Parallax measurements of cool brown dwarfs

Accurate parallax measurements allow us to determine physical properties of brown dwarfs, and help us to constrain evolutionary and atmospheric models, break the age-mass degeneracy and reveal unresolved binaries.
We measured absolute trigonometric parallaxes and proper motions of 6 cool brown dwarfs using background galaxies to establish an absolute reference frame. We derive the absolute J-mag. The six T brown dwarfs in our sample have spectral types between T2.5 and T7.5 and magnitudes in J between 13.9 and 18.0, with photometric distances below 25 pc.
The observations were taken in the J-band with the Omega-2000 camera on the 3.5 m telescope at Calar Alto, during a time period of 27 months, between March 2011 and June 2013. The number of epochs varied between 11 and 12 depending on the object. The reduction of the astrometric measurements was carried out with respect to the field stars. The relative parallax and proper motions were transformed into absolute measurements using the background galaxies in our fields.
We obtained absolute parallaxes for our six brown dwarfs with a precision between 3 and 6 mas. We compared our results with the study by Dupuy and Liu (2012) and with the atmospheric models of Allard et al. (2012) as well. For four of the six targets we found a good agreement in luminosity with objects of similar spectral types. We obtained an improved accuracy in the parallaxes and proper motions in comparison to previous works. The object 2MASS J11061197+2754225 is more than 1 mag overluminous in all bands pointing to binarity or high order multiplicity.

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Date added: Wed, 9 Oct 13