A Candidate Substellar Companion to CoD -33 7795 (TWA 5)

Astronomy and Astrophysics – Astrophysics

Scientific paper

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LATEX, 10 pages, 2 figures, accepted for publication in ApJ Letters

Scientific paper


We present the discovery of a candidate substellar object in a survey of young stars in the solar vicinity using the sensitivity and spatial resolution afforded by the NICMOS coronagraph on the Hubble Space Telescope. The H=12.1 mag object was discovered approximately 2 arcsec from the TW Hydrae Association member CoD -33 7795 (TWA 5), and the photometry implies a spectral type M8-M8.5, with a temperature of approximately 2600K. We estimate that the probability of a chance alignment with a background objectof this nature is < 2 X 10^(-5), and therefore postulate the object (TWA 5B) is physically associated at a projected separation of 100 AU. Given the likely youth of the primary (~ 10 Myr), current brown dwarf cooling models predict a mass of approximately 20 Jupiter masses for TWA 5B.

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