The gemini NICI planet-finding campaign: Asymmetries in the HD 141569 disc

Beth A. Biller, Michael C. Liu, Ken Rice, Zahed Wahhaj, Eric Nielsen, Thomas Hayward, Marc J. Kuchner, Laird M. Close, Mark Chun, Christ Ftaclas, Douglas W. Toomey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


We report here the highest resolution near-IR imaging to date of the HD 141569A disc taken as part of the NICI (near infrared coronagraphic imager) Science Campaign. We recover four main features in the NICI images of the HD 141569 disc discovered in previous Hubble Space Telescope (HST) imaging: (1) an inner ring/spiral feature. Once deprojected, this feature does not appear circular. (2) An outer ring which is considerably brighter on the western side compared to the eastern side, but looks fairly circular in the deprojected image. (3) An additional arc-like feature between the inner and outer ring only evident on the east side. In the deprojected image, this feature appears to complete the circle of the west side inner ring and (4) an evacuated cavity from 175 au inwards. Compared to the previous HST imaging with relatively large coronagraphic inner working angles (IWA), the NICI coronagraph allows imaging down to an IWA of 0.3 arcsec. Thus, the inner edge of the inner ring/spiral feature is well resolved and we do not find any additional disc structures within 175 au. We note some additional asymmetries in this system. Specifically, while the outer ring structure looks circular in this deprojection, the inner bright ring looks rather elliptical. This suggests that a single deprojection angle is not appropriate for this system and that there may be an offset in inclination between the two ring/spiral features. We find an offset of 4 ± 2 au between the inner ring and the star centre, potentially pointing to unseen inner companions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4446-4457
Number of pages12
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 24 2015


  • Circumstellar matter
  • Infrared: stars

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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