Gaia Data Release 1
The Cepheid and RR Lyrae star pipeline and its application to the south ecliptic pole region⋆
1 INAF−Osservatorio Astronomico di Bologna, via Ranzani 1, 40127 Bologna, Italy
2 INAF−Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, Salita Moiariello 16, 80131 Napoli, Italy
3 Department of Astronomy, University of Geneva, Ch. des Maillettes 51, 1290 Versoix, Switzerland
4 Department of Astronomy, University of Geneva, Ch. d’Ecogia 16, 1290 Versoix, Switzerland
5 Konkoly Observatory, Research Centre for Astronomy and Earth Sciences, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, 1121 Budapest, Konkoly Thege M. ut 15-17, Hungary
6 SixSq, Rue du Bois-du-Lan 8, 1217 Geneva, Switzerland
7 Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, Madingley Road, Cambridge CB3 0HA, UK
8 Royal Observatory of Belgium, Ringlaan 3, 1180 Brussels, Belgium
9 Institute of Astronomy, KU Leuven, Celestijnenlaan 200D, 3001 Leuven, Belgium
10 Dpto. Inteligencia Artificial, UNED, c/ Juan del Rosal 16, 28040 Madrid, Spain
Corresponding author: G. Clementini, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Received: 25 August 2016
Accepted: 11 October 2016
Context. The European Space Agency spacecraft Gaia is expected to observe about 10 000 Galactic Cepheids and over 100 000 Milky Way RR Lyrae stars (a large fraction of which will be new discoveries), during the five-year nominal lifetime spent scanning the whole sky to a faint limit of G = 20.7 mag, sampling their light variation on average about 70 times.
Aims. We present an overview of the Specific Objects Study (SOS) pipeline developed within the Coordination Unit 7 (CU7) of the Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC), the coordination unit charged with the processing and analysis of variable sources observed by Gaia, to validate and fully characterise Cepheids and RR Lyrae stars observed by the spacecraft. The algorithms developed to classify and extract information such as the pulsation period, mode of pulsation, mean magnitude, peak-to-peak amplitude of the light variation, subclassification in type, multiplicity, secondary periodicities, and light curve Fourier decomposition parameters, as well as physical parameters such as mass, metallicity, reddening, and age (for classical Cepheids) are briefly described.
Methods. The full chain of the CU7 pipeline was run on the time series photometry collected by Gaia during 28 days of ecliptic pole scanning law (EPSL) and over a year of nominal scanning law (NSL), starting from the general Variability Detection, general Characterization, proceeding through the global Classification and ending with the detailed checks and typecasting of the SOS for Cepheids and RR Lyrae stars (SOS Cep&RRL). We describe in more detail how the SOS Cep&RRL pipeline was specifically tailored to analyse Gaia’s G-band photometric time series with a south ecliptic pole (SEP) footprint, which covers an external region of the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), and to produce results for confirmed RR Lyrae stars and Cepheids to be published in Gaia Data Release 1 (Gaia DR1).
Results. G-band time series photometry and characterisation by the SOS Cep&RRL pipeline (mean magnitude and pulsation characteristics) are published in Gaia DR1 for a total sample of 3194 variable stars (599 Cepheids and 2595 RR Lyrae stars), of which 386 (43 Cepheids and 343 RR Lyrae stars) are new discoveries by Gaia. All 3194 stars are distributed over an area extending 38 degrees on either side from a point offset from the centre of the LMC by about 3 degrees to the north and 4 degrees to the east. The vast majority are located within the LMC. The published sample also includes a few bright RR Lyrae stars that trace the outer halo of the Milky Way in front of the LMC.
Key words: stars: general / stars: oscillations / stars: variables: Cepheids / stars: variables: RR Lyrae / methods: data analysis / Magellanic Clouds
The full atlas of light curves is available at http://davide2.bo.astro.it/~felix/
© ESO, 2016