P. Francois

French National Centre for Scientific Research, Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France

Are you P. Francois?

Claim your profile

Publications (206)515.61 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We obtained spectra for two giants of Crater (Crater J113613-105227 and Crater J113615-105244) using X-Shooter at the VLT. The spectra have been analysed with the MyGIsFoS code using a grid of synthetic spectra computed from one dimensional, Local Thermodynamic Equilibrium (LTE) model atmospheres. Effective temperature and surface gravity have been derived from photometry measured from images obtained by the Dark Energy Survey. The radial velocities are 144.3+-4.0 km/s for Crater J113613-105227 and and 134.1+-4.0 km/s for Crater J113615-105244. The metallicities are [Fe/H]=-1.73 and [Fe/H]=-1.67, respectively. Beside the iron abundance we could determine abundances for nine elements: Na, Mg, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Ni and Ba. For Na and Ba we took into account deviations from LTE, since the corrections are significant. The abundance ratios are similar in the two stars and resemble those of Galactic stars of the same metallicity. On the deep photometric images we could detect several stars that lie to the blue of the turn-off. conclusions heading (optional), leave it empty if necessary The radial velocities imply that both stars are members of the Crater stellar system. The difference in velocity between the two taken at face value, implies a velocity dispersion > 3.7 km/s at 95% confidence level. Our spectroscopic metallicities are in excellent agreement with that determined by previous investigations using photometry. Our deep photometry and the spectroscopic metallicity imply an age of 7 Gyr for the main population of the system. The stars to the blue of the turn-off can be interpreted as a younger population, of the same metallicity and an age of 2.2 Gyr. Finally, spatial and kinematical parameters support the idea that this system is associated to the galaxies Leo~IV and Leo~V. All the observations favour the interpretation of Crater as a dwarf galaxy. (Abridged).
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 06/2015; DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201526366 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Gaia-ESO Survey (GES) is a large public spectroscopic survey at the European Southern Observatory Very Large Telescope. A key aim is to provide precise radial velocities (RVs) and projected equatorial velocities (v sin i) for representative samples of Galactic stars, that will complement information obtained by the Gaia astrometry satellite. We present an analysis to empirically quantify the size and distribution of uncertainties in RV and v sin i using spectra from repeated exposures of the same stars. We show that the uncertainties vary as simple scaling functions of signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) and v sin i, that the uncertainties become larger with increasing photospheric temperature, but that the dependence on stellar gravity, metallicity and age is weak. The underlying uncertainty distributions have extended tails that are better represented by Student's t-distributions than by normal distributions. Parametrised results are provided, that enable estimates of the RV precision for almost all GES measurements, and estimates of the v sin i precision for stars in young clusters, as a function of S/N, v sin i and stellar temperature. The precision of individual high S/N GES RV measurements is 0.22-0.26 km/s, dependent on instrumental configuration.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 05/2015; in press. · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Context. The inner disc, linking the thin disc with the bulge, has been somehow neglected in the past because of intrinsic difficulties in its study, due, e.g., to crowding and high extinction. Open clusters located in the inner disc are among the best tracers of its chemistry at different ages and distances. Aims. We analyse the chemical patterns of four open clusters located within 7 kpc of the Galactic Centre and of field stars to infer the properties of the inner disc with the Gaia-ESO survey idr2/3 data release. Methods. We derive the parameters of the newly observed cluster, Berkeley 81, finding an age of about 1 Gyr and a Galactocentric distance of 5.4 kpc. We construct the chemical patterns of clusters and we compare them with those of field stars in the Solar neighbourhood and in the inner-disc samples. Results. Comparing the three populations we observe that inner-disc clusters and field stars are both, on average, enhanced in [O/Fe], [Mg/Fe] and [Si/Fe]. Using the idr2/3 results of M67, we estimate the non-local thermodynamic equilibrium (NLTE) effect on the abundances of Mg and Si in giant stars. After empirically correcting for NLTE effects, we note that NGC 6705 and Be 81 still have a high [{\alpha}/Fe]. Conclusions. The location of the four open clusters and of the field population reveals that the evolution of the metallicity [Fe/H] and of [alpha/Fe] can be explained within the framework of a simple chemical evolution model: both [Fe/H] and [{\alpha}/Fe] of Trumpler 20 and of NGC 4815 are in agreement with expectations from a simple chemical evolution model. On the other hand, NGC 6705, and at a lower level Berkeley 81, have higher [{\alpha}/Fe] than expected for their ages, location in the disc, and metallicity. These differences might originate from local enrichment processes as explained in the inhomogeneous evolution framework.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: A robust classification of Cepheids into their different sub-classes and, in particular, between classical and Type II Cepheids, is necessary to properly calibrate the period-luminosity relations and for populations studies in the Galactic disc. Type II Cepheids are, however, very diverse, and classifications based either on intrinsic (period, light curve) or external parameters (e.g., [Fe/H], |z|) do not provide a unique classification. We want to ascertain the classification of two Cepheids, HQ Car and DD Vel, that are sometimes classified as classical Cepheids and sometimes as Type II Cepheids. To achieve this goal, we examine both their chemical composition and the presence of specific features in their spectra. We find emission features in the H{\alpha} and in the 5875.64 {\AA} He I lines that are typical of W Vir stars. The [Na/Fe] (or [Na/Zn]) abundances are typical of thick-disc stars, while BL Her stars are Na-overabundant ([Na/Fe]>+0.5 dex). Finally, the two Cepheids show a possible (HQ Car) or probable (DD Vel) signature of mild dust-gas separation that is usually observed only in long-period type II Cepheids and RV Tau stars. These findings clearly indicate that HQ Car and DD Vel are both Type II Cepheids from the W Vir sub-class. Several studies have reported an increase in the Cepheids' abundance dispersion towards the outer (thin) disc. A detailed inspection of the Cepheid classification, in particular for those located in the outer disc, will indicate whether this feature is real or simply an artefact of the inclusion of type II Cepheids belonging to the thick disc in the current samples.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 05/2015; DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201425541 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In the course of the TOPoS (Turn Off Primordial Stars) survey, aimed at discovering the lowest metallicity stars, we have found several carbon-enhanced metal-poor (CEMP) stars. We here present our analysis of six CEMP stars. Calcium and carbon are the only elements that can be measured in all six stars. The range is -5.0<=[Ca/H]< -2.1 and 7.12<=A(C)<=8.65. For star SDSS J1742+2531 we were able to detect three FeI lines from which we deduced [Fe/H]=-4.80, from four CaII lines we derived [Ca/H]=-4.56, and from synthesis of the G-band we derived A(C)=7.26. For SDSS J1035+0641 we were not able to detect any iron lines, yet we could place a robust (3sigma) upper limit of [Fe/H]< -5.0 and measure the Ca abundance, with [Ca/H]=-5.0, and carbon, A(C)=6.90. No lithium is detected in the spectrum of SDSS J1742+2531 or SDSS J1035+0641, which implies a robust upper limit of A(Li)<1.8 for both stars. Our measured carbon abundances confirm the bimodal distribution of carbon in CEMP stars, identifying a high-carbon band and a low-carbon band. We propose an interpretation of this bimodality according to which the stars on the high-carbon band are the result of mass transfer from an AGB companion, while the stars on the low-carbon band are genuine fossil records of a gas cloud that has also been enriched by a faint supernova (SN) providing carbon and the lighter elements. (Abridged)
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We present the abundance analysis for a sample of 7 red giant branch stars in the metal-poor globular cluster NGC 4372 based on UVES spectra acquired as part of the Gaia-ESO Survey. This is the first extensive study of this cluster from high resolution spectroscopy. We derive abundances of O, Na, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, Sc, Ti, Fe, Cr, Ni, Y, Ba, and La. We find a metallicity of [Fe/H] = -2.19 $\pm$ 0.03 and find no evidence for a metallicity spread. This metallicity makes NGC 4372 one of the most metal-poor galactic globular clusters. We also find an {\alpha}-enhancement typical of halo globular clusters at this metallicity. Significant spreads are observed in the abundances of light elements. In particular we find a Na-O anti-correlation. Abundances of O are relatively high compared with other globular clusters. This could indicate that NGC 4372 was formed in an environment with high O for its metallicity. A Mg-Al spread is also present which spans a range of more than 0.5 dex in Al abundances. Na is correlated with Al and Mg abundances at a lower significance level. This pattern suggests that the Mg-Al burning cycle is active. This behavior can also be seen in giant stars of other massive, metal-poor clusters. A relation between light and heavy s-process elements has been identified.
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We present new homogeneous measurements of Na, Al and three alpha-elements (Mg, Si, Ca) for 75 Galactic Cepheids. The abundances are based on high spectral resolution (R ~ 38,000) and high signal-to-noise ratio (S/N ~ 50-300) spectra collected with UVES at ESO VLT. The current measurements were complemented with Cepheid abundances either provided by our group (75) or available in the literature, for a total of 439 Galactic Cepheids. Special attention was given in providing a homogeneous abundance scale for these five elements plus iron (Genovali et al. 2013, 2014). In addition, accurate Galactocentric distances (RG) based on near-infrared photometry are also available for all the Cepheids in the sample (Genovali et al. 2014). They cover a large fraction of the Galactic thin disk (4.1 <= RG <= 18.4 kpc). We found that the above five elements display well defined linear radial gradients and modest standard deviations over the entire range of RG. Moreover, the [element/Fe] abundance ratios are constant across the entire thin disk; only the Ca radial distribution shows marginal evidence of a positive slope. These results indicate that the chemical enrichment history of iron and of the quoted five elements has been quite similar across the four quadrants of the Galactic thin disk. The [element/Fe] ratios are also constant over the entire period range. This empirical evidence indicates that the chemical enrichment of Galactic Cepheids has also been very homogenous during the range in age that they cover (~10-300 Myr). Once again, [Ca/Fe] vs. log(P) shows a (negative) gradient, being underabundant among youngest Cepheids. Finally, we also found that Cepheid abundances agree quite well with similar abundances for thin and thick disk dwarf stars and they follow the typical Mg-Al and Na-O correlations.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 03/2015; DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201525894 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Large spectroscopic surveys have enabled in the recent years the computation of three-dimensional interstellar extinction maps thanks to accurate stellar atmospheric parameters and line-of-sight distances. Such maps are complementary to 3D maps extracted from photometry, allowing a more thorough study of the dust properties. Our goal is to use the high-resolution spectroscopic survey Gaia-ESO in order to obtain with a good distance resolution the interstellar extinction and its dependency as a function of the environment and the Galactocentric position. We use the stellar atmospheric parameters of more than 5000 stars, obtained from the Gaia-ESO survey second internal data release, and combine them with optical (SDSS) and near-infrared (VISTA) photometry as well as different sets of theoretical stellar isochrones, in order to calculate line-of-sight extinction and distances. The extinction coefficients are then compared with the literature to discuss their dependancy on the stellar parameters and position in the Galaxy. Within the errors of our method, our work does not show that there is any dependence of the interstellar extinction coefficient on the atmospheric parameters of the stars. We do not find any evidence of the variation of E(J-H)/E(J-K) with the angle from the Galactic centre nor with Galactocentric distance. This suggests that we are dealing with a uniform extinction law in the SDSS ugriz bands and the near-IR JHKs bands. Therefore, extinction maps using mean colour-excesses and assuming a constant extinction coefficient can be used without introducing any systematic errors.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 02/2015; 577. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201425333 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This paper describes the analysis of UVES and GIRAFFE spectra acquired by the Gaia-ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey in the fields of young clusters whose population includes pre-main sequence (PMS) stars. Both methods that have been extensively used in the past and new ones developed in the contest of the Gaia-ESO survey enterprise are available and used. The internal precision of these quantities is estimated by inter-comparing the results obtained by such different methods, while the accuracy is estimated by comparison with independent external data, like effective temperature and surface gravity derived from angular diameter measurements, on a sample of benchmarks stars. Specific strategies are implemented to deal with fast rotation, accretion signatures, chromospheric activity, and veiling. The analysis carried out on spectra acquired in young clusters' fields during the first 18 months of observations, up to June 2013, is presented in preparation of the first release of advanced data products. Stellar parameters obtained with the higher resolution and larger wavelength coverage from UVES are reproduced with comparable accuracy and precision using the smaller wavelength range and lower resolution of the GIRAFFE setup adopted for young stars, which allows us to provide with confidence stellar parameters for the much larger GIRAFFE sample. Precisions are estimated to be $\approx$ 120 K r.m.s. in Teff, $\approx$0.3 dex r.m.s. in logg, and $\approx$0.15 dex r.m.s. in [Fe/H], for both the UVES and GIRAFFE setups.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 01/2015; in press. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201424759 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics 01/2015; DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201425266 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: It has been noted that, in classical extremely metal-poor (EMP) stars, the abundance ratio of Sr and Ba, is always higher than [Sr/Ba] = -0.5, the value of the solar r-only process; however, a handful of EMP stars have recently been found with a very low Sr/Ba ratio. We try to understand the origin of this anomaly by comparing the abundance pattern of the elements in these stars and in the classical EMP stars. Four stars with very low Sr/Ba ratios were observed and analyzed within LTE approximation through 1D (hydrostatic) model atmosphere, providing homogeneous abundances of nine neutron-capture elements. In CS 22950-173, the only turnoff star of the sample, the Sr/Ba ratio is, in fact, found to be higher than the r-only solar ratio, so the star is discarded. The remaining stars (CS 29493-090, CS 30322-023, HE 305-4520) are cool evolved giants. They do not present a clear carbon enrichment. The abundance patterns of the neutron-capture elements in the three stars are strikingly similar to a theoretical s-process pattern. This pattern could at first be attributed to pollution by a nearby AGB, but none of the stars presents a clear variation in the radial velocity indicating the presence of a companion. The stellar parameters seem to exclude any internal pollution in a TP-AGB phase for at least two of these stars. The possibility that the stars are early-AGB stars polluted during the core He flash does not seem compatible with the theory.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 10/2014; 571. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201423658 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Gaia-ESO Survey is obtaining high-quality spectroscopic data for about 10^5 stars using FLAMES at the VLT. UVES high-resolution spectra are being collected for about 5000 FGK-type stars. These UVES spectra are analyzed in parallel by several state-of-the-art methodologies. Our aim is to present how these analyses were implemented, to discuss their results, and to describe how a final recommended parameter scale is defined. We also discuss the precision (method-to-method dispersion) and accuracy (biases with respect to the reference values) of the final parameters. These results are part of the Gaia-ESO 2nd internal release and will be part of its 1st public release of advanced data products. The final parameter scale is tied to the one defined by the Gaia benchmark stars, a set of stars with fundamental atmospheric parameters. A set of open and globular clusters is used to evaluate the physical soundness of the results. Each methodology is judged against the benchmark stars to define weights in three different regions of the parameter space. The final recommended results are the weighted-medians of those from the individual methods. The recommended results successfully reproduce the benchmark stars atmospheric parameters and the expected Teff-log g relation of the calibrating clusters. Atmospheric parameters and abundances have been determined for 1301 FGK-type stars observed with UVES. The median of the method-to-method dispersion of the atmospheric parameters is 55 K for Teff, 0.13 dex for log g, and 0.07 dex for [Fe/H]. Systematic biases are estimated to be between 50-100 K for Teff, 0.10-0.25 dex for log g, and 0.05-0.10 dex for [Fe/H]. Abundances for 24 elements were derived: C, N, O, Na, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, Sc, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Y, Zr, Mo, Ba, Nd, and Eu. The typical method-to-method dispersion of the abundances varies between 0.10 and 0.20 dex.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 10/2014; 570:A122. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201423937 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Fornax is one of the most massive dwarf spheroidal galaxies in the Local Group. The Fornax field star population is dominated by intermediate age stars but star formation was going on over almost its entire history. It has been proposed that Fornax experienced a minor merger event. Despite recent progress, only the high metallicity end of Fornax field stars ([Fe/H]>-1.2 dex) has been sampled in larger number via high resolution spectroscopy. We want to better understand the full chemical evolution of this galaxy by better sampling the whole metallicity range, including more metal poor stars. We use the VLT-FLAMES multi-fibre spectrograph in high-resolution mode to determine the abundances of several alpha, iron-peak and neutron-capture elements in a sample of 47 individual Red Giant Branch stars in the Fornax dwarf spheroidal galaxy. We combine these abundances with accurate age estimates derived from the age probability distribution from the colour-magnitude diagram of Fornax. Similar to other dwarf spheroidal galaxies, the old, metal-poor stars of Fornax are typically alpha-rich while the young metal-rich stars are alpha-poor. In the classical scenario of the time delay between SNe II and SNe Ia, we confirm that SNe Ia started to contribute to the chemical enrichment at [Fe/H] between -2.0 and -1.8 dex. We find that the onset of SNe Ia took place between 12-10 Gyrs ago. The high values of [Ba/Fe], [La/Fe] reflect the influence of SNe Ia and AGB stars in the abundance pattern of the younger stellar population of Fornax. Our findings of low [alpha/Fe] and enhanced [Eu/Mg] are compatible with an initial mass function that lacks the most massive stars and with star formation that kept going on throughout the whole history of Fornax. We find that massive stars kept enriching the interstellar medium in alpha-elements, although they were not the main contributor to the iron enrichment.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 09/2014; 572. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201423919 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The Gaia-ESO Survey is a large public spectroscopic survey that aims to derive radial velocities and fundamental parameters of about 10^5 Milky Way stars in the field and in clusters. Observations are carried out with the multi-object optical spectrograph FLAMES, using simultaneously the medium resolution (R~20,000) GIRAFFE spectrograph and the high resolution (R~47,000) UVES spectrograph. In this paper, we describe the methods and the software used for the data reduction, the derivation of the radial velocities, and the quality control of the FLAMES-UVES spectra. Data reduction has been performed using a workflow specifically developed for this project. This workflow runs the ESO public pipeline optimizing the data reduction for the Gaia-ESO Survey, performs automatically sky subtraction, barycentric correction and normalisation, and calculates radial velocities and a first guess of the rotational velocities. The quality control is performed using the output parameters from the ESO pipeline, by a visual inspection of the spectra and by the analysis of the signal-to-noise ratio of the spectra. Using the observations of the first 18 months, specifically targets observed multiple times at different epochs, stars observed with both GIRAFFE and UVES, and observations of radial velocity standards, we estimated the precision and the accuracy of the radial velocities. The statistical error on the radial velocities is sigma~0.4 km s^-1 and is mainly due to uncertainties in the zero point of the wavelength calibration. However, we found a systematic bias with respect to the GIRAFFE spectra (~0.9 km s^-1) and to the radial velocities of the standard stars (~0.5 kms^-1) retrieved from the literature. This bias will be corrected in the future data releases, when a common zero point for all the setups and instruments used for the survey will be established.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 05/2014; 565:A113. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201423619 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Lithium is a key element for studying the mixing mechanisms operating in stellar interiors. It can also be used to probe the chemical evolution of the Galaxy and the Big Bang nucleosynthesis. Measuring the abundance of Lithium in stars belonging to Open Clusters (hereafter OC) allows a detailed comparison with stellar evolutionary models. NGC 2243 is particularly interesting thanks to its relative low metallicity ([Fe/H]=-0.54 ± 0.10 dex). We performed a detailed analysis of high-resolution spectra obtained with the multi-object facility FLAMES at the VLT 8.2m telescope. Lithium abundance has been measured in 27 stars. We found a Li dip center of 1.06 M☉, which is significantly smaller than that observed in solar metallicity and metal-rich clusters. This finding confirms and strengthens the conclusion that the mass of the stars in the Li dip strongly depends on stellar metallicity. The mean Li abundance of the cluster is log n(Li) = 2.70 dex, which is substantially higher than that observed in 47 Tue. We derived an iron abundance of [Fe/H]=-0.54±0.10 dex for NGC 2243, in agreement (within the errors) with previous findings.
    04/2014; 1594(1). DOI:10.1063/1.4874052
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Moderately r-process-enriched stars (r-I) are at least four times as common as those that are greatly enriched in r-process elements (r-II), and the abundances in their atmospheres are important tools for obtaining a better understanding of the nucleosynthesis processes responsible for the origin of the elements beyond the iron peak. The main aim of this work is to derive abundances for a sample of seven metal-poor stars with classified as r-I stars, to understand the role of these stars for constraining the astrophysical nucleosynthesis event(s) that is(are) responsible for the production of the r-process, and to investigate whether they differ, in any significant way, from the r-II stars. We carried out a detailed abundance analysis based on high-resolution spectra obtained with the VLT/UVES spectrograph. The OSMARCS LTE 1D model atmosphere grid was employed, along with the spectrum synthesis code Turbospectrum. We have derived abundances of light elements Li, C, and N, alpha-elements, odd-Z elements, iron-peak elements, and the trans-iron elements from the first peak, the second peak, the third peak, and the actinides regions. The results are compared with values for these elements for r-II and normal very and extremely metal-poor stars reported in the literature, ages based on radioactive chronometry are explored using different models, and a number of conclusions about the r-process and the r-I stars are presented. Hydrodynamical models were used for some elements, and general behaviors for the 3D corrections were presented.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 04/2014; 565. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201423826 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We present homogeneous and accurate iron abundances for 42 Galactic Cepheids based on high-spectral resolution (R~38,000) high signal-to-noise ratio (SNR>100) optical spectra collected with UVES at VLT (128 spectra). The above abundances were complemented with high-quality iron abundances provided either by our group (86) or available in the literature. We paid attention in deriving a common metallicity scale and ended up with a sample of 450 Cepheids. We also estimated for the entire sample accurate individual distances by using homogeneous near-infrared photometry and the reddening free Period-Wesenheit relations. The new metallicity gradient is linear over a broad range of Galactocentric distances (Rg~5-19 kpc) and agrees quite well with similar estimates available in the literature (-0.060+/-0.002 dex/kpc). We also uncover evidence which suggests that the residuals of the metallicity gradient are tightly correlated with candidate Cepheid Groups (CGs). The candidate CGs have been identified as spatial overdensities of Cepheids located across the thin disk. They account for a significant fraction of the residual fluctuations, and in turn for the large intrinsic dispersion of the metallicity gradient. We performed a detailed comparison with metallicity gradients based on different tracers: OB stars and open clusters. We found very similar metallicity gradients for ages younger than 3 Gyrs, while for older ages we found a shallower slope and an increase in the intrinsic spread. The above findings rely on homogeneous age, metallicity and distance scales. Finally we found, by using a large sample of Galactic and Magellanic Cepheids for which are available accurate iron abundances, that the dependence of the luminosity amplitude on metallicity is vanishing.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 03/2014; 566. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201323198 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Open clusters are key tools to study the spatial distribution of abundances in the disk and their evolution with time. Using the first release of stellar parameters and abundances of the Gaia-ESO Survey, we analyse the chemical properties of stars in three old/intermediate-age open clusters, namely NGC 6705, NGC 4815, and Trumpler 20, all located in the inner part of the Galactic disk at Galactocentric radius R$_{GC}\sim$7 kpc, aiming at proving their homogeneity and at comparing them with the field population. We study the abundance ratios of elements belonging to two different nucleosynthetic channels: $\alpha$-elements and iron-peak elements. The main results can be summarised as follows: i) cluster members are chemically homogeneous within 3-$\sigma$ in all analysed elements; ii) the three clusters have comparable [El/Fe] patters within $\sim$1-$\sigma$, but they differ in their global metal content [El/H], with NGC 4815 having the lowest metallicity. Their [El/Fe] ratios show differences and analogies with those of the field population, both in the solar neighbourhood and in the bulge/inner disk; iii) comparing the abundance ratios with the results of two chemical evolution models and with field star abundance distributions, we find that the abundance ratios of Mg, Ni, Ca in NGC 6705 might require an inner birthplace, implying a subsequent variation of its R$_{GC}$ during its lifetime, consistent with previous orbit determination. The full dataset of the Gaia-ESO Survey will be a superlative tool to constrain the chemical evolution of our Galaxy by disentangling different formation and evolution scenarios.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 03/2014; 563:A44. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201322977 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The metal-weak tail of the metallicity distribution function (MDF) of the Galactic Halo stars contains crucial information on the formation mode of the first generation of stars. To determine this observationally, it is necessary to observe large numbers of extremely metal-poor stars. We present here the Turn-Off Primordial Stars survey (TOPoS) that is conducted as an ESO Large Programme at the VLT. This project has {four} main goals: (i) to understand the formation of low-mass stars in a low-metallicity gas: determine the metal-weak tail of the halo MDF below [M/H]=-3.5. In particular, we aim at determining the critical metallicity, that is the lowest metallicity sufficient for the formation of low-mass stars; (ii) to determine the relative abundance of the elements in extremely metal-poor stars, which are the signature of the massive first stars; (iii) to determine the trend of the lithium abundance at the time when the Galaxy formed; and (iv) to derive the fraction of C-enhanced extremely metal-poor stars with respect to normal extremely metal-poor stars. The large number of stars observed in the SDSS provides a good sample of candidates of stars at extremely low metallicity. Candidates with turn-off colours down to magnitude g=20 were selected from the low-resolution spectra of SDSS by means of an automated procedure. X-Shooter has the potential of performing the necessary follow-up spectroscopy, providing accurate metallicities and abundance ratios for several key elements for these stars. We here present the stellar parameters of the first set of stars. The nineteen stars range in iron abundance between -4.1 and -2.9 dex relative to the Sun. Two stars have a high radial velocity and, according to our estimate of their kinematics, appear to be marginally bound to the Galaxy and are possibly accreted from another galaxy.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 10/2013; 560. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201322488 · 4.48 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Context. Galactic abundance gradients set strong constraints to chemo-dynamical evolutionary models of the Milky Way. Given the period-luminosity relations that provide accurate distances and the large number of spectral lines, Cepheids are excellent tracers of the present-day abundance gradients. Aims. We want to measure the Galactic abundance gradient of several chemical elements. While the slope of the Cepheid iron gradient did not vary much from the very first studies, the gradients of the other elements are not that well constrained. In this paper we focus on the inner and outer regions of the Galactic thin disk. Methods. We use high-resolution spectra (FEROS, ESPADONS, NARVAL) to measure the abundances of several light (Na, Al), a (Mg, Si, S, Ca), and heavy elements (Y, Zr, La, Ce, Nd, Eu) in a sample of 65 Milky Way Cepheids. Combining these results with accurate distances from period-Wesenheit relations in the near-infrared enables us to determine the abundance gradients in the Milky Way. Results. Our results are in good agreement with previous studies on either Cepheids or other tracers. In particular, we confirm an upward shift of +/- 0.2 dex for the Mg abundances, as has recently been reported. We also confirm the existence of a gradient for all the heavy elements studied in the context of a local thermodynamic equilibrium analysis. However, for Y, Nd, and especially La, we find lower abundances for Cepheids in the outer disk than reported in previous studies, leading to steeper gradients. This effect can be explained by the differences in the line lists used by different groups. Conclusions. Our data do not support a flattening of the gradients in the outer disk, in agreement with recent Cepheid studies and chemo-dynamical simulations. This is in contrast to the open cluster observations but remains compatible with a picture where the transition zone between the inner disk and the outer disk would move outward with time.
    Astronomy and Astrophysics 10/2013; 558:A31. DOI:10.1051/0004-6361/201322115 · 4.48 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

4k Citations
515.61 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2010–2015
    • French National Centre for Scientific Research
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
  • 2007–2015
    • Paris Diderot University
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
    • Odessa National University
      Odessa, Odessa, Ukraine
    • Observatoire de Haute-Provence
      Manosque, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
  • 2013
    • Université de Picardie Jules Verne
      Amiens, Picardie, France
  • 1987–2011
    • Observatoire de Paris
      Lutetia Parisorum, Île-de-France, France
  • 2006
    • National Institute of Astrophysics
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 2004
    • Università degli Studi di Trieste
      Trst, Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy
  • 2002
    • University of São Paulo
      San Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
  • 2001
    • University of Santiago, Chile
      CiudadSantiago, Santiago, Chile