Journal Article

IC 2602: a lithium depletion boundary age and new candidate low-mass stellar members*

P. D. Dobbie, N. Lodieu and R. G. Sharp

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 409, issue 3, pages 1002-1012
Published in print December 2010 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online December 2010 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2010.17355.x
IC 2602: a lithium depletion boundary age and new candidate low-mass stellar members*

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We report the results from a photometric and spectroscopic survey of ∼1.4 deg2 of the young open cluster IC 2602. Fourteen objects have been identified as having magnitudes, spectral types and radial velocities consistent with being probable or possible low-mass stellar members of the cluster. We have used the observed location of the lithium depletion boundary in the sequence defined by these objects to place a new and improved constraint on the cluster age, τ= 46+6−5 Myr. This new determination is larger by a factor ∼1.3–1.8 than the majority of age estimates which have been obtained using the main-sequence turn-off or pre-main-sequence isochrone techniques. It is thus consistent with the trend indicated by the results of similar studies on other young open clusters. Based on this new age, we set a lower limit on the cluster mass function over the range M = 0.054 − 0.24 M, dn/dM > 46 M−1. If the mass function of IC 2602 has a form similar to that of other young clusters and associations then future wide, deep surveys can expect to unearth at least a handful of brown dwarfs which could potentially serve as benchmark objects.

Keywords: techniques: photometric; brown dwarfs; stars: low-mass; open clusters and associations: individual: IC 2602

Journal Article.  8399 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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