More Rapidly Rotating PMS M Dwarfs with Light Curves Suggestive of Orbiting Clouds of Material

February 2018 • 2018AJ....155...63S

Authors • Stauffer, John • Rebull, Luisa • David, Trevor J. • Jardine, Moira • Collier Cameron, Andrew • Cody, Ann Marie • Hillenbrand, Lynne A. • Barrado, David • van Eyken, Julian • Melis, Carl • Briceno, Cesar

Abstract • In a previous paper, using data from K2 Campaign 2, we identified 11 very low mass members of the ρ Oph and Upper Scorpius star-forming region as having periodic photometric variability and phased light curves showing multiple scallops or undulations. All of the stars with the “scallop-shell” light curve morphology are mid-to-late M dwarfs without evidence of active accretion and with photometric periods generally <1 day. Their phased light curves have too much structure to be attributed to non-axisymmetrically distributed photospheric spots and rotational modulation. We have now identified an additional eight probable members of the same star-forming region plus three stars in the Taurus star-forming region with this same light curve morphology and sharing the same period and spectral type range as the previous group. We describe the light curves of these new stars in detail and present their general physical characteristics. We also examine the properties of the overall set of stars in order to identify common features that might help elucidate the causes of their photometric variability.


IPAC Authors


Luisa Rebull

Senior Research Scientist


Julian van Eyken

Associate Scientist