University of Hertfordshire

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1383–1391
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Early online date23 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2018


We report the discovery of an esdL3 subdwarf, ULAS J020858.62+020657.0 and a usdL4.5 subdwarf, ULAS J230711.01+014447.1. They were identified as L subdwarfs by optical spectra obtained with the Gran Telescopio Canarias, and followed up by optical to near infrared spectroscopy with the Very Large Telescope. We also obtained an optical to near infrared spectrum of a previously known L subdwarf, ULAS J135058.85+081506.8, and re-classified it as a usdL3 subdwarf. These three objects all have typical halo kinematics. They have $T_{\rm eff}$ around 2050-2250 K, $-$1.8 $\leq$ [Fe/H] $\leq -$1.5, and mass around 0.0822-0.0833 M$_{\odot}$, according to model spectral fitting and evolutionary models. These sources are likely halo transitional brown dwarfs with unsteady hydrogen fusions, as their masses are just below the hydrogen-burning minimum mass, which is $\sim$ 0.0845 M$_{\odot}$ at [Fe/H] = $-$1.6 and $\sim$ 0.0855 M$_{\odot}$ at [Fe/H] = $-$1.8. Including these, there are now nine objects in the `halo brown dwarf transition zone', which is a `substellar subdwarf gap' spans a wide temperature range within a narrow mass range of the substellar population.


This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

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