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Astrophysics Luncheon Seminar

Investigating the Origin of the Stars Closest to the Milky Way Supermassive Black Hole
Presented by Devin Chu
University of California, Los Angeles

Monday, October 26, 2020
Virtual Event starts at 12:00 noon

The formation mechanism of the young stars called "S-stars" located within an arcsecond of the Milky Way supermassive black hole remains a mystery. Proposed formation scenarios for these S-stars include the tidal disruption of a binary system and migration from the clockwise disk of young stars. Identifying current binary systems among the S-stars can provide important constraints for these formation mechanisms. Binary stars also play a significant role in the evolution and dynamics of the clusters they live in. While binary systems are important for understanding the history of the young star cluster at the Galactic Center, there have been limited surveys for binaries of the region. With two decades of integral field spectroscopy data and advanced tools for fitting mid-infrared stellar spectra, it is feasible to conduct a comprehensive spectroscopic binary search of the Galactic Center S-stars. I will present a framework for searching for spectroscopic binaries. This analysis uses 20 years of spectroscopy data and includes a sample of 29 stars located closest to the supermassive black hole. With these data and framework, I can place constraints on potential companion masses and the intrinsic binary fraction. I will also discuss how these limits have implications for the proposed S-stars' formation mechanisms.

JPL Contact: Varoujan Gorjian (4-2068)

SVCP Astrophysics

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