DPS Meeting, Madison, October 1998
Session 42P. Comets IV
Contributed Poster Session, Wednesday, October 14, 1998, 5:10-6:10pm, Hall of Ideas

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[42P.13] Cometary Dust in the Debris Disks of HD 31648 and HD 163296: Two ``Baby'' Beta Pictoris Stars

M.L. Sitko (University of Cincinnati), C.A. Grady (Eureka Scientific), D.K. Lynch, R.W. Russell (The Aerospace Corporation), M.S. Hanner (JPL/Caltech)

Recent millimeter interferometric dust continuum and CO line observations by Mannings, Koerner, and Sargent (1997, Nature, 388, 555) and Mannings and Sargent (1997, ApJ, 490, 792) of the stars HD 31648 and HD 163296 indicate that these stars possess debris disks which are progenitors of main sequence star debris disks like that observed in the star Beta Pictoris, and perhaps the early solar system disk. The UV spectrum of HD 163296 exhibits infalling gas events that suggest stargrazing comets (Grady et al. 1999, in preparation). We have observed these two stars spectroscopically between 3 and 14 microns using the Aerospace BASS spectrometer. Both possess a silicate emission feature at 10 microns which resembles that of the star Beta Pictoris and those observed in solar system comets such as Hale Bopp (C/1995 O1) and Levy (C/1991 L3). The structure of the band is consistent with a mixture of olivine and pyroxene material, plus an underlying continuum of unspecified origin. The similarity in both size and structure of the silicate band suggests that the material in these systems had a processing history similar to that in our own solar system prior to the time that the grains were incorporated into comets.

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The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: sitko@physics.uc.edu

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