Discovery of molecular gas around HD 131835 in an apex molecular line survey of bright debris disks

A. Moór, Th Henning, A. Juhász, P. Ábrahám, Z. Balog, Kóspál, I. Pascucci, Gy M. Szabó, R. Vavrek, M. Curé, T. Csengeri, C. Grady, R. Güsten, Cs Kiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Debris disks are considered to be gas-poor, but recent observations revealed molecular or atomic gas in several 10-40 Myr old systems. We used the APEX and IRAM 30 m radio telescopes to search for CO gas in 20 bright debris disks. In one case, around the 16 Myr old A-type star HD 131835, we discovered a new gas-bearing debris disk, where the CO 3-2 transition was successfully detected. No other individual system exhibited a measurable CO signal. Our Herschel Space Observatory far-infrared images of HD 131835 marginally resolved the disk at both 70 and 100 μm, with a characteristic radius of ∼170 AU. While in stellar properties HD 131835 resembles β Pic, its dust disk properties are similar to those of the most massive young debris disks. With the detection of gas in HD 131835 the number of known debris disks with CO content has increased to four, all of them encircling young (≤40 Myr) A-type stars. Based on statistics within 125 pc, we suggest that the presence of a detectable amount of gas in the most massive debris disks around young A-type stars is a common phenomenon. Our current data cannot conclude on the origin of gas in HD 131835. If the gas is secondary, arising from the disruption of planetesimals, then HD 131835 is a comparably young, and in terms of its disk, more massive analog of the β Pic system. However, it is also possible that this system, similar to HD 21997, possesses a hybrid disk, where the gas material is predominantly primordial, while the dust grains are mostly derived from planetesimals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number42
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 20 2015


  • circumstellar matter
  • infrared: stars
  • stars: individual (HD 131835)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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