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Published December 1, 2010 | Published
Journal Article Open

The Spitzer c2d Survey of Weak-line T Tauri Stars. III. The Transition from Primordial Disks to Debris Disks


We present 3.6 to 70 μm Spitzer photometry of 154 weak-line T Tauri stars (WTTSs) in the Chamaeleon, Lupus, Ophiuchus, and Taurus star formation regions, all of which are within 200 pc of the Sun. For a comparative study, we also include 33 classical T Tauri stars which are located in the same star-forming regions. Spitzer sensitivities allow us to robustly detect the photosphere in the IRAC bands (3.6 to 8 μm) and the 24 μm MIPS band. In the 70 μm MIPS band, we are able to detect dust emission brighter than roughly 40 times the photosphere. These observations represent the most sensitive WTTSs survey in the mid- to far-infrared to date and reveal the frequency of outer disks (r = 3-50 AU) around WTTSs. The 70 μm photometry for half the c2d WTTSs sample (the on-cloud objects), which were not included in the earlier papers in this series, those of Padgett et al. and Cieza et al., are presented here for the first time. We find a disk frequency of 19% for on-cloud WTTSs, but just 5% for off-cloud WTTSs, similar to the value reported in the earlier works. WTTSs exhibit spectral energy distributions that are quite diverse, spanning the range from optically thick to optically thin disks. Most disks become more tenuous than L_disk/L_* = 2 × 10^(–3) in 2 Myr and more tenuous than L_disk/L_* = 5 × 10^(–4) in 4 Myr.

Additional Information

© 2010 American Astronomical Society. Received 2008 November 3; accepted 2010 September 21; published 2010 November 9. Support for this work, which is part of the Spitzer Legacy Science Program, was provided by NASA through contracts 1224608, 1230782, and 1230799 issued by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under NASA contract 1407. This publication makes use of data products from the Two Micron All Sky Survey, which is a joint project of the University of Massachusetts and the Infrared Processing and Analysis Center funded by NASA and the National Science Foundation. We also acknowledge use of the SIMBAD database.

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