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Title: The Impact of White Dwarf Luminosity Profiles on Oscillation Frequencies

Abstract

KIC 08626021 is a pulsating DB white dwarf (WD) of considerable recent interest, and the first of its class to be extensively monitored by Kepler for its pulsation properties. Fitting the observed oscillation frequencies of KIC 08626021 to a model can yield insights into its otherwise-hidden internal structure. Template-based WD models choose a luminosity profile where the luminosity is proportional to the enclosed mass, $${L}_{r}\,\propto \,{M}_{r}$$, independent of the effective temperature T eff. Evolutionary models of young WDs with T eff ≳ 25,000 K suggest that neutrino emission gives rise to luminosity profiles with L r $${/}\!\!\!\!\!\!{\propto }$$ M r . We explore this contrast by comparing the oscillation frequencies between two nearly identical WD models: one with an enforced $${L}_{r}\propto {M}_{r}$$ luminosity profile, and the other with a luminosity profile determined by the star's previous evolution history. We find that the low-order g-mode frequencies differ by up to ≃70 μHz over the range of Kepler observations for KIC 08626021. This suggests that by neglecting the proper thermal structure of the star (e.g., accounting for the effect of plasmon neutrino losses), the model frequencies calculated by using an $${L}_{r}\propto {M}_{r}$$ profile may have uncorrected, effectively random errors at the level of tens of μHz. A mean frequency difference of 30 μHz, based on linearly extrapolating published results, suggests a template model uncertainty in the fit precision of ≃12% in WD mass, ≃9% in the radius, and ≃3% in the central oxygen mass fraction.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [4]; ORCiD logo [5]; ORCiD logo [6]
  1. Arizona State Univ., Tempe, AZ (United States); Joint Inst. for Nuclear Astrophysics (JINA), East Lansing, MI (United States). Center for the Evolution of the Elements (JINA-CEE)
  2. Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)
  3. Univ. of California, Santa Barbara, CA (United States)
  4. Univ. of Liege, (Belgium)
  5. Joint Inst. for Nuclear Astrophysics (JINA), East Lansing, MI (United States). Center for the Evolution of the Elements (JINA-CEE); Michigan State Univ., East Lansing, MI (United States); Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
  6. Arizona State Univ., Tempe, AZ (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA); National Science Foundation (NSF)
OSTI Identifier:
1561074
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-18-29196
Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213
Grant/Contract Number:  
89233218CNA000001
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
The Astrophysical Journal. Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 867; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2041-8213
Publisher:
Institute of Physics (IOP)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; stars: evolution; stars: individual (KIC 08626021); stars: interiors; stars: oscillations; white dwarfs

Citation Formats

Timmes, Frances X., Townsend, Richard H. D., Bauer, Evan B., Thoul, Anne, Fields Jr., Carl Edward, and Wolf, William M. The Impact of White Dwarf Luminosity Profiles on Oscillation Frequencies. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aae70f.
Timmes, Frances X., Townsend, Richard H. D., Bauer, Evan B., Thoul, Anne, Fields Jr., Carl Edward, & Wolf, William M. The Impact of White Dwarf Luminosity Profiles on Oscillation Frequencies. United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aae70f.
Timmes, Frances X., Townsend, Richard H. D., Bauer, Evan B., Thoul, Anne, Fields Jr., Carl Edward, and Wolf, William M. Thu . "The Impact of White Dwarf Luminosity Profiles on Oscillation Frequencies". United States. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aae70f. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1561074.
@article{osti_1561074,
title = {The Impact of White Dwarf Luminosity Profiles on Oscillation Frequencies},
author = {Timmes, Frances X. and Townsend, Richard H. D. and Bauer, Evan B. and Thoul, Anne and Fields Jr., Carl Edward and Wolf, William M.},
abstractNote = {KIC 08626021 is a pulsating DB white dwarf (WD) of considerable recent interest, and the first of its class to be extensively monitored by Kepler for its pulsation properties. Fitting the observed oscillation frequencies of KIC 08626021 to a model can yield insights into its otherwise-hidden internal structure. Template-based WD models choose a luminosity profile where the luminosity is proportional to the enclosed mass, ${L}_{r}\,\propto \,{M}_{r}$, independent of the effective temperature Teff. Evolutionary models of young WDs with Teff ≳ 25,000 K suggest that neutrino emission gives rise to luminosity profiles with L r ${/}\!\!\!\!\!\!{\propto }$ M r . We explore this contrast by comparing the oscillation frequencies between two nearly identical WD models: one with an enforced ${L}_{r}\propto {M}_{r}$ luminosity profile, and the other with a luminosity profile determined by the star's previous evolution history. We find that the low-order g-mode frequencies differ by up to ≃70 μHz over the range of Kepler observations for KIC 08626021. This suggests that by neglecting the proper thermal structure of the star (e.g., accounting for the effect of plasmon neutrino losses), the model frequencies calculated by using an ${L}_{r}\propto {M}_{r}$ profile may have uncorrected, effectively random errors at the level of tens of μHz. A mean frequency difference of 30 μHz, based on linearly extrapolating published results, suggests a template model uncertainty in the fit precision of ≃12% in WD mass, ≃9% in the radius, and ≃3% in the central oxygen mass fraction.},
doi = {10.3847/2041-8213/aae70f},
journal = {The Astrophysical Journal. Letters},
number = 2,
volume = 867,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {11}
}

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