California Institute of Technology | Palomar Observatory | ZTF | 2019 Feb 07
The newest instrument at Palomar Observatory has its eye on our dynamic night skies
The results are rolling in from Caltech's newest state-of-the-art sky-surveying camera, which began operations at the Palomar Observatory in March 2018. Called the Zwicky Transient Facility, or ZTF, the new instrument has so far discovered 50 small near-Earth asteroids and more than 1,100 supernovae, and it has observed more than 1 billion stars in the Milky Way galaxy. One of the near-Earth asteroids discovered by ZTF, called 2019 AQ3, has an orbital period of just 165 days, the shortest known "year" for any asteroid. ...
ZTF uses the 48-inch Samuel Oschin Telescope at Palomar to survey the northern skies for anything that explodes, moves, or changes in brightness. Because the ZTF camera covers 240 times the size of the full moon in a single night-sky image, it is discovering the most fleeting, or short-lived, of cosmic events, which were impossible to catch before now. ...
Discoveries from ZTF so far include not only new supernovae, binary stars, and asteroids but two black holes caught shredding stars. As stars wander too close to black holes, they can be "tidally disrupted" by the gravity of the black hole and stretched into oblivion. Graham says that he and the team working on the tidal disruption data, led by Suvi Gezari of the University of Maryland, got fed up with referring to the technical names for the objects, consisting of long strings of numbers. "We decided to nickname them Ned Stark and Jon Snow, after Game of Thrones characters," he says.
ZTF also caught two near-Earth asteroids, 2018 NX and 2018 NW, that zipped by Earth at distances of only 72,000 miles and 76,000 miles away, respectively, or approximately a third of the distance between Earth and the moon. These discoveries were enabled by the NSF-funded GROWTH program. ...
Zwicky Transient Facility Spots a Bumper
Crop of Supernovae, Black Holes and More
University of Maryland | CMNS | 2019 Feb 07
All the Data in the Sky
University of Washington | 2019 Feb 07
A Morphological Classification Model to Identify Unresolved PanSTARRS1 Sources:
Application in the ZTF Real-Time Pipeline ~ Yutaro Tachibana, A. A. Miller
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arXiv.org > astro-ph > arXiv:1902.01935 > 05 Feb 2019
- Publications of the ASP 131(995):018001 (Jan 2019) DOI: 10.1088/1538-3873/aae904
arXiv.org > astro-ph > arXiv:1902.02227 > 06 Feb 2019
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