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Session 70 - Planetary Systems Near & Far.
Display session, Friday, January 09
Exhibit Hall,

[70.09] Brown Dwarf Candidates in the Rho Oph Molecular Cloud

B. A. Wilking (UM-St. Louis), T. P. Greene (Lockheed Martin), M. R. Meyer (Steward Obs.)

In their youth, brown dwarfs in nearby molecular clouds should be easily detected at near-infrared wavelengths. We present low resolution (R=300) near-infrared spectra for 19 objects observed toward the high extinction core of the Rho Oph molecular cloud. These objects were selected on the basis of their low luminosities and lack of strong infrared excesses at \lambda=2.2 \mum. The observations were obtained with the IRTF using the NSFCAM grism to cover the 2.0 - 2.5 \mum spectral region. Photospheric absorptions due to Na I, Ca I, H_2O, and the CO bandheads are evident in the majority of spectra and are characteristic of late-type photospheres. Effective temperatures are estimated by comparison with a grid of late-type spectral standards (K5 through M9) observed with the same instrumental configuration. For objects with reliable spectral classifications, masses are estimated using evolutionary models for low mass objects.

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