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Wolf 1130: A Nearby Triple System Containing a Cool, Ultramassive White Dwarf

Mace, Gregory N. and Mann, Andrew W. and Skiff, Brian A. and Sneden, Christopher and Kirkpatrick, J. Davy and Schneider, Adam C. and Kidder, Benjamin and Gosnell, Natalie M. and Kim, Hwihyun and Mulligan, Brian W. and Prato, L. and Jaffe, Daniel (2018) Wolf 1130: A Nearby Triple System Containing a Cool, Ultramassive White Dwarf. Astrophysical Journal, 854 (2). Art. No. 145. ISSN 1538-4357. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/aaa8dd.

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Following the discovery of the T8 subdwarf WISE J200520.38+542433.9 (Wolf 1130C), which has a proper motion in common with a binary (Wolf 1130AB) consisting of an M subdwarf and a white dwarf, we set out to learn more about the old binary in the system. We find that the A and B components of Wolf 1130 are tidally locked, which is revealed by the coherence of more than a year of V-band photometry phase-folded to the derived orbital period of 0.4967 days. Forty new high-resolution, near-infrared spectra obtained with the Immersion Grating Infrared Spectrometer provide radial velocities and a projected rotational velocity (v sin i) of 14.7 ± 0.7 km s^(-1) for the M subdwarf. In tandem with a Gaia parallax-derived radius and verified tidal locking, we calculate an inclination of i = 29° ± 2°. From the single-lined orbital solution and the inclination we derive an absolute mass for the unseen primary (1.24^(+0.19)_(-0.15) M ⊙). Its non-detection between 0.2 and 2.5 μm implies that it is an old (>3.7 Gyr) and cool (T_(eff) < 7000 K) ONe white dwarf. This is the first ultramassive white dwarf within 25 pc. The evolution of Wolf 1130AB into a cataclysmic variable is inevitable, making it a potential SN Ia progenitor. The formation of a triple system with a primary mass >100 times the tertiary mass and the survival of the system through the common-envelope phase, where ~80% of the system mass was lost, is remarkable. Our analysis of Wolf 1130 allows us to infer its formation and evolutionary history, which has unique implications for understanding low-mass star and brown dwarf formation around intermediate-mass stars.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Mace, Gregory N.0000-0001-7875-6391
Mann, Andrew W.0000-0003-3654-1602
Sneden, Christopher0000-0002-3456-5929
Kirkpatrick, J. Davy0000-0003-4269-260X
Schneider, Adam C.0000-0002-6294-5937
Gosnell, Natalie M.0000-0002-8443-0723
Kim, Hwihyun0000-0003-4770-688X
Mulligan, Brian W.0000-0003-3347-0554
Jaffe, Daniel0000-0003-3577-3540
Additional Information:© 2018 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2017 October 11; revised 2018 January 10; accepted 2018 January 16; published 2018 February 21. We appreciate the comments and recommendations of the anonymous referee, Sarah Logsdon, Emily Martin, Fabiola Campos, Kimberly Sokal, Casey Deen, Julie Skinner Manegold, Edward Robinson, Mike Montgomery, and Craig Wheeler. Thank you to Kevin Gullikson, Kyle Kaplan, and Jacob McLane for exchanging observing time for this project. This paper includes data taken at the McDonald Observatory of the University of Texas at Austin and we thank the Observer Support for their constant watch over the facility. Support was provided in part by the US National Science Foundation under grant AST-1616040 to C. Sneden. This work used the Immersion Grating Infrared Spectrometer (IGRINS) that was developed under a collaboration between the University of Texas at Austin and the Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI) with the financial support of the US National Science Foundation under grant AST-1229522, of the University of Texas at Austin, and of the Korean GMT Project of KASI. 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
University of Texas at AustinUNSPECIFIED
Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute (KASI)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:binaries: close – binaries: spectroscopic – brown dwarfs – novae, cataclysmic variables – subdwarfs – white dwarfs
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180222-130734416
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Gregory N. Mace et al 2018 ApJ 854 145
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:84926
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:22 Feb 2018 23:53
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 20:24

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