Astronomy and Astrophysics
Aims: Our goal is to characterise the physical properties of the metal-poor brown dwarf population. In particular, we focus on the recently discovered peculiar dwarf WISE 1810055−1010023.
Methods: We collected optical iz and near-infrared J-band imaging on multiple occasions over 1.5 years to derive accurate trigonometric parallax and proper motion of the metal-depleted ultra-cool dwarf candidate WISE J1810055−1010023. We also acquired low-resolution optical spectroscopy (0.6−1.0 μm) and new infrared (0.9−1.3 μm) spectra of WISE J1810055−1010023 that were combined with our photometry, other existing data from the literature and our trigonometric distance to determine the object's luminosity from the integration of the observed spectral energy distribution covering from 0.6 through 16 μm. We compared the full optical and infrared spectrum with state-of-the-art atmosphere models to further constrain its effective temperature, surface gravity and metallicity.
Results: WISE J1810055−1010023 is detected in the iz bands with AB magnitudes of i = 23.871 ± 0.104 and z = 20.147 ± 0.083 mag in the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (PanSTARRS) system. It does not show any obvious photometric variability beyond 0.1−0.2 mag in any of the z- and J-band filters. The very red z − J ≈ 2.9 mag colour is compatible with an ultra-cool dwarf nature. Fitting for parallax and proper motion, we measure a trigonometric parallax of 112.5 −8.0+8.1 mas for WISE J1810055−1010023, placing the object at only 8.9−0.6+0.7 pc, about three times closer than previously thought. We employed Monte Carlo methods to estimate the error on the parallax and proper motion. The object's luminosity was determined at log L/L⊙ = −5.78 ± 0.11 dex. From the comparison to atmospheric models, we infer a likely metallicity of [Fe/H] ≈ −1.5 and an effective temperature cooler than 1000 K. The estimated luminosity and temperature of this object are below the known substellar limit. Despite its apparent low metallicity, we derive space motions that are more typical of the old disc than the halo of the Milky Way. We confirm that WISE J1810055−1010023 has an ultra-cool temperature and belongs to a new class of objects with no known spectral counterparts among field L- and T-type dwarfs.
Conclusions: WISE J1810055−1010023 is a very special substellar object and represents a new addition to the 10 pc sample. The optical to near-infrared spectra show strong features due to water vapour and H2 collision induced absorption. Our trigonometric distance has strong implications on the density of metal-poor brown dwarfs in the solar vicinity, which may be higher than that of metal-poor stars.