Tau Boötis

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Tau Bootis)
Jump to: navigation, search
Tau Boötis
Diagram showing star positions and boundaries of the Eridanus constellation and its surroundings
Cercle rouge 100%.svg

A star chart of the constellation of Boötes showing the position of Tau Boötis (circled)
Observation data
Epoch J2000.0      Equinox J2000.0
Constellation Boötes
Right ascension 13h 47m 15.74s[1]
Declination +17° 27′ 24.9″[1]
Apparent magnitude (V) 4.50[2]
Spectral type F6 IV[2]
U−B color index 0.04
B−V color index 0.48[2]
R−I color index 0.24
Variable type Variable star
Radial velocity (Rv) -15.6 km/s
Proper motion (μ) RA: -479.53 ± 0.16[1] mas/yr
Dec.: 53.49 ± 0.13[1] mas/yr
Parallax (π) 64.03 ± 0.19[1] mas
Distance 50.9 ± 0.2 ly
(15.62 ± 0.05 pc)
Absolute magnitude (MV) 3.38[3]
τ Boo A
Mass 1.3[citation needed] M
Radius 1.331 ± 0,027[citation needed] R
Luminosity 3.0[2] L
Surface gravity (log g) 4.30[2] cgs
Temperature 6,360[4] K
Metallicity 210%[citation needed]
Rotation 3.31 days[4]
Rotational velocity (v sin i) 15.6±1.0[3] km/s
Age 1.6–2.3 [5] Gyr
τ Boo B
Mass 0.4[citation needed] M
Other designations
4 Boötis, ADS 9025, BD+18°2782, CCDM 13473+1727, FK5 507, GC 18637, GCTP 3144.00, GJ 527, HD 120136, HIP 67275, HR 5185, LTT 14021, SAO 100706
Database references
Data sources:
Hipparcos Catalogue,
CCDM (2002),
Bright Star Catalogue (5th rev. ed.)
Database references

Tau Boötis (τ Boo, τ Boötis) is an F-type main-sequence star approximately 51 light-years away[1] in the constellation of Boötes. The system is also a binary star system, with the secondary star being a red dwarf. As of 1999, an extrasolar planet has been confirmed to be orbiting the primary star.

Stellar components[edit]

The system is a binary. The primary component is a yellow-white dwarf (spectral type F7 V) and secondary is a dim red dwarf (spectral type M2 V). The system is relatively nearby, distance being about 51 light years. The primary star should be easily visible to the unaided eye under dark skies.

The primary star, Tau Boötis A is a yellow-white dwarf. It is 20 percent more massive than the Sun and thus is somewhat brighter and hotter. It has a radius 1.9 times solar, and is probably about 1.3 billion years old. Since it is more massive than the Sun, its lifespan is shorter - less than 6 billion years. Tau Bootis is the first star apart from the sun to be observed changing the polarity of its magnetic field.[6] It is also listed as a suspected variable star.

Tau Boötis B (with a capital B, as opposed to the planet) is a dim red dwarf orbiting the primary star at a distance of 240 AU. One orbit around the primary would take thousands of years to complete.

Planetary system[edit]

In 1996 a planet, designated as Tau Boötis b, was discovered orbiting the primary star.[7] There are also some indications of another, more distant, planet orbiting the star. In an unusual case of role-reversal, it appears that Tau Boötis' rotation has been tidally locked to Tau Boötis b.[8] The planet was discovered by a team of astronomers led by Geoff Marcy and R. Paul Butler.[7]

The Tau Boötis A planetary system[9]
(in order from star)
Mass Semimajor axis
Orbital period
Eccentricity Inclination Radius
b 6±0.28 MJ 0.0481 ± 0.028 3.312463 ± 0.000014 0.023 ± 0.015 44.5 ± 1.5°

The planet and its host star was one of the planetary systems selected by the International Astronomical Union as part of their public process for giving proper names to exoplanets and their host star (where no proper name already exists).[10][11] The process involved public nomination and voting for the new names, and the IAU announced the new names in mid-December 2015.[12] However, the IAU annulled the vote for the system, as the winning names ("Shri Ram Matt" for the star and "Bhagavatidevi" for the planet)[13] were judged not to conform with the IAU rules for naming exoplanets.[14] The names garnered the majority of the votes cast for the system, and also making up a significant proportion of all votes cast as part of the contest.[13]


  1. ^ a b c d e f van Leeuwen, F. (2007). "Validation of the new Hipparcos reduction". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 474 (2): 653–664. arXiv:0708.1752Freely accessible. Bibcode:2007A&A...474..653V. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20078357.  Vizier catalog entry
  2. ^ a b c d e Mallik, Sushma V. (December 1999), "Lithium abundance and mass", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 352: 495–507, Bibcode:1999A&A...352..495M 
  3. ^ a b Reiners, A. (January 2006), "Rotation- and temperature-dependence of stellar latitudinal differential rotation", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 446 (1): 267–277, arXiv:astro-ph/0509399Freely accessible, Bibcode:2006A&A...446..267R, doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20053911. 
  4. ^ a b Strassmeier, Klaus G. (September 2009), "Starspots", The Astronomy and Astrophysics Review, 17 (3): 251–308, Bibcode:2009A&ARv..17..251S, doi:10.1007/s00159-009-0020-6 
  5. ^ Mamajek, Eric E.; Hillenbrand, Lynne A. (2008). "Improved Age Estimation for Solar-Type Dwarfs Using Activity-Rotation Diagnostics". The Astrophysical Journal. 687 (2): 1264–1293. arXiv:0807.1686Freely accessible. Bibcode:2008ApJ...687.1264M. doi:10.1086/591785. 
  6. ^ Donati, J.-F.; et al. (2008). "Magnetic cycles of the planet-hosting star Tau Boötis". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 385 (3): 1179–1185. arXiv:0802.1584Freely accessible. Bibcode:2008MNRAS.385.1179D. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.12946.x. 
  7. ^ a b Butler, R. Paul; et al. (1997). "Three New 51 Pegasi Type Planets". The Astrophysical Journal Letters. 474 (2): L115–L118. Bibcode:1997ApJ...474L.115B. doi:10.1086/310444. 
  8. ^ Walker, G. A. H.; et al. (2008). "MOST detects variability on tau Bootis possibly induced by its planetary companion". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 482 (2): 691–697. arXiv:0802.2732Freely accessible. Bibcode:2008A&A...482..691W. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20078952. 
  9. ^ Butler, R. P.; et al. (2006). "Catalog of Nearby Exoplanets". The Astrophysical Journal. 646 (1): 505–522. arXiv:astro-ph/0607493Freely accessible. Bibcode:2006ApJ...646..505B. doi:10.1086/504701. 
  10. ^ "NameExoWorlds: An IAU Worldwide Contest to Name Exoplanets and their Host Stars". International Astronomical Union. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  11. ^ "The ExoWorlds". NameExoWorlds. International Astronomical Union. n.d. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  12. ^ "The Process". NameExoWorlds. International Astronomical Union. 30 November 2015. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  13. ^ a b "The Statistics". NameExoWorlds. International Astronomical Union. n.d. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  14. ^ "Final Results of NameExoWorlds Public Vote Released". International Astronomical Union. 15 December 2015. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: Sky map 13h 47m 15.7s, +17° 27′ 25″