Lyra Cao

Research — Lyra Cao

Current Projects

Starspot Physics with APOGEE

Exploring the Li dip with YREC

Developing an Accretion Formalism with YREC

1. First-Author Papers

1.1. Cao, Pinsonneault, Hillenbrand, and Kuhn (2022)

In the Orion star-forming complex, and for young pre-MS stars around 1-10 Myr, spotted evolutionary models produce systematically older ages and appear to be more consistent between low mass and high mass stars. It appears that low mass stars that would otherwise be considered too young are appropriately aged with the rest of the cluster with this method. The luminosity spread appears to be persistent even with a star-by-star treatment of interstellar extinction. ADS

2. Selected Contributing Papers

2.1. Somers, Cao, and Pinsonneault (2020)

Figure 1. Somers and Pinsonneault (2015)

Employing a two-temperature mixture model from Somers and Pinsonneault (2015), Garrett generates grids of starspot evolutionary tracks with the additional modelling parameter \alpha, which is a function of starspot filling fraction f_{\mathrm{spot}} and spot temperature contrast x, for grids of models from 0.11.3M_{\odot} and 085\% spot filling factor. Tests of these evolutionary tracks suggest that they explain anomalies in mass-radius and H-R diagram space in eclipsing binaries, age trends between the low and high mass populations in Upper Sco, and the sub-subgiant population in M67. Link on ADS


  • L. Cao, M. H. Pinsonneault, L. A. Hillenbrand, and M. A. Kuhn (2022) Age Spreads and Systematics in \lambda Orionis with Gaia DR2 and the SPOTS Tracks. \apj 924 (2), pp. 84. External Links: Document, 2110.11363 Cited by: §1.1.
  • G. Somers, L. Cao, and M. H. Pinsonneault (2020) The SPOTS Models: A Grid of Theoretical Stellar Evolution Tracks and Isochrones for Testing the Effects of Starspots on Structure and Colors. \apj 891 (1), pp. 29. External Links: Document, 2002.10644 Cited by: §2.1.
  • G. Somers and M. H. Pinsonneault (2015) Older and Colder: The Impact of Starspots on Pre-main-sequence Stellar Evolution. \apj 807 (2), pp. 174. External Links: Document, 1506.01393 Cited by: Figure 1, §2.1.