Astrophys. J., 626, 486-497 (2005/June-2)
Quiescent radio emission from southern late-type M dwarfs and a spectacular radio flare from the M8 dwarf DENIS 1048-3956.
BURGASSER A.J. and PUTMAN M.E.
Abstract (from CDS):
We report the results of a radio monitoring program conducted at the Australia Telescope Compact Array to search for quiescent and flaring emission from seven nearby Southern late-type M and L dwarfs. Two late-type M dwarfs, the M7 V LHS 3003 and the M8 V DENIS 1048-3956, were detected in quiescent emission at 4.80 GHz. The observed emission is consistent with optically thin gyrosynchrotron emission from mildly relativistic (∼1-10 keV) electrons with source densities ne≲109/cm3 in B≳10 G magnetic fields. DENIS 1048-3956 was also detected in two spectacular, short-lived flares, one at 4.80 GHz (peak fν=6.0±0.8 mJy) and one at 8.64 GHz (peak fν=29.6±1.0 mJy) approximately 10 minutes later. The high brightness temperature (TB≳1013 K), short emission period (∼4-5 minutes), high circular polarization (∼100%), and apparently narrow spectral bandwidth of these events imply a coherent emission process in a region of high electron density (ne∼1011-1012/cm3) and magnetic field strength (B∼1 kG). If the two flare events are related, the apparent frequency drift in the emission suggests that the emitting source either moved into regions of higher electron or magnetic flux density or was compressed, e.g., by twisting field lines or gas motions. This emission may be related to a recent optical flare from this source that exhibited indications of chromospheric mass motion. The quiescent fluxes from the radio-emitting M dwarfs are too bright to support the Güdel-Benz empirical radio/X-ray relations, confirming a trend previously noted by Berger et al. The violation of these relations is symptomatic of a divergence in magnetic emission trends at and beyond spectral type M7/M8, where relative X-ray and Hα emission drops precipitously while relative radio emission appears to remain constant or possibly increases. With an apparent decline in chromospheric/coronal heating, the origin of hot coronal plasmas around ultracool dwarfs remains uncertain, although external sources, such as accretion from a residual disk or tidally distorted companions, remain possibilities worth exploring.
Radio Continuum: Stars - Stars: Activity - Stars: Flare - Stars: Individual: Alphanumeric: DENIS J104814.7-395606 - Stars: Individual: Alphanumeric: LHS 102B - Stars: Individual: Alphanumeric: LHS 3003 - Stars: Low-Mass, Brown Dwarfs - Techniques: Interferometric
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