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Title: KEPLER FLARES. I. ACTIVE AND INACTIVE M DWARFS

We analyzed Kepler short-cadence M dwarf observations. Spectra from the Astrophysical Research Consortium 3.5 m telescope identify magnetically active (Hα in emission) stars. The active stars are of mid-M spectral type, have numerous flares, and have well-defined rotational modulation due to starspots. The inactive stars are of early M type, exhibit less starspot signature, and have fewer flares. A Kepler to U-band energy scaling allows comparison of the Kepler flare frequency distributions with previous ground-based data. M dwarfs span a large range of flare frequency and energy, blurring the distinction between active and inactive stars designated solely by the presence of Hα. We analyzed classical and complex (multiple peak) flares on GJ 1243, finding strong correlations between flare energy, amplitude, duration, and decay time, with only a weak dependence on rise time. Complex flares last longer and have higher energy at the same amplitude, and higher energy flares are more likely to be complex. A power law fits the energy distribution for flares with log E{sub K{sub p}}> 31 erg, but the predicted number of low-energy flares far exceeds the number observed, at energies where flares are still easily detectable, indicating that the power-law distribution may flatten at low energy. There is no correlationmore » of flare occurrence or energy with starspot phase, the flare waiting time distribution is consistent with flares occurring randomly in time, and the energies of consecutive flares are uncorrelated. These observations support a scenario where many independent active regions on the stellar surface are contributing to the observed flare rate.« less
Authors:
; ; ; ; ;  [1] ;  [2]
  1. Department of Astronomy, University of Washington, Box 351580, Seattle, WA 98195 (United States)
  2. Department of Physics, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, 300 Pulteney Street, Geneva, NY 14456 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22364798
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 797; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; AMPLITUDES; ASTROPHYSICS; COMPARATIVE EVALUATIONS; CORRELATIONS; ENERGY SPECTRA; MASS; MODULATION; STARS; STARSPOTS; STELLAR FLARES; TELESCOPES