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Reliability Checks on the Indo-US Stellar Spectral Library Using Artificial Neural Networks and Principal Component Analysis
The Indo-US coudé feed stellar spectral library (CFLIB) madeavailable to the astronomical community recently by Valdes et al. (2004,ApJS, 152, 251) contains spectra of 1273 stars in the spectral region3460 to 9464Å at a high resolution of 1Å (FWHM) and a widerange of spectral types. Cross-checking the reliability of this databaseis an important and desirable exercise since a number of stars in thisdatabase have no known spectral types and a considerable fraction ofstars has not so complete coverage in the full wavelength region of3460-9464Å resulting in gaps ranging from a few Å to severaltens of Å. We use an automated classification scheme based onArtificial Neural Networks (ANN) to classify all 1273 stars in thedatabase. In addition, principal component analysis (PCA) is carried outto reduce the dimensionality of the data set before the spectra areclassified by the ANN. Most importantly, we have successfullydemonstrated employment of a variation of the PCA technique to restorethe missing data in a sample of 300 stars out of the CFLIB.

Dwarfs in the Local Region
We present lithium, carbon, and oxygen abundance data for a sample ofnearby dwarfs-a total of 216 stars-including samples within 15 pc of theSun, as well as a sample of local close giant planet (CGP) hosts (55stars) and comparison stars. The spectroscopic data for this work have aresolution of R~60,000, a signal-to-noise ratio >150, and spectralcoverage from 475 to 685 nm. We have redetermined parameters and derivedadditional abundances (Z>10) for the CGP host and comparison samples.From our abundances for elements with Z>6 we determine the meanabundance of all elements in the CGP hosts to range from 0.1 to 0.2 dexhigher than nonhosts. However, when relative abundances ([x/Fe]) areconsidered we detect no differences in the samples. We find nodifference in the lithium contents of the hosts versus the nonhosts. Theplanet hosts appear to be the metal-rich extension of local regionabundances, and overall trends in the abundances are dominated byGalactic chemical evolution. A consideration of the kinematics of thesample shows that the planet hosts are spread through velocity space;they are not exclusively stars of the thin disk.

An Improved Infrared Passband System for Ground-based Photometry: Realization
We describe new simulations and field trials of the new infraredpassband system developed and discussed by Young, Milone, & Stagg,who discussed and illustrated the state of infrared photometry andsuggested ways in which it could be improved. In particular, theypresented a new set of passbands that minimize the dependence of thephotometry on the water vapor bands of the atmospheric windows, whichdefined the edges of many previous infrared passbands, especially whenused at sites and under conditions for which they were not designed. Inthis paper, we present numerical simulations for three atmosphericmodels, demonstrate a measure of the signal-to-noise ratio in the newpassbands for these models, and present observational data obtained at arelatively low-elevation site. The latter demonstrate the utility ofthis system for most astronomical sites where photometry can beperformed, and permit the transformation of observations to this system.Publications of the Rothney Astrophysical Observatory, No. 74.

Predicting accurate stellar angular diameters by the near-infrared surface brightness technique
I report on the capabilities of the near-infrared (near-IR) surfacebrightness technique to predict reliable stellar angular diameters asaccurate as <~2 per cent using standard broad-band Johnson photometryin the colour range -0.1 <= (V-K)O<= 3.7 includingstars of A, F, G, K spectral type. This empirical approach is fast toapply and leads to estimated photometric diameters in very goodagreement with recent high-precision interferometric diametermeasurements available for non-variable dwarfs and giants, as well asfor Cepheid variables. Then I compare semi-empirical diameters predictedby model-dependent photometric and spectrophotometric (SP) methods withnear-IR surface brightness diameters adopted as empirical referencecalibrators. The overall agreement between all these methods is withinapproximately +/-5 per cent, confirming previous works. However, on thesame scale of accuracy, there is also evidence for systematic shiftspresumably as a result of an incorrect representation of the stellareffective temperature in the model-dependent results. I also comparemeasurements of spectroscopic radii with near-IR surface brightnessradii of Cepheids with known distances. Spectroscopic radii are found tobe affected by a scatter as significant as >~9 per cent, which is atleast three times greater than the formal error currently claimed by thespectroscopic technique. In contrast, pulsation radii predicted by theperiod-radius (PR) relation according to the Cepheid period result aresignificantly less dispersed, indicating a quite small scatter as aresult of the finite width of the Cepheid instability strip, as expectedfrom pulsation theory. The resulting low level of noise stronglyconfirms our previous claims that the pulsation parallaxes are the mostaccurate empirical distances presently available for Galactic andextragalactic Cepheids.

Not Available

Analysis of the Dynamical Instability of Several Multiple Stars with Weak Hierarchy
The dynamical stability of 16 multiple stars is analyzed using MonteCarlo simulations with allowance for the errors in the observationaldata. The analysis was carried out by varying the uncertainties in theinitial observational data. Six different stability criteria wereconsidered, and the dynamical evolution was studied using numericalsimulations. Eleven of the systems are probably stable, whereas fivesystems (HD 40887, HD 136176, HD 150680, HD 217675, and HD 222326) areprobably unstable (the probability that they are unstable is 0.94 ormore accordingt o the results of forward and backward simulations overintervals of 106 yr). The results of the simulations were mostconsistent with the criteria of Mardling-Aarseth (the correlationcoefficient between the probabilities of disruption inferred from thestability criterion and numerical integration was r = 0.998),Valtonen-Karttunen (r = 0.998), and Eggleton-Kiseleva (r = 0.997). Inabout 92 93% of all cases, these criteria yield results that areconsistent with the numerical simulations. These criteria also yieldhigh disruption probabilities for the unstable systems. Scenarios forthe formation of such systems are discussed: temporary capture of afield star by a close binary, perturbation of a stable multiple systemby a massive field object, and disruption of small stellar groups orclusters. The probabilities that these scenarios are realized areanalyzed.

Analysis of the Dynamic Stability of Selected Multiple Stars with Weak Hierarchy
The stability of multiple systems with known orbital elements and withsubsystems occupying adjacent hierarchy levels is analyzed using sixstability criteria and numerical simulations of their dynamicalevolution. All the stability criteria considered are in qualitativeagreement with the numerical computations. Of the 16 systems studied, 11are confirmed to be stable and five (HD 40887, HD 136176, HD 150680, HD217675, and HD 222326) may be unstable on time scales of ˜106 yr orless. The small dynamical ages of the unstable systems may indicate thatthey have captured components during encounters between close binariesand field or moving cluster stars. The instability could also resultfrom the perturbation of a stable system when it approaches a massiveobject (star, black hole, or molecular cloud). It is possible that someof the unstable systems are remnants of small clusters or stellargroups.

Radial Velocities of Late-Type Field Subgiant Stars
High-dispersion coudé spectra were observed and measured for 43field subgiants of the G and K spectral types, with the intent ofsearching for hitherto undiscovered spectroscopic binaries. Statisticalanalysis of the measurements revealed no definite but two possible newbinaries. We present the data and discuss the statistical analysis usedto test for new binaries. Additionally, we discuss the techniques forhigh precision of radial-velocity measurement, and the systematic errorsthat interfere with that goal.

Can Life Develop in the Expanded Habitable Zones around Red Giant Stars?
We present some new ideas about the possibility of life developingaround subgiant and red giant stars. Our study concerns the temporalevolution of the habitable zone. The distance between the star and thehabitable zone, as well as its width, increases with time as aconsequence of stellar evolution. The habitable zone moves outward afterthe star leaves the main sequence, sweeping a wider range of distancesfrom the star until the star reaches the tip of the asymptotic giantbranch. Currently there is no clear evidence as to when life actuallyformed on the Earth, but recent isotopic data suggest life existed atleast as early as 7×108 yr after the Earth was formed.Thus, if life could form and evolve over time intervals from5×108 to 109 yr, then there could behabitable planets with life around red giant stars. For a 1Msolar star at the first stages of its post-main-sequenceevolution, the temporal transit of the habitable zone is estimated to beseveral times 109 yr at 2 AU and around 108 yr at9 AU. Under these circumstances life could develop at distances in therange 2-9 AU in the environment of subgiant or giant stars, and in thefar distant future in the environment of our own solar system. After astar completes its first ascent along the red giant branch and the Heflash takes place, there is an additional stable period of quiescent Hecore burning during which there is another opportunity for life todevelop. For a 1 Msolar star there is an additional109 yr with a stable habitable zone in the region from 7 to22 AU. Space astronomy missions, such as proposed for the TerrestrialPlanet Finder (TPF) and Darwin, that focus on searches for signatures oflife on extrasolar planets, should also consider the environments ofsubgiants and red giant stars as potentially interesting sites forunderstanding the development of life. We performed a preliminaryevaluation of the difficulty of interferometric observations of planetsaround red giant stars compared to a main-sequence star environment. Weshow that pathfinder missions for TPF and Darwin, such as Eclipse andFKSI, have sufficient angular resolution and sensitivity to search forhabitable planets around some of the closest evolved stars of thesubgiant and red giant class.

UVBLUE: A New High-Resolution Theoretical Library of Ultraviolet Stellar Spectra
We present an extended ultraviolet-blue (850-4700 Å) library oftheoretical stellar spectral energy distributions computed at highresolution, λ/Δλ=50,000. The UVBLUE grid, as wenamed the library, is based on LTE calculations carried out with ATLAS9and SYNTHE codes developed by R. L. Kurucz and consists of nearly 1800entries that cover a large volume of the parameter space. It spans arange in Teff from 3000 to 50,000 K, the surface gravityranges from logg=0.0 to 5.0 with Δlogg=0.5 dex, while sevenchemical compositions are considered:[M/H]=-2.0,-1.5,-1.0,-0.5,+0.0,+0.3, and +0.5 dex. For its coverageacross the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, this library is the mostcomprehensive one ever computed at high resolution in theshort-wavelength spectral range, and useful application can be foreseenfor both the study of single stars and in population synthesis models ofgalaxies and other stellar systems. We briefly discuss some relevantissues for a safe application of the theoretical output to ultravioletobservations, and a comparison of our LTE models with the non-LTE (NLTE)ones from the TLUSTY code is also carried out. NLTE spectra are found,on average, to be slightly ``redder'' compared to the LTE ones for thesame value of Teff, while a larger difference could bedetected for weak lines, which are nearly wiped out by the enhanced coreemission component in case of NLTE atmospheres. These effects seem to bemagnified at low metallicity (typically [M/H]<~-1). A match with aworking sample of 111 stars from the IUE atlas, with availableatmosphere parameters from the literature, shows that UVBLUE modelsprovide an accurate description of the main mid- and low-resolutionspectral features for stars along the whole sequence from the B to ~G5type. The comparison sensibly degrades for later spectral types, withsupergiant stars that are in general more poorly reproduced than dwarfs.As a possible explanation of this overall trend, we partly invoke theuncertainty in the input atmosphere parameters to compute thetheoretical spectra. In addition, one should also consider the importantcontamination of the IUE stellar sample, where the presence of binaryand variable stars certainly works in the sense of artificiallyworsening the match between theory and observations.

Boron Depletion in F and G Dwarf Stars and the Beryllium-Boron Correlation
Boron provides a special probe below the stellar surface since itsurvives to greater depths than do Li and Be. To search for B depletionswe have observed B in 13 F and G dwarfs with large Be depletions; forcomparison we have also obtained spectra of five stars that areundepleted in Li and Be. We have used HST with STIS to obtain spectra ofthe B I resonance line at 2497 Å. The spectral resolution is30,000 or 114,000, and the median signal-to-noise ratio is 70pixel-1. New Be and Li spectra have been obtained at Keck Iwith HIRES of four of the five standard stars at ~48,000 resolution.Abundances have been determined by the spectrum synthesis method withMOOG. A comparison between the standard stars and those with severe Bedepletions shows a distinct difference in the B abundances between thetwo groups of 0.22 dex. We have discovered a correlation between the Beand B abundances. The slope between A(Be) and A(B)NLTE is0.22+/-0.05 [where A(element)=logN(element)/N(H)+12.00], which, asexpected, is shallower than the slope between A(Li) and A(Be) of 0.38.We have normalized the light-element abundances to account for theobservation that the initial abundances are somewhat lower in lowermetallicity stars by employing recently published empirical relationsbetween Be and [Fe/H] and between B and [Fe/H]. The correlation betweenthe normalized A(Be) and A(B)NLTE has a slope of 0.18+/-0.06.The star with the largest Be depletion, HR 107, a main-sequence Ba star,also has the largest B depletion, with the B abundance lower by a factorof 3.5 relative to the standard stars.Based on observations obtained with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescopethrough the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS5-26555.

Stars within 15 Parsecs: Abundances for a Northern Sample
We present an abundance analysis for stars within 15 pc of the Sunlocated north of -30° declination. We have limited our abundancesample to absolute magnitudes brighter than +7.5 and have eliminatedseveral A stars in the local vicinity. Our final analysis list numbers114 stars. Unlike Allende Prieto et al. in their consideration of a verysimilar sample, we have enforced strict spectroscopic criteria in thedetermination of atmospheric parameters. Nevertheless, our results arevery similar to theirs. We determine the mean metallicity of the localregion to be <[Fe/H]>=-0.07 using all stars and -0.04 when interlopersfrom the thick disk are eliminated.

Disk populations from HIPPARCOS kinematic data. Discontinuities in the local velocity distribution
The full space motions including radial velocities of a stellarsample drawn from HIPPARCOS catalogue are used to discriminatedifferentiated statistical behaviours that are associated with stellarpopulations in the solar neighbourhood. A sampling parameter is used tobuild a hierarchical set of nested samples, where a discontinuouspattern, based in a partition introduced by two normal distributions,scans the subsamples. Two quantities inform whether any subsample fitsproperly into the discontinuous model. A χ2 test measuresthe Gaussianity of both components, and the entropy of the mixtureprobability gives account of how informative the resulting segregationis. The less informative partition is the one with maximum populationentropy, which provides most representative kinematic parameters. Eachnew population merged to the cumulative subsample produces adiscontinuity in the plot entropy versus sampling parameter, that allowsto determine the number of populations contained in the whole sample.The resulting method has been named MEMPHIS, Maximum Entropy of theMixture Probability from HIerarchical Segregation. In addition to bothmain kinematic components, thin and thick disk, with respective velocitydispersions (28± 1, 16± 2, 13± 1) and (65±2, 39± 9, 41± 2) km s-1, two discretenon-Gaussian subcomponents are detected within the thin disk. Thesepopulations are identified with early-type and young disk stars.Moreover, a continuous old disk population is mixed with the foregoingsubcomponents composing all together the thin disk. Older thin diskstars have a velocity dispersion overlapping a wing of the thick disk.Although they could appear like an intermediate continuous population,nested subsamples distributions allow us to conclude that theydefinitively belong to the thin disk, and that a clear discontinuitydetaches thick from thin disk. Almost the same qualitative results, butwith less accuracy, are obtained whether MEMPHIS is applied tosubsamples from the Third Catalogue of Nearby Stars (CNS3). A dynamicmodel according to Chandrasekhar's approximation, under particularsymmetry hypotheses, allows to interpret the results. The non-vanishingvertex deviation lower for older stars of all Galactic components issuggesting that, at least, point-axial symmetry is required in order toexplain the local kinematic behaviour. According to this model, theoldest thick disk population, with no net radial movement, can beextrapolated, having heliocentric velocities of -76 ± 2 kms-1 in rotation, and -18 ± 1 km s-1 in theradial direction. Early-type stars show a worthy local singularity,nearly with no net radial motion, similarly to the oldest thick diskstars. Older populations half of the thin disk and the whole thickdisk share a common differential galactic movement, suggesting acommon dynamical origin for the rupture of the axial symmetry. Therelationship between the maximum stellar velocity of a sample and itsaverage age τ is discussed, finding an approximate relation|V|max ∝ τ. Local stellar populations can bedescribed from a Titius-Bode-like law for the radial velocitydispersion, σ1 = 6.6 (4/3)^x, so that for naturalvalues x=2,3,5,8 it determines average energy levels of discretepopulations, while for continuous intervals x≤ 5 and x≥ 7 itdescribes the velocity-age evolution of thin and thick disk components,according to x ˜ 1.5 ln τ.

Abundance trends in kinematical groups of the Milky Way's disk
We have compiled a large catalogue of metallicities and abundance ratiosfrom the literature in order to investigate abundance trends of severalalpha and iron peak elements in the thin disk and the thick disk of theGalaxy. The catalogue includes 743 stars with abundances of Fe, O, Mg,Ca, Ti, Si, Na, Ni and Al in the metallicity range -1.30 < [Fe/H]< +0.50. We have checked that systematic differences betweenabundances measured in the different studies were lower than randomerrors before combining them. Accurate distances and proper motions fromHipparcos and radial velocities from several sources have been retreivedfor 639 stars and their velocities (U, V, W) and galactic orbits havebeen computed. Ages of 322 stars have been estimated with a Bayesianmethod of isochrone fitting. Two samples kinematically representative ofthe thin and thick disks have been selected, taking into account theHercules stream which is intermediate in kinematics, but with a probabledynamical origin. Our results show that the two disks are chemicallywell separated, they overlap greatly in metallicity and both showparallel decreasing alpha elements with increasing metallicity, in theinterval -0.80 < [Fe/H] < -0.30. The Mg enhancement with respectto Fe of the thick disk is measured to be 0.14 dex. An even largerenhancement is observed for Al. The thick disk is clearly older than thethin disk with tentative evidence of an AMR over 2-3 Gyr and a hiatus instar formation before the formation of the thin disk. We do not observea vertical gradient in the metallicity of the thick disk. The Herculesstream has properties similar to that of the thin disk, with a widerrange of metallicity. Metal-rich stars assigned to the thick disk andsuper-metal-rich stars assigned to the thin disk appear as outliers inall their properties.

Identification of a complete sample of northern ROSAT All-Sky Survey X-ray sources. VIII. The late-type stellar component
We present results of an investigation of the X-ray properties, agedistribution, and kinematical characteristics of a high-galacticlatitude sample of late-type field stars selected from the ROSAT All-SkySurvey (RASS). The sample comprises 254 RASS sources with opticalcounterparts of spectral types F to M distributed over six study areaslocated at |b|  20 °, and Dec ≥ -9 °. A detailed studywas carried out for the subsample of ~200 G, K, and M stars. Lithiumabundances were determined for 179 G-M stars. Radial velocities weremeasured for most of the 141 G and K type stars of the sample. Combinedwith proper motions these data were used to study the age distributionand the kinematical properties of the sample. Based on the lithiumabundances half of the G-K stars were found to be younger than theHyades (660 Myr). About 25% are comparable in age to the Pleiades (100Myr). A small subsample of 10 stars is younger than the Pleiades. Theyare therefore most likely pre-main sequence stars. Kinematically the PMSand Pleiades-type stars appear to form a group with space velocitiesclose to the Castor moving group but clearly distinct from the LocalAssociation.Based on observations collected at the German-Spanish AstronomicalCentre, Calar Alto, operated by the Max-Planck-Institut fürAstronomie, Heidelberg, jointly with the Spanish National Commission forAstronomy, and at the European Southern Observatory, La Silla, Chile.Tables A2-A4 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org

CHARM2: An updated Catalog of High Angular Resolution Measurements
We present an update of the Catalog of High Angular ResolutionMeasurements (CHARM, Richichi & Percheron \cite{CHARM}, A&A,386, 492), which includes results available until July 2004. CHARM2 is acompilation of direct measurements by high angular resolution methods,as well as indirect estimates of stellar diameters. Its main goal is toprovide a reference list of sources which can be used for calibrationand verification observations with long-baseline optical and near-IRinterferometers. Single and binary stars are included, as are complexobjects from circumstellar shells to extragalactic sources. The presentupdate provides an increase of almost a factor of two over the previousedition. Additionally, it includes several corrections and improvements,as well as a cross-check with the valuable public release observationsof the ESO Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI). A total of 8231entries for 3238 unique sources are now present in CHARM2. Thisrepresents an increase of a factor of 3.4 and 2.0, respectively, overthe contents of the previous version of CHARM.The catalog is only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/431/773

Improved Baade-Wesselink surface brightness relations
Recent, and older accurate, data on (limb-darkened) angular diameters iscompiled for 221 stars, as well as BVRIJK[12][25] magnitudes for thoseobjects, when available. Nine stars (all M-giants or supergiants)showing excess in the [12-25] colour are excluded from the analysis asthis may indicate the presence of dust influencing the optical andnear-infrared colours as well. Based on this large sample,Baade-Wesselink surface brightness (SB) relations are presented fordwarfs, giants, supergiants and dwarfs in the optical and near-infrared.M-giants are found to follow different SB relations from non-M-giants,in particular in V versus V-R. The preferred relation for non-M-giantsis compared to the earlier relation by Fouqué and Gieren (basedon 10 stars) and Nordgren et al. (based on 57 stars). Increasing thesample size does not lead to a lower rms value. It is shown that theresiduals do not correlate with metallicity at a significant level. Thefinally adopted observed angular diameters are compared to thosepredicted by Cohen et al. for 45 stars in common, and there isreasonable overall, and good agreement when θ < 6 mas.Finally, I comment on the common practice in the literature to average,and then fix, the zero-point of the V versus V-K, V versus V-R and Kversus J-K relations, and then rederive the slopes. Such a commonzero-point at zero colour is not expected from model atmospheres for theV-R colour and depends on gravity. Relations derived in this way may bebiased.

Determination of fundamental characteristics for stars of the F, G, and K spectral types. The surface gravities and metallicity parameters.
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The Indo-US Library of Coudé Feed Stellar Spectra
We have obtained spectra for 1273 stars using the 0.9 m coudéfeed telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory. This telescope feedsthe coudé spectrograph of the 2.1 m telescope. The spectra havebeen obtained with the no. 5 camera of the coudé spectrograph anda Loral 3K×1K CCD. Two gratings have been used to provide spectralcoverage from 3460 to 9464 Å, at a resolution of ~1 Å FWHMand at an original dispersion of 0.44 Å pixel-1. For885 stars we have complete spectra over the entire 3460 to 9464 Åwavelength region (neglecting small gaps of less than 50 Å), andpartial spectral coverage for the remaining stars. The 1273 stars havebeen selected to provide broad coverage of the atmospheric parametersTeff, logg, and [Fe/H], as well as spectral type. The goal ofthe project is to provide a comprehensive library of stellar spectra foruse in the automated classification of stellar and galaxy spectra and ingalaxy population synthesis. In this paper we discuss thecharacteristics of the spectral library, viz., details of theobservations, data reduction procedures, and selection of stars. We alsopresent a few illustrations of the quality and information available inthe spectra. The first version of the complete spectral library is nowpublicly available from the National Optical Astronomy Observatory(NOAO) via ftp and http.

Nearby stars of the Galactic disk and halo. III.
High-resolution spectroscopic observations of about 150 nearby stars orstar systems are presented and discussed. The study of these and another100 objects of the previous papers of this series implies that theGalaxy became reality 13 or 14 Gyr ago with the implementation of amassive, rotationally-supported population of thick-disk stars. The veryhigh star formation rate in that phase gave rise to a rapid metalenrichment and an expulsion of gas in supernovae-driven Galactic winds,but was followed by a star formation gap for no less than three billionyears at the Sun's galactocentric distance. In a second phase, then, thethin disk - our ``familiar Milky Way'' - came on stage. Nowadays ittraces the bright side of the Galaxy, but it is also embedded in a hugecoffin of dead thick-disk stars that account for a large amount ofbaryonic dark matter. As opposed to this, cold-dark-matter-dominatedcosmologies that suggest a more gradual hierarchical buildup throughmergers of minor structures, though popular, are a poor description forthe Milky Way Galaxy - and by inference many other spirals as well - if,as the sample implies, the fossil records of its long-lived stars do notstick to this paradigm. Apart from this general picture that emergeswith reference to the entire sample stars, a good deal of the presentwork is however also concerned with detailed discussions of manyindividual objects. Among the most interesting we mention the bluestraggler or merger candidates HD 165401 and HD 137763/HD 137778, thelikely accretion of a giant planet or brown dwarf on 59 Vir in itsrecent history, and HD 63433 that proves to be a young solar analog at\tau˜200 Myr. Likewise, the secondary to HR 4867, formerly suspectednon-single from the Hipparcos astrometry, is directly detectable in thehigh-resolution spectroscopic tracings, whereas the visual binary \chiCet is instead at least triple, and presumably even quadruple. Withrespect to the nearby young stars a complete account of the Ursa MajorAssociation is presented, and we provide as well plain evidence foranother, the ``Hercules-Lyra Association'', the likely existence ofwhich was only realized in recent years. On account of its rotation,chemistry, and age we do confirm that the Sun is very typical among itsG-type neighbors; as to its kinematics, it appears however not unlikelythat the Sun's known low peculiar space velocity could indeed be thecause for the weak paleontological record of mass extinctions and majorimpact events on our parent planet during the most recent Galactic planepassage of the solar system. Although the significance of thiscorrelation certainly remains a matter of debate for years to come, wepoint in this context to the principal importance of the thick disk fora complete census with respect to the local surface and volumedensities. Other important effects that can be ascribed to this darkstellar population comprise (i) the observed plateau in the shape of theluminosity function of the local FGK stars, (ii) a small thoughsystematic effect on the basic solar motion, (iii) a reassessment of theterm ``asymmetrical drift velocity'' for the remainder (i.e. the thindisk) of the stellar objects, (iv) its ability to account for the bulkof the recently discovered high-velocity blue white dwarfs, (v) itsmajor contribution to the Sun's ˜220 km s-1 rotationalvelocity around the Galactic center, and (vi) the significant flatteningthat it imposes on the Milky Way's rotation curve. Finally we note ahigh multiplicity fraction in the small but volume-complete local sampleof stars of this ancient population. This in turn is highly suggestivefor a star formation scenario wherein the few existing single stellarobjects might only arise from either late mergers or the dynamicalejection of former triple or higher level star systems.

Speckle Observations of Binary Stars with the WIYN Telescope. IV. Differential Photometry
Five hundred seventy-six magnitude difference measures are presented for260 binary stars. These measures are derived from CCD-based speckleobservations taken at the WIYN 3.5 m telescope at Kitt Peak NationalObservatory during the period 1997-2000. Separations of the systemsrange from over 1" down to near the diffraction limit of the telescope.A study of multiple measures of the same targets indicates that themeasures have a typical uncertainty of better than 0.13 mag per 2 minuteobservation, and that multiple observations can be averaged to arrive atsmaller uncertainties. Results presented here are also compared, insofaras it is possible, with measures in the Hipparcos Catalogue and toprevious studies using adaptive optics. No major systematic errors wereidentified.The WIYN Observatory is a joint facility of the University ofWisconsin-Madison, Indiana University, Yale University, and the NationalOptical Astronomy Observatory.

The angular sizes of dwarf stars and subgiants. Surface brightness relations calibrated by interferometry
The availability of a number of new interferometric measurements of MainSequence and subgiant stars makes it possible to calibrate the surfacebrightness relations of these stars using exclusively direct angulardiameter measurements. These empirical laws make it possible to predictthe limb darkened angular diameters θLD of dwarfs andsubgiants using their dereddened Johnson magnitudes, or their effectivetemperature. The smallest intrinsic dispersions of σ ≤1% inθLD are obtained for the relations based on the K andL magnitudes, for instance log θLD = 0.0502 (B-L) +0.5133 - 0.2 L or log θLD = 0.0755 (V-K) + 0.5170 -0.2 K. Our calibrations are valid between the spectral types A0 and M2for dwarf stars (with a possible extension to later types when using theeffective temperature), and between A0 and K0 for subgiants. Suchrelations are particularly useful for estimating the angular sizes ofcalibrators for long-baseline interferometry from readily availablebroadband photometry.Tables 3-6 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org

Sodium abundances in nearby disk stars
We present sodium abundances for a sample of nearby stars. All resultshave been derived from NLTE statistical equilibrium calculations. Theinfluence of collisional interactions with electrons and hydrogen atomsis evaluated by comparison of the solar spectrum with very precise fitsto the Na I line cores. The NLTE effects are more pronounced inmetal-poor stars since the statistical equilibrium is dominated bycollisions of which at least the electronic component is substantiallyreduced. The resulting influence on the determination of sodiumabundances is in a direction opposite to that found previously for Mgand Al. The NLTE corrections are about -0.1 in thick-disk stars with[Fe/H] ˜-0.6. Our [Na/Fe] abundance ratios are about solar forthick- and thin-disk stars. The increase in [Na/Fe] as a function of[Fe/H] for metal-rich stars found by Edvardsson et al. (\cite{EAG93}) isconfirmed. Our results suggest that sodium yields increase with themetallicity, and quite large amounts of sodium may be produced by AGBstars. We find that [Na/Fe] ratios, together with either [Mg/Fe] ratio,kinematic data or stellar evolutionary ages, make possible theindividual discrimination between thin- and thick-disk membership.Based on observations collected at the Germany-Spanish AstronomicalCenter, Calar Alto, Spain.Tables \ref{table2} and \ref{table3} are only available in electronicform at http://www.edpsciences.org

S4N: A spectroscopic survey of stars in the solar neighborhood. The Nearest 15 pc
We report the results of a high-resolution spectroscopic survey of allthe stars more luminous than M_V = 6.5 mag within 14.5 pc from the Sun.The Hipparcos catalog's completeness limits guarantee that our survey iscomprehensive and free from some of the selection effects in othersamples of nearby stars. The resulting spectroscopic database, which wehave made publicly available, includes spectra for 118 stars obtainedwith a resolving power of R ≃ 50 000, continuous spectral coveragebetween ˜ 362-921 nm, and typical signal-to-noise ratios in therange 150-600. We derive stellar parameters and perform a preliminaryabundance and kinematic analysis of the F-G-K stars in the sample. Theinferred metallicity ([Fe/H]) distribution is centered at about -0.1dex, and shows a standard deviation of 0.2 dex. A comparison with largersamples of Hipparcos stars, some of which have been part of previousabundance studies, suggests that our limited sample is representative ofa larger volume of the local thin disk. We identify a number ofmetal-rich K-type stars which appear to be very old, confirming theclaims for the existence of such stars in the solar neighborhood. Withatmospheric effective temperatures and gravities derived independentlyof the spectra, we find that our classical LTE model-atmosphere analysisof metal-rich (and mainly K-type) stars provides discrepant abundancesfrom neutral and ionized lines of several metals. This ionizationimbalance could be a sign of departures from LTE or inhomogeneousstructure, which are ignored in the interpretation of the spectra.Alternatively, but seemingly unlikely, the mismatch could be explainedby systematic errors in the scale of effective temperatures. Based ontransitions of majority species, we discuss abundances of 16 chemicalelements. In agreement with earlier studies we find that the abundanceratios to iron of Si, Sc, Ti, Co, and Zn become smaller as the ironabundance increases until approaching the solar values, but the trendsreverse for higher iron abundances. At any given metallicity, stars witha low galactic rotational velocity tend to have high abundances of Mg,Si, Ca, Sc, Ti, Co, Zn, and Eu, but low abundances of Ba, Ce, and Nd.The Sun appears deficient by roughly 0.1 dex in O, Si, Ca, Sc, Ti, Y,Ce, Nd, and Eu, compared to its immediate neighbors with similar ironabundances.Based on observations made with the 2.7 m telescope at the McDonaldObservatory of the University of Texas at Austin (Texas), and the 1.52 mtelescope at the European Southern Observatory (La Silla, Chile) underthe agreement with the CNPq/Observatorio Nacional (Brazil).Tables 3-5 are only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/420/183

p-mode frequencies in solar-like stars. I. Procyon A
As a part of an on-going program to explore the signature of p-modes insolar-like stars by means of high-resolution absorption linespectroscopy, we have studied four stars (α CMi, η Cas A,ζ Her A and β Vir). We present here new results from two-siteobservations of Procyon A acquired over twelve nights in 1999.Oscillation frequencies for l=1 and 0 (or 2) p-modes are detected in thepower spectra of these Doppler shift measurements. A frequency analysispoints out the difficulties of the classical asymptotic theory inrepresenting the p-mode spectrum of Procyon A.Based on observations obtained at the Observatoire de Haute-Provence(CNRS, France) and at the Whipple Observatory (Arizona, USA).

NEXXUS: A comprehensive ROSAT survey of coronal X-ray emission among nearby solar-like stars
We present a final summary of all ROSAT X-ray observations of nearbystars. All available ROSAT observations with the ROSAT PSPC, HRI and WFChave been matched with the CNS4 catalog of nearby stars and the resultsgathered in the Nearby X-ray and XUV-emitting Stars data base, availablevia www from the Home Page of the Hamburger Sternwarte at the URLhttp://www.hs.uni-hamburg.de/DE/For/Gal/Xgroup/nexxus. Newvolume-limited samples of F/G-stars (dlim = 14 pc), K-stars(dlim = 12 pc), and M-stars (dlim = 6 pc) areconstructed within which detection rates of more than 90% are obtained;only one star (GJ 1002) remains undetected in a pointed follow-upobservation. F/G-stars, K-stars and M-stars have indistinguishablesurface X-ray flux distributions, and the lower envelope of the observeddistribution at FX ≈ 104 erg/cm2/sis the X-ray flux level observed in solar coronal holes. Large amplitudevariations in X-ray flux are uncommon for solar-like stars, but maybemore common for stars near the bottom of the main sequence; a largeamplitude flare is reported for the M star LHS 288. Long term X-raylight curves are presented for α Cen A/B and Gl 86, showingvariations on time scales of weeks and demonstrating that α Cen Bis a flare star.Tables 1-3 are also available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/417/651

Solar-like Oscillations
The five-minute oscillations in the Sun have provided a wealth ofinformation about the solar interior. After many attempts, positivedetections of similar oscillations in solar-type stars have now beenmade. This review discusses the properties of solar-like oscillations,the methods used to observe them, and the results on individual stars.We conclude that the study of solar-like oscillations from the groundand space has an exciting future.

Sodium Abundances in Stellar Atmospheres with Differing Metallicities
The non-LTE sodium abundances of 100 stars with metallicities-3<[Fe/H]<0.3 are determined using high-dispersion spectra withhigh signal-to-noise ratios. The sodium abundances [Na/Fe] obtained areclose to the solar abundance and display a smaller scatter than valuespublished previously. Giants (logg<3.8) with [Fe/H]<-1 do notdisplay overabundances of sodium, and their sodium abundances do notshow an anticorrelation with the oxygen abundance, in contrast toglobular-cluster giants. They likewise do not show sodium-abundancevariations with motion along the giant branch. No appreciable decreasein the sodium abundance was detected for dwarfs (logg>3.8) withmetallicities -2<[Fe/H]<-1. The observed relation between [Na/Fe]and [Fe/H] is in satisfactory agreement with the theoreticalcomputations of Samland, which take into account the metallicitydependence of the sodium yield and a number of other factors affectingthe distribution of elements in the Galaxy during the course of itsevolution.

Improved Astrometry and Photometry for the Luyten Catalog. II. Faint Stars and the Revised Catalog
We complete construction of a catalog containing improved astrometry andnew optical/infrared photometry for the vast majority of NLTT starslying in the overlap of regions covered by POSS I and by the secondincremental Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS) release, approximately 44%of the sky. The epoch 2000 positions are typically accurate to 130 mas,the proper motions to 5.5 mas yr-1, and the V-J colors to0.25 mag. Relative proper motions of binary components are measured to 3mas yr-1. The false-identification rate is ~1% for11<~V<~18 and substantially less at brighter magnitudes. Theseimprovements permit the construction of a reduced proper-motion diagramthat, for the first time, allows one to classify NLTT stars intomain-sequence (MS) stars, subdwarfs (SDs), and white dwarfs (WDs). We inturn use this diagram to analyze the properties of both our catalog andthe NLTT catalog on which it is based. In sharp contrast to popularbelief, we find that NLTT incompleteness in the plane is almostcompletely concentrated in MS stars, and that SDs and WDs are detectedalmost uniformly over the sky δ>-33deg. Our catalogwill therefore provide a powerful tool to probe these populationsstatistically, as well as to reliably identify individual SDs and WDs.

Angular Diameters of Stars from the Mark III Optical Interferometer
Observations of 85 stars were obtained at wavelengths between 451 and800 nm with the Mark III Stellar Interferometer on Mount Wilson, nearPasadena, California. Angular diameters were determined by fitting auniform-disk model to the visibility amplitude versus projected baselinelength. Half the angular diameters determined at 800 nm have formalerrors smaller than 1%. Limb-darkened angular diameters, effectivetemperatures, and surface brightnesses were determined for these stars,and relationships between these parameters are presented. Scatter inthese relationships is larger than would be expected from themeasurement uncertainties. We argue that this scatter is not due to anunderestimate of the angular diameter errors; whether it is due tophotometric errors or is intrinsic to the relationship is unresolved.The agreement with other observations of the same stars at the samewavelengths is good; the width of the difference distribution iscomparable to that estimated from the error bars, but the wings of thedistribution are larger than Gaussian. Comparison with infraredmeasurements is more problematic; in disagreement with models, coolerstars appear systematically smaller in the near-infrared than expected,warmer stars larger.

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Observation and Astrometry data

Right ascension:16h41m17.20s
Apparent magnitude:2.81
Distance:10.796 parsecs
Proper motion RA:0
Proper motion Dec:0
B-T magnitude:3.666
V-T magnitude:2.952

Catalogs and designations:
Proper NamesRuticulus
Bayerζ Her
Flamsteed40 Her
HD 1989HD 150680
TYCHO-2 2000TYC 2582-3158-1
USNO-A2.0USNO-A2 1200-07987374
BSC 1991HR 6212
HIPHIP 81693

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