Bayesian distances and extinctions for giants observed by Kepler and APOGEE

Thaíse S. Rodrigues, Léo Girardi, Andrea Miglio, Diego Bossini, Jo Bovy, Courtney Epstein, Marc H. Pinsonneault, Dennis Stello, Gail Zasowski, Carlos Allende Prieto, William J. Chaplin, Saskia Hekker, Jennifer A. Johnson, Szabolcs Mészáros, Benoît Mosser, Friedrich Anders, Sarbani Basu, Timothy C. Beers, Cristina Chiappini, Luiz A.N. da CostaYvonne Elsworth, Rafael A. García, Ana E. García Pérez, Fred R. Hearty, Marcio A.G. Maia, Steven R. Majewski, Savita Mathur, Josefina Montalbán, David L. Nidever, Basilio Santiago, Mathias Schultheis, Aldo Serenelli, Matthew Shetrone

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124 Scopus citations


We present a first determination of distances and extinctions for individual stars in the first release of the APOKASC catalogue, built from the joint efforts of the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE) and the Kepler Asteroseismic Science Consortium (KASC). Our method takes into account the spectroscopic constraints derived from the APOGEE Stellar Parameters and Chemical Abundances Pipeline, together with the asteroseismic parameters from KASC. These parameters are then employed to estimate intrinsic stellar properties, including absolute magnitudes, using the Bayesian tool PARAM. We then find the distance and extinction that best fit the observed photometry in Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), 2MASS, and WISE passbands. The first 1989 giants targetted by APOKASC are found at typical distances between 0.5 and 5 kpc, with individual uncertainties of just ~1.8 per cent. Our extinction estimates are systematically smaller than provided in the Kepler Input Catalogue and by the Schlegel et al. maps. Distances to individual stars in the NGC 6791 and NGC 6819 star clusters agree to within their credible intervals. Comparison with the APOGEE red clump and SAGA catalogues provide another useful check, exhibiting agreement with our measurements to within a few per cent. Overall, present methods seem to provide excellent distance and extinction determinations for the bulk of the APOKASC sample. Approximately one third of the stars present broad or multiple-peaked probability density functions and hence increased uncertainties. Uncertainties are expected to be reduced in future releases of the catalogue, when a larger fraction of the stars will have seismically determined evolutionary status classifications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2758-2776
Number of pages19
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 5 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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