A well-understood, volume-limited sample of stellar systems is an essential input to determine the stellar luminosity and mass functions, the stellar velocity distribution, and the stellar multiplicity fraction.Although these physical relationships describe the makeup of our Galaxy, and by extension more distant galaxies, models are being developed from an incomplete catalog with limited parameters.
Of the nine binaries in the sample, two promise mass determinations in the next decade: LHS 6167AB, an M4.5V system for which we present an accurate parallax placing the binary at 9.7 pc, and 2MASS J23515048-2537367AB, an M8.5V system at 21.1 pc for which we present the first evidence of an unseen, low-mass companion.
Most importantly, Na gravity indicators, Hα measurements, long-term photometric variability, locations on the H-R diagram, and kinematic assessments indicate that as many as 13 of the systems are young, including candidate members of young moving groups, with ages less than ~120 Myr.
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This ninth list of photometry is collected to characterize the systems and to support parallax reductions.
Aside from being an input to the parallax reduction pipeline, this homogeneous set of optical photometry supplements the infrared measurements available from the Two Micron All Sky Survey (Skrutskie et al.2006, hereafter 2MASS; names are abbreviated to 2MASS HHMM-DDMM) for all of the systems.When combined with parallaxes, broadband colors such as these provide a rough means of probing the temperatures, surface gravities, and compositions of nearby systems.Such volume-limited samples help define stellar populations and are critical to estimating the amount of mass contributed by local stars, while the systems in this volume provide insight into stellar evolution and the history of star formation in the Galactic disk.The nearby stars are also the brightest and easiest to examine from the Earth, allowing their characteristics to be studied in detail and allowing the detection of subtle differences among similar stars.VRI photometry from the 0.9 m and optical spectra from the 1.5 m indicate that the targets have V = 11–22 mag and spectral types M3.0V–L3.0V.