CWISE J105512.11+544328.3: A Nearby Y Dwarf Spectroscopically Confirmed with Keck/NIRES

November 2023 • 2023ApJ...958...94R

Authors • Robbins, Grady • Meisner, Aaron M. • Schneider, Adam C. • Burgasser, Adam J. • Kirkpatrick, J. Davy • Gagné, Jonathan • Hsu, Chih-Chun • Moranta, Leslie • Casewell, Sarah • Marocco, Federico • Gerasimov, Roman • Faherty, Jacqueline K. • Kuchner, Marc J. • Caselden, Dan • Cushing, Michael C. • Alejandro, Sherelyn • Backyard Worlds: Cool Neighbors Collaboration

Abstract • Y dwarfs, the coolest known spectral class of brown dwarfs, overlap in mass and temperature with giant exoplanets, providing unique laboratories for studying low-temperature atmospheres. However, only a fraction of Y dwarf candidates have been spectroscopically confirmed. We present Keck/NIRES near-infrared spectroscopy of the nearby (d ≈ 6-8 pc) brown dwarf CWISE J105512.11+544328.3. Although its near-infrared spectrum aligns best with the Y0 standard in the J band, no standard matches well across the full YJHK wavelength range. The CWISE J105512.11+544328.3 NH3-H = 0.427 ± 0.0012 and CH4-J = 0.0385 ± 0.0007 absorption indices and absolute Spitzer [4.5] magnitude of 15.18 ± 0.22 are also indicative of an early-Y dwarf rather than a late-T dwarf. CWISE J105512.11+544328.3 additionally exhibits the bluest Spitzer [3.6]-[4.5] color among all spectroscopically confirmed Y dwarfs. Despite this anomalously blue Spitzer color given its low luminosity, CWISE J105512.11+544328.3 does not show other clear kinematic or spectral indications of low metallicity. Atmospheric model comparisons yield a log(g) ≤ 4.5 and T eff ≈ 500 ± 150 K for this source. We classify CWISE J105512.11+544328.3 as a Y0 (pec) dwarf, adding to the remarkable diversity of the Y-type population. JWST spectroscopy would be crucial to understanding the origin of this Y dwarf's unusual preference for low-gravity models and blue 3-5 μm color.


IPAC Authors


Davy Kirkpatrick

Senior Scientist

Federico Marocco

Assistant Scientist