INAF – Osservatorio Astrofisico di Catania, via S. Sofia 78, 95123 Catania, Italy e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, Salita Moiariello 16, 80131 Napoli, Italy
Accepted: 2 February 2007
Aims.We present the results of an optical multi-band survey for low-mass pre-main sequence (PMS) stars and young brown dwarfs (BDs) in the Chamaeleon II (Cha II) dark cloud. This survey constitutes the complementary optical data to the c2d Spitzer Legacy survey in Cha II.
Methods.Using the wide-field imager (WFI) at the ESO 2.2 m telescope, we surveyed a sky area of about 1.75 square degrees in Cha II. The region was observed in the Rc, Ic, and z broad-bands, in Hα and in two medium-band filters centred at 856 and 914 nm. We selected PMS star and young BD candidates using colour-magnitude diagrams (CMDs) and theoretical isochrones reproduced ad-hoc for the WFI at the ESO2.2m telescope system. We reinforced the selection criteria by using the previously known PMS stars in Cha II to define the PMS locus on the CMDs and by investigating the infrared (IR) colours of the candidates. By exploiting the WFI intermediate-band photometry we also estimated the effective temperature and the level of Hα emission of the candidates.
Results.Our survey, which is one of the largest and deepest optical surveys conducted so far in Cha II, recovered the majority of the PMS stars and 10 member candidates of the cloud from previous IR surveys. In addition, the survey revealed 10 new potential members. From our photometric characterisation, we estimate that some 50% of the 20 candidates will result in true Cha II members. Based on our temperature estimates, we conclude that several of these objects are expected to be sub-stellar and give a first estimate of the fraction of sub-stellar objects.
Key words: stars: low-mass, brown dwarfs / stars: formation / stars: pre-main sequence / ISM: clouds / ISM: individual objects: Chamaeleon II
Based on observations carried out at the European Southern Observatory, La Silla, Chile under proposals numbers 67.C-0225 and 68.C-0311.
© ESO, 2007