High Spatial Resolution Imaging of Pre-Main Sequence Binary Stars: Resolving the Relationship Between Disks and Close Companions
Although the standard model for star formation is based on single stars, we now know that most T Tauri stars are in multiple star systems with the majority having separations less than 100 AU, the size typically inferred for a circumstellar disk. To study the effects of ``close'' companions (10-50 AU) on the circumstellar environment, we have obtained HST Planetary Camera images of a several T Tauri binary stars. These high resolution observations, in conjunction with near-infrared speckle imaging measurements, have revealed a particularly surprising result: contrary to the standard model for T Tauri stars, several of the secondary stars have an ultra-violet but no infrared excess. We interpret this as a signature of diskless accretion, a phenomenon previously unobserved in T Tauri stars. Furthermore, this result suggests that planetary formation is unlikely to occur around these close secondary stars.
American Astronomical Society Meeting Abstracts
- Pub Date:
- December 1995