AAS 196th Meeting, June 2000
Session 5. Be Star and Other Atmosphere Studies
Display, Monday, June 5, 2000, 9:20am-6:30pm, Empire Hall South

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[5.15] Computer simulations of interferometric studies of stellar surface structures with NPOI

M. Wittkowski (USRA/USNO, on leave from MPIfR)

We present computer simulations of interferometric studies of stellar surface structures with the Navy Prototype Optical Interferometer (NPOI).

We realistically model center-to-limb intensity variations of giants and supergiants according to recent models of stellar atmospheres, as well as hot spots caused by large-scale photospheric convection. We simulate interferometric observations of these model stars covering a spectral range from 450\,nm to 850\,nm (resembling the NPOI spectral channels) and using uv configurations that are either currently available with NPOI (baselines up to 38\,m) or that will be available in the near future using the extended NPOI array (baselines up to 437\,m).

Our simulations predict the expected squared visibilities as well as the amplitudes and phases of the tripleproducts, and we add realistic atmospheric and instrumental noise as experienced during previous observations.

Model fitting and imaging using these data allows us (1) to test different fitting and imaging algorithms (2) to determine the optimum uv configuration for studying different stellar surface structures and (3) to find limitations and accuracies of determinations of the underlying astrophysical quantities.\\

MW acknowledges support from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation through a Feodor Lynen Fellowship.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: mw@usno.navy.mil

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