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The animal health and welfare status in European organic dairy production does not in all aspects meet the organic principles and consumers’ expectations and needs to be improved. To achieve this, tailored herd health planning, targeted to the specific situation of individual farms could be of use. The aim of this study was to apply herd health planning in a structured participatory approach, with impact matrix analysis, not previously used in this context, in European organic dairy farms and to assess changes in animal health and welfare. Herd health planning farm visits were conducted on 122 organic dairy farms in France, Germany and Sweden. The farmer, the herd veterinarian and/or an advisor took part in the farm discussions. The researcher served as facilitator. Baseline data on the animal health status of the individual farm, collected from national milk recording schemes, were presented as an input for the discussion. Thereafter a systematic impact matrix analysis was performed. This was to capture the complexity of individual farms with the aim to identify the farm-specific factors that could have a strong impact on animal health. The participants (i.e. farmer, veterinarian and advisor) jointly identified areas in need of improvement, taking the health status and the interconnected farm system components into account, and appropriate actions were jointly identified. The researcher took minutes during the discussions, and these were shared with the participants. No intervention was made by the researcher, and further actions were left with the participants. The number of actions per farm ranged from 0 to 22. The change in mortality, metabolic diseases, reproductive performance and udder health was assessed at two time points, and potential determinators of the change were evaluated with linear regression models. A significant association was seen between change in udder health, as measured by the somatic cell count, and country. At the first follow-up, a significant association was also found between change in the proportion of prolonged calving interval and the farmers’ desire to improve reproductive health as well as with an increase in herd size, but this was not seen at the second follow-up. The degree of implementation of the actions was good (median 67%, lower quartile 40%, upper quartile 83%). To conclude, the degree of implementation was quite high, improvement of animal health could not be linked to the herd health planning approach. However, the approach was highly appreciated by the participants and deserves further study.
As a measure to manage the climate impact of aviation, significant enhancements to aviation technologies and operations are necessary. When assessing these enhancements and their respective impacts on the climate, it is important that we also quantify the associated uncertainties. This is important to support an effective decision and policymaking process. However, such quantification of uncertainty is challenging, especially in a complex system that comprises multiple interacting components. The uncertainty quantification task can quickly become computationally intractable and cumbersome for one individual or group to manage. Recognizing the challenge of quantifying uncertainty in multicomponent systems, we utilize a divide-and-conquer approach, inspired by the decomposition-based approaches used in multidisciplinary analysis and optimization. Specifically, we perform uncertainty analysis and global sensitivity analysis of our multicomponent aviation system in a decomposition-based manner. In this work, we demonstrate how to handle a high-dimensional multicomponent interface using sensitivity-based dimension reduction and a novel importance sampling method. Our results demonstrate that the decomposition-based uncertainty quantification approach can effectively quantify the uncertainty of a feed-forward multicomponent system for which the component models are housed in different locations and owned by different groups.
Hypervelocity stars (HVSs) are characterized by a total velocity in excess of the Galactic escape speed, and with trajectories consistent with coming from the Galactic Centre. We apply a novel data mining routine, an artificial neural network, to discover HVSs in the TGAS subset of the first data release of the Gaia satellite, using only the astrometry of the stars. We find 80 stars with a predicted probability >90% of being HVSs, and we retrieved radial velocities for 47 of those. We discover 14 objects with a total velocity in the Galactic rest frame >400 km s−1, and 5 of these have a probability >50% of being unbound from the Milky Way. Tracing back orbits in different Galactic potentials, we discover 1 HVS candidate, 5 bound HVS candidates, and 5 runaway star candidates with remarkably high velocities, between 400 and 780 km s−1. We wait for future Gaia releases to confirm the goodness of our sample and to increase the number of HVS candidates.
Our recent studies based on a large sample of K giants with Hipparcos parallaxes and spectroscopic analysis resulted more than a dozen new Li-rich K giants including few super Li-rich ones. Most of the Li-rich K giants including the new ones appear to occur at the luminosity bump in the HR diagram. However, one can’t rule out the possibility of overlap with the clump region where core He-burning K giants reside post He-flash at the tip of RGB. It is important to distinguish field K giants of clump from the bump region in the HR diagram to understand clues for Li production in K giants. In this poster, we explore whether GAIA parallaxes improve to disentangle clump from bump region, more precisely.
The vast majority of stars will become white dwarfs at the end of the stellar life cycle. These remnants are precise cosmic clocks owing to their well constrained cooling rates. Gaia Data Release 2 is expected to discover hundreds of thousands of white dwarfs, which can then be observed spectroscopically with WEAVE and 4MOST. By employing spectroscopically derived atmospheric parameters combined with Gaia parallaxes, white dwarfs can constrain the stellar formation history in the early developing phases of the Milky Way, the initial mass function in the 1.5 to 8 M⊙ range, and the stellar mass loss as well as the state of planetary systems during the post main-sequence evolution.
We use the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data Release 12, which is the largest available white dwarf catalog to date, to study the evolution of the kinematical properties of the population of white dwarfs in the Galactic disc. We derive masses, ages, photometric distances and radial velocities for all white dwarfs with hydrogen-rich atmospheres. For those stars for which proper motions from the USNO-B1 catalog are available the true three-dimensional components of the stellar space velocity are obtained. This subset of the original sample comprises 20,247 objects, making it the largest sample of white dwarfs with measured three-dimensional velocities. Furthermore, the volume probed by our sample is large, allowing us to obtain relevant kinematical information. In particular, our sample extends from a Galactocentric radial distance RG = 7.8 kpc to 9.3 kpc, and vertical distances from the Galactic plane ranging from Z = −0.5 kpc to 0.5 kpc. We examine the mean components of the stellar three-dimensional velocities, as well as their dispersions with respect to the Galactocentric and vertical distances. We confirm the existence of a mean Galactocentric radial velocity gradient, ∂〈VR〉/∂RG = −3 ± 5 km s−1 kpc−1. We also confirm North-South differences in 〈Vz〉. Specifically, we find that white dwarfs with Z > 0 (in the North Galactic hemisphere) have 〈Vz〉 < 0, while the reverse is true for white dwarfs with Z < 0. The age-velocity dispersion relation derived from the present sample indicates that the Galactic population of white dwarfs may have experienced an additional source of heating, which adds to the secular evolution of the Galactic disc.
The nature and origin of the Galactic warp represent one of the open questions posed by Galactic evolution. Thanks to Gaia high precision absolute astrometry, steps towards the understanding of the warp's dynamical nature can be made. Indeed, proper motions for long-lived stable warp are expected to show measurable trends in the component vertical to the galactic plane. Within this context, we search for the kinematic warp signal in the first Gaia data release (DR1). By analyzing distant spectroscopically-identified OB stars in the Hipparcos subset in Gaia DR1, we find that the kinematic trends cannot be explained by a simple model of a long-lived warp. We therefore discuss possible scenarios for the interpretation of the obtained results. We also present current work in progress to select a larger sample of OB star candidates from the Tycho-Gaia Astrometric Solution (TGAS) subsample in DR1, and delineate the points that we will be addressing in the near future.
The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is scheduled for launch in 2018. To operate and observe efficiently, JWST will rely on various external astrometric and photometric catalogues, in particular the HST Guide Star Catalog (GSC), for instance to locate sources accurately on the sky. The incorporation of the Gaia astrometric catalog will improve the absolute astrometry of the GSC and is therefore relevant for JWST operations. We outline how the JWST Science and Operations Center hosted at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) intends to use the Gaia survey results to improve upon operational aspects such as the guiding and the geometric focal plane characterisation of JWST.
We use the TGAS proper motions and parallaxes as well as published and new radial velocities to study the dynamics of nearby moving groups. In particular we try to determine their age using backtracing of the individual members to a common origin. We find that the current data, probably the radial velocities, do not allow to reach a successful conclusion.
TW Hydrae is a very young and nearby association with about 30 known members which is an excellent target for studies on stellar evolution since several of its members present a particular interest (planetary system, brown dwarfs, etc.). With the new data from TGAS and the Gaia DR1 eventually combined with others astrometric data we intend to improve our kinematic knowledge of this association.
Current Galactic surveys, including the Gaia mission, rely on the efficiency of the spectral analysis techniques to provide precise and accurate spectral information (i.e. effective temperature, surface gravity, metallicity, and chemical abundances) in the shortest computational time. In this work, we present a new package to preform complete spectral analyses based on the spectral synthesis technique (Tsantaki et al. 2017, submitted). We focus on deriving atmospheric parameters for FGK-type stars using both high and medium resolution (GIRAFFE) spectra. This method is implemented on the Gaia-ESO benchmark stars to confirm its validity, achieving similar accuracy for the two resolution setups.
Some studies suggested that the chemical abundance trend with the condensation temperature, Tc, is a signature of rocky planet formation. Very recently, a strong Tc trend was reported in ζ2 Ret relative to its companion (ζ1 Ret) and was explained by the presence of a debris disk around ζ2 Ret. We re-evaluated the presence and variability of the Tc trend in this system with a goal to understand the impact of the presence of the debris disk on a star. Our results confirm the reported abundance difference between ζ2 Ret and ζ1 Ret and its dependence on the Tc. However, we also found that the Tc trends depend on the individual spectrum used. We conclude that for the ζ Reticuli system, for example, nonphysical factors can be at the root of the Tc trends for the case of individual spectra. For more details see Adibekyan et al. (2016b).
We have developed a fully automated cluster characterization pipeline, which simultaneously determines cluster membership and fits the fundamental cluster parameters: distance, reddening, and age. We present results for 24 established clusters and compare them to literature values. Given the large amount of stellar data for clusters available from Gaia DR2 in 2018, this pipeline will be beneficial to analyzing the parameters of open clusters in our Galaxy.
White dwarfs are becoming useful tools for many areas of astronomy. They can be used as accurate chronometers over Gyr timescales. They are also clues to the history of star formation in our galaxy. Many of these studies require accurate estimates of the mass of the white dwarf. The theoretical mass-radius relation is often invoked to provide these mass estimates. While the theoretical mass-radius relation is well developed, observational tests of this relation show a much larger scatter in the results than expected. High precision observational tests to confirm this relation are required. Gaia is providing distance measurements which will remove one of the main source of uncertainty affecting most previous observations. We combine Gaia distances with spectra from the Hubble and FUSE satelites to make precise tests of the white dwarf mass-radius relation.
Because of to its exceptional resolving power, Gaia should detect a few thousands gravitational lensed systems. These consist in multiple images of background quasars. The estimated number of lens phenomena in the sky, however, depends on the cosmological model considered. By taking into account the observational bias that will restrict the detection of lensed quasars, identification of these up to a given limiting magnitude will constrain the cosmological parameters.
We have investigated the known gravitationally lensed quasars present in the Gaia DR1, and found that a significant number of components of these systems have been measured and are present in the Gaia DR1 catalogue although quasi none of them have all their components detected. We additionally examined the immediate surroundings of QSOs from the large Quasar catalogue, LQAC3, and detected several configurations compatible with gravitational lensing phenomena. A more global strategy to systematically detect the potential candidates in the various releases of the Gaia catalogue is presented.
In this work we present chemical abundances of heavy elements (Z>28) for a homogeneous sample of 1059 stars from HARPS planet search program. We also derive ages using parallaxes from Hipparcos and Gaia DR1 to compare the results. We study the [X/Fe] ratios for different populations and compare them with models of Galactic chemical evolution. We find that thick disk stars are chemically disjunt for Zn adn Eu. Moreover, the high-alpha metal-rich population presents an interesting behaviour, with clear overabundances of Cu and Zn and lower abundances of Y and Ba with respect to thin disk stars. Several abundance ratios present a significant correlation with age for chemically separated thin disk stars (regardless of their metallicity) but thick disk stars do not present that behaviour. Moreover, at supersolar metallicities the trends with age tend to be weaker for several elements.
Binary and multiple stars have long provided an effective method of testing stellar formation and evolution theories. In particular, wide binary systems with separations > 20,000 au are particularly challenging as their physical separations are beyond the typical size of a collapsing cloud core (5,000 - 10,000 au). We present here a preliminary work in which we make use of the TGAS catalogue and Virtual Observatory tools and services (Aladin, TOPCAT, STILTS, VOSA, VizieR) to identify binary and multiple star candidate systems. The catalogue will be available from the Spanish VO portal (http://svo.cab.inta-csic.es) in the coming months.
Understanding how young stars and their circumstellar disks form and evolve is key to explain how planets form. The evolution of the star and the disk is regulated by different processes, both internal to the system or related to their environment. The former include accretion of material onto the central star, wind emission, and photoevaporation of the disk due to high-energy radiation from the central star. These are best studied spectroscopically, and the distance to the star is a key parameter in all these studies. Here we present new estimates of the distance to a complex of nearby star-forming clouds obtained combining TGAS distances with measurement of extinction on the line of sight. Furthermore, we show how we plan to study the effects of the environment on the evolution of disks with Gaia, using a kinematic modelling code we have developed to model young star-forming regions.
Knowledge of the spin and shape parameters of the asteroids is very important for understanding of the conditions during the creation of our planetary system and formation of asteroid populations. The main belt asteroid and Flora family member 967 Helionape was observed during five apparitions. The observations were made at the Bulgarian National Astronomical Observatory (BNAO) Rozhen, since March 2006 to March 2016. Lihtcurve inversion method (Kaasalainen et al. (2001)), applied on 12 relative lightcurves obtained at various geometric conditions of the asteroid, reveals the spin vector, the sense of rotation and the preliminary shape model of the asteroid. Our aim is to contribute in increasing the set of asteroids with known spin and shape parameters. This could be done with dense lightcurves, obtained during small number of apparitions, in combination with sparse data produced by photometric asteroid surveys such as the Gaia satellite (Hanush (2011)).
Bacteraemia caused by Escherichia coli are particularly frequent and severe, contrasting with the commensal character of the strains found in the digestive tract. A better understanding of the relationships between strains of both origins is needed to unravel the pathogenesis of this disease. Two hundred and forty-three commensal strains were compared to 243 bacteraemic strains isolated from adult hosts matched in terms of gender and age, and from similar location and epoch. Phylogenetic grouping, O-type determination, virulence factor content and antibiotic resistance were compared. Compared to commensal strains, the bacteraemic strains were characterized by a higher proportion of B2, C and D phylogroups, and a lower proportion of A, E and F phylogroups. They also had a lower proportion of the B2 subgroup IV (STc141), a higher proportion of virulence factors, and a higher frequency of antibiotic resistance. These differences were more marked for the bacteraemic strains of urinary tract origin with the presence of specific clones, whereas the bacteraemic strains of digestive origin remained non-significantly different from the commensal strains, except for their antibiotic resistance. Thus, two levels of specialization from commensal strains were demonstrated in the bacteraemic strains: resistance to antibiotics in all cases, and virulence for those of urinary tract origin.