PI: Simon Albrecht, Aarhus University, DK, firstname.lastname@example.org
Address: Department of Physics and Astronomy, Ny Munkegade 120, Aarhus 8000 Denmark
Title: Orientation of stellar spin-axes: A new method to probe star and planet formation
Abstract: The formation of stars and planets is one of the foremost issues in contemporary astrophysics. This proposal aims to study this process using a new approach, making precise measurements of an important and revealing aspect of stellar systems that has heretofore been elusive: the spatial orientation of the stars rotation axes in wide double star systems. Theories make different predictions about whether to expect the rotation axes to be aligned with each other in binary star systems. Measurements of stellar obliquities in close star-star and star-planet systems have revealed systems with strong misalignments. However making the necessary measurements for wide systems and thereby testing theories has become possible only recently with high spectral resolution Optical/IR interferometry. VEGA@CHARA has sufficient sensitivity, spectral -- and spatial resolution to measure the orientation of stellar spin axes for a number of late-type stars. Using the unique capabilities of VEGA we propose to perform a pilot study on two bright stars in the $gamma$,Vir binary.
Program Type: Standard/Galactic
Run 1 (2016A): CHARA/VEGA -- 5hrs
National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360