NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2002B-0312

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Proposal Information for 2002B-0312


PI: Patrick J. Lowrance, IPAC/JPL, lowrance@ipac.caltech.edu
Address: 770 S Wilson Ave, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA

CoI: J. Davy Kirkpatrick, IPAC/Caltech
CoI: I. Neill Reid, STScI

Title: Confirmation of L and T dwarf Companions to Nearby Stars

Abstract: Using the 2MASS database, we are searching for widely separated (>100 AU) M, L, and T dwarf companions around all stars in the Catalog of Nearby Stars (d<=25pc). We propose to obtain spectra of candidate companions in an effort to select those whose spectroscopic parallax is consistent with membership and to classify those whose measured proper motion membership has already been confirmed. Faint L and T dwarf companions to nearby stars provide a wealth of information that is not available for L and T dwarfs in the field. Because the more luminous primaries of these systems are generally well studied stars, many parameters such as parallax (and hence absolute magnitude), age, and metallicity previously measured for the primary can be assumed to apply to the L and T dwarf companions themselves. As such, these companions provide a ready laboratory for the testing of substellar atmospheric theory and can also give insight into the companion mass function since interior models can assign masses to the objects if ages are known. With this study, we will obtain more robust statistics on the lack of a ``brown dwarf desert'' at such separations and help complete the inventory of nearby stars, one of the goals of the NASA/NSF NSTARS program.


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NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2002B-0312

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