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  1. Abstract

    Using a sample of 361 nearby brown dwarfs, we have searched for 4.6μm variability, indicative of large-scale rotational modulations or large-scale, long-term changes on timescales of over 10 yr. Our findings show no statistically significant variability in Spitzer’s Infrared Array Camera (IRAC) channel 2 (ch2) or Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer W2 photometry. For Spitzer the ch2 1σlimits are ∼8 mmag for objects at 11.5 mag and ∼22 mmag for objects at 16 mag. This corresponds to no variability above 4.5% at 11.5 mag and 12.5% at 16 mag. We conclude that highly variable brown dwarfs, at least two previously published examples of which have been shown to have 4.6μm variability above 80 mmag, are very rare. While analyzing the data, we also developed a new technique for identifying brown dwarf binary candidates in Spitzer data. We find that known binaries have IRAC ch2 point response function (PRF) flux measurements that are consistently dimmer than aperture flux measurements. We have identified 59 objects that exhibit such PRF versus aperture flux differences and are thus excellent binary brown dwarf candidates.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 10, 2024
  2. Abstract

    WISEA J153429.75−104303.3 (a.k.a. “The Accident”) is a brown dwarf with unique observational properties unlike those of any other known (sub)stellar object. It is thought to be a very cold, metal-poor brown dwarf, and potentially the first identified Y-type subdwarf. Although WISEA J153429.75−104303.3 is extremely faint atλ ∼ 1.25 μm, low-temperature atmosphere models suggest thatY-band flux could increase dramatically relative toJ-band as metallicity decreases from solar. We therefore obtained deepY-band follow-up imaging of WISEA J153429.75−104303.3 with the Dark Energy Camera, and report a resultingY-band limit ofY > 21.79 mag (Vega, 5σ).

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  3. 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 theJband, no standard matches well across the fullYJHKwavelength 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 andTeff≈ 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 3–5μm color.

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  4. Abstract

    We present the analysis of two unusually red L dwarfs, CWISE J075554.14−325956.3 (W0755−3259) and CWISE J165909.91−351108.5 (W1659−3511), confirmed by their newly obtained near-infrared spectra collected with the TripleSpec4 spectrograph on the Southern Astrophysical Research Telescope. We classify W0755−3259 as an L7 very low-gravity dwarf, exhibiting extreme redness with a characteristic peakedH-band and spectral indices typical of low-gravity late-type L dwarfs. We classify W1659-3511 as a red L7 field-gravity dwarf, with a more roundedH-band peak and spectral indices that support a normal gravity designation. W1659−3511 is noticeably fainter than W0755−3259, and the roundedH-band of W1659−3511 may be evidence of CH4absorption.

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  5. Abstract

    We present spectroscopic confirmation of a nearby L dwarf pair, CWISE J061741.79+194512.8AB. Keck/NIRES near-infrared spectroscopy shows that the pair is composed of an L2 dwarf primary and an L4 dwarf secondary. High resolution spectroscopy of the combined light system with Keck/NIRSPEC yields a radial velocity of 29.2 ± 0.3 km s−1and a projected rotational velocityvsini=41.62.6+2.7km s−1. Our spectrophotometric distance estimate places the system at 28.2 ± 5.7 pc, significantly more distant than originally estimated in Kirkpatrick et al. The angular separation of the components is 1.″31 ± 0.″14, corresponding to a projected physical separation of 37 ± 8 au.

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  6. Abstract

    We present the discovery of CWISE J050626.96+073842.4 (CWISE J0506+0738), an L/T transition dwarf with extremely red near-infrared colors discovered through the Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 citizen science project. Photometry from UKIRT and CatWISE give a (JK)MKOcolor of 2.97 ± 0.03 mag and aJMKO− W2 color of 4.93 ± 0.02 mag, making CWISE J0506+0738 the reddest known free-floating L/T dwarf in both colors. We confirm the extremely red nature of CWISE J0506+0738 using Keck/NIRES near-infrared spectroscopy and establish that it is a low-gravity, late-type L/T transition dwarf. The spectrum of CWISE J0506+0738 shows possible signatures of CH4absorption in its atmosphere, suggesting a colder effective temperature than other known, young, red L dwarfs. We assign a preliminary spectral type for this source of L8γ–T0γ. We tentatively find that CWISE J0506+0738 is variable at 3–5μm based on multiepoch WISE photometry. Proper motions derived from follow-up UKIRT observations combined with a radial velocity from our Keck/NIRES spectrum and a photometric distance estimate indicate a strong membership probability in theβPic moving group. A future parallax measurement will help to establish a more definitive moving group membership for this unusual object.

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  7. Abstract We present the discovery of CWISE J052306.42−015355.4, which was found as a faint, significant proper-motion object (0.″52 ± 0.″08 yr −1 ) using machine-learning tools on the unWISE re-processing of time series images from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer. Using the CatWISE2020 W1 and W2 magnitudes along with a J -band detection from the VISTA Hemisphere Survey, the location of CWISE J052306.42−015355.4 on the W1 − W2 versus J − W2 diagram best matches that of other known, or suspected, extreme T subdwarfs. As there is currently very little knowledge concerning extreme T subdwarfs we estimate a rough distance of ≤68 pc, which results in a tangential velocity of ≤167 km s −1 , both of which are tentative. A measured parallax is greatly needed to test these values. We also estimate a metallicity of −1.5 < [M/H] < −0.5 using theoretical predictions. 
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  8. Abstract We present the discovery of a low-mass comoving system found by means of the NOIRLab Source Catalog DR2. The system consists of the high proper-motion star LEHPM 5005 and an ultracool companion 2MASS J22410186-4500298 with an estimated spectral type of L2. The primary (LEHPM 5005) is likely a mid-M dwarf but over-luminous for its color, indicating a possible close equal mass binary. According to the Gaia EDR3 parallax of the primary, the system is located at a distance of 58 ± 2 pc. We calculated an angular separation of 7.″2 between both components, resulting in a projected physical separation of 418 au. 
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  9. Abstract

    We present WDJ220838.73+454434.04 (hereafter WD2208+454), a wide, co-moving white dwarf companion to the eclipsing binary system, AR Lacertae. The companion was discovered through the Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 citizen science collaboration. It has a separation of 21.″9 on the sky from the central eclipsing pair, translating to a projected separation of ∼930 au. We present a review of the physical properties and orbital parameters of this new addition to the system.

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  10. Abstract In an effort to identify nearby and unusual cold objects in the solar neighborhood, we searched for previously unidentified moving objects using CatWISE2020 proper motion data combined with machine learning methods. We paired the motion candidates with their counterparts in 2MASS, UHS, and VHS. Then we searched for white dwarf, brown dwarf, and subdwarf outliers on the resulting color–color diagrams. This resulted in the discovery of 16 new dwarfs, including 2 nearby M dwarfs (<30 pc), a possible young L dwarf, a high-motion early-T dwarf, and 3 later-T dwarfs. This research represents a step forward in completing the census of the Sun’s neighbors. 
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