Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 464, 1294-1305 (2017/January-2)
Optical linear polarization of 74 white dwarfs with the RoboPol polarimeter.
ZEJMO M., SLOWIKOWSKA A., KRZESZOWSKI K., REIG P. and BLINOV D.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present the first linear polarimetric survey of white dwarfs (WDs). Our sample consists of WDs of DA and DC spectral types in the SDSS r magnitude range from 13 to 17. We performed polarimetric observations using the RoboPol polarimeter attached to the 1.3-m telescope at Skinakas Observatory. We have 74 WDs in our sample, of which almost all are low-polarized WDs with a polarization degree (PD) lower than 1 per cent; only two have a PD higher than 1 per cent. There is evidence that on average isolated DC-type WDs have a higher PD (with a median PD of 0.78 per cent) than isolated DA-type WDs (with a median PD of 0.36 per cent). On the other hand, the median PD of isolated DA-type WDs is almost the same (i.e. 0.36 per cent) as the median PD of DA-type WDs in binary systems with red dwarfs (dM type; i.e. 0.33 per cent). This shows, as expected, that there is no contribution to the PD from the companion if the WD companion is a red dwarf, which is the most common situation for WD binary systems. We do not find differences in the PD between magnetic and non-magnetic WDs. Because 97 per cent of WDs in our sample have a PD lower than 1 per cent, they can be used as faint zero-polarized standard stars in the magnitude range from 13 to 17 of the SDSS r filter. They cover the Northern sky between 13h and 23h in right ascension and between -11° and 78° in declination. In addition, we found that for low extinction values (<0.04), the best model that describes the dependence of the PD on E(B - V) is given by the equation PD_max, ISM_[per cent] = 0.65 E(B - V)0.12.
© 2016 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society
standards - polarization - instrumentation: polarimeters - techniques: polarimetric - white dwarfs - white dwarfs
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