The structure of the β leonis debris disk

Nathan D. Stock, Kate Y.L. Su, Wilson Liu, Phil M. Hinz, George H. Rieke, Massimo Marengo, Karl R. Stapelfeldt, Dean C. Hines, David E. Trilling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


We combine nulling interferometry at 10 μm using the MMT and Keck Telescopes with spectroscopy, imaging, and photometry from 3 to 100 μm using Spitzer to study the debris disk around β Leo over a broad range of spatial scales, corresponding to radii of 0.1 to ∼100 AU. We have also measured the close binary star o Leo with both Keck and MMT interferometers to verify our procedures with these instruments. The β Leo debris system has a complex structure: (1) relatively little material within 1 AU; (2) an inner component with a color temperature of ∼600 K, fitted by a dusty ring from about 2-3 AU; and (3) a second component with a color temperature of ∼120 K fitted by a broad dusty emission zone extending from about ∼5 AU to ∼55 AU. Unlike many other A-type stars with debris disks, β Leo lacks a dominant outer belt near 100 AU.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1238-1255
Number of pages18
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010


  • Circumstellar matter
  • Infrared: stars
  • Planetary systems
  • Stars: individual (β Leo, o Leo)
  • Techniques: interferometric

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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