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Post Info TOPIC: UGPS J0521+3639


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The Coolest Brown Dwarf: A Neighbour  in Space

A team of astronomers, led by Phil Lucas of Hertfordshire University in the UK, have discovered what is currently the coldest star-like object. The object, called UGPS J0722-05, is also of particular interest because it is one of our closest neighbours.
The result is published in The Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
UGPS J0722-05 is a cold brown dwarf; these small Jupiter-sized objects are hard to find as they are very faint, and they become fainter, and so even harder to find, with decreasing temperature. UGPS J0722-05 was identified as the only possible brown dwarf in a search of over 600 million sources detected in the plane of our Galaxy by the UK Infrared Telescope (UKIRT) as part of the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS).

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Title: The discovery of the T8.5 dwarf UGPS J0521+3639
Authors: Ben Burningham, P.W. Lucas, S. K. Leggett, R. Smart, D. Baker, D. J. Pinfield, C. G. Tinney, D. Homeier, F. Allard, Z. H. Zhang, J. Gomes, A. C. Day-Jones, H.R.A. Jones, G. Kovacs, N. Lodieu, F. Marocco, D. N. Murray, B. Sipocz

We have carried out a search for late-type T dwarfs in the UKIDSS Galactic Plane Survey 6th Data Release. The search yielded two persuasive candidates, both of which have been confirmed as T dwarfs. The brightest, UGPS J0521+3639 has been assigned the spectral type T8.5 and appears to lie at a distance of 7-9 pc. The fainter of the two, UGPS J0652+0324, is classified as a T5.5 dwarf, and lies at an estimated distance of 28-37 pc. Warm-Spitzer observations in IRAC channels 1 and 2, taken as part of the GLIMPSE360 Legacy Survey, are available for UGPS J0521+3639 and we used these data with the near-infrared spectroscopy to estimate its properties. We find best fitting solar metallicity BT-Settl models for Teff = 600K and 650K and log g = 4.5 and 5.0. These parameters suggest a mass of between 14 and 32 MJup for an age between 1 and 5 Gyr. The proximity of this very cool T dwarf, and its location in the Galactic plane makes it an ideal candidate for high resolution adaptive optics imaging to search for cool companions.

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