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The Dark Energy Survey is undertaking an observational programme imaging 1/4 of the southern hemisphere sky with unprecedented photometric accuracy. In the process of observing millions of faint stars and galaxies to constrain the parameters of the dark energy equation of state, the Dark Energy Survey will obtain pre-discovery images of the regions surrounding an estimated 100 gamma-ray bursts over 5 yr. Once gamma-ray bursts are detected by, e.g., the Swift satellite, the DES data will be extremely useful for follow-up observations by the transient astronomy community. We describe a recently-commissioned suite of software that listens continuously for automated notices of gamma-ray burst activity, collates information from archival DES data, and disseminates relevant data products back to the community in near-real-time. Of particular importance are the opportunities that non-public DES data provide for relative photometry of the optical counterparts of gamma-ray bursts, as well as for identifying key characteristics (e.g., photometric redshifts) of potential gamma-ray burst host galaxies. We provide the functional details of the DESAlert software, and its data products, and we show sample results from the application of DESAlert to numerous previously detected gamma-ray bursts, including the possible identification of several heretofore unknown gamma-ray burst hosts.
We derive zphot for sources in the entire (~0.4 deg2) H-HDF-N field with the EAzY code, based on PSF-matched broad-band (U band to IRAC 4.5 μm) photometry. Our catalog consists of a total of 131,678 sources. We find σNMAD = 0.029 for non-X-ray sources. We also classify each object as a star or galaxy through SED fitting. Furthermore, we match our catalog with the 2 Ms CDF-N main X-ray catalog. For the 462 matched non-stellar X-ray sources, we improve their zphot quality (σNMAD = 0.035) by adding three additional AGN templates. We make our photometry and zphot catalog publicly available.
Completing the census of AGN in the Universe is the key to understanding the cosmic evolution of supermassive black holes (SMBH) and galaxies, and to resolving the spectrum of the X-ray background (XRB). However, a large population of AGN, especially the heavily obscured, Compton-thick AGN, are still missing from even the deepest X-ray surveys. The infrared spectra energy distribution (SED) of distant star-forming galaxies can reveal the presence of bright AGN activity. Using some of the deepest infrared, X-ray and radio data available in the GOODS fields, we identify a population of infrared bright quasars at redshift z ~ 2, which are often missed in the X-ray band. Amongst these sources the number of obscured and heavily-obscured quasars is much higher than those previously found in several X-ray and optical selected samples. A unique view on these heavily-obscured quasars is now given at high energies by NuSTAR. I will present the first NuSTAR detection of a heavily obscured quasar at z 2. This source is a potential archetype of the heavily-obscured high-z AGN in which most of the black hole growth is happening, that can explain the mysterious missing fraction of the XRB.
Strophomenid brachiopods have long been interpreted as “snowshoe” strategists, with their flattened concavo-convex valves providing resistance to foundering in very soft sediments. There has been a sharp difference of opinion in whether the shells were oriented with their convex or their concave surface in contact with the sediment. This study, along with independent evidence from sedimentology, ichnology, and morphology, indicates that the strophomenids lived with their shells concave down (convex up). Experiments indicate the force required to push shells into soft cohesive muds is much greater for the convex up than for the convex down orientation. Forces also increase with shell curvature. All measured forces greatly exceed estimates of the downward force exerted by the weight of the shell, indicating that foundering resistance may not have been the key functional requirement. Instead, a convex up orientation would have provided resistance to overturning in currents, in particular if the valves gaped widely. The “snowshoe” may not be the relevant paradigm for the shell morphology of these forms. An alternative is that they functioned more as a tip-resistant base, similar to those of garden umbrellas or stanchions.
The study of variable stars in open clusters via asteroseismology is a powerful tool for the study of stellar evolution and stars in general. That is because stars in clusters can be assumed to originate from the same interstellar cloud, so they share similar properties such as age and overall metallicity. We performed a search for variable stars in the field of the young open star cluster Roslund 2, with photoelectric and CCD photometry acquired at two different telescopes. Within the resulting light curves we have found 12 variable stars. Our measurements confirm three previously known variables.
Faecal moisture content can determine whether faeces appear soft or firm, and faecal character can influence whether owners are satisfied with a dog food. In a previous study, dogs appeared to produce softer faeces after noon. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether time of defecation affected canine faecal water content. A total of eight hound dogs were fed one of four canned diets as a single meal each morning for 1 week per diet in a Latin square design. All four diets contained approximately 77 % moisture and, on a DM basis, 24 MJ/kg gross energy, 23 % crude protein, 32 % crude fat, 31 % N-free extract and 1 % crude fibre. The proportion of dietary protein from soya-derived texturised vegetable protein (TVP):beef was 0:100, 14:86, 29:71 and 57:43, respectively. Soya carbohydrate partially replaced maize starch as TVP increased. Faeces were collected by direct catch during the sixth morning and afternoon of each diet period. Mean faecal moisture content was greater in the afternoon than in the morning (79 v. 71 %; P = 0·01) and increased with dietary TVP (P ≤ 0·0001), and there was an interaction between time of day and percentage TVP (P = 0·003). Faecal moisture content differed from morning to afternoon only with TVP in the diet. Faecal wet weight was similar from morning to afternoon. This suggests that time of day and presence of TVP from soya should be taken into account when evaluating the effect of a diet on faecal form and moisture content in dogs fed once daily.
We present the results of over two decades of radio observations of type IIb Supernovae with the Very Large Array and the Australia Telescope Compact Array. These radio studies illustrate the need for multi-wavelength follow-up to determine the progenitor scenario for type IIb events.
a-Si1−xCx:H superlattice structures were fabricated by photo-CVD and glow discharge deposition. The compositional abruptness of the heterojunction has been confirmed by X-ray diffraction and Auger electron spectroscopy. The optical bandgap of amorphous silicon-based superlattices increases as the well layer thickness decreases. The existence of quantized levels in a-Si:H wells is demonstrated by the observation of resonant tunneling current through the three-barrier two-well structure.
Stress distribution and mass flux in the plane of each grain boundary within a polycrystalline thin-film conductor have been calculated during electromigration for zero flux divergence (steady state) and various boundary conditions. Steady state, representing a balance between the (applied) electric and (induced) stress driving forces, is assumed to develop after a short transient time. Boundary conditions at the intersection of grain boundaries with the top and bottom conductor surfaces (surface junctions) and with the conductor edges (edge junctions) are assumed to be of two types: open (flux passes freely) and closed (zero flux). Flux is assumed to pass freely at the intersection of grain boundaries with each other (triple Junctions). Several grain boundary configurations are considered, including individual boundaries, single triple junctions, and combinations thereof, assuming that bottom surface junctions (conductor/ substrate interface) are closed and that top surface junctions are either open (bare conductor) or closed (passivation layer). Results clearly show the formation of incipient holes and hillocks near the intersection of triple junctions and/or closed (blocked) edge junctions with open surface junctions.
Because of the continuing miniaturization, electromigration (EM) phenomena are still a key issue in reliability of VLSI metallizations. The present study of EM induced voiding and hillocking was performed on unpassivated conductor lines with various widths and current densities. Stressed and unstressed interconnects were carefully examined with SEM and TEM techniques, especially with regard to void densities, void sizes and characteristic lengths between void and hillock. The fatal void shape was related to current density and line width indicating that the failure mechanism changes with decreasing line width and decreasing current density.
Atomic steps are a common defect at surfaces. Observations made with low energy electron microscopy are presented which demonstrate the impact of steps in growth, phase transitions, magnetic and orientational properties of thin films and clusters at surfaces. Most of these observations can be explained if steps modify the overlayer strain or interface energy.
A study of the electrical resisitivity of (Fex.Mn1−x)Si with 0 < x < 1 indicates a crossover from an almost semiconducting state in FeSi to a metallic one in MnSi. Optical measurements show that the electronic structure and the vibrational behaviour appears to be essentially uneffected by the Fe/Mn substitution. Instead, a change of the free carrier density occurs, yielding a temperature and stoichiometry dependent plasma frequency.
The effects of Al, Cu, and Ni on Gate Oxide Integrity (GOI) are evaluated in a critical process sequence relevant for current CMOS technology. The test process is designed to evaluate the GOI effect of these metals after multiple oxide growth and strip steps. This work compares oxide growth in a furnace and Rapid Thermal Processing (RTP). Wearout and E ramp measurements show that Ni contamination is detrimental for GOI only after multiple oxidations. Atomic Force Measurement (AFM) showed that precipitates (presumably NiSi2) form at the interface during the first oxidation. These precipitates are oxidized during the next oxidation and lead to oxide surface roughness and local Fowler Nordheim (FN) current enhancements. RTP results in a higher density of these defects as compared to furnace oxidation. Cu is fast-diffusing into the substrate and leads to defects only during the n+-poly process. Therefore, no influence of the oxide process variations on the Cu defect formation was found. In addition, no difference for furnace or RTP processes was observed. Cu precipitates that form at the poly/oxide interface lead to very pronounced FN current enhancements. As Al is built in the oxide structure, no electrode roughness occurs that leads to FN current enhancement. RTP grown oxides are less affected by Al contamination. Al can be removed by stripping the oxide, whereas Ni and Cu cannot.
The CRESST-II direct Dark Matter search is located in the Gran Sasso underground laboratories, Italy. CaWO4 crystals are used as scintillating targets for WIMP (weakly interacting massive particle) interactions. They are operated as cryogenic calorimeters in combination with a second cryogenic detector used to measure the scintillation light produced in the target crystal. For each particle interaction, the combination of phonon and light signals provides an event by event discrimination which allows to distinguish known particles (alphas, betas, gammas, neutrons) from the expected signal of WIMPs. A major upgrade of the setup comprises modifications of the shielding, installation of a muon-veto, and new read out electronics, as well as a new detector-support structure to accommodate up to 33 detector modules, i.e. 10 kg of target mass. The experiment was thereafter successfully commissioned in 2007. Data obtained during this commissioning phase from 2 detector modules are presented here. Combining the data collected with these two detector modules with data from one single module obtained during the CRESST-I phase, the experiment could already place a limit of ~6 × 10-7 pb for the spin independent WIMP-nucleon scattering cross section at a WIMP mass of ~60 GeV/c2.
EURECA (European Underground Rare Event Calorimeter Array) is an
astro-particle physics facility aiming to directly detect galactic dark
matter. The Laboratoire Souterrain de Modane has been selected as host
laboratory. The EURECA collaboration unites CRESST, EDELWEISS and the
Spanish-French experiment ROSEBUD, thus concentrating and focussing effort
on cryogenic detector research in Europe into a single facility. EURECA will
use a target mass of up to one ton, enough to explore WIMP – nucleon scalar
scattering cross sections in the region of 10-9 – 10-10 picobarn.
A major advantage of EURECA is the planned use of more than just one target
material (multi target experiment for WIMP identification).