PI: Rahul I. Patel, Stony Brook University, email@example.com
Address: Physics Department, 100 Nicolls Rd, Stony Brook, NY 11790, USA
CoI: Stanimir Metchev, U of Western Ontario & SBU
Title: Age Diagnostics of New WISE Detected Debris Disk-Host Stars
Abstract: We propose to obtain R=40,000 echelle spectroscopy with the Mayall and the AAT of a sample of newly identified debris disk-host stars from the WISE all-sky catalog. The sample was selected by cross-correlating WISE sources with the Hipparcos catalogue, and selecting only (pre-) main-sequence stars with W3 (12(mu) m) or W4 (22(mu) m) excesses within 75 pc. These stars are already the subject of several intensive high-contrast imaging programs to resolve their debris disks, and to image new extrasolar planets. Our echelle data will elucidate crucial stellar characteristics, such as age and binarity, necessary for the interpretation of the evolutionary stage of the circumstellar dust and of any detected exoplanets. Our spectra will also reveal trace amounts of circumstellar gas around any of the B and A stars with nearly edge-on disks, and so determine the availability of remnant material for giant planet formation. This proposal is a continuation of a 2012B-2013B Mayall/AAT survey program, during which we observed stars with newly discovered moderately bright (>30%) mid-infrared excesses. Using improved selection techniques accounting for systematic trends in the WISE photometry, we have uncovered new unprecedentedly faint exozodi and asteroid belt analogs. We are now requesting additional time to observe the new high fidelity mostly fainter-excess targets, and to so complete our investigation of the evolution of low-luminosity dust in the terrestrial planet zone.
National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360