An assembly of pulsating giant red stars has recently been identified by astronomers from the University of Hawai'i Institute for Astronomy.
A Maui News report said, though observations from Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite or TESS of NASA, the researchers were able to detect the stars, whose rhythms ascend from internal sound waves and provide the opening chords of the galactic neighborhood's symphonic exploration.
Since its 2018 launch, TESS has mainly hunted for exoplanets, worlds outside the solar system. However, its measurement of changing stellar brightness makes the telescope perfect for observing astronomical oscillations or material within the stars' internal structure.
The researchers called such a research area "asteroseismology." NASA Hubble Fellow at IfA Marc Hon said their preliminary result, using one month of stellar measurements from the first two years of TESS, shows that masses and sizes of the oscillating giants can be determined with high precision that will only enhance as TESS continues.
To Use for Exceptional Detailed Research
A similar Phys.org report specified that also, according to Hon, what's really unmatched is that the board coverage of TESS enables them to make such measurements uniformly through almost the whole sky.
This large group of oscillating giant stars will be employed for exceptionally detailed research using ground-based telescopes on Maunakea.
Hon explained, they have already begun with follow-up observations of some of the most interesting oddballs they have unveiled on their large TESS dataset, which will tell more about their origin. He added they have just scratched the treasure trove's surface of data allowed by TESS.
He presented the research, A 'Quick Look' at All-Sky Galactic Archeology with TESS: 158,000 Oscillating Red Giants from the MIT Quick-Look Pipeline, published in the Astrophysical Journal during the TESS Science Conference, where there was also a discussion among scientists on the latest outcomes of the mission.
How TESS Works
TESS is monitoring large swaths of sky for roughly a month at a time through the use of its four cameras, comprising the sky's roughly 75 percent during its two-year primary mission.
Each camera captures a full 24-by-24-degree image, 48 times the Moon's size in the sky across, every half an hour. Since late summer last year, the cameras have been gathering at a rate that's even faster.
The images are used to generate light curves, the changing brightness's graphs, for almost 24 million stars, each that spans 27 days, the length of time TESS is staring at one patch of the sky.
To examine this enormous buildup of measurements, Hon's team taught a computer how to identify pulsating giants.
The researchers used machine learning, a form of artificial intelligence of AI that's training computers to make decisions according to general patterns without clearly programming them.
For the system's training, the research team used Kepler light curves for over 150,000 stars, of which approximately 20,000 were said to be oscillating red giant stars.
When the neural network completes processing all of the data from TESS, it was able to identify more than 158,000 pulsating giants.
Colors and Distances Determined for Each Giant
The University of Hawai'i report also specified that the team was able to determine colors and distance for every giant star by using the data from the Gaia mission of the European Space Agency and plotted these stars' masses across the sky.
An essential forecast in galactic astronomy is that younger, higher-mass stars need to lie nearer the plane of the galaxy, marked by a high density of stars that generate the Milky Way's glow in the sky.
According to Huber, for the first time, their map demonstrates that this is indeed the case across almost the entire sky. Through Gaia's help, TESS has now provided the research team tickets to a so-called "red giant concert" in the sky.
Related information about red giant stars is shown on Cosmoknowledge's YouTube video below:
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