On the alignment of debris disks and their host stars' rotation axis -implications for spin-orbit misalignment in exoplanetary systems

Christopher Watson, S.P. Littlefair, C. Diamond, A. Collier Cameron, Alan Fitzsimmons, Elaine Simpson, Victoria Moulds, Don Pollacco

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

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Abstract

It has been widely thought that measuring the misalignment angle between the orbital plane of a transiting exoplanet and the spin of its host star was a good discriminator between different migration processes for hot-Jupiters. Specifically, well-aligned hot-Jupiter systems (as measured by the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect) were thought to have formed via migration through interaction with a viscous disc, while misaligned systems were thought to have undergone a more violent dynamical history. These conclusions were based on the assumption that the planet-forming disc was well-aligned with the host star. Recent work by Lai et al. has challenged this assumption, and proposes that the star-disc interaction in the pre-main sequence phase can exert a torque on the star and change its rotation axis angle. We have estimated the stellar rotation axis of a sample of stars which host spatially resolved debris disks. Comparison of our derived stellar rotation axis inclination angles with the geometrically measured debris-disk inclinations shows no evidence for a misalignment between the two.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)L71-L75
Number of pages5
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume413
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2011

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debris
misalignment
alignment
orbits
stars
Jupiter
stellar rotation
Jupiter (planet)
inclination
torque
planet
discriminators
extrasolar planets
planets
history
histories
interactions
orbitals

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Watson, Christopher ; Littlefair, S.P. ; Diamond, C. ; Collier Cameron, A. ; Fitzsimmons, Alan ; Simpson, Elaine ; Moulds, Victoria ; Pollacco, Don. / On the alignment of debris disks and their host stars' rotation axis -implications for spin-orbit misalignment in exoplanetary systems. In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 2011 ; Vol. 413, No. 1. pp. L71-L75.
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abstract = "It has been widely thought that measuring the misalignment angle between the orbital plane of a transiting exoplanet and the spin of its host star was a good discriminator between different migration processes for hot-Jupiters. Specifically, well-aligned hot-Jupiter systems (as measured by the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect) were thought to have formed via migration through interaction with a viscous disc, while misaligned systems were thought to have undergone a more violent dynamical history. These conclusions were based on the assumption that the planet-forming disc was well-aligned with the host star. Recent work by Lai et al. has challenged this assumption, and proposes that the star-disc interaction in the pre-main sequence phase can exert a torque on the star and change its rotation axis angle. We have estimated the stellar rotation axis of a sample of stars which host spatially resolved debris disks. Comparison of our derived stellar rotation axis inclination angles with the geometrically measured debris-disk inclinations shows no evidence for a misalignment between the two.",
author = "Christopher Watson and S.P. Littlefair and C. Diamond and {Collier Cameron}, A. and Alan Fitzsimmons and Elaine Simpson and Victoria Moulds and Don Pollacco",
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On the alignment of debris disks and their host stars' rotation axis -implications for spin-orbit misalignment in exoplanetary systems. / Watson, Christopher; Littlefair, S.P.; Diamond, C.; Collier Cameron, A.; Fitzsimmons, Alan; Simpson, Elaine; Moulds, Victoria; Pollacco, Don.

In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 413, No. 1, 05.2011, p. L71-L75.

Research output: Contribution to journalLetter

TY - JOUR

T1 - On the alignment of debris disks and their host stars' rotation axis -implications for spin-orbit misalignment in exoplanetary systems

AU - Watson, Christopher

AU - Littlefair, S.P.

AU - Diamond, C.

AU - Collier Cameron, A.

AU - Fitzsimmons, Alan

AU - Simpson, Elaine

AU - Moulds, Victoria

AU - Pollacco, Don

PY - 2011/5

Y1 - 2011/5

N2 - It has been widely thought that measuring the misalignment angle between the orbital plane of a transiting exoplanet and the spin of its host star was a good discriminator between different migration processes for hot-Jupiters. Specifically, well-aligned hot-Jupiter systems (as measured by the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect) were thought to have formed via migration through interaction with a viscous disc, while misaligned systems were thought to have undergone a more violent dynamical history. These conclusions were based on the assumption that the planet-forming disc was well-aligned with the host star. Recent work by Lai et al. has challenged this assumption, and proposes that the star-disc interaction in the pre-main sequence phase can exert a torque on the star and change its rotation axis angle. We have estimated the stellar rotation axis of a sample of stars which host spatially resolved debris disks. Comparison of our derived stellar rotation axis inclination angles with the geometrically measured debris-disk inclinations shows no evidence for a misalignment between the two.

AB - It has been widely thought that measuring the misalignment angle between the orbital plane of a transiting exoplanet and the spin of its host star was a good discriminator between different migration processes for hot-Jupiters. Specifically, well-aligned hot-Jupiter systems (as measured by the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect) were thought to have formed via migration through interaction with a viscous disc, while misaligned systems were thought to have undergone a more violent dynamical history. These conclusions were based on the assumption that the planet-forming disc was well-aligned with the host star. Recent work by Lai et al. has challenged this assumption, and proposes that the star-disc interaction in the pre-main sequence phase can exert a torque on the star and change its rotation axis angle. We have estimated the stellar rotation axis of a sample of stars which host spatially resolved debris disks. Comparison of our derived stellar rotation axis inclination angles with the geometrically measured debris-disk inclinations shows no evidence for a misalignment between the two.

U2 - 10.1111/j.1745-3933.2011.01036.x

DO - 10.1111/j.1745-3933.2011.01036.x

M3 - Letter

VL - 413

SP - L71-L75

JO - Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

JF - Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

SN - 0035-8711

IS - 1

ER -