NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2013B-0389

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Proposal Information for 2013B-0389


PI: James Muzerolle, Space Telescope Science Institute, muzerol@stsci.edu
Address: 3700 San Martin Dr., Baltimore, MD 21218, USA

CoI: Kevin Flaherty, University of Arizona
CoI: Zoltan Balog, MPIA
CoI: Tracy Beck, Space Telescope Science Institute
CoI: Elise Furlan, IPAC
CoI: Robert Gutermuth, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Title: Photometric Monitoring of Close Binary T Tauri Stars: Connecting Accretion Activity with Inner Disk Structure

Abstract: We propose to monitor two spectroscopic binary T Tauri stars with SMARTS/ANDICAM in order to characterize their optical and infrared brightness as a function of orbital phase. Previous studies have shown optical accretion pulses that correlate with periastron passages in some objects; however, infrared data probing the dust content of the inner disk regions are lacking. We have preliminary results for one binary that suggest a possible sequence between dust emission traced by near infrared photometry and gas accretion traced by optical photometry, and hint at surprising behavior at longer timescales. We propose to obtain longer-baseline observations in order to quantify the occurrence rate of pulses and confirm a longer-term second periodicity that may be associated with the circumbinary disk. We also want to add new monitoring of another binary in order to explore a wider range of stellar and orbital architectures. The proposed data, in combination with separate observations at other facilities, will help elucidate the nature of dynamical structures in circumbinary disks. This will establish a framework for understanding general infrared variability seen in most young stars, and is of great importance for understanding planet formation processes in binary systems.


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NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2013B-0389

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