance. PNe have long been known to emit across a very large span of wavelengths, from the radio to X-rays. Extensive use of space-based observatories at X-ray (Chandra/ XMM-Newton), optical (HST) and mid- to far-infrared (Spitzer, Herschel) wavelengths in recent years has produced significant new advances in our knowledge of these objects. Given the expected advent of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) in the near future, we focus on future high-angular-resolution, high-sensitivity observations at near and mid-IR wavelengths with JWST that can help in addressing the major unsolved problems in the study of PNe and their progenitors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Workplans II: Workshop for Planetary Nebula Observations)
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Review
UV Spectroscopy of Massive Stars
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030060 - 12 Aug 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1463
Abstract
We present a review of UV observations of massive stars and their analysis. We discuss O stars, luminous blue variables, and Wolf–Rayet stars. Because of their effective temperature, the UV (9123200 Å) provides invaluable diagnostics not available at other wavebands. [...] Read more.
We present a review of UV observations of massive stars and their analysis. We discuss O stars, luminous blue variables, and Wolf–Rayet stars. Because of their effective temperature, the UV (9123200 Å) provides invaluable diagnostics not available at other wavebands. Enormous progress has been made in interpreting and analysing UV data, but much work remains. To facilitate the review, we provide a brief discussion on the structure of stellar winds, and on the different techniques used to model and interpret UV spectra. We discuss several important results that have arisen from UV studies including weak-wind stars and the importance of clumping and porosity. We also discuss errors in determining wind terminal velocities and mass-loss rates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Star Formation in the Ultraviolet)
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Article
X-ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazar H 2356-309
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030059 - 10 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 930
Abstract
We present the results of timing and spectral analysis of the blazar H 2356-309 using XMM-Newton observations. This blazar is observed during 13 June 2005–24 December 2013 in total nine observations. Five of the observations show moderate flux variability with amplitude 1.7–2.2%. We [...] Read more.
We present the results of timing and spectral analysis of the blazar H 2356-309 using XMM-Newton observations. This blazar is observed during 13 June 2005–24 December 2013 in total nine observations. Five of the observations show moderate flux variability with amplitude 1.7–2.2%. We search for the intra-day variability timescales in these five light curves, but did not find in any of them. The fractional variability amplitude is generally lower in the soft bands than in the hard bands, which is attributed to the energy dependent synchrotron emission. Using the hardness ratio analysis, we search for the X-ray spectral variability along with flux variability in this source. However, we did not find any significant spectral variability on intra-day timescales. We also investigate the X-ray spectral curvature of blazar H 2356-309 and found that six of our observations are well described by the log parabolic model with α = 1.99–2.15 and β = 0.03–0.18. Three of our observations are well described by power law model. The break energy of the X-ray spectra varies between 1.97–2.31 keV. We investigate the correlation between various parameters that are derived from log parabolic model and their implications are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Article
Temporal and Spectral Variability of OJ 287 before the April–June 2020 Outburst
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030058 - 06 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 838
Abstract
We present the results of a temporal and spectral study of the BL Lacertae object OJ 287 in optical, UV, and X-ray bands with observations performed by Swift satellite during September 2019–March 2020. In this period, the source showed moderate variability characterized by [...] Read more.
We present the results of a temporal and spectral study of the BL Lacertae object OJ 287 in optical, UV, and X-ray bands with observations performed by Swift satellite during September 2019–March 2020. In this period, the source showed moderate variability characterized by variability amplitude of ∼22–31% in all the wavelengths on a short timescale, except the hard X-ray band which was variable by only ∼8%. We observed that the X-ray flux of the source was significantly dominated by the soft photons below 2 keV. Soft lags of ∼45 days were detected between the optical/UV and soft X-ray emissions, while there is no correlation between the hard X-rays and the lower energy bands indicating the presence of two emission components or electron populations. Although two components contribute to the X-ray emission, most of the 0.3–10 keV spectra were well fitted with an absorbed power-law model which outlines the dominance of synchrotron over inverse Compton (IC) mechanism. The X-ray spectra follow a weak “softer when brighter” trend. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Review
Close Binary Perspectives
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030057 - 03 Aug 2020
Viewed by 1076
Abstract
Development of analytic binary star models is discussed in historical and on-going perspective, beginning with an overview of paradigm shifts, the merits of direct (rectification-free) models, and fundamental four-type binary system morphology. Attention is called to the likelihood that many or even most [...] Read more.
Development of analytic binary star models is discussed in historical and on-going perspective, beginning with an overview of paradigm shifts, the merits of direct (rectification-free) models, and fundamental four-type binary system morphology. Attention is called to the likelihood that many or even most cataclysmic variables may be of the double contact morphological type. Eclipsing binary distance estimates differ from those of standard candles in being individually measurable—without reliance on (usually nearby) objects that are assumed similar. Recent progress on circumstellar accretion disk models is briefly summarized, with emphasis on the separate roles of fluid dynamic, structural, and analytic models. Time-related parameters (ephemeris, apsidal motion, and light travel time) now can be found with a unified algorithm that processes light curves, velocity curves, and pre-existing eclipse timings together, without need to compute any new timings. Changes in data publication practices are recommended and logical errors and inconsistencies in terminology are noted. Parameter estimation strategies are discussed. Full article
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Article
Parameters of the Supernova-Driven Interstellar Turbulence
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030056 - 31 Jul 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 977
Abstract
Galactic dynamo models take as input certain parameters of the interstellar turbulence, most essentially the correlation time τ, root-mean-square turbulent speed u, and correlation scale l. However, these quantities are difficult, or, in the case of τ, impossible, to [...] Read more.
Galactic dynamo models take as input certain parameters of the interstellar turbulence, most essentially the correlation time τ, root-mean-square turbulent speed u, and correlation scale l. However, these quantities are difficult, or, in the case of τ, impossible, to directly observe, and theorists have mostly relied on order of magnitude estimates. Here we present an analytic model to derive these quantities in terms of a small set of more accessible parameters. In our model, turbulence is assumed to be driven concurrently by isolated supernovae (SNe) and superbubbles (SBs), but clustering of SNe to form SBs can be turned off if desired, which reduces the number of model parameters by about half. In general, we find that isolated SNe and SBs can inject comparable amounts of turbulent energy into the interstellar medium, but SBs do so less efficiently. This results in rather low overall conversion rates of SN energy into turbulent energy of ∼1–3%. The results obtained for l, u and τ for model parameter values representative of the Solar neighbourhood are consistent with those determined from direct numerical simulations. Our analytic model can be combined with existing dynamo models to predict more directly the magnetic field properties for nearby galaxies or for statistical populations of galaxies in cosmological models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Perspectives on Galactic Magnetism)
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Article
NuSTAR View of TeV Blazar Mrk 501
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030055 - 25 Jul 2020
Viewed by 1106
Abstract
We report the results of flux and spectral variability studies of all seven Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observations of TeV γ-ray emitting blazar Markarian (or Mrk) 501. We found strong evidence of intraday variability in 3–79 keV X-ray light curves [...] Read more.
We report the results of flux and spectral variability studies of all seven Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) observations of TeV γ-ray emitting blazar Markarian (or Mrk) 501. We found strong evidence of intraday variability in 3–79 keV X-ray light curves (LCs) of Mrk 501 during four out of these seven observations. We examined spectral variability using a model-independent hardness-ratio analysis and found a general “harder-when-brighter” behaviour in two observations. We also investigated the nature of 3–79 keV X-ray spectra of TeV blazar Mrk 501 and found that five out of seven spectra are well described by the curved log-parabola models with photon indices (at 10 keV) α 2.12–2.32 and a curvature β 0.15–0.28. The two other spectra are somewhat better represented by simple power-law models with photon indices 2.70 and 2.75. We briefly discuss available physical models to explain our results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue X-Ray Flux and Spectral Variability of Blazars)
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Editorial
Debate on the Physics of Galactic Rotation and the Existence of Dark Matter
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030054 - 15 Jul 2020
Viewed by 1389
Abstract
This Special Issue was motivated by the disparate explanations of galactic dynamics promulgated by different philosophical camps [...] Full article
Article
Magnetism Science with the Square Kilometre Array
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030053 - 06 Jul 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 1539
Abstract
The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) will answer fundamental questions about the origin, evolution, properties, and influence of magnetic fields throughout the Universe. Magnetic fields can illuminate and influence phenomena as diverse as star formation, galactic dynamics, fast radio bursts, active galactic nuclei, large-scale [...] Read more.
The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) will answer fundamental questions about the origin, evolution, properties, and influence of magnetic fields throughout the Universe. Magnetic fields can illuminate and influence phenomena as diverse as star formation, galactic dynamics, fast radio bursts, active galactic nuclei, large-scale structure, and dark matter annihilation. Preparations for the SKA are swiftly continuing worldwide, and the community is making tremendous observational progress in the field of cosmic magnetism using data from a powerful international suite of SKA pathfinder and precursor telescopes. In this contribution, we revisit community plans for magnetism research using the SKA, in light of these recent rapid developments. We focus in particular on the impact that new radio telescope instrumentation is generating, thus advancing our understanding of key SKA magnetism science areas, as well as the new techniques that are required for processing and interpreting the data. We discuss these recent developments in the context of the ultimate scientific goals for the SKA era. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Perspectives on Galactic Magnetism)
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Review
Rotational Disruption of Astrophysical Dust and Ice—Theory and Applications
Galaxies 2020, 8(3), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/galaxies8030052 - 06 Jul 2020
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 1468
Abstract
Dust is an essential component of the interstellar medium (ISM) and plays an important role in many different astrophysical processes and phenomena. Traditionally, dust grains are known to be destroyed by thermal sublimation, Coulomb explosions, sputtering, and shattering. The first two mechanisms arise [...] Read more.
Dust is an essential component of the interstellar medium (ISM) and plays an important role in many different astrophysical processes and phenomena. Traditionally, dust grains are known to be destroyed by thermal sublimation, Coulomb explosions, sputtering, and shattering. The first two mechanisms arise from the interaction of dust with intense radiation fields and high-energy photons (extreme UV), which work in a limited astrophysical environment. The present review is focused on a new destruction mechanism present in the dust-radiation interaction that is effective in a wide range of radiation fields and has ubiquitous applications in astrophysics. We first describe this new mechanism of grain destruction, namely rotational disruption induced by Radiative Torques (RATs) or RAdiative Torque Disruption (RATD). We then discuss rotational disruption of nanoparticles by mechanical torques due to supersonic motion of grains relative to the ambient gas, which is termed MEchanical Torque Disruption (METD). These two new mechanisms modify properties of dust and ice (e.g., size distribution and mass), which affects observational properties, including dust extinction, thermal and nonthermal emission, and polarization. We present various applications of the RATD and METD mechanisms for different environments, including the ISM, star-forming regions, astrophysical transients, and surface astrochemistry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dust Evolution in Galaxy and Galaxy Cluster Models)
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