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Title: Uncovering multiple populations with washington photometry. I. The globular cluster NGC 1851

The analysis of multiple populations (MPs) in globular clusters (GCs) has become a forefront area of research in astronomy. Multiple red giant branches (RGBs), subgiant branches (SGBs), and even main sequences (MSs) have now been observed photometrically in many GCs, while broad abundance distributions of certain elements have been detected spectroscopically in most, if not all, GCs. UV photometry has been crucial in discovering and analyzing these MPs, but the Johnson U and the Stromgren and Sloan u filters that have generally been used are relatively inefficient and very sensitive to reddening and atmospheric extinction. In contrast, the Washington C filter is much broader and redder than these competing UV filters, making it far more efficient at detecting MPs and much less sensitive to reddening and extinction. Here, we investigate the use of the Washington system to uncover MPs using only a 1 m telescope. Our analysis of the well-studied GC NGC 1851 finds that the C filter is both very efficient and effective at detecting its previously discovered MPs in the RGB and SGB. Remarkably, we have also detected an intrinsically broad MS best characterized by two distinct but heavily overlapping populations that cannot be explained by binaries, fieldmore » stars, or photometric errors. The MS distribution is in very good agreement with that seen on the RGB, with ∼30% of the stars belonging to the second population. There is also evidence for two sequences in the red horizontal branch, but this appears to be unrelated to the MPs in this cluster. Neither of these latter phenomena have been observed previously in this cluster. The redder MS stars are also more centrally concentrated than the blue MS. This is the first time MPs in an MS have been discovered from the ground, and using only a 1 m telescope. The Washington system thus proves to be a very powerful tool for investigating MPs, and holds particular promise for extragalactic objects where photons are limited.« less
Authors:
; ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Departamento de Astronomía, Casilla 160-C, Universidad de Concepción (Chile)
  2. ESO, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Casilla 19001, Santiago de Chile (Chile)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22342290
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astronomical Journal (New York, N.Y. Online); Journal Volume: 148; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ABUNDANCE; ASTRONOMY; DISTRIBUTION; FILTERS; GALAXY CLUSTERS; PHOTOMETRY; PHOTONS; REDD; STARS; TELESCOPES; TOOLS; WASHINGTON