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The dipper population of Taurus seen with K2

Roggero, Noemi and Bouvier, Jèrôme and Rebull, Luisa M. and Cody, Ann Marie (2021) The dipper population of Taurus seen with K2. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 651 . Art. No. A44. ISSN 0004-6361. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/202140646.

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Context. Dippers are typically low-mass, pre-main-sequence stars that display dips in their light curves. These dips have been attributed to dusty warps that form in the inner part of the disk. Aims. Our goal is to derive the characteristics of dipper stars in Taurus to assess the physical mechanisms that induce dipper light curves. Methods. We used the light curves of the fourth and thirteenth campaigns of K2 to select a dipper sample among 179 members and possible members of the Taurus star-forming region based on the light-curve morphology. We studied the periodicities by combining periodograms with wavelet analysis and derived the stellar parameters of the sample from the photometry. We also studied the morphology of the photometric dips. Results. We find a dipper occurrence of ~30% in disk-bearing stars observed with K2 that were identified visually by us. This represents a lower limit to their true occurrence, on the one hand because they are ephemeral, and on the other because there are detection limits. About half of the dippers are aperiodic, and most of these are dominated by another type of variability. The chosen sample is of late spectral type (K/M), low mass (mostly <1 M_⊙), and moderate mass accretion rates and has periods of a few days. We observed a transient dipper over a few rotation cycles and observed a dipper with a changing period. The structure of the dips can be complex and varies strongly over timescales of down to one stellar rotation. The corotation radii are located at a few stellar radii, and the temperatures at corotation allow dust survival. Many of the systems are seen at moderate to high inclination. We find that the angular extension of the dusty structure producing the dips is correlated with the stellar period. Conclusions. Magnetospheric accretion, which causes an accretion column and its base to occult the star, can explain most of the observed light curves. Although compatible with the model, many of the stellar inclination angles are moderate and do not exclude mechanisms other than the occultation by an inner disk warp to account for dipper light curves.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Roggero, Noemi0000-0003-4370-086X
Bouvier, Jèrôme0000-0002-7450-6712
Rebull, Luisa M.0000-0001-6381-515X
Cody, Ann Marie0000-0002-3656-6706
Additional Information:© N. Roggero et al. 2021. Open Access article, published by EDP Sciences, under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Received 23 February 2021; Accepted 10 May 2021; Published online 12 July 2021. We wish to thank the anonymous referee for constructive comments which have improved the clarity of this paper, and Didier Fraix-Burnet and Gérard Grégoire for the helpful discussions. This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 742095; SPIDI: Star-Planets-Inner Disk-Interactions). Some of the data presented in this paper were obtained from the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST). Support for MAST for non-HST data is provided by the NASA Office of Space Science via grant NNX09AF08G and by other grants and contracts. This research has made use of data products from the Two Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS), which is a joint project of the University of Massachusetts and the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the National Science Foundation. The 2MASS data are served by the NASA/IPAC Infrared Science Archive, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. This work has made use of data from the European Space Agency (ESA) mission Gaia (, processed by the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC, Funding for the DPAC has been provided by national institutions, in particular the institutions participating in the Gaia Multilateral Agreement.
Group:Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
European Research Council (ERC)742095
Gaia Multilateral AgreementUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:stars: pre-main sequence – stars: variables: T Tauri, Herbig Ae/Be – protoplanetary disks – accretion, accretion disks – techniques: photometric
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210722-140457513
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Official Citation:The dipper population of Taurus seen with K2. Noemi Roggero, Jérôme Bouvier, Luisa M. Rebull and Ann Marie Cody. A&A, 651 (2021) A44; DOI:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:109971
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:26 Jul 2021 22:37
Last Modified:26 Jul 2021 22:37

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