NEMESIS: Near Encounters with M-dwarfs from an Enormous Sample and Integrated Simulations

John J. Bochanski, R. E. Sanderson, A. A. West, A. J. Burgasser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The latest spectroscopic catalog of M dwarfs identified in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey provides radial velocities, proper motions and distances for nearly 40,000 low-mass stars. Using the full 6D phase space coverage and a realistic Galactic potential, we calculated orbits for each star in the sample. The sample consists of stars from both the thin and thick disks, and the orbital properties between the two groups are compared. We also examine trends in orbital properties with spectroscopic features, such as Balmer emission and molecular bands, that should correlate with age. In addition, we have identified a number of stars that will pass very close to the Sun within the next 1000 Myrs. These stars form the "Nemesis" family of orbits. Potential encounters with these stars could have a significant impact on orbits of Oort Cloud and Kuiper Belt members as well as the planets. We comment on the probability of a catastrophic encounter within the next 1000 Myrs.
Original languageEnglish
Article number24219
JournalBulletin of the American Astronomical Society
Publication statusPublished - 1-Jan-2011
Externally publishedYes
EventAmerican Astronomical Society, AAS Meeting #217, #242.19 - , United Kingdom
Duration: 1-Jan-2010 → …

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