538 research outputs found

    High-resolution Spectra of Very Low-Mass Stars

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    We present the results of high-resolution (1-0.4A) optical spectroscopy of a sample of very low-mass stars. These data are used to examine the kinematics of the stars at the bottom of the hydrogen-burning main sequence. No evidence is found for a significant difference between the kinematics of the stars in our sample with I-K > 3.5 (MBol > 12.8) and those of more massive M-dwarfs (MBol = 7-10). A spectral atlas at high (0.4A) resolution for M8-M9+ stars is provided, and the equivalent widths of CsI, RbI and Halpha lines present in our spectra are examined. We analyse our data to search for the presence of rapid rotation, and find that the brown dwarf LP 944-20 is a member of the class of ``inactive, rapid rotators''. Such objects seem to be common at and below the hydrogen burning main sequence. It seems that in low-mass/low-temperature dwarf objects either the mechanism which heats the chromosphere, or the mechanism which generates magnetic fields, is greatly suppressed.Comment: 19 pages, 12 figure files. MNRAS style file. Accepted for publication in MNRAS, August 199

    The Intermediate Age Brown Dwarf LP 944-20

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    Observations are presented which show that LiI 6708A is detected with equivalent width of 0.53+-0.05A in the proper-motion object LP 944-20 (which is also known as BRI 0337-3535). This Li detection implies that LP 944-20 is a brown dwarf with mass between 0.057 and 0.063Mo and age between 475 and 650Myr, making it the first brown dwarf to have its mass and age precisely determined.Comment: 3 pages, 2 figure

    Periodic photometric variability of the brown dwarf Kelu-1

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    We have detected a strong periodicity of 1.80+/-0.05 hours in photometric observations of the brown dwarf Kelu-1. The peak-to-peak amplitude of the variation is ~1.1% (11.9+/-0.8 mmag) in a 41nm wide filter centred on 857nm and including the dust/temperature sensitive TiO & CrH bands. We have identified two plausible causes of variability: surface features rotating into- and out-of-view and so modulating the light curve at the rotation period; or, elliposidal variability caused by an orbiting companion. In the first scenario, we combine the observed vsin(i) of Kelu-1 and standard model radius to determine that the axis of rotation is inclined at 65+/-12 degrees to the line of sight.Comment: 7 pages, 9 figures. Accepted for publication in MNRA

    A Spin-Orbit Alignment for the Hot Jupiter HATS-3b

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    We have measured the alignment between the orbit of HATS-3b (a recently discovered, slightly inflated Hot Jupiter) and the spin-axis of its host star. Data were obtained using the CYCLOPS2 optical-fiber bundle and its simultaneous calibration system feeding the UCLES spectrograph on the Anglo-Australian Telescope. The sky-projected spin-orbit angle of λ=3±25∘\lambda = 3\pm25^{\circ} was determined from spectroscopic measurements of Rossiter-McLaughlin effect. This is the first exoplanet discovered through the HATSouth transit survey to have its spin-orbit angle measured. Our results indicate that the orbital plane of HATS-3b is consistent with being aligned to the spin axis of its host star. The low obliquity of the HATS-3 system, which has a relatively hot mid F-type host star, agrees with the general trend observed for Hot Jupiter host stars with effective temperatures >6250>6250K to have randomly distributed spin-orbit angles.Comment: 13 pages. Accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journa

    The 2MASS Wide-Field T Dwarf Search. IV Unting out T dwarfs with Methane Imaging

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    We present first results from a major program of methane filter photometry for low-mass stars and brown dwarfs. The definition of a new methane filter photometric system is described. A recipe is provided for the differential calibration of methane imaging data using existing 2MASS photometry. We show that these filters are effective in discriminating T dwarfs from other types of stars, and demonstrate this with Anglo-Australian Telescope observations using the IRIS2 imager. Methane imaging data and proper motions are presented for ten T dwarfs identified as part of the 2MASS "Wide Field T Dwarf Search" -- seven of them initially identified as T dwarfs using methane imaging. We also present near-infrared moderate resolution spectra for five T dwarfs, newly discovered by this technique. Spectral types obtained from these spectra are compared to those derived from both our methane filter observations, and spectral types derived by other observers. Finally, we suggest a range of future programs to which these filters are clearly well suited: the winnowing of T dwarf and Y dwarf candidate objects coming from the next generation of near-infrared sky surveys; the robust detection of candidate planetary-mass brown dwarfs in clusters; the detection of T dwarf companions to known L and T dwarfs via deep methane imaging; and the search for rotationally-modulated time-variable surface features on cool brown dwarfs.Comment: 20 pages. To appear in The Astronomical Journal, Nov. 200

    The First Direct Distance and Luminosity Determination for a Self-Luminous Giant Exoplanet: The Trigonometric Parallax to 2MASS1207334-393254Ab

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    We present the first trigonometric parallax and distance for a young planetary mass object. A likely TW Hya cluster member, 2MASSW J1207334-393254Ab (hereafter 2M1207Ab) is an M8 brown dwarf with a mid to late L type planetary mass companion. Recent observations of spectral variability have uncovered clear signs of disk accretion and outflow, constraining the age of the system to <10 Myr. Because of its late spectral type and the clearly youthful nature of the system, 2M1207b is very likely a planetary mass object. We have measured the first accurate distance and luminosity for a self-luminous planetary mass object. Our parallax measurements are accurate to <2 mas (1sigma) for 2M1207Ab. With 11 total epochs of data taken from January 2006 through April 2 007 (475 images for 2M1207Ab), we determine a distance of 58.8+-7.0 pc (17.0{+2.3}{-1.8} mas, 1.28sigma) to 2M1207Ab and a calculated luminosity of 0.68-2.2x10^-5 Lsun for 2M1207b. Hence 2M1207Ab is a clear member of the TW Hya cluster in terms of its distance, proper motions, and youthful nature. However, as previously noted by Mohanty and co-workers, 2M1207b's luminosity appears low compared to its temperature according to evolutionary models.Comment: 12 pages, 3 figures, accepted to ApJ Letter

    Planets in Spin-Orbit Misalignment and the Search for Stellar Companions

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    The discovery of giant planets orbiting close to their host stars was one of the most unexpected results of early exoplanetary science. Astronomers have since found that a significant fraction of these 'Hot Jupiters' move on orbits substantially misaligned with the rotation axis of their host star. We recently reported the measurement of the spin-orbit misalignment for WASP-79b by using data from the 3.9 m Anglo-Australian Telescope. Contemporary models of planetary formation produce planets on nearly coplanar orbits with respect to their host star's equator. We discuss the mechanisms which could drive planets into spin-orbit misalignment. The most commonly proposed being the Kozai mechanism, which requires the presence of a distant, massive companion to the star-planet system. We therefore describe a volume-limited direct-imaging survey of Hot Jupiter systems with measured spin-orbit angles, to search for the presence of stellar companions and test the Kozai hypothesis.Comment: Accepted for publication in the peer-reviewed proceedings of the 13th annual Australian Space Science Conferenc

    Infrared Spectra and Spectral Energy Distributions of Late-M- and L-Dwarfs

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    We have obtained 1.0-2.5um spectra at R~600 of 14 disk dwarfs with spectral types M6 to L7. For four of the dwarfs we have also obtained infrared spectra at R~3000 in narrow intervals. In addition, we present new L' photometry for four of the dwarfs in the sample, which allows improved determinations of their bolometric luminosities. We resolve the L-dwarf Denis-P J 0205-1159 into an identical pair of objects separated by 0.35". The spectra, with the published energy distribution for one other dwarf, are compared to synthetic spectra generated by upgraded model atmospheres. Good matches are found for 2200> Teff K>1900 (spectral types around M9 to L3), but discrepancies exist at Teff> 2300 K (M8) and for Teff<1800 K (L4-L7). At the higher temperatures the mismatches are due to incompleteness in the water vapor linelist. At the lower temperatures the disagreement is probably due to our treatment of dust: we assume a photospheric distribution in equilibrium with the gas phase. We derive effective temperatures for the sample from the comparison with synthetic spectra and also by comparing our observed total intrinsic luminosities to structural model calculations (which are mostly independent of the atmosphere but are dependent on the unknown masses and ages of the targets). The two derivations agree to ~200 K except for the faintest object in the sample where the discrepancy is larger. Agreement with other temperature determinations is also ~200 K, except for the L7 dwarf.Comment: 31 pages incl. 5 Tables and 12 Figures, accepted by ApJ for Feb 2001 issu

    Ks band secondary eclipses of WASP-19b and WASP-43b with the Anglo-Australian Telescope

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    We report new Ks band secondary eclipse observations for the hot-Jupiters WASP-19b and WASP-43b. Using the IRIS2 infrared camera on the Anglo-Australian Telescope (AAT), we measured significant secondary eclipses for both planets, with depths of 0.287 -0.020/+0.020% and 0.181 -0.027/+0.027% for WASP-19b and WASP-43b respectively. We compare the observations to atmosphere models from the VSTAR line-by-line radiative transfer code, and examine the effect of C/O abundance, top layer haze, and metallicities on the observed spectra. We performed a series of signal injection and recovery exercises on the observed light curves to explore the detection thresholds of the AAT+IRIS2 facility. We find that the optimal photometric precision is achieved for targets brighter than Kmag = 9, for which eclipses as shallow as 0.05% are detectable at >5 sigma significance.Comment: Accepted for publication in MNRAS, 13 pages, 10 figure