Astronomy and Astrophysics, volume 392, 215-229 (2002/9-2)
The CORALIE survey for southern extra-solar planets. IX. A 1.3-day period brown dwarf disguised as a planet.
SANTOS N.C., MAYOR M., NAEF D., PEPE F., QUELOZ D., UDRY S., BURNET M., CLAUSEN J.V., HELT B.E., OLSEN E.H. and PRITCHARD J.D.
Abstract (from CDS):
In this article we present the case of HD41004AB, a system composed of a K0V star and a 3.7-mag fainter M-dwarf companion. We have obtained 86 CORALIE spectra of this system with the goal of obtaining precise radial-velocity measurements. Since HD 41004A and B are separated by only 0.5", in every spectrum taken for the radial-velocity measurement, we are observing the blended spectra of the two stars. An analysis of the measurements has revealed a velocity variation with an amplitude of about 50m/s and a periodicity of 1.3days. This radial-velocity signal is consistent with the expected variation induced by the presence of a companion to either HD 41004A or HD 41004B, or to some other effect due to e.g. activity related phenomena. In particular, such a small velocity amplitude could be the signature of the presence of a very low mass giant planetary companion to HD 41004A, whose light dominates the spectra. The radial-velocity measurements were then complemented with a photometric campaign and with the analysis of the bisector of the CORALIE Cross-Correlation Function (CCF). While the former revealed no significant variations within the observational precision of ∼0.003-0.004mag (except for an observed flare event), the bisector analysis showed that the line profiles are varying in phase with the radial-velocity. This latter result, complemented with a series of simulations, has shown that we can explain the observations by considering that HD 41004B has a brown-dwarf companion orbiting with the observed 1.3-day period. As the spectrum of the fainter HD 41004B ``moves'' relative to the one of HD 41004A (with an amplitude of a few km/s), the relative position of the spectral lines of the two spectra changes, thus changing the blended line-profiles. This variation is large enough to explain the observed radial-velocity and bisector variations, and is compatible with the absence of any photometric signal. If confirmed, this detection represents the first discovery of a brown dwarf in a very short period (1.3-day) orbit around an M dwarf. Finally, this case should be taken as a serious warning about the importance of analyzing the bisector when looking for planets using radial-velocity techniques.
techniques: radial velocities - binaries: visual - binaries: spectroscopic - stars: brown dwarfs - stars: exoplanets - stars: individual: HD 41004
VizieR on-line data:
<Available at CDS (J/A+A/392/215): table1.dat>
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