2016B proposals

Click the title of each proposal to read the abstract

Science Collaboration Key Projects (includes time from all Partners)

Title PI name PI Institution Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Echo Mapping of AGN Accretion Flows Horne, K. St. Andrews U. 185 821 0
Our goals are to measure black hole masses and quasar distances out to redshift ~2 by exploiting light travel time delays to resolve micro-arcsecond structure of accretion flows onto supermassive black holes in active galactic nuclei (AGN). LCOGT is the enabling technology for mass production AGN echo mapping, with FLOYDS for spectroscopy and the 1m scopes for imaging, providing long high-cadence lightcurves. Time delays from the lightcurves give us the radii of emission line and continuum regions around the accreting black hole. The emission-line widths and time delays (weeks-months) give us the black hole mass (Mbh). We will measure Mbh at high redshift by monitoring Hbeta+MgII for 10 AGN at z~0.35, MgII+CIV for 10 at z~1.6, and CIV for 2 lensed quasars at z=2-2.3. We then calibrate the Hbeta+MgII+CIV size-luminosity relations to find Mbh for thousands more AGN. To measure quasar distances, we will use the LCOGT 1m scopes for ugriz lightcurves and measure continuum delays (days) increasing from blue to red, thus probing the accretion disk T(R) profiles, measuring accretion rates (M dM/dt), and distances (D). With D for ~70 quasars out to z~2 we can independently probe the cosmic expansion history with different systematics and at higher redshifts than Type Ia supernovae. If NASA approves the Kepler 2 ecliptic plane survey, we will exploit the unique opportunity to target AGN in the K2 fields.
The Next-Generation Sample of Supernovae Howell, A. LCO 390 1451 0
In the study of supernovae, we are leaving the serendipity era, when we had to learn from what nature provided by chance, and entering the database-driven era, when we can ask questions by comparing statistically significant groups of supernovae. This project will obtain light curves and spectra of 100 Type Ia and 100 core-collapse supernovae per year over three years. We will start light curves and spectroscopy within hours of discovery, and focus on those SNe caught soon after explosion. The goals are fivefold: (1) observe supernovae soon after explosion to search for signs of their progenitors, (2) obtain a large homogeneous sample of supernovae for next generation cosmological studies, (3) obtain a large sample of supernovae for statistical studies comparing groups that are split into different populations, (4) obtain some of the first large samples of the recently discovered classes of rare and exotic explosions, (5) obtain the optical light curves and spectroscopy in support of studies at other wavelengths and using other facilities including UV observations, IR imaging and spectroscopy, host galaxy studies, high resolution spectroscopy, and late-time spectroscopy with large telescopes.
Exploring Cool Planets Beyond the Snowline Street, R. LCO 70 480 0

This proposal aims to explore the one regime in exoplanetary science which remains hardly touched: the population of planets of all masses predicted to form in the cold outer reaches of planetary systems between 0.5-10AU, but which are difficult or impossible to find by most planet hunting techniques. Microlensing is uniquely sensitive to this parameter space and has proven capable of detecting even Earth-mass planets from ground-based observations alone. But to fully characterize these unpredictable and non-repeating events demands high precision photometry with 24/7 monitoring over several weeks, as well as highly responsive scheduling and great flexibility to handle the rapidly evolving targetlist. LCOGT's robotic, queue-scheduled network is ideal. Over the last few years, our team have developed a unique system designed to take maximum advantage of LCOGT's resources in order to detect and characterize cool planets discovered from the subtle photometric anomalies they cause in microlensing lightcurves. Over the course of this Key Project we will double the number of known cool and low mass exoplanets, a population that is a critical test of planetary formation models.

Outer Solar System Studies Bianco, F. NYU 6 6 0

This proposal aims to investigate the Outer Solar System (OSS) with a synergic photometry, spectroscopy and high speed photometry program, which will organize various programs already running at LCOGT with new scientific approaches at a critical time for the study of the OSS, with the New Horizons spacecraft approaching Pluto, Pluto transiting crowded fields, increasing dramatically the rate of occultations, and the coming online of the OSS Origins Survey (OSSOS). The program has two main lines of scientific inquiry: 1) Observe occultations of Pluto over three years in several passbands simultaneously, using LCOGT’s unique capability of having 2-3 telescopes equipped with fast cameras at a single site, and potentially multiple identical sites within a track. We aim to probe the evolution of Pluto’s atmosphere, and support the New Horizons space mission for the years before, during and after the July 2015 encounter. Obtain three-color (B,V, r’) light curves (and associated calibration star-field data) of Pluto, and time-resolved low resolution spectroscopy using FLOYDS to produce constraints on the evolution of Pluto’s atmosphere & surface. 2) Observe occultations of large TNOs, including new discoveries from OSSOS, to gain crucial information about the distribution of sizes, albedos, shapes, densities and thermal inertia & temperatures. Constraints on the surface and atmosphere of Pluto, and on the statistics of TNOs are very powerful tools to constraint SS evolution.

LCO, Inc.

Title PI name PI Institution Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Searching for Optical Counterparts to Gravitational Waves Arcavi, I. LCO 99    
We propose to use the LCOGT 2m telescopes to search for optical counterparts of gravitational waves (GWs) detected during the upcoming advanced LIGO+Virgo observing run 2 (O2). Finding a counterpart will identify the source of the GWs and will help maximize the science produced from the GW detection. The number of galaxies containing 50% of the mass inside a LIGO+Virgo error region during O2 is expected to be 20-30. We will be able to visit all of these galaxies with an LCOGT 2-meter in a single night, and to re-visit them for several consecutive nights with a modest time allocation. With this strategy, a large field of view is not required, but rather rapid-trigger robotic telescopes have the advantage. LCOGT, as the only operator of robotic 2m-class telescopes capable of rapid response in both hemispheres and as a member of the LIGO followup collaboration, is ideal for carrying out this search. While the number of GW triggers during the overlap between O2 and LCOGT semester 2016A is expected to be small (~1), there is potential for a highly significant discovery. In future runs, LIGO and Virgo's detection range will increase but the size of the error-region will decrease, leaving the number of galaxies in the search region roughly the same. The current semester thus provides an opportunity to develop the expertise and techniques that will allow LCOGT to be an important contributor to GW-counterpart searches when LIGO and Virgo reach their full sensitivity.
Image Subtraction Templates for Supernovae McCully, C. LCO 14 90  
To unlock the full scientific potential of the LCOGT supernova (SN) data set, accurate photometry is a necessity. For most of the SN sample, this requires removing host galaxy contamination by subtracting supernova-free template images from the original observations. Here, we propose to obtain reference images for SNe discovered in the second year of the SN Key project. With the data from this proposal, we will be able to build quality SN light curves and measure SN host galaxy properties. This will enable a variety of SN science, including SN Ia cosmology, SN companion shocking, resolving the worrying difference in corrected luminosities seen in SNe Ia in different galaxy types, and probing the physics behind the explosions of massive stars.
Classification and Followup of Tidal Disruption Events Arcavi, I. LCO 85 99  
Tidal Disruption Events (TDEs), the disruptions of stars by supermassive black holes (SMBHs), are now being discovered in real time by optical transient surveys. Recently we found that TDEs exhibit a continuum of spectral properties and that they strongly prefer post-starburst host galaxies. Our classification scheme has aided in the identification of new events, yet the physical mechanisms responsible for the observed emission are not yet understood. LCOGT observations are crucial to nailing down the multi-wavelength properties of TDE emission, in conjunction with radio, UV and X-ray data. New events will also help us investigate the surprising host-galaxy preference shown by TDEs. In 2015B we began a dedicated TDE survey with LCOGT to find more events (the survey, called "SEATiDE", runs through 2016A). Here we propose to continue our successful LCOGT TDE classification and followup program which has so far collected valuable data on several confirmed TDEs. We aim to classify TDE candidates and to collect well-sampled photometry and spectroscopy of three new confirmed TDEs to be discovered during 2016A by SEATiDE and other surveys (e.g. public surveys like ASAS-SN and OGLE, and surveys we have access to as members of the LCOGT Supernova Key Project like iPTF and LSQ). Continuing to discover and follow new TDEs will help map their diversity, a first step towards constraining their physics and enabling their use as a new tool to study otherwise quiescent SMBHs.
Explosion Physics and Progenitors from a One Day Cadence Supernova Search Valenti, S. UC. Davis 30   10
Explosion Physics and Progenitors from a One Day Cadence Supernova Search
Variable Light Curves of Redback Millisecond Pulsars Halpern, J. Columbia U.   100  
Variable Light Curves of Redback Millisecond Pulsars
Commissioning the Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs (NRES) Brown, T. LCO   145  
Commissioning the Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs (NRES)
Establishing a Network of Next Generation SED standards with DA White Dwarfs Matheson, T. NOAO   60  
Establishing a Network of Next Generation SED standards with DA White Dwarfs
Long Baseline Transit Timing of Low-Mass Planets Beyond the Range of RV Street, R. LCO 5 4  
We propose targeted ground-based follow-up of Kepler’s long period transiting planets with detected transit timing variations (TTV) to constrain the masses of low-mass planets, all of which are too low in mass for detectable RV signals, and all of would benefit from transit data beyond the four-year Kepler baseline. Future transit data will significantly improve constraints on the masses and densities of these planets compared with what is possible from the Kepler dataset. Two of our targets are notable for having extreme low densities for planets below 25MEarth. These planets are high profile targets for planet formation models and JWST spectroscopy. They have longer orbital periods than any other transiting planets that have been observed from the ground. Hence, with its flexibility in geographic longitude, LCOGT is uniquely capable of taking these observations.
Monitoring Stellar Activity for Exoplanet Hosts: Essential Support for a Gemini Survey Program Huitson, C. U. Colorado   39  
We propose nightly photometric monitoring of 4 exoplanet host stars with the 1-m network. The proposed program is essential to the success of an accepted Gemini survey, which is the first aimed at characterization of exoplanet clouds. Since understanding clouds is essential to measuring exoplanet compositions, this an important step forward in the field of exoplanet science. The Gemini survey will measure scattering signatures in blue optical transmission spectra during multiple observations to determine cloud species. However, while the blue optical is the only spectral region where clouds can be directly detected, it is also the spectral region where stellar activity produces strong signals in transmission. The proposed LCOGT program is essential in order to dis-entangle contaminating stellar signals from true planetary signals. The stellar contribution varies significantly depending on the number of starspots visible, and only independent measurements of the stellar spot level will enable distinction between the two signals. Long-term, frequent, photometric monitoring throughout the Gemini survey is the only way to measure the stellar spot level at the time of each transit event, by allowing us to model the stellar periodicity, spot evolution and estimate the non-spotted stellar brightness. This is the only way to correct the transmission spectra for stellar effects and accurately characterize the planetary cloud species.
Follow-up of a K2 Transit Candidate in the M35 Open Cluster Ciardi, D. IPAC     18
Follow-up of a K2 Transit Candidate in the M35 Open Cluster
Rotation Periods for Rapidly Rotating L Dwarfs and a Test of Spin-Orbit Alignment Burgasser, A. UCSD 119    
The surfaces of L-type dwarfs have been shown to exhibit asymmetries, either from magnetic spots or cloud features, which manifest as rotationally-synched periodic and aperiodic variability. Various studies have examined how temperature, surface gravity and rotation rate influence these dynamics. However, a confounding factor is the orientation of the spin axis, which is rarely known due to the lack of combined high-resolution spectroscopy and time-series photometry. Over the past 6 years we have conducted a high-resolution spectroscopic survey of L-type dwarfs with Keck/NIRSPEC which have provided several dozen v sin i measurements. We propose monitoring the most rapidly rotating of these to search for periodic variability and measure spin axis orientation. One of our targets, SDSS 0805+4812, is also a tight binaries with a well constrained orbital inclination, which we will compare to spin orientation measurements to make the first test of spin-orbit alignment in the substellar regime.
LCOGT NEO Follow-up Network Lister, T. LCO 10 360 100
Near Earth Objects (NEOs) are our closest neighbors and research into them is important not only for understanding the Solar Systems’ origin and evolution, but also to understand and protect human society from potential impacts. NEOs originate in collisions between bodies in the main asteroid belt and have found their way into near-Earth space via complex dynamical interactions. Understanding these interactions, the populations and the orbital element distribution requires accurate orbits and complete samples for the NEO population, in order to properly debias the sample and correctly model the NEO population. Our previous programs of NEO follow-up on the 2-m and 1-m network have tracked and confirmed over a thousand new NEOs, primarily from the Catalina (CSS) and PanSTARRS1 (PS1) surveys. We wish to complement our comprehensive NASA-funded program on the 1-m network to confirm and characterize new NEOs (and comets & Centaurs) discovered by all the feeder surveys, which now includes 100% of PS1, CSS, NEOWISE and an increasing amount from the new PS2 and ATLAS telescopes. Confirming astrometry & photometry for new NEOWISE candidates is particularly important as this IR survey is unbiased to low-albedo objects allowing a cleaner sample but requires the follow-up to confirm NEOs and provide optical fluxes to derive the albedos.
Multi-wavelength Observations of the T Tauri Planet Candidate PTFO 8-8695 b van Eyken, J. IPAC   136  
Multi-wavelength Observations of the T Tauri Planet Candidate PTFO 8-8695 b
TECH Project 2016B - Warm Jupiters Shporer, A. Caltech   317  
TECH Project 2016B - Warm Jupiters
Characterizing Planets in the Solar Neighborhood Siverd, R. LCO 30 250 250
The most scientifically productive exoplanet discoveries are transiting planets orbiting bright host stars. These are the only ones for which accurate physical parameters (radii, masses, densities, temperatures, compositions) can be determined. However, only ~2% of the ~1300 transiting planets have host stars that are sufficiently bright for such detailed studies. Wide-field photometric transit surveys are best able to provide a statistically significant sample of planets around nearby, bright stars but their candidates require follow-up observations to vet candidates and properly characterize promising systems. The KELT project is such a survey that targets primarily FGK stars with V ~7.5-11 mag. KELT has already published several planetary discoveries from its Northern and Southern telescopes using data from LCOGT, and several more discoveries are in preparation. The Southern LCOGT nodes have been especially critical in the discovery of these planets as the KELT network has much fewer follow-up partners in the South than in the North. We propose to continue our successful program to obtain high precision photometry of KELT candidates and therefore support the discovery of transiting planets around bright stars that are ripe for detailed characterization, especially with the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope.
Understanding blazar emission through multifrequency observations-III Acosta-Pulido, J. IAC   7 6
Understanding blazar emission through multifrequency observations-III
Detection of the Yarkovsky effect for a selection of near-Earth asteroids Greenstreet, S. LCO   120  
Detection of the Yarkovsky effect for a selection of near-Earth asteroids
VaMoS: Variability monitoring of exoplanet host stars Dragomir, D. MIT   175  
VaMoS: Variability monitoring of exoplanet host stars

Australian National University

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Echo Mapping of AGN Accretion Flows Onken, C. 45 21  

ANU contribution to AGN key project.

Transiting Exoplanet CHaracterisation (TECH) Project Bento, J.   25  

ANU contribution to TECH project.

High Precision Photometric Follow-up of HATSouth Planet Candidates Bento, J.   85  
We propose to obtain high precision transit light curves for high priority HATSouth planet candidates. Transiting planets provide unique opportunities for us to understand the properties of exoplanet interior structure, atmospheres, and dynamics. The HATSouth network is the largest ground-based survey for transiting planets, and has already produced six published planets that are suitable for future follow-up studies, as well as over 1000 planet candidates. We will use the LCOGT 1-m network to provide high precision light curves of the transit events of HATSouth planet candidates, these observations will 1) confirm the presence of a planetary transit signal, 2) when combined with other spectroscopic follow-up observations, allow the precise determinations of their system properties, such as planet radius, planet density, planet-star orbital separation, and stellar density. We have shown that the LCOGT 1-m network is perfect for this task, capable of providing high precision light curves, over all longitudes, to measure these time-critical events. We require 100 hours of 1-m time to follow-up 20 high priority planet candidates, these candidates will have been vetted by our observations on the ANU 2.3m telescope, and are the most promising targets from the HATSouth survey.
Precision pulsation parameters of TT Hor Streamer, M.   35 50
Precision pulsation parameters of TT Hor
The Next-Generation Sample of Supernovae Tucker 40 21  

ANU contribution to the Supernova key project.

AGN activity monitoring Peterson, B. 6 13 50

AGN activity monitoring

Host Galaxies of X-shaped radio galaxies Rao, M. 9   50

Host Galaxies of X-shaped radio galaxies

Astrophysics Research Institute - Liverpool John Moores University

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
The Remarkable Recurrent Novae: Probing their contribution to the SN Ia population Darnley, M. 7 5  
We propose to monitor and follow-up erutpions of Local Group recurrent novae (Rne). Recent studies have gorwn the importance of RNe as Type Ia SN progenitors, by a combination of increased population size and WD mass growth models. Key to studying RNe are the recently uncovered ultra-short recurrence period systems, one in the LMC and two in M31 - including the 6-month duty cycle M31N 2008-12a. These observations will continue to monior eurptions from these systems and the queiscent state, following up new eruptions - in particular the predcited 2016 eruption of M31N 2008-12a. 1m-network bservations of M31N 2008-12a will be used to detect the eruption - triggering follow-up observations from facilities such as HST and XMM, with the 2m-netowrk tasked to follow the eruption itself.
Exploring the bright variable sky Bersier, D. 14    
We propose to obtain photometry and spectroscopy of bright transients detected by the All-Sky Automated Survey for Supernovae (ASAS-SN) that is exploring the bright sky, in the range 12 < V < 17. While the main aim of the project is to find and follow nearby SNe, it is finding numerous other transients. We focus here on supernovae (SNe) and tidal disruption events (TDEs) that will be discovered by ASAS-SN. The high survey cadence means that any transient is found soon after eruption. We will obtain photometry and spectroscopy of SNe and follow their evolution to constrain their progenitors and nucleosynthesis. We have demonstrated very fast turn-around time (few hours) between initial observations and classification and we have a good chance of catching a SN shock breakout. This provides excellent constraints on the radius of the progenitor, hence on its evolutionary status. For TDEs, observations will constrain the mass of the supermassive black hole, the physics of the emission and the total accreted mass. We would use LCOGT facilities for photometry (mostly on 1m telescopes) and spectroscopy (2m telescopes). We have already published papers (most of them include LCOGT data) on different classes of objects, including young stellar objects, AGN, several SNe and three tidal disruption events. We have papers nearing completion for several other SNe and another YSO. We can guarantee that there will be exciting and bright events to follow in any semester. Technical requirements: we expect to use 40% of the time in ToO mode for rapid classification of transients. The rest of the time will be used on 1m telescopes for followup, and some time will be on 2m for classification and late-time followup (when transients have faded beyond the capability of 1m).
Spectro-photometric monitoring of Type Ib/c Supernovae Mazzali, P. 14    
We would like to use the LCOGT network to aid in the work we are currently doing on Type Ib/c Supernovae. We lead the follow-up campaign on the ESO public survey Pessto, and collaborate with iPTF and the Carnegie SN Project. We normally provide 8m telescope time for late phase follow-up, so we would focus on targets that are bright enough to be monitored for 6-12 months. Our proposal would include classical SNe Ib/c, IIb, as well as rarer H-poor transients such as faint & fast events and H-poor SuperLuminous SNe (including Pair Instability candidates). LCOGT instruments give us good coverage in the South, which would be complementary with Pessto (which runs on the ESO-NTT and does not get photometry) and the CSP and add to the LT work in the North, where iPTF is also located. Based on previous experience we may be following 10 SNe per year, and would request some 25 hours per semester, mostly for photometry but including some spectroscopy as well.
Studies of Gamma-ray Bursts and the associated Supernovae Kobayashi, S. 13 7  
We would like to use the LCOGT network to continue the work we have been doing on Gamma-ray bursts, extending it to GRB/SNe. Following triggers from Swift (and sometimes Integral) we can use the LCOGT network (mostly the 2 m telescopes) to monitor GRB light curves. These data are used to build statistical samples, diagnose shock physics and central engine properties possibly determine magnetisation properties for bursts in which reverse and forward shocks can be identified and to determine the GRB light contribution at later time when searching for the contribution from the supernova component in lower redshift objects. If a SN is identified (this requires low-redshift GRBs) we will also follow that both photometrically and spectroscopically, combining LCOGT time with LT/TNG time, in order to determine its properties. The chance to study serendipitous/unique events is also important. We distribute the telescope time across northern and southern telescopes, using both 1 and 2m facilities. Gamma-ray bursts are transient events. We are especially interested in the early afterglow phase (a few mins to a few hrs after GRB triggers) to study shock physics and central engine properties. In order to observe such rapidly fading objects, ToO observations are essential.
Multicolour analysis of blazars Jermak, H.   15  
We propose to undertake U, B, V, R and I photometric monitoring of a sample of 21 blazars (AGN with jets pointed toward observer) to monitor their variability in different wavelengths. We currently have (and continue to take) photometric (and polarimetric) data from the RINGO3 polarimeter on the Liverpool Telescope in three non-standard wavelength bands equivalent loosely to red, green and blue. We want to supplement this ever-growing data set with U, B, V, R and I data from the LCOGT 1-metre telescopes to build a better picture of the colour behaviour of these extremely variable and powerful sources, particularly during flaring/brightening events to explore emission mechanisms. Blazars can be split into subclasses according to the location of the synchrotron peak in their spectral energy distributions (at high-, intermediate- and low- frequencies). We will explore the colour-colour differences between these subclasses in 5 optical filters as we continue our analysis in the 3 RINGO3 wavelength bands.

Chilean Astronomical Community

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Constraining the Disk-Braking Paradigm: LCOGT observations of the young Cluster Mon R2 Cieza, L.   150  
Constraining the Disk-Braking Paradigm: LCOGT observations of the young Cluster Mon R2
Testing Type II supernovae as cosmological probes at near-infrared wavelengths Rodriguez, O.   34  
Testing Type II supernovae as cosmological probes at near-infrared wavelengths
Quantifying the companions of long period hot subdwarf binaries. Vos, J.   5  
Quantifying the companions of long period hot subdwarf binaries.
Characterizing ASAS-SN Transients: Physical Properties, Progenitors, Distances, and Rates Prieto, J.   100  
Characterizing ASAS-SN Transients: Physical Properties, Progenitors, Distances, and Rates
Photometric follow-up of planet candidates from the HATSouth project Rabus, M.   11  
The on-going HATSouth project is a wide-field survey searching for transiting extrasolar planets (TEPs) around relatively bright stars. It is producing hundreds of planet candidates per year and it has already announced 17 new planets. In this proposal we request photometric follow-up transit observations of these candidates with 1m-class telescopes. Only this aperture provides enough signal-to-noise for us to take high cadence (2 min) imaging of our candidates and obtain 1-2 mmag precision. This is the level of precision we need for accurate determination of the planetary properties of the systems we uncover. The proposed photometric observations form part of a multi-step strategy for HATSouth follow-up, designed to minimize the use of resources and maximize the confirmed planet yield. The first aim of these photometric observations is to reveal if a given transit-like event has an astrophysical origin and arises from the target star. Additionally, through multi-bandpass observations when possible, we can identify triple system with an eclipsing binary component, which are hidden in the spectrum. The final aim for true exoplanets is to accurately determine their properties.
TAROT-LCOGTN multi-band photometric monitoring of short-period binaries showing evidence of chromospheric activity Mennickent, R.     60
TAROT-LCOGTN multi-band photometric monitoring of short-period binaries showing evidence of chromospheric activity

Faulkes Telescope Project - Cardiff University

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
LMXB Monitoring Lewis, F. 50 10
Monitoring of LMXBs as documented at faulkes-telescope.com/XRB. Continued monitoring of approx 40 transient/quiescent sources.
Education - On Sky Roche, P. 20 20 30
Use of On Sky for FTP education program.
Education - Queue observations Roche, P. 120 100 60
Use of queue observations for FTP education program.
Education - Gaia Alerts Roche, P. 60 20 20
Use of queue observations for responding to Gaia alerts.

Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Optical monitoring of a sample of bright gamma-ray blazars Acosta, J.     15
Optical monitoring of a sample of bright gamma-ray blazars
VRI followup of Be Xray binary systems with LCOGT telescopes Blay, P.     40
VRI followup of Be Xray binary systems with LCOGT telescopes
Shape, Pole, Size, Albedo and Thermal Inertia of Cybele and Hilda Asteroids Licandro, J.     105
Shape, Pole, Size, Albedo and Thermal Inertia of Cybele and Hilda Asteroids
Photometric monitoring of the M dwarfs in the Carmenes sample Bejar, V.     240
Photometric monitoring of the M dwarfs in the Carmenes sample

University of Hawaii - Institute for Astronomy

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
HI STAR Projects Armstrong, JD 45 45 90
The Hawaii Student Teacher Astronomy Research program (HI STAR) is a week long summer program for middle and high school students. At the summer program students work with mentors on starting a research project which the students will continue through the year. The goal ot the HI STAR program is to have students conduct astronomy research projects, enter their projects in the science fair, and eventually major in science, engineering, or technology when they go to college. Typical student research projects include variable stars; asteroid recovery, rotation, and color; exoplanets; galaxies; etc. While this is an EPO program the students are conducting research and some students may submit peer reviewed papers on their research so a proprietary period is desirable.
HI STAR Projects II Armstrong, JD 45 45 90
The Hawaii Student Teacher Astronomy Research program (HI STAR) is a week long summer program for middle and high school students. At the summer program students work with mentors on starting a research project which the students will continue through the year. The goal ot the HI STAR program is to have students conduct astronomy research projects, enter their projects in the science fair, and eventually major in science, engineering, or technology when they go to college. Typical student research projects include variable stars; asteroid recovery, rotation, and color; exoplanets; galaxies; etc. While this is an EPO program the students are conducting research and some students may submit peer reviewed papers on their research so a proprietary period is desirable.
Astro 301 Armstrong, JD 10 10 30
Students at the University of Hawai'i Manoa Astronomy 301 research class will be performing authentic astronomical research. Observations will be collected to support these activities.
0m4 educational data sets Armstrong, JD     90
0m4 educational data sets

National Astronomical Observatories of China

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Multi-band Photometric Monitoring of Extragalactic Transients Discovered by ASAS-SN Dong, S.   70  
We are in a golden era of time-domain astronomy, with several optical transient surveys finding hundreds of sources per year. However, most of these transients are poorly studied due to their relative faintness and lack of follow-up resources. Here we propose to use the LCOGT 1m telescopes to obtain multi-band and well-sampled light curves of a complete sample of nearby extragalactic transients (discovery magnitude V <~ 17 mag, D <~ 200 Mpc), mainly supernovae, that will be selected from the ASAS-SN surveys. The well-sampled light curves obtained with this program will be used to characterize the physical properties of the explosions (e.g., source of the emission, radiated energies, ejecta and 56Ni masses, dust formation) and for constraining their progenitor stars and explosion mechanisms. For Type Ia and Type IIP supernovae, these data will also be used to obtain accurate distances. To augment our high-cadence photometry, we will obtain spectral time-series of the targets via coordination with a several mid-sized telescopes available to us.
Observations of Young Supernovae for Precision Cosmology Wang, X.   105  
NAOC contribution to Supernova key project.
Completion of LCOGT photometric measurements of new classical Cepheids in the northern Galactic disk de Grijs, R.   25  
LCOGT photometric measurements of new classical Cepheids in the northern Galactic disk

South African Astronomical Observatory

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
AGN Reverberation (Echo) Mapping Romero-Colmenero, E.   60  
SAAO contribution to AGN Echo Mapping Key Project
Transiting Exoplanet CHaracterisation (TECH) Project Sefako, R.   50  
SAAO contribution to TECH Project
Time-domain astrophysics of magnetic CVs, continued Potter, S.   60  
Magnetic CV (mCV) research has been an unofficial key SAAO/UCT research programme for the past ~ 3 decades. In that time we have built up expertise in high time domain photometry, spectroscopy and polarimetry of mCVs. Presently we have multiple on-going active observing campaigns using the SALT, SAAO small telescopes and other Gamma and X-ray observatories through international collaborations. This proposal has two main objectives. The first is to boost the scientific output of our ongoing campaigns by providing up-to-date light curves and to provide timely notification of infrequent or rare extreme events (targets of opportunity). Secondly, to extend our time-domain exploration of mCVs to the longer time domain in order to address our lack of knowledge and understanding of the long term physical accretion processes of mCVs.
Optical ToO observations with LCOGT for H.E.S.S. van Soelen, B.   33  
The H.E.S.S. gamma-ray telescope regularly partakes in campaigns to obtain multi-wavelength observations of variable very-high-energy (VHE: E > 100 GeV) ?-ray sources. Here we propose for ToO time on the LCOGT system to provide optical support for such coordinated multiwavelength observations. The most probable targets will be extra-galactic sources such as blazars and GRBs. Blazars display rapid variability across all wavelengths and while some studies have found tight correlations between the optical, X-ray and gamma-ray emissions, others have not. Observed correlations (or lack thereof), which often include more complicated patterns than simple linear flux-flux correlations, place constraints on the particle acceleration and radiation mechanisms at work within these systems. A major part of the science being undertaken with the H.E.S.S. II telescope is the attempted VHE gamma-ray detection of a GRB. While GRBs are routinely observed at MeV energies and have been detected up to 95 GeV by Fermi-LAT, so far none has been detected at energies above 100 GeV. The H.E.S.S. II telescope has a fully automated GRB observation system, automatically repositioning the system for prompt follow-up observations of GRBs, within as short as 60 seconds, without the need for intervention by the observation shift crew. The LCOGT provides a unique resource to allow for simultaneous optical and VHE observations.
Light-Curve of Possible Super-AGB Stars in NGC 6822 Whitelock, P.   2  
We propose obtaining one exposure per month in the RCband of the hot bottom burning (HBB) variables in IC 1613 in order to characterize their variability and in particular to find out if the period of the lithium-rich star is changing. Such a change could indicate that it is undergoing real-time evolution.
Study photometric structure of southern lenticular galaxies in clusters Kniazev, A.   52  
The goal of the project is to study photometric structure of southern lenticular galaxies in clusters. The project supplements the spectral program is now active at SALT. To attribute the stellar population ages and metallicities measured along the slit of spectrograph to certain large-scale components of the galaxies studied, we need the images in gri bands. After data obtaining, we will decompose observed galaxies into bulges and disks to determine strict radial borders and relative brightness contributions of the components at different radii.
Evolutionary Period Changes in Hot Bottom Burning Stars? Menzies, J.   3  
none.
Observations of stellar occultations by large trans-Neptunian Objects Sickafoose, A.   25  
none.

Scottish Universities Physics Alliance

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Exploring Cool Planets Beyond the Snow Line Street, R.   250  
SUPA contribution to Microlensing Key Project
Echo Mapping of AGN Accretion Flows Horne, K. 400  
SUPA contribution to AGN Echo Mapping Key Project
Transiting Exoplanet CHaracterisation (TECH) Project Shporer, A.   100  
SUPA contribution to TECH project.
Transiting Exoplanets Cameron, A.   100  
Follow-up of transiting extrasolar planet candidates identified in ground-based surveys (e.g. WASP,QES).
Time-Domain Observations of Young Stellar Objects (TOYS) Scholz, A.   150  
Young stellar objects show variability on a range of timescales, caused by a variety of physical mechanisms. Some of them are periodic and associated with stellar and disk rotation, others are irregular and based on instabilities. We want to use LCOGT 1-m time to carry out multi-filter monitoring of ~100 YSOs to a) map their (stable) circumstellar environment (hot spots, inner disk bubbles, disk clumps), b) to measure timescales/frequencies for instabilities, and c) to identify specific objects for follow-up with larger telescopes. We plan to focus on one star forming region per semester - Chamaeleon-I in April/May and SigmaOri in November/December. With the Sinistro detectors, the field of view will cover several dozen known and well-characterised YSOs in each region. The regions can be covered almost 24/7 with the 1-m network during these months.
Science from GAIA Alerts Dominik, M.   80  
Follow-up of e.g. GAIA transients.

Tel Aviv University: Israeli Center Of Research Excellence

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Black Holes in binary systems in the LMC Mazeh, T. 150    
Black Holes in binary systems in the LMC
Companions and debris around white dwarfs Maoz, D. 10 280  100
Companions and debris around white dwarfs
Classification and Followup of Tidal Disruption Events Arcavi, I. 15 45  
TAU/ICORE contribution to Classification and Followup of Tidal Disruption Events project.
The Next Generation Sample of Supernovae Howell, D. A.   25  
TAU/ICORE contribution to Supernova key project.

University of Texas

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
The Light Curves of Wolf-Rayet Stars Robinson, E.   33  
The Light Curves of Wolf-Rayet Stars
The Evolution of Planetary Atmospheres Mann, A.   27  
The Evolution of Planetary Atmospheres
Multi-site multi-color time-series photometry of outbursting pulsating white dwarf stars Castanheira, B.   30  
Multi-site multi-color time-series photometry of outbursting pulsating white dwarf stars
Supernova Light Curves with the LCOGT SN Key Project Wheeler, J. C.   30  
U. Texas contribution to Supernova Key Project
Transiting Exoplanet CHaracterisation (TECH) Project Cochran, W.   30  
U.Texas contribution to TECH Project

University of Heidelberg

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Gaia Tracking Altmann, M. 10    
Tracking of the GAIA spacecraft as part of the Ground-Based Optical Tracking (GBOT).
Heidelberg AGN Monitoring Wambsganss, J.   68  
Heidelberg AGN Monitoring

NYU, Abu Dhabi

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
NYU, Abu Dhabi research and education Roberts, M. 13 50  
 

Nanjing University

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Quasar Variability Shi, Y.   250  
Quasar Variability

Queens University Belfast

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Public ESO Spectroscopic Survey of Transient Objects (PESSTO) Follow-up Observations Smartt, S.   83  
Public ESO Spectroscopic Survey of Transient Objects (PESSTO) Follow-up Observations

The Ohio State University

Title PI name Hours (2m) Hours (1m) Hours (0m4)
Photometric Follow-up of ASAS-SN Transients Stanek, K.   91  
Photometric Follow-up of ASAS-SN Transients