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The first low-mass, pre-main sequence eclipsing binary with evidence of a circumbinary disk

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I will present a new double-lined, detached eclipsing binary, which comprises two pre-main sequence M dwarfs and shows evidence of a circumbinary disk. There is wealth of data, obtained in a coordinated manner, with which to analyse the system: CoRoT and Spitzer light curves, CFHT /MegaCam photometry, and VLT /FLAMES spectroscopy. Together, these allow us to disentangle the different contributions to the observed variability. The system’s spectral energy distribution (SED) shows a mid-infrared excess that can be modelled as thermal emission from dust in the inner cavity of a circumbinary disk. Additionally, the CoRoT and Spitzer light curves contain large-amplitude, rapidly evolving out-of-eclipse variations, which might be due in part to occultations of the central stars by material located at the inner edge or in the central cavity of the circumbinary disk. This unique system, which could be a precursor of the circumbinary planetary systems discovered by Kepler, enables us to test evolutionary models of low mass stars, and the interaction between a close binary and a circumbinary disk.

This talk is part of the Exoplanet Meetings series.

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