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Alternative Title

Multi-wavelength study of transition disk properties at the substellar boundary

Publication Date


First Advisor

Kimberly Ward-Duong

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts




Star formation, Brown dwarf, Accretion, YSO, Transition disk, Circumbinary disk


Transition disks around low-mass stars are important to study because they hold clues to disk evolution at the low-mass extremes of stellar mass, which provide the most abundant pathways of planet formation. Using VLT/Xshooter and IRTF/SpeX spectra covering near-ultraviolet to near-infrared wavelengths, this thesis aims to constrain the accretion, wind, and binary properties of a young, very low-mass object, V410 X-ray 6. With an estimated mass near the hydrogen burning limit, this source lies at the stellar/substellar boundary and is a transition disk host, with an inner cavity of 8-15 AU in radius. In a uniquely comprehensive examination of the system, this thesis makes a first attempt at tying together the accretion and inner disk properties with the large-scale disk structure. I conclude that the inner disk of V410 X-ray 6 was likely cleared by a (sub)stellar companion, not giant planets, as previously thought. The accretion, gas, and dust properties of the system can be explained by this clearing scenario, holding implications for the low likelihood of giant planet formation in V410 X-ray 6 and systems similar to it.


©2019 Olena Komarova Access limited to the Smith College community and other researchers while on campus. Smith College community members also may access from off-campus using a Smith College log-in. Other off-campus researchers may request a copy through Interlibrary Loan for personal use.




146 pages : color illustrations. Includes bibliographical references (pages 113-146)