NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2014B-0281

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Proposal Information for 2014B-0281


PI: James Muzerolle, STScI, muzerol@stsci.edu
Address: 3700 San Martin Dr., Baltimore, MD 21218, USA

CoI: Kevin Flaherty, Wesleyan University
CoI: Zoltan Balog, MPIA
CoI: Tracy Beck, STScI
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 continue monitoring 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 have been lacking. We have results for one binary that indicate a sequence between dust emission traced by near infrared photometry and gas accretion traced by optical photometry, and suggest possible longer-term periodicity associated with the inner edge of the circumbinary disk. We propose to obtain further long- baseline observations in order to confirm the second periodicity. We will also add new monitoring of an additional 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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