Wednesday, December 30, 2015

HD 100546b is a SuperJovian and HD 100546c is a SuperJovian at 13 AU

Resolving the HD 100546 Protoplanetary System with the Gemini Planet Imager: Evidence for Multiple Forming, Accreting Planets


Currie et al


We report Gemini Planet Imager H band high-contrast imaging/integral field spectroscopy and polarimetry of the HD 100546, a 10 Myr-old early-type star recently confirmed to host a thermal infrared bright (super)jovian protoplanet at wide separation, HD 100546 b. We resolve the inner disk cavity in polarized light, recover the thermal-infrared (IR) bright arm, and identify one additional spiral arm. We easily recover HD 100546 b and show that much of its emission originates an unresolved, point source. HD 100546 b likely has extremely red infrared colors compared to field brown dwarfs, qualitatively similar to young cloudy superjovian planets, however, these colors may instead indicate that HD 100546 b is still accreting material from a circumplanetary disk. Additionally, we identify a second point source-like peak at rproj ∼ 13 AU, located just interior to or at inner disk wall consistent with being a 10--20 MJ candidate second protoplanet-- "HD 100546 c" -- and lying within a weakly polarized region of the disk but along an extension of the thermal IR bright spiral arm. Alternatively, it is equally plausible that this feature is a weakly polarized but locally bright region of the inner disk wall. Astrometric monitoring of this feature over the next 2 years and emission line measurements could confirm its status as a protoplanet, rotating disk hot spot that is possibly a signpost of a protoplanet, or a stationary emission source from within the disk.

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