A Caltech Library Service

Brown dwarfs and very low mass stars in the Hyades cluster: a dynamically evolved mass function

Bouvier, J. and Kendall, T. and Meeus, G. and Testi, L. and Moraux, E. and Stauffer, J. R. and James, D. and Cuillandre, J.-C. and Irwin, J. and McCaughrean, M. J. and Baraffe, I. and Bertin, E. (2008) Brown dwarfs and very low mass stars in the Hyades cluster: a dynamically evolved mass function. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 481 (3). pp. 661-672. ISSN 0004-6361. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20079303.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Aims. We conducted a search for brown dwarfs (BDs) and very low mass (VLM) stars in the 625 Myr-old Hyades cluster in order to derive the cluster's mass function across the stellar-substellar boundary. Methods. We performed a deep (I=23, z=22.5) photometric survey over 16 deg^2 around the cluster center and followed up with K-band photometry to measure the proper motion of candidate members and with optical and near-IR spectroscopy of probable BD and VLM members. Results. We report the discovery of the first 2 BDs in the Hyades cluster. The 2 objects have a spectral type early-T and their optical and near-IR photometry as well as their proper motion are consistent with them being cluster members. According to models, their mass is 50 Jupiter masses at an age of 625 Myr. We also report the discovery of 3 new very low mass stellar members of the cluster and confirm the membership of 16 others. We combine these results with a list of previously known cluster members to build the present-day mass function (PDMF) of the Hyades cluster from 50 Jupiter masses to 3 Mסּ. We find the Hyades PDMF to be strongly deficient in very low mass objects and BDs compared to the IMF of younger open clusters such as the Pleiades. We interpret this deficiency as the result of dynamical evolution over the past few 100 Myr, i.e., the preferential evaporation of low mass cluster members due to weak gravitational encounters. Conclusions. We thus estimate that the Hyades cluster currently hosts about 10-15 BDs, while its initial substellar population may have amounted to up to 150-200 members.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Bouvier, J.0000-0002-7450-6712
Testi, L.0000-0003-1859-3070
Stauffer, J. R.0000-0003-3595-7382
Additional Information:© ESO 2008. Received 21 December 2007 / Accepted 7 January 2008. We thank the TNG staff for the support in preparing and executing the service observing observations. This research benefited from financial assistance from the European Union Research Training Network “The Formation and Evolution of Young Stellar Clusters” (RTN1-1999-00436). G.M. acknowledges financial support by the DFG under Grant ME2061/3-1. This research has made use of the SIMBAD database, operated at CDS, Strasbourg, France, and of the IRAF package distributed by the NOAO.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Marie Curie FellowshipRTN1-1999-00436
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)ME2061/3-1
Subject Keywords:stars: luminosity function ; mass function ; Galaxy: open clusters and associations: individual: Hyades (Melotte 25) ; stars: low-mass, brown dwarfs
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20090407-130750587
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:13875
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:13 May 2009 16:48
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 22:41

Repository Staff Only: item control page