The TESS mission has been a crucial tool in the characterization of 5 new transiting brown dwarfs with more discoveries expected to follow as it completes its primary mission into 2020. There are approximately two dozen known transiting brown dwarfs that have precisely measured masses and radii, which require ground-based follow up spectroscopy in combination with the light curves from the TESS mission to obtain. Due to the relatively low number of transiting brown dwarfs that have been discovered, we are limited in how well we can study this population of objects. Still, we may compare the measured masses and radii of brown dwarfs to theoretical substellar evolutionary models in order to find clues to the origins of this population. As more brown dwarfs are discovered, we may find that the arbitrarily chosen mass range that defines them (13 to 80 Jupiter masses) does not appropriately reflect their formation mechanisms. We have analyzed 3 brown dwarfs that have been discovered by the TESS mission and present our findings and evidence for the favored formation scenarios for each.
American Astronomical Society Meeting Abstracts
- Pub Date:
- January 2020