Rotation of Low-mass Stars in Taurus with K2

June 2020 • 2020AJ....159..273R

Authors • Rebull, L. M. • Stauffer, J. R. • Cody, A. M. • Hillenbrand, L. A. • Bouvier, J. • Roggero, N. • David, T. J.

Abstract • We present an analysis of K2 light curves (LCs) from Campaigns 4 and 13 for members of the young (∼3 Myr) Taurus association, in addition to an older (∼30 Myr) population of stars that is largely in the foreground of the Taurus molecular clouds. Out of 156 of the highest-confidence Taurus members, we find that 81% are periodic. Our sample of young foreground stars is biased and incomplete, but nearly all stars (37/38) are periodic. The overall distribution of rotation rates as a function of color (a proxy for mass) is similar to that found in other clusters: the slowest rotators are among the early M spectral types, with faster rotation toward both earlier FGK and later M types. The relationship between period and color/mass exhibited by older clusters such as the Pleiades is already in place by Taurus age. The foreground population has very few stars but is consistent with the USco and Pleiades period distributions. As found in other young clusters, stars with disks rotate on average slower, and few with disks are found rotating faster than ∼2 days. The overall amplitude of the LCs decreases with age, and higher-mass stars have generally lower amplitudes than lower-mass stars. Stars with disks have on average larger amplitudes than stars without disks, though the physical mechanisms driving the variability and the resulting LC morphologies are also different between these two classes.


IPAC Authors


Luisa Rebull

Senior Research Scientist