EDP Sciences
Free Access
Volume 479, Number 1, February III 2008
Page(s) 141 - 148
Section Galactic structure, stellar clusters, and populations
DOI https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20078226
Published online 20 November 2007

A&A 479, 141-148 (2008)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20078226

Detection of the lithium depletion boundary in the young open cluster IC 4665

S. Manzi1, S. Randich1, W. J. de Wit2, 3, and F. Palla1

1  INAF-Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, Largo E. Fermi 5, 50125 Firenze, Italy
    e-mail: randich@arcetri.astro.it
2  Laboratoire d'Astrophysique, Observatoire de Grenoble, BP 53, 38041 Grenoble Cedex 9, France
3  School of Physics & Astronomy, University of Leeds, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9JT, UK

(Received 5 July 2007 / Accepted 13 November 2007)

Context. The so-called lithium depletion boundary (LDB) provides a secure and independent tool for deriving the ages of young open clusters.
Aims. In this context, our goal is to determine membership for a sample of 147 photometrically selected candidates of the young open cluster IC 4665 and to use confirmed members to establish an age based on the LDB.
Methods. Employing the FLAMES multi-object spectrograph on VLT/UT2, we have obtained intermediate-resolution spectra of the cluster candidates. The spectra were used to measure radial velocities and to infer the presence of the $\ion{Li}{i}$ 670.8 nm doublet and H$\alpha$ emission.
Results. We have identified 39 bona fide cluster members based on radial velocity, H$\alpha$ emission, and Li absorption. The mean radial velocity of IC 4665 is found to be $V_{\rm rad}$ = $-15.95 \pm 1.13$ km s-1. Confirmed cluster members display a sharp transition in magnitude between stars with and without lithium, both in the $I_{\rm m}$ vs.  $I_{\rm m}-z$ and in the $K_{\rm s}$ vs. $I_{\rm C}-K_{\rm s}$ diagrams. From this boundary, we deduce a cluster age of $27.7^{+4.2}_{-3.5} \pm 1.1 \pm 2$ Myr.
Conclusions. IC 4665 is the fifth cluster for which an LDB age has been determined, and it is the youngest cluster among these five. Thus, the LDB is established from relatively bright stars still in the contracting pre-main sequence phase. The mass of the boundary is $M_\ast=0.24 \pm 0.04$ $M_\odot$. The LDB age agrees well with the ages derived from isochrone fitting of both low and high mass, turn-off stars, a result similar to what is found in the slightly older NGC 2547.

Key words: open clusters and associations: individual: IC 4665 -- stars: low-mass, brown dwarfs -- stars: pre-main-sequence -- stars: abundances

© ESO 2008

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