A Mid Infrared Search for Variable Stars in the Milky Way Galaxy
Brian Brooks
Advisor: Dr. Robert Benjamin
Contact me at: bbroo009@odu.edu


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A Mid Infrared Search for Variable Stars in the Milky Way Galaxy



The distribution of variable stars in the Milky Way Galaxy has revealed interesting scientific findings that will allow for continuation of research. Determining the source of a bimodal distribution still needs further research and in the process of doing so we have uncovered certain characteristics such as the classification of our stars region. The region classification along with the SIMBAD findings can hopefully lead us to a solid conclusion. We have already looked at the other sigma cuts for the SIMBAD classifications and determined that we are mainly finding dark cloud nebulas, stars in clusters, young stellar objects, variable stars and emission-line stars.

Furure Work

A website will be developed which will contain the following items for the 10-sigma variables list:

  • Blinking gif of variable source
  • Inspection if it is varying
  • SIMBAD results for the variable source
  • Image and classification of environment
  • Apparent magnitude variation in each band
  • Spectral Energy Distribution Plot
  • If there are other variables in Field
  • If there are other Proper Motion Stars
The same process can be performed on the other sigma cuts which will produce a more precise statistical analysis of our variable sources. New questions that have been raised are:
  • Are majority of the stars in Star Forming Regions or are they Field Stars?
  • Where are the most dense regions of variables located?
In the process of finding variable stars some proper motion stars have been recovered from SIMBAD. Using the same data, a program can be written to search for proper motion stars.

Useful links

The following links are very useful for looking up info on UNIX, web page making, and astrophysical data and journals.

SIMBAD (Stellar/Galactic database)

NED (Extragalactic database)

UNIX tutorial

Web page basics

NASA Astrophysics Data Service


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