Gaia 17bpi: An FU Ori-type Outburst

December 2018 • 2018ApJ...869..146H

Authors • Hillenbrand, Lynne A. • Contreras Peña, Carlos • Morrell, Sam • Naylor, Tim • Kuhn, Michael A. • Cutri, Roc M. • Rebull, Luisa M. • Hodgkin, Simon • Froebrich, Dirk • Mainzer, Amy K.

Abstract • We report on the source Gaia 17bpi and identify it as a new, ongoing FU Ori-type outburst, associated with a young stellar object. The optical light curve from Gaia exhibited a 3.5 mag rise with the source appearing to plateau in mid-/late 2018. Mid-infrared observations from NEOWISE also show a >3 mag rise that occurred in two stages, with the second one coincident with the optical brightening, and the first one preceding the optical brightening by ∼1.5 yr. We model the outburst as having started between October and December of 2014. This wavelength-dependent aspect of young star accretion-driven outbursts has never been documented before. Both the mid-infrared and the optical colors of the object become bluer as the outburst proceeds. Optical spectroscopic characteristics in the outburst phase include: a GK-type absorption spectrum, strong wind/outflow in, e.g., Mgb, NaD, Hα, K I, O I, and Ca II profiles, and detection of Li I 6707 Å. The infrared spectrum in the outburst phase is similar to that of an M-type spectrum, notably exhibiting prominent H2O and 12CO (2-0) bandhead absorption in the K band, and likely He I wind in the Y band. The new FU Ori source Gaia 17bpi is associated with a little-studied dark cloud in the galactic plane, located at a distance of 1.27 kpc.


IPAC Authors

Roc Cutri

IPAC Deputy Director


Luisa Rebull

Senior Research Scientist