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Title: M DWARF LUMINOSITY, RADIUS, AND α-ENRICHMENT FROM I-BAND SPECTRAL FEATURES

Despite the ubiquity of M dwarfs and their growing importance to studies of exoplanets, Galactic evolution, and stellar structure, methods for precisely measuring their fundamental stellar properties remain elusive. Existing techniques for measuring M dwarf luminosity, mass, radius, or composition are calibrated over a limited range of stellar parameters or require expensive observations. We find a strong correlation between the K{sub S}-band luminosity (M{sub K}), the observed strength of the I-band sodium doublet absorption feature, and [Fe/H] in M dwarfs without strong Hα emission. We show that the strength of this feature, coupled with [Fe/H] and spectral type, can be used to derive M dwarf M{sub K} and radius without requiring parallax. Additionally, we find promising evidence that the strengths of the I-band sodium doublet and the nearby I-band calcium triplet may jointly indicate α-element enrichment. The use of these I-band features requires only moderate-resolution near-infrared spectroscopy to provide valuable information about the potential habitability of exoplanets around M dwarfs, and surface gravity and distance for M dwarfs throughout the Galaxy. This technique has immediate applicability for both target selection and candidate planet–host system characterization for exoplanet missions such as TESS and K2.
Authors:
; ; ; ;  [1]
  1. Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, The Pennsylvania State University, 525 Davey Laboratory, University Park, PA 16802 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22518824
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 802; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ABSORPTION SPECTROSCOPY; CALCIUM; CORRELATIONS; DWARF STARS; ELEMENT ABUNDANCE; GALACTIC EVOLUTION; GALAXIES; GRAVITATION; HYDROGEN; INFRARED SPECTRA; IRON; LUMINOSITY; MASS; PLANETS; SATELLITES; SODIUM; TRIPLETS