We report the discovery of 42 white dwarfs in the original Kepler mission field, including nine new confirmed pulsating hydrogen-atmosphere white dwarfs (ZZ Ceti stars). Guided by the Kepler-Isaac Newton Telescope Survey, we selected white dwarf candidates on the basis of their U - g, g - r, and r - Hα photometric colours. We followed up these candidates with high-signal-to-noise optical spectroscopy from the 4.2-m William Herschel Telescope. Using ground-based, time series photometry, we put our sample of new spectroscopically characterized white dwarfs in the context of the empirical ZZ Ceti instability strip. Prior to our search, only two pulsating white dwarfs had been observed by Kepler. Ultimately, four of our new ZZ Cetis were observed from space. These rich data sets are helping initiate a rapid advancement in the asteroseismic investigation of pulsating white dwarfs, which continues with the extended Kepler mission, K2.
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
- Pub Date:
- April 2016
- white dwarfs;
- Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics
- 9 pages, 6 figures, accepted for publication in MNRAS