Luyten's Star

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Luyten's star
Observation data
Epoch J2000      Equinox J2000
Constellation Canis Minor
Right ascension 07h 27m 24.4991s[1]
Declination +05° 13′ 32.827″[1]
Apparent magnitude (V) 9.872[2]
Spectral type M3.5V[3]
U−B color index 1.115[2]
B−V color index 1.571[2]
Variable type None
Radial velocity (Rv) +18.2[4] km/s
Proper motion (μ) RA: 571.27[1] mas/yr
Dec.: -3694.25[1] mas/yr
Parallax (π) 267.36 ± 0.79[5] mas
Distance 12.20 ± 0.04 ly
(3.74 ± 0.01 pc)
Absolute magnitude (MV) 11.94[2]
Mass 0.26[3] M
Radius 0.35[6] R
Surface gravity (log g) 5[7] cgs
Temperature 3,150 ± 100[7] K
Metallicity [Fe/H] −0.16 ± 0.20[4] dex
Rotation 115.6±19.4 d[8]
Other designations
GCTP1755, BD +05°1668, GJ 273, Gl 089-019, LHS 33, LTT 12021, LFT 527, Vys 17, HIP 36208.
Database references

Luyten's Star (GJ 273) is a red dwarf in the constellation Canis Minor located at a distance of approximately 12.36 light-years (3.79 parsecs) from the Sun. It has a visual magnitude of 9.9, making it too faint to be viewed with the unaided eye. It is named after Willem Jacob Luyten, who, in collaboration with Edwin G. Ebbighausen, first determined its high proper motion in 1935.[9]

This star is approximately a quarter the mass of the Sun[3] and has 35% of the Sun's radius.[6] Luyten's Star is at the maximum mass at which a red dwarf can be fully convective, which means that most if not all of the star forms an extended convection zone.[10] It has a stellar classification of M3.5V,[3] with the V luminosity class indicating this is a main-sequence star that is generating energy through the thermonuclear fusion of hydrogen at its core. The projected rotation rate of this star[11] is too low to be measured, but is no greater than 1 km/s.[12] Measurements of periodic variation in surface activity suggest a leisurely rotation period of roughly 116 days.[8] The effective temperature of the star's outer envelope is a relatively cool 3,150 K, giving the star the characteristic red-orange hue of an M-type star.[7][13]

At present, Luyten's Star is moving away from the Solar System. The closest approach occurred about 13,000 years ago when it came within 3.67 parsecs.[14] The star is currently located 1.2 light years distant from Procyon, and the latter would appear as a visual magnitude −4.5 star in the night sky of a hypothetical planet orbiting Luyten's Star.[15] The closest encounter between the two stars occurred about 600 years ago when Luyten's Star was at its minimal distance of about 1.12 ly from Procyon.[16] The space velocity components of Luyten's Star are U = +16, V = −66 and W = −17 km/s.[16][17][18]

Planetary system[edit]

In March 2017, two planets were discovered orbiting Luyten's Star. The outer planet, GJ 273b, is a Super Earth in its star's habitable zone. It has a mass of 2.89 ± 0.26 Earth masses and orbits at a distance of 0.09110 ± 0.00002 AU, completing one orbital period in 18.650 ± 0.006 days. While the planet is on the innermost edge of the star's conservative habitable zone, the incident flux is only 1.06S⊕, so it may be easily habitable if an atmosphere is present; depending on albedo, its equilibrium temperature could be anywhere between 206 and 293 Kelvin. The inner planet, GJ 273c, is one of the lightest exoplanets detected by radial velocities, with a mass of only 1.18 ± 0.16 Earth masses. However, it orbits much further in, with an orbital period of only 4.7234 ± 0.00004 days.[19]

GJ 273b is one of the closest known planets in its star's habitable zone.[19]

The Luyten's Star planetary system
(in order from star)
Mass Semimajor axis
Orbital period
Eccentricity Inclination Radius
c 1.18 ± 0.16 M 0.036467 4.7234 ± 0.0004 0.17
b 2.89±0.26 M 0.09110 ± 0.00002 18.650 ± 0.006 0.10

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Perryman, M. A. C.; et al. (1997), "The Hipparcos Catalogue", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 323: L49–L52, Bibcode:1997A&A...323L..49P 
  2. ^ a b c d Koen, C.; et al. (July 2002), "UBV(RI)C photometry of Hipparcos red stars", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 334 (1): 20–38, Bibcode:2002MNRAS.334...20K, doi:10.1046/j.1365-8711.2002.05403.x 
  3. ^ a b c d The One Hundred Nearest Stars, Research Consortium On Nearby Stars, 2009-01-01, retrieved 2009-09-03 
  4. ^ a b Nidever, David L.; et al. (August 2002), "Radial Velocities for 889 Late-Type Stars", The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, 141 (2): 503–522, arXiv:astro-ph/0112477Freely accessible, Bibcode:2002ApJS..141..503N, doi:10.1086/340570 
  5. ^ Gatewood, George (2008). "Astrometric Studies of Aldebaran, Arcturus, Vega, the Hyades, and Other Regions". The Astronomical Journal. 136 (1): 452–460. Bibcode:2008AJ....136..452G. doi:10.1088/0004-6256/136/1/452. 
  6. ^ a b Lacy, C. H. (August 1977), "Radii of nearby stars: an application of the Barnes-Evans relation", Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series, 34: 479–492, Bibcode:1977ApJS...34..479L, doi:10.1086/190459 
  7. ^ a b c Viti, S.; et al. (August 2008), "A potential new method for determining the temperature of cool stars", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 388 (3): 1305–1313, arXiv:0805.3297Freely accessible, Bibcode:2008MNRAS.388.1305V, doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13489.x 
  8. ^ a b Suárez Mascareño, A.; et al. (September 2015), "Rotation periods of late-type dwarf stars from time series high-resolution spectroscopy of chromospheric indicators", Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 452 (3): 2745–2756, arXiv:1506.08039Freely accessible, Bibcode:2015MNRAS.452.2745S, doi:10.1093/mnras/stv1441. 
  9. ^ Luyten, W. J.; Ebbighausen, E. G. (September 1935), "A Faint Star of Large Proper Motion", Harvard College Observatory Bulletin (900): 1–3, Bibcode:1935BHarO.900....1L 
  10. ^ Reiners, A.; Basri, G. (March 2009), "On the magnetic topology of partially and fully convective stars", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 496 (3): 787–790, arXiv:0901.1659Freely accessible, Bibcode:2009A&A...496..787R, doi:10.1051/0004-6361:200811450 
  11. ^ This is denoted by v sin i, where v is the rotational velocity at the equator and i is the inclination to the line of sight.
  12. ^ Reiners, A. (May 2007), "The narrowest M-dwarf line profiles and the rotation-activity connection at very slow rotation", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 467 (1): 259–268, arXiv:astro-ph/0702634Freely accessible, Bibcode:2007A&A...467..259R, doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20066991 
  13. ^ "The Colour of Stars", Australia Telescope, Outreach and Education, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, December 21, 2004, retrieved 2012-01-16 
  14. ^ García-Sánchez, J.; et al. (2001). "Stellar encounters with the solar system". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 379: 634–659. Bibcode:2001A&A...379..634G. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20011330. 
  15. ^ Schaaf, Fred (2008). The Brightest Stars: Discovering the Universe Through the Sky's Most Brilliant Stars. John Wiley and Sons. p. 169. ISBN 0-471-70410-5. 
  16. ^ a b "Annotations on LHS 33 object". SIMBAD. Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  17. ^ Delfosse, X.; Forveille, T.; Perrier, C.; Mayor, M. (March 1998). "Rotation and chromospheric activity in field M dwarfs". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 331: 581–595. Bibcode:1998A&A...331..581D. 
  18. ^ "ARICNS star page of GJ 273". Astronomisches Rechen-Institut Heidelberg. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  19. ^ a b N. Astudillo-Defru (March 17, 2017), The HARPS search for southern extra-solar planets (PDF), retrieved March 17, 2017 


External links[edit]