Deep Long Asymmetric Occultation in EPIC 204376071

S. Rappaport*, G. Zhou, A. Vanderburg, A. Mann, M. H. Kristiansen, K. Oláh, T. L. Jacobs, E. Newton, M. R. Omohundro, D LaCourse, H. M. Schwengeler, I. A. Terentev, D. W. Latham, A. Bieryla, M. Soares-Furtado, L. G. Bouma, M. J. Ireland, J. Irwin

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

We have discovered a young M star of mass 0.16 M⊙ and radius 0.63 R⊙, likely in the Upper Sco Association, that exhibits only a single 80% deep occultation of 1-day duration. The star has frequent flares and a low-amplitude rotational modulation, but is otherwise quiet over 160 days of cumulative observation during K2 Campaigns C2 and C15. We discuss how such a deep eclipse is not possible by one star crossing another in any binary or higher-order stellar system in which no mass transfer has occurred. The two possible explanations we are left with are (1) orbiting dust or small particles (e.g., a disk bound to a smaller orbiting body, or unbound dust that emanates from such a body); or (2) a transient accretion event of dusty material near the corotation radius of the star. In either case, the time between such occultation events must be longer than ∼80 days. We model a possible orbiting occulter both as a uniform elliptically shaped surface (e.g., an inclined circular disk) and as a ‘dust sheet’ with a gradient of optical depth behind its leading edge. The required masses in such dust features are then ≳ 3 × 1019 g and ≳ 1019 g, for the two cases, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume485
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)2681–2693
ISSN0035-8711
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • Stars: binaries (including multiple): close
  • Stars: binaries: eclipsing
  • Stars: binaries: general

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