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See detailUnveiling the β Pictoris system, coupling high contrast imaging, interferometric, and radial velocity data
Lagrange, A. M.; Rubini, P.; Nowak, M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 642

Context. The nearby and young β Pictoris system hosts a well resolved disk, a directly imaged massive giant planet orbiting at ≃9 au, as well as an inner planet orbiting at ≃2.7 au, which was recently ... [more ▼]

Context. The nearby and young β Pictoris system hosts a well resolved disk, a directly imaged massive giant planet orbiting at ≃9 au, as well as an inner planet orbiting at ≃2.7 au, which was recently detected through radial velocity (RV). As such, it offers several unique opportunities for detailed studies of planetary system formation and early evolution. <BR /> Aims: We aim to further constrain the orbital and physical properties of β Pictoris b and c using a combination of high contrast imaging, long base-line interferometry, and RV data. We also predict the closest approaches or the transit times of both planets, and we constrain the presence of additional planets in the system. <BR /> Methods: We obtained six additional epochs of SPHERE data, six additional epochs of GRAVITY data, and five additional epochs of RV data. We combined these various types of data in a single Markov-chain Monte Carlo analysis to constrain the orbital parameters and masses of the two planets simultaneously. The analysis takes into account the gravitational influence of both planets on the star and hence their relative astrometry. Secondly, we used the RV and high contrast imaging data to derive the probabilities of presence of additional planets throughout the disk, and we tested the impact of absolute astrometry. <BR /> Results: The orbital properties of both planets are constrained with a semi-major axis of 9.8 ± 0.4 au and 2.7 ± 0.02 au for b and c, respectively, and eccentricities of 0.09 ± 0.1 and 0.27 ± 0.07, assuming the HIPPARCOS distance. We note that despite these low fitting error bars, the eccentricity of β Pictoris c might still be over-estimated. If no prior is provided on the mass of β Pictoris b, we obtain a very low value that is inconsistent with what is derived from brightness-mass models. When we set an evolutionary model motivated prior to the mass of β Pictoris b, we find a solution in the 10-11 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] range. Conversely, β Pictoris c's mass is well constrained, at 7.8 ± 0.4 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB], assuming both planets are on coplanar orbits. These values depend on the assumptions on the distance of the β Pictoris system. The absolute astrometry HIPPARCOS-Gaia data are consistent with the solutions presented here at the 2σ level, but these solutions are fully driven by the relative astrometry plus RV data. Finally, we derive unprecedented limits on the presence of additional planets in the disk. We can now exclude the presence of planets that are more massive than about 2.5 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] closer than 3 au, and more massive than 3.5 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] between 3 and 7.5 au. Beyond 7.5 au, we exclude the presence of planets that are more massive than 1-2 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB]. <BR /> Conclusions: Combining relative astrometry and RVs allows one to precisely constrain the orbital parameters of both planets and to give lower limits to potential additional planets throughout the disk. The mass of β Pictoris c is also well constrained, while additional RV data with appropriate observing strategies are required to properly constrain the mass of β Pictoris b. [less ▲]

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See detailDirect confirmation of the radial-velocity planet β Pictoris c
Nowak, M.; Lacour, S.; Lagrange, A.-M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 642

Context. Methods used to detect giant exoplanets can be broadly divided into two categories: indirect and direct. Indirect methods are more sensitive to planets with a small orbital period, whereas direct ... [more ▼]

Context. Methods used to detect giant exoplanets can be broadly divided into two categories: indirect and direct. Indirect methods are more sensitive to planets with a small orbital period, whereas direct detection is more sensitive to planets orbiting at a large distance from their host star. This dichotomy makes it difficult to combine the two techniques on a single target at once. <BR /> Aims: Simultaneous measurements made by direct and indirect techniques offer the possibility of determining the mass and luminosity of planets and a method of testing formation models. Here, we aim to show how long-baseline interferometric observations guided by radial-velocity can be used in such a way. <BR /> Methods: We observed the recently-discovered giant planet β Pictoris c with GRAVITY, mounted on the Very Large Telescope Interferometer. <BR /> Results: This study constitutes the first direct confirmation of a planet discovered through radial velocity. We find that the planet has a temperature of T = 1250 ± 50 K and a dynamical mass of M = 8.2 ± 0.8 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB]. At 18.5 ± 2.5 Myr, this puts β Pic c close to a `hot start' track, which is usually associated with formation via disk instability. Conversely, the planet orbits at a distance of 2.7 au, which is too close for disk instability to occur. The low apparent magnitude (M[SUB]K[/SUB] = 14.3 ± 0.1) favours a core accretion scenario. <BR /> Conclusions: We suggest that this apparent contradiction is a sign of hot core accretion, for example, due to the mass of the planetary core or the existence of a high-temperature accretion shock during formation. [less ▲]

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See detailThe search for disks or planetary objects around directly imaged companions: a candidate around DH Tauri B
Lazzoni, C.; Zurlo, A.; Desidera, S. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 641

Context. In recent decades, thousands of substellar companions have been discovered with both indirect and direct methods of detection. While the majority of the sample is populated by objects discovered ... [more ▼]

Context. In recent decades, thousands of substellar companions have been discovered with both indirect and direct methods of detection. While the majority of the sample is populated by objects discovered using radial velocity and transit techniques, an increasing number have been directly imaged. These planets and brown dwarfs are extraordinary sources of information that help in rounding out our understanding of planetary systems. <BR /> Aims: In this paper, we focus our attention on substellar companions detected with the latter technique, with the primary goal of investigating their close surroundings and looking for additional companions and satellites, as well as disks and rings. Any such discovery would shed light on many unresolved questions, particularly with regard to their possible formation mechanisms. <BR /> Methods: To reveal bound features of directly imaged companions, whether for point-like or extended sources, we need to suppress the contribution from the source itself. Therefore, we developed a method based on the negative fake companion technique that first estimates the position in the field of view (FoV) and the flux of the imaged companion with high precision, then subtracts a rescaled model point spread function (PSF) from the imaged companion, using either an image of the central star or another PSF in the FoV. Next it performs techniques, such as angular differential imaging, to further remove quasi-static patterns of the star (i.e., speckle contaminants) that affect the residuals of close-in companions. <BR /> Results: After testing our tools on simulated companions and disks and on systems that were chosen ad hoc, we applied the method to the sample of substellar objects observed with SPHERE during the SHINE GTO survey. Among the 27 planets and brown dwarfs we analyzed, most objects did not show remarkable features, which was as expected, with the possible exception of a point source close to DH Tau B. This candidate companion was detected in four different SPHERE observations, with an estimated mass of ~1M[SUB]Jup[/SUB], and a mass ratio with respect to the brown dwarf of 1/10. This binary system, if confirmed, would be the first of its kind, opening up interesting questions for the formation mechanism, evolution, and frequency of such pairs. In order to address the latter, the residuals and contrasts reached for 25 companions in the sample of substellar objects observed with SPHERE were derived. If the DH Tau Bb companion is real, the binary fraction obtained is ~7%, which is in good agreement with the results obtained for field brown dwarfs. <BR /> Conclusions: While there may currently be many limitations affecting the exploration of bound features to directly imaged exoplanets and brown dwarfs, next-generation instruments from the ground and space (i.e., JWST, ELT, and LUVOIR) will be able to image fainter objects and, thus, drive the application of this technique in upcoming searches for exo-moons and circumplanetary disks. <P />Based on observations collected at Paranal Observatory, ESO (Chile) Program ID: 095.C-0298, 096.C-0241, 097.C-0865, 198.C-0209, and 0104.C-0327(A) and on observations collected at LBT Observatory. [less ▲]

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See detailGap, shadows, spirals, and streamers: SPHERE observations of binary-disk interactions in GG Tauri A
Keppler, M.; Penzlin, A.; Benisty, M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 639

Context. A large portion of stars is found to be part of binary or higher-order multiple systems. The ubiquity of planets found around single stars raises the question of whether and how planets in binary ... [more ▼]

Context. A large portion of stars is found to be part of binary or higher-order multiple systems. The ubiquity of planets found around single stars raises the question of whether and how planets in binary systems form. Protoplanetary disks are the birthplaces of planets, and characterizing them is crucial in order to understand the planet formation process. <BR /> Aims: Our goal is to characterize the morphology of the GG Tau A disk, one of the largest and most massive circumbinary disks. We also aim to trace evidence for binary-disk interactions. <BR /> Methods: We obtained observations in polarized scattered light of GG Tau A using the SPHERE/IRDIS instrument in the H-band filter. We analyzed the observed disk morphology and substructures. We ran 2D hydrodynamical models to simulate the evolution of the circumbinary ring over the lifetime of the disk. <BR /> Results: The disk and also the cavity and the inner region are highly structured, with several shadowed regions, spiral structures, and streamer-like filaments. Some of these are detected here for the first time. The streamer-like filaments appear to connect the outer ring with the northern arc. Their azimuthal spacing suggests that they may be generated through periodic perturbations by the binary, which tear off material from the inner edge of the outer disk once during each orbit. By comparing observations to hydrodynamical simulations, we find that the main features, in particular, the gap size, but also the spiral and streamer filaments, can be qualitatively explained by the gravitational interactions of a binary with a semimajor axis of ~35 au on an orbit coplanar with the circumbinary ring. <P />Based on observations performed with VLT/SPHERE under program ID 198.C-0209(N). [less ▲]

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See detailOrbital and spectral characterization of the benchmark T-type brown dwarf HD 19467B
Maire, Anne-Lise ULiege; Molaverdikhani, K.; Desidera, S. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 639

Context. Detecting and characterizing substellar companions for which the luminosity, mass, and age can be determined independently is of utter importance to test and calibrate the evolutionary models due ... [more ▼]

Context. Detecting and characterizing substellar companions for which the luminosity, mass, and age can be determined independently is of utter importance to test and calibrate the evolutionary models due to uncertainties in their formation mechanisms. HD 19467 is a bright and nearby star hosting a cool brown dwarf companion detected with radial velocities and imaging, making it a valuable object for such studies. <BR /> Aims: We aim to further characterize the orbital, spectral, and physical properties of the HD 19467 system. <BR /> Methods: We present new high-contrast imaging data with the SPHERE and NaCo instruments. We also analyze archival data from the instruments HARPS, NaCo, HIRES, UVES, and ASAS. Furthermore, we use proper motion data of the star from HIPPARCOS and Gaia. <BR /> Results: We refined the properties of the host star and derived an age of 8.0[SUP]+2.0[/SUP][SUB]-1.0[/SUB] Gyr based on isochrones, gyrochronology, and chemical and kinematic arguments. This age estimate is slightly younger than previous age estimates of ~9-11 Gyr based on isochrones. No orbital curvature is seen in the current imaging, radial velocity, and astrometric data. From a joint fit of the data, we refined the orbital parameters for HD 19467B, including: a period of 398[SUP]+95[/SUP][SUB]-93[/SUB] yr, an inclination of 129.8[SUP]+8.1[/SUP][SUB]-5.1[/SUB] deg, an eccentricity of 0.56 ± 0.09, a longitude of the ascending node of 134.8 ± 4.5 deg, and an argument of the periastron of 64.2[SUP]+5.5[/SUP][SUB]-6.3[/SUB] deg. We assess a dynamical mass of 74[SUP]+12[/SUP][SUB]-9[/SUB] M[SUB]J[/SUB]. The fit with atmospheric models of the spectrophotometric data of the companion indicates an atmosphere without clouds or with very thin clouds, an effective temperature of 1042[SUP]+77[/SUP][SUB]-71[/SUB] K, and a high surface gravity of 5.34[SUP]+0.8[/SUP][SUB]-0.9[/SUB] dex. The comparison to model predictions of the bolometric luminosity and dynamical mass of HD 19467B, assuming our system age estimate, indicates a better agreement with the Burrows et al. (1997, ApJ, 491, 856) models; whereas, the other evolutionary models used tend to underestimate its cooling rate. <P />The reduced images shown in Fig. 3 are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/cat/J/A+A/639/A47">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/cat/J/A+A/639/A47</A> <P />Based on observations collected at the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere under ESO programmes 1100.C-0481, 0100.C-0234, 096.C-0602, 072.C-0488, 183.C-0972, 084.D-0965, 188.C-0265, 192.C-0852, and 0100.D-0444. [less ▲]

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See detailSearching for the near-infrared counterpart of Proxima c using multi-epoch high-contrast SPHERE data at VLT★
Gratton, R.; Zurlo, A.; Le Coroller, H. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 638

Context. Proxima Centauri is the closest star to the Sun and it is known to host an Earth-like planet in its habitable zone; very recently a second candidate planet was proposed based on radial velocities ... [more ▼]

Context. Proxima Centauri is the closest star to the Sun and it is known to host an Earth-like planet in its habitable zone; very recently a second candidate planet was proposed based on radial velocities. At quadrature, the expected projected separation of this new candidate is larger than 1 arcsec, making it a potentially interesting target for direct imaging. <BR /> Aims: While identification of the optical counterpart of this planet is expected to be very difficult, successful identification would allow for a detailed characterization of the closest planetary system. <BR /> Methods: We searched for a counterpart in SPHERE images acquired over four years through the SHINE survey. In order to account for the expected large orbital motion of the planet, we used a method that assumes the circular orbit obtained from radial velocities and exploits the sequence of observations acquired close to quadrature in the orbit. We checked this with a more general approach that considers Keplerian motion, called K-stacker. <BR /> Results: We did not obtain a clear detection. The best candidate has signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) = 6.1 in the combined image. A statistical test suggests that the probability that this detection is due to random fluctuation of noise is <1%, but this result depends on the assumption that the distribution of noise is uniform over the image, a fact that is likely not true. The position of this candidate and the orientation of its orbital plane fit well with observations in the ALMA 12 m array image. However, the astrometric signal expected from the orbit of the candidate we detected is 3σ away from the astrometric motion of Proxima as measured from early Gaia data. This, together with the unexpectedly high flux associated with our direct imaging detection, means we cannot confirm that our candidate is indeed Proxima c. <BR /> Conclusions: On the other hand, if confirmed, this would be the first observation in imaging of a planet discovered from radial velocities and the second planet (after Fomalhaut b) of reflecting circumplanetary material. Further confirmation observations should be done as soon as possible. <P />The reduced images are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/cat/J/A+A/638/A120">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/cat/J/A+A/638/A120</A> <P />Based on data collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile (ESO Programs 095.D-0309, 096.C-0241, 096.D-0252, 097.C-0865, 198.C-D0209, 099.D-0098, 099.C-0127. [less ▲]

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See detailSPHERE+: Imaging young Jupiters down to the snowline
Boccaletti, A.; Chauvin, G.; Mouillet, D. et al

E-print/Working paper (2020)

SPHERE (Beuzit et al,. 2019) has now been in operation at the VLT for more than 5 years, demonstrating a high level of performance. SPHERE has produced outstanding results using a variety of operating ... [more ▼]

SPHERE (Beuzit et al,. 2019) has now been in operation at the VLT for more than 5 years, demonstrating a high level of performance. SPHERE has produced outstanding results using a variety of operating modes, primarily in the field of direct imaging of exoplanetary systems, focusing on exoplanets as point sources and circumstellar disks as extended objects. The achievements obtained thus far with SPHERE (~200 refereed publications) in different areas (exoplanets, disks, solar system, stellar physics...) have motivated a large consortium to propose an even more ambitious set of science cases, and its corresponding technical implementation in the form of an upgrade. The SPHERE+ project capitalizes on the expertise and lessons learned from SPHERE to push high contrast imaging performance to its limits on the VLT 8m-telescope. The scientific program of SPHERE+ described in this document will open a new and compelling scientific window for the upcoming decade in strong synergy with ground-based facilities (VLT/I, ELT, ALMA, and SKA) and space missions (Gaia, JWST, PLATO and WFIRST). While SPHERE has sampled the outer parts of planetary systems beyond a few tens of AU, SPHERE+ will dig into the inner regions around stars to reveal and characterize by mean of spectroscopy the giant planet population down to the snow line. Building on SPHERE's scientific heritage and resounding success, SPHERE+ will be a dedicated survey instrument which will strengthen the leadership of ESO and the European community in the very competitive field of direct imaging of exoplanetary systems. With enhanced capabilities, it will enable an even broader diversity of science cases including the study of the solar system, the birth and death of stars and the exploration of the inner regions of active galactic nuclei. [less ▲]

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See detailA dusty benchmark brown dwarf near the ice line of HD 72946
Maire, Anne-Lise ULiege; Baudino, J.-L.; Desidera, S. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2020), 633

Context. HD 72946 is a bright and nearby solar-type star hosting a low- mass companion at long period (P ̃ 16 yr) detected with the radial velocity (RV) method. The companion has a minimum mass of 60.4 ± ... [more ▼]

Context. HD 72946 is a bright and nearby solar-type star hosting a low- mass companion at long period (P ̃ 16 yr) detected with the radial velocity (RV) method. The companion has a minimum mass of 60.4 ± 2.2 M[SUB]J[/SUB] and might be a brown dwarf. Its expected semi-major axis of ̃243 mas makes it a suitable target for further characterization with high-contrast imaging, in particular to measure its inclination, mass, and spectrum and thus definitely establish its substellar nature. <BR /> Aims: We aim to further characterize the orbit, atmosphere, and physical nature of HD 72946B. <BR /> Methods: We present high-contrast imaging data in the near-infrared with the Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch (SPHERE) instrument. We also use proper motion measurements of the star from HIPPARCOS and Gaia. <BR /> Results: The SPHERE data reveal a point source with a contrast of ̃9 mag at a projected separation of ̃235 mas. No other point sources are detected in the field of view. By jointly fitting the RV, imaging, and proper motion data, we constrain all the orbital parameters of HD 72946B and assess a dynamical mass of 72.4 ± 1.6 M[SUB]J[/SUB] and a semi-major axis of 6.456.45[SUP]+0.08[/SUP][SUB]-0.07[/SUB] au. Empirical comparison of its SPHERE spectrum to template dwarfs indicates a spectral type of L5.0 ± 1.5. The J-H3 color is close to the expectations of the DUSTY models and suggests a cloudy atmosphere. Comparison with atmospheric models of the spectrophotometry suggests an effective temperature of ̃1700 K. The bolometric luminosity (log(L/L[SUB]☉[/SUB]) = -4.11 ± 0.10 dex) and dynamical mass of HD 72946B are more compatible with evolutionary models for an age range of ̃0.9-3 Gyr. The formation mechanism of the companion is currently unclear as the object appears slightly away from the bulk of model predictions. HD 72946B is currently the closest benchmark brown dwarf companion to a solar-type star with imaging, RV, and proper motion measurements. <P />Based on observations collected at the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere under ESO programme 0102.C-0781. [less ▲]

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See detailPeering into the formation history of beta Pictoris b with VLTI/GRAVITY long baseline interferometry
Nowak, M.; Lacour, S.; Mollière, P. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2019), 633

Our objective is to estimate the C/O ratio in the atmosphere of beta Pictoris b and obtain an estimate of the dynamical mass of the planet, as well as to refine its orbital parameters using high-precision ... [more ▼]

Our objective is to estimate the C/O ratio in the atmosphere of beta Pictoris b and obtain an estimate of the dynamical mass of the planet, as well as to refine its orbital parameters using high-precision astrometry. We used the GRAVITY instrument with the four 8.2 m telescopes of the Very Large Telescope Interferometer to obtain K-band spectro-interferometric data on $\beta$ Pic b. We extracted a medium resolution (R=500) K-band spectrum of the planet and a high-precision astrometric position. We estimated the planetary C/O ratio using two different approaches (forward modeling and free retrieval) from two different codes (ExoREM and petitRADTRANS, respectively). Finally, we used a simplified model of two formation scenarios (gravitational collapse and core-accretion) to determine which can best explain the measured C/O ratio. Our new astrometry disfavors a circular orbit for $\beta$ Pic b ($e=0.15^{+0.05}_{-0.04}$). Combined with previous results and with Hipparcos/GAIA measurements, this astrometry points to a planet mass of $M = 12.7\pm{}2.2\,M_\mathrm{Jup}$. This value is compatible with the mass derived with the free-retrieval code petitRADTRANS using spectral data only. The forward modeling and free-retrieval approches yield very similar results regarding the atmosphere of beta Pic b. In particular, the C/O ratios derived with the two codes are identical ($0.43\pm{}0.05$ vs $0.43^{+0.04}_{-0.03}$). We argue that if the stellar C/O in $\beta$ Pic is Solar, then this combination of a very high mass and a low C/O ratio for the planet suggests a formation through core-accretion, with strong planetesimal enrichment. [less ▲]

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See detailSpatially Resolving the Quasar Broad Emission Line Region
Gravity Collaboration; Abuter, R.; Accardo, M. et al

in Messenger (2019), 178

The angular resolution of the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) and the excellent sensitivity of GRAVITY have led to the first detection of spatially resolved kinematics of high velocity atomic ... [more ▼]

The angular resolution of the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) and the excellent sensitivity of GRAVITY have led to the first detection of spatially resolved kinematics of high velocity atomic gas near an accreting super- massive black hole, revealing rotation on sub-parsec scales in the quasar 3C 273 at a distance of 550 Mpc. The observations can be explained as the result of circular orbits in a thick disc configuration around a 300 million solar mass black hole. Within an ongoing Large Programme, this capability will be used to study the kinematics of atomic gas and its relation to hot dust in a sample of quasars and Seyfert galaxies. We will measure a new radius-luminosity relation from spatially resolved data and test the current methods used to measure black hole mass in large surveys. [less ▲]

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See detailMapping of shadows cast on a protoplanetary disk by a close binary system
D'Orazi, V.; Gratton, R.; Desidera, S. et al

in Nature Astronomy (2019), 3

For a comprehensive understanding of planetary formation and evolution, we need to investigate the environment in which planets form: circumstellar disks. Here we present high-contrast imaging ... [more ▼]

For a comprehensive understanding of planetary formation and evolution, we need to investigate the environment in which planets form: circumstellar disks. Here we present high-contrast imaging observations of V4046 Sagittarii, a 20-Myr-old close binary known to host a circumbinary disk. We have discovered the presence of rotating shadows in the disk, caused by mutual occultations of the central binary. Shadow-like features are often observed in disks[SUP]1,2[/SUP], but those found thus far have not been due to eclipsing phenomena. We have used the phase difference due to light travel time to measure the flaring of the disk and the geometrical distance of the system. We calculate a distance that is in very good agreement with the value obtained from the Gaia mission's Data Release 2 (DR2), and flaring angles of α = (6.2 ± 0.6)° and α = (8.5 ± 1.0)° for the inner and outer disk rings, respectively. Our technique opens up a path to explore other binary systems, providing an independent estimate of distance and the flaring angle, a crucial parameter for disk modelling. [less ▲]

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See detailHint of curvature in the orbital motion of the exoplanet 51 Eridani b using 3 yr of VLT/SPHERE monitoring
Maire, Anne-Lise ULiege; Rodet, L.; Cantalloube, F. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2019), 624

Context. The 51 Eridani system harbors a complex architecture with its primary star forming a hierarchical system with the binary GJ 3305AB at a projected separation of 2000 au, a giant planet orbiting ... [more ▼]

Context. The 51 Eridani system harbors a complex architecture with its primary star forming a hierarchical system with the binary GJ 3305AB at a projected separation of 2000 au, a giant planet orbiting the primary star at 13 au, and a low-mass debris disk around the primary star with possible cold and warm components inferred from the spectral energy distribution. <BR /> Aims: We aim to better constrain the orbital parameters of the known giant planet. <BR /> Methods: We monitored the system over three years from 2015 to 2018 with the Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch (SPHERE) instrument at the Very Large Telescope (VLT). <BR /> Results: We measure an orbital motion for the planet of 130 mas with a slightly decreasing separation ( 10 mas) and find a hint of curvature. This potential curvature is further supported at 3σ significance when including literature Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) astrometry corrected for calibration systematics. Fits of the SPHERE and GPI data using three complementary approaches provide broadly similar results. The data suggest an orbital period of 32[SUB]-9[/SUB][SUP]+17[/SUP] yr (i.e., 12[SUB]-2[/SUB][SUP]+4[/SUP] au in semi-major axis), an inclination of 133[SUB]-7[/SUB][SUP]+14[/SUP] deg, an eccentricity of 0.45[SUB]-0.15[/SUB][SUP]+0.10[/SUP], and an argument of periastron passage of 87[SUB]-30[/SUB][SUP]+34[/SUP] deg [mod 180°]. The time at periastron passage and the longitude of node exhibit bimodal distributions because we do not yet detect whether the planet is accelerating or decelerating along its orbit. Given the inclinations of the orbit and of the stellar rotation axis (134-144°), we infer alignment or misalignment within 18° for the star-planet spin- orbit. Further astrometric monitoring in the next 3-4 yr is required to confirm at a higher significance the curvature in the motion of the planet, determine if the planet is accelerating or decelerating on its orbit, and further constrain its orbital parameters and the star-planet spin-orbit. <P />The fitted orbits and the histogram distributions of the orbital parameters are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/624/A118">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/624/A118</A>Based on observations collected at the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere under ESO programmes 095.C-0298, 096.C-0241, 198.C-0209, and 1100.C-0481. [less ▲]

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See detailFirst direct detection of an exoplanet by optical interferometry. Astrometry and K-band spectroscopy of HR 8799 e
Gravity Collaboration; Lacour, S.; Nowak, M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2019), 623

<BR /> Aims: To date, infrared interferometry at best achieved contrast ratios of a few times 10[SUP]-4[/SUP] on bright targets. GRAVITY, with its dual-field mode, is now capable of high contrast ... [more ▼]

<BR /> Aims: To date, infrared interferometry at best achieved contrast ratios of a few times 10[SUP]-4[/SUP] on bright targets. GRAVITY, with its dual-field mode, is now capable of high contrast observations, enabling the direct observation of exoplanets. We demonstrate the technique on HR 8799, a young planetary system composed of four known giant exoplanets. <BR /> Methods: We used the GRAVITY fringe tracker to lock the fringes on the central star, and integrated off-axis on the HR 8799 e planet situated at 390 mas from the star. Data reduction included post-processing to remove the flux leaking from the central star and to extract the coherent flux of the planet. The inferred K band spectrum of the planet has a spectral resolution of 500. We also derive the astrometric position of the planet relative to the star with a precision on the order of 100 μas. <BR /> Results: The GRAVITY astrometric measurement disfavors perfectly coplanar stable orbital solutions. A small adjustment of a few degrees to the orbital inclination of HR 8799 e can resolve the tension, implying that the orbits are close to, but not strictly coplanar. The spectrum, with a signal-to-noise ratio of ≈5 per spectral channel, is compatible with a late-type L brown dwarf. Using Exo-REM synthetic spectra, we derive a temperature of 1150 ± 50 K and a surface gravity of 10[SUP]4.3 ± 0.3[/SUP] cm s[SUP]2[/SUP]. This corresponds to a radius of 1.17[SUB]-0.11[/SUB][SUP]+0.13[/SUP] R[SUB]Jup[/SUB] and a mass of 10[SUB]-4[/SUB][SUP]+7[/SUP] M[SUB]Jup[/SUB], which is an independent confirmation of mass estimates from evolutionary models. Our results demonstrate the power of interferometry for the direct detection and spectroscopic study of exoplanets at close angular separations from their stars. <P />The reduced spectrum is available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/623/L11">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/623/L11</A>.Based on observations collected at the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere, ID 60.A-9102(G). [less ▲]

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See detailHigh-contrast study of the candidate planets and protoplanetary disk around HD 100546
Sissa, E.; Gratton, R.; Garufi, Antonio et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 619

The nearby Herbig Be star HD 100546 is known to be a laboratory for the study of protoplanets and their relation with the circumstellar disk, which is carved by at least two gaps. We observed the HD ... [more ▼]

The nearby Herbig Be star HD 100546 is known to be a laboratory for the study of protoplanets and their relation with the circumstellar disk, which is carved by at least two gaps. We observed the HD 100546 environment with high-contrast imaging exploiting several different observing modes of SPHERE, including data sets with and without coronagraphs, dual band imaging, integral field spectroscopy and polarimetry. The picture emerging from these different data sets is complex. Flux-conservative algorithm images clearly show the disk up to 200 au. More aggressive algorithms reveal several rings and warped arms that are seen overlapping the main disk. Some of these structures are found to lie at considerable height over the disk mid-plane at about 30 au. Our images demonstrate that the brightest wings close to the star in the near side of the disk are a unique structure, corresponding to the outer edge of the intermediate disk at 40 au. Modeling of the scattered light from the disk with a geometrical algorithm reveals that a moderately thin structure (H/r = 0.18 at 40 au) can well reproduce the light distribution in the flux-conservative images. We suggest that the gap between 44 and 113 au spans between the 1:2 and 3:2 resonance orbits of a massive body located at 70 au, which mightcoincide with the candidate planet HD 100546b detected with previous thermal infrared (IR) observations. In this picture, the two wings can be the near side of a ring formed by disk material brought out of the disk at the 1:2 resonance with the same massive object. While we find no clear evidence confirming detection of the planet candidate HD 100546c in our data, we find a diffuse emission close to the expected position of HD 100546b. This source can be described as an extremely reddened substellar object surrounded by a dust cloud or its circumplanetary disk. Its astrometry is broadly consistent with a circular orbital motion on the disk plane, a result that could be confirmed with new observations. Further observations at various wavelengths are required to fully understand the complex phenomenology of HD 100546. <P />Based on data collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile (ESO Programs 095.C-0298, 096.C-0241, 096.C-0248, 097.C-0523, 097.C-0865, and 098.C-0209). [less ▲]

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See detailThe GJ 504 system revisited. Combining interferometric, radial velocity, and high contrast imaging data
Bonnefoy, M.; Perraut, K.; Lagrange, A.-M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 618

Context. The G-type star GJ504A is known to host a 3-35 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] companion whose temperature, mass, and projected separation all contribute to making it a test case for planet formation theories ... [more ▼]

Context. The G-type star GJ504A is known to host a 3-35 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] companion whose temperature, mass, and projected separation all contribute to making it a test case for planet formation theories and atmospheric models of giant planets and light brown dwarfs. <BR /> Aims: We aim at revisiting the system age, architecture, and companion physical and chemical properties using new complementary interferometric, radial-velocity, and high-contrast imaging data. <BR /> Methods: We used the CHARA interferometer to measure GJ504A's angular diameter and obtained an estimation of its radius in combinationwith the HIPPARCOS parallax. The radius was compared to evolutionary tracks to infer a new independent age range for the system. We collected dual imaging data with IRDIS on VLT/SPHERE to sample the near-infrared (1.02-2.25 μm) spectral energy distribution (SED) of the companion. The SED was compared to five independent grids of atmospheric models (petitCODE,Exo-REM, BT-SETTL, Morley et al., and ATMO) to infer the atmospheric parameters of GJ 504b and evaluate model-to-model systematic errors. In addition, we used a specific model grid exploring the effect of different C/O ratios. Contrast limits from 2011 to 2017 were combined with radial velocity data of the host star through the MESS2 tool to define upper limits on the mass of additional companions in the system from 0.01 to 100 au. We used an MCMC fitting tool to constrain the companion'sorbital parameters based on the measured astrometry, and dedicated formation models to investigate its origin. <BR /> Results: We report a radius of 1.35 ± 0.04 R[SUB]☉[/SUB] for GJ504A. The radius yields isochronal ages of 21 ± 2 Myr or 4.0 ± 1.8 Gyr for the system and line-of-sight stellar rotation axis inclination of 162.4[SUB]-4.3[/SUB][SUP]+3.8[/SUP] degrees or 186.6[SUB]-3.8[/SUB][SUP]+4.3[/SUP] degrees. We re-detect the companion in the Y2, Y3, J3, H2, and K1 dual-band images. The complete 1-4 μm SED shape of GJ504b is best reproduced by T8-T9.5 objects with intermediate ages (≤ 1.5Gyr), and/or unusual dusty atmospheres and/or super-solar metallicities. All atmospheric models yield T[SUB]eff[/SUB] = 550 ± 50 K for GJ504b and point toward a low surface gravity (3.5-4.0 dex). The accuracy on the metallicity value is limited by model-to-model systematics; it is not degenerate with the C/O ratio. We derive log L/L[SUB]☉[/SUB] = -6.15 ± 0.15 dex for the companion from the empirical analysis and spectral synthesis. The luminosity and T[SUB]eff[/SUB] yield masses of M = 1.3[SUB]-0.3[/SUB][SUP]+0.6[/SUP] M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] and M = 23[SUB]-9[/SUB][SUP]+10[/SUP] M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] for the young and old age ranges, respectively. The semi-major axis (sma) is above 27.8 au and the eccentricity is lower than 0.55. The posterior on GJ 504b's orbital inclination suggests a misalignment with the rotation axis of GJ 504A. We exclude additional objects (90% prob.) more massive than 2.5 and 30 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] with semi-major axes in the range 0.01-80 au for the young and old isochronal ages, respectively. <BR /> Conclusions: The mass and semi-major axis of GJ 504b are marginally compatible with a formation by disk-instability if the system is 4 Gyr old. The companion is in the envelope of the population of planets synthesized with our core-accretion model. Additional deep imaging and spectroscopic data with SPHERE and JWST should help to confirm the possible spin-orbit misalignment and refine the estimates on the companion temperature, luminosity, and atmospheric composition. <P />Based on observations collected at the European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere under ESO programs 093.C-0500, 095.C-0298, 096.C-0241, and 198.C-0209, and on interferometric observations obtained with the VEGA instrument on the CHARA Array. [less ▲]

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See detailDynamical masses of M-dwarf binaries in young moving groups. I. The case of TWA 22 and GJ 2060
Rodet, L.; Bonnefoy, M.; Durkan, S. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 618

Context. Evolutionary models are widely used to infer the mass of stars, brown dwarfs, and giant planets. Their predictions are thought to be less reliable at young ages (< 200 Myr) and in the low-mass ... [more ▼]

Context. Evolutionary models are widely used to infer the mass of stars, brown dwarfs, and giant planets. Their predictions are thought to be less reliable at young ages (< 200 Myr) and in the low-mass regime (< 1 M[SUB]☉[/SUB]). GJ 2060 AB and TWA 22 AB are two rare astrometric M-dwarf binaries, respectively members of the AB Doradus (AB Dor) and Beta Pictoris (β Pic) moving groups. As their dynamical mass can be measured to within a few years, they can be used to calibrate the evolutionary tracks and set new constraints on the age of young moving groups. <BR /> Aims: We provide the first dynamical mass measurement of GJ 2060 and a refined measurement of the total mass of TWA 22. We also characterize the atmospheric properties of the individual components of GJ 2060 that can be used as inputs to the evolutionary models. <BR /> Methods: We used NaCo and SPHERE observations at VLT and archival Keck/NIRC2 data to complement the astrometric monitoring of the binaries. We combined the astrometry with new HARPS radial velocities (RVs) and FEROS RVs of GJ 2060. We used a Markov chain Monte-Carlo (MCMC) module to estimate posteriors on the orbital parameters and dynamical masses of GJ 2060 AB and TWA 22 AB from the astrometry and RVs. Complementary data obtained with the integral field spectrograph VLT/SINFONI were gathered to extract the individual near-infrared (1.1-2.5 μm) medium-resolution (R ̃ 1500 - 2000) spectra of GJ 2060 A and B. We compared the spectra to those of known objects and to grids of BT-SETTL model spectra to infer the spectral type, bolometric luminosities, and temperatures of those objects. <BR /> Results: We find a total mass of 0.18 ± 0.02 M[SUB]☉[/SUB] for TWA 22, which is in good agreement with model predictions at the age of the β Pic moving group. We obtain a total mass of 1.09 ± 0.10 M[SUB]☉[/SUB] for GJ 2060. We estimate a spectral type of M1 ± 0.5, L/L[SUB]☉[/SUB] = -1.20 ± 0.05 dex, and T[SUB]eff[/SUB] = 3700 ± 100 K for GJ 2060 A. The B component is a M3 ± 0.5 dwarf with L/L[SUB]☉[/SUB] = -1.63 ± 0.05 dex and T[SUB]eff[/SUB] = 3400 ± 100 K. The dynamical mass of GJ 2060 AB is inconsistent with the most recent models predictions (BCAH15, PARSEC) for an AB Dor age in the range 50-150 Myr. It is 10%-20% (1-2σ, depending on the assumed age) above the model's predictions, corresponding to an underestimation of 0.10-0.20 M[SUB]☉[/SUB]. Coevality suggests a young age for the system (̃50 Myr) according to most evolutionary models. <BR /> Conclusions: TWA 22 validates the predictions of recent evolutionary tracks at ̃20 Myr. On the other hand, we evidence a 1-2σ mismatch between the predicted and observed mass of GJ 2060 AB. This slight departure may indicate that one of the stars hosts a tight companion. Alternatively, this would confirm the model's tendency to underestimate the mass of young low-mass stars. [less ▲]

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See detailImaging radial velocity planets with SPHERE
Zurlo, A.; Mesa, D.; Desidera, S. et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2018), 480

We present observations with the planet finder Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch (SPHERE) of a selected sample of the most promising radial velocity (RV) companions for high-contrast ... [more ▼]

We present observations with the planet finder Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch (SPHERE) of a selected sample of the most promising radial velocity (RV) companions for high-contrast imaging. Using a Monte Carlo simulation to explore all the possible inclinations of the orbit of wide RV companions, we identified the systems with companions that could potentially be detected with SPHERE. We found the most favourable RV systems to observe are: HD 142, GJ 676, HD 39091, HIP 70849, and HD 30177 and carried out observations of these systems during SPHERE Guaranteed Time Observing. To reduce the intensity of the starlight and reveal faint companions, we used principal component analysis algorithms alongside angular and spectral differential imaging. We injected synthetic planets with known flux to evaluate the self-subtraction caused by our data reduction and to determine the 5σ contrast in the J band versus separation for our reduced images. We estimated the upper limit on detectable companion mass around the selected stars from the contrast plot obtained from our data reduction. Although our observations enabled contrasts larger than 15 mag at a few tenths of arcsec from the host stars, we detected no planets. However, we were able to set upper mass limits around the stars using AMES-COND evolutionary models. We can exclude the presence of companions more massive than 25-28 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] around these stars, confirming the substellar nature of these RV companions. [less ▲]

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See detailDiscovery of a planetary-mass companion within the gap of the transition disk around PDS 70
Keppler, M.; Benisty, M.; Müller, A. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 617

Context. Young circumstellar disks are the birthplaces of planets. Their study is of prime interest to understand the physical and chemical conditions under which planet formation takes place. Only very ... [more ▼]

Context. Young circumstellar disks are the birthplaces of planets. Their study is of prime interest to understand the physical and chemical conditions under which planet formation takes place. Only very few detections of planet candidates within these disks exist, and most of them are currently suspected to be disk features. <BR /> Aims: In this context, the transition disk around the young star PDS 70 is of particular interest, due to its large gap identified in previous observations, indicative of ongoing planet formation. We aim to search for the presence of an embedded young planet and search for disk structures that may be the result of disk-planet interactions and other evolutionary processes. <BR /> Methods: We analyse new and archival near-infrared images of the transition disk PDS 70 obtained with the VLT/SPHERE, VLT/NaCo, and Gemini/NICI instruments in polarimetric differential imaging and angular differential imaging modes. <BR /> Results: We detect a point source within the gap of the disk at about 195 mas ( 22 au) projected separation. The detection is confirmed at five different epochs, in three filter bands and using different instruments. The astrometry results in an object of bound nature, with high significance. The comparison of the measured magnitudes and colours to evolutionary tracks suggests that the detection is a companion of planetary mass. The luminosity of the detected object is consistent with that of an L-type dwarf, but its IR colours are redder, possibly indicating the presence of warm surrounding material. Further, we confirm the detection of a large gap of 54 au in size within the disk in our scattered light images, and detect a signal from an inner disk component. We find that its spatial extent is very likely smaller than 17 au in radius, and its position angle is consistent with that of the outer disk. The images of the outer disk show evidence of a complex azimuthal brightness distribution which is different at different wavelengths and may in part be explained by Rayleigh scattering from very small grains. <BR /> Conclusions: The detection of a young protoplanet within the gap of the transition disk around PDS 70 opens the door to a so far observationally unexplored parameter space of planetary formation and evolution. Future observations of this system at different wavelengths and continuing astrometry will allow us to test theoretical predictions regarding planet-disk interactions, planetary atmospheres, and evolutionary models. <P />Based on observations performed with ESO Telescopes at the Paranal Observatory under programmes 095.C-0298, 095.C-0404, 096.C-0333, 097.C-0206, 097.C-1001, and 099.C-0891.The reduced images and datacubes are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (ftp://130.79.128.5) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/617/A44">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz- bin/qcat?J/A+A/617/A44</A> [less ▲]

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See detailInvestigating the young solar system analog HD 95086. A combined HARPS and SPHERE exploration
Chauvin, G.; Gratton, R.; Bonnefoy, M. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 617

Context. HD 95086 (A8V, 17 Myr) hosts a rare planetary system for which a multi-belt debris disk and a giant planet of 4-5 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] have been directly imaged. <BR /> Aims: Our study aims to ... [more ▼]

Context. HD 95086 (A8V, 17 Myr) hosts a rare planetary system for which a multi-belt debris disk and a giant planet of 4-5 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] have been directly imaged. <BR /> Aims: Our study aims to characterize the global architecture of this young system using the combination of radial velocity and direct imaging observations. We want to characterize the physical and orbital properties of HD 95086 b, search for additional planets at short and wide orbits and image the cold outer debris belt in scattered light. <BR /> Methods: We used HARPS at the ESO 3.6 m telescope to monitor the radial velocity of HD 95086 over two years and investigate the existence of giant planets at less than 3 au orbital distance. With the IRDIS dual-band imager and the IFS integral field spectrograph of SPHERE at VLT, we imaged the faint circumstellar environment beyond 10 au at six epochs between 2015 and 2017. <BR /> Results: We do not detect additional giant planets around HD 95086. We identify the nature (bound companion or background contaminant) of all point-like sources detected in the IRDIS field of view. None of them correspond to the ones recently discovered near the edge of the cold outer belt by ALMA. HD 95086 b is resolved for the first time in J-band with IFS. Its near-infrared spectral energy distribution is well fitted by a few dusty and/or young L7-L9 dwarf spectral templates. The extremely red 1-4 μm spectral distribution is typical of low-gravity objects at the L/T spectral type transition. The planet's orbital motion is resolved between January 2015 and May 2017. Together with past NaCo measurements properly re-calibrated, our orbital fitting solutions favor a retrograde low to moderate-eccentricity orbit e = 0.2[SUP]+0.3[/SUP][SUB]-0.2[/SUB], with a semi-major axis 52 au corresponding to orbital periods of 288 yr and an inclination that peaks at i = 141°, which is compatible with a planet-disk coplanar configuration. Finally, we report the detection in polarimetric differential imaging of the cold outer debris belt between 100 and 300 au, consistent in radial extent with recent ALMA 1.3 mm resolved observations. <P />Based on observations collected at the European Southern Observatory, Chile (ESO SPHERE Guaranteed Time Observation Program 095.C-0273, 095.C-0298, 096.C-0241, 097.C-0865, 198.C-0209) and ESO HARPS Open Time Observation Program 099.C-0205, 192. C-0224. [less ▲]

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See detailResolving faint structures in the debris disk around TWA 7. Tentative detections of an outer belt, a spiral arm, and a dusty cloud
Olofsson, J.; van Holstein, R. G.; Boccaletti, A. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 617

Context. Debris disks are the intrinsic by-products of the star and planet formation processes. Most likely due to instrumental limitations and their natural faintness, little is known about debris disks ... [more ▼]

Context. Debris disks are the intrinsic by-products of the star and planet formation processes. Most likely due to instrumental limitations and their natural faintness, little is known about debris disks around low mass stars, especially when it comes to spatially resolved observations. <BR /> Aims: We present new VLT/SPHERE IRDIS dual- polarization imaging (DPI) observations in which we detect the dust ring around the M2 spectral type star TWA 7. Combined with additional angular differential imaging observations we aim at a fine characterization of the debris disk and setting constraints on the presence of low-mass planets. <BR /> Methods: We modeled the SPHERE DPI observations and constrain the location of the small dust grains, as well as the spectral energy distribution of the debris disk, using the results inferred from the observations, and performed simple N-body simulations. <BR /> Results: We find that the dust density distribution peaks at 0.72'' (25 au), with a very shallow outer power-law slope, and that the disk has an inclination of 13° with a position angle of 91° east of north. We also report low signal-to-noise ratio detections of an outer belt at a distance of 1.5'' ( 52 au) from the star, of a spiral arm in the southern side of the star, and of a possible dusty clump at 0.11''. These findings seem to persist over timescales of at least a year. Using the intensity images, we do not detect any planets in the close vicinity of the star, but the sensitivity reaches Jovian planet mass upper limits. We find that the SED is best reproduced with an inner disk at 0.2'' ( 7 au) and another belt at 0.72'' (25 au). <BR /> Conclusions: We report the detections of several unexpected features in the disk around TWA 7. A yet undetected 100M[SUB]⊕[/SUB] planet with a semi-major axis at 20-30 au could possibly explain the outer belt as well as the spiral arm. We conclude that stellar winds are unlikely to be responsible for the spiral arm. <P />Based on observations made with ESO Telescopes at the Paranal Observatory under programs ID 095.C-0298, 097.C-0319, 098.C-0155, and 198.C-0209. [less ▲]

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