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WFIRST ULTRA-PRECISE ASTROMETRY II: ASTEROSEISMOLOGY

  • Gould, Andrew ;
  • Huber, Daniel ;
  • Penny, Matthew ;
  • Stello, Dennis
  • Received : 2014.10.28
  • Accepted : 2014.12.30
  • Published : 2015.04.30

Abstract

WFIRST microlensing observations will return high-precision parallaxes, σ(π) . 0.3 µas, for the roughly 1 million stars with H < 14 in its 2.8 deg2 field toward the Galactic bulge. Combined with its 40,000 epochs of high precision photometry (∼ 0.7 mmag at Hvega = 14 and ∼ 0.1 mmag at H = 8), this will yield a wealth of asteroseismic data of giant stars, primarily in the Galactic bulge but includindvvvvvg a substantial fraction of disk stars at all Galactocentric radii interior to the Sun. For brighter stars, the astrometric data will yield an external check on the radii derived from the two asteroseismic parameters, the large-frequency separation <∆νnl> and the frequency of maximum oscillation power νmax, while for the fainter ones, it will enable a mass measurement from the single measurable asteroseismic parameter νmax. Simulations based on Kepler data indicate that WFIRST will be capable of detecting oscillations in stars from slightly less luminous than the red clump to the tip of the red giant branch, yielding roughly 1 million detections.

Keywords

astrometry;gravitational microlensing;stars: oscillations

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