By combining photometry from the 2MASS Point Source Catalog and the USNO-B1.0 catalog with optical and infrared spectroscopy, I have performed a search for young brown dwarfs in an area of 225 deg2 encompassing all of the Taurus star-forming region (τ ∼ 1 Myr). From this work, I have discovered 22 new members of Taurus, 5 of which were independently found by Guieu and coworkers. Sixteen of these new members have spectral types later than M6 and thus are likely to be brown dwarfs according to the theoretical evolutionary models of Chabrier and Baraffe. After adding these new members to the previously known members of Taurus, I have compared the spatial distributions of stars and brown dwarfs across the entire region. I find no statistically significant difference between these two distributions. Taurus does not contain the large, extended population of brown dwarfs that has been predicted by some embryo ejection models for the formation of brown dwarfs. However, these results are consistent with other ejection models, as well as models in which stars and brown dwarfs share a common formation mechanism.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science