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Geosciences 2018, 8(10), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences8100362

A Review on Substellar Objects below the Deuterium Burning Mass Limit: Planets, Brown Dwarfs or What?

Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), ESAC, Camino Bajo del Castillo s/n, E-28692 Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain
Received: 23 August 2018 / Revised: 4 September 2018 / Accepted: 10 September 2018 / Published: 28 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Detection and Characterization of Extrasolar Planets)
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Abstract

“Free-floating, non-deuterium-burning, substellar objects” are isolated bodies of a few Jupiter masses found in very young open clusters and associations, nearby young moving groups, and in the immediate vicinity of the Sun. They are neither brown dwarfs nor planets. In this paper, their nomenclature, history of discovery, sites of detection, formation mechanisms, and future directions of research are reviewed. Most free-floating, non-deuterium-burning, substellar objects share the same formation mechanism as low-mass stars and brown dwarfs, but there are still a few caveats, such as the value of the opacity mass limit, the minimum mass at which an isolated body can form via turbulent fragmentation from a cloud. The least massive free-floating substellar objects found to date have masses of about 0.004 Msol, but current and future surveys should aim at breaking this record. For that, we may need LSST, Euclid and WFIRST. View Full-Text
Keywords: planetary systems; stars: brown dwarfs; stars: low mass; galaxy: solar neighborhood; galaxy: open clusters and associations planetary systems; stars: brown dwarfs; stars: low mass; galaxy: solar neighborhood; galaxy: open clusters and associations
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Caballero, J.A. A Review on Substellar Objects below the Deuterium Burning Mass Limit: Planets, Brown Dwarfs or What? Geosciences 2018, 8, 362.

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