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A microvariability study of nearby M dwarfs from the Western Italian Alps: Status update

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 November 2011

Mario Damasso
Affiliation:
Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Loc. Lignan 39, 11020 Nus (Aosta), Italy Dept. of Astronomy, University of Padova, Vicolo dell'Osservatorio 5, I-35122 Padova, Italy email: m.damasso@gmail.com
Andrea Bernagozzi
Affiliation:
Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Loc. Lignan 39, 11020 Nus (Aosta), Italy
Enzo Bertolini
Affiliation:
Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Loc. Lignan 39, 11020 Nus (Aosta), Italy
Paolo Calcidese
Affiliation:
Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Loc. Lignan 39, 11020 Nus (Aosta), Italy
Paolo Giacobbe
Affiliation:
Dept. of Physics, University of Trieste, Via Tiepolo 11, I-34143 Trieste, Italy
Mario G. Lattanzi
Affiliation:
INAF - Astronomical Observatory of Torino, Via Osservatorio 20, I-10025 Pino Torinese, Italy
Matteo Perdoncin
Affiliation:
Dept. of Physics, University of Torino, Via Giuria 1, I-10125 Torino, Italy
Alessandro Sozzetti
Affiliation:
INAF - Astronomical Observatory of Torino, Via Osservatorio 20, I-10025 Pino Torinese, Italy
Richard Smart
Affiliation:
INAF - Astronomical Observatory of Torino, Via Osservatorio 20, I-10025 Pino Torinese, Italy
Giorgio Toso
Affiliation:
Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley, Loc. Lignan 39, 11020 Nus (Aosta), Italy
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Abstract

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Small ground-based telescopes can effectively be used to look for transiting rocky planets around nearby low-mass M stars, as recently demonstrated for example by the MEarth project. Since December 2009 at the Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of Aosta Valley (OAVdA) we are monitoring photometrically a sample of red dwarfs with accurate parallax measurements. The primary goal of this ‘pilot study’ is the characterization of the photometric microvariability of each target over a typical period of approximately 2 months. This is the preparatory step to long-term survey with an array of identical small telescopes, with kick-off in early 2011. Here we discuss the present status of the study, describing the stellar sample, and presenting the most interesting results obtained so far, including the aggressive data analysis devoted to the characterization of the variability properties of the sample and the search for transit-like signals.

Type
Contributed Papers
Copyright
Copyright © International Astronomical Union 2011

References

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