Letter to the Editor
Captured at millimeter wavelengths: a flare from the classical T Tauri star DQ Tauri
Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands e-mail: [demerese;michiel]@strw.leidenuniv.nl
2 California Institute of Technology, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, Mail Stop 150-21, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 21 October 2008
For several hours on 2008 April 19, the T Tauri spectroscopic binary DQ Tau was observed to brighten, reaching a maximum detected flux of 468 mJy and likely making it (briefly) the brightest object at 3 mm in the Taurus star-forming region. We present the light curve of a rarely before observed millimeter flare originating in the region around a pre-main-sequence star, and the first from a classical T Tauri star. We discuss the properties and nature of the flaring behavior in the context of pulsed accretion flows (the current picture based largely on studies of this object's optically variable spectrum), as well as magnetospheric re-connection models (a separate theory that predicts millimeter flares for close binaries of high orbital eccentricity). We believe that the flare mechanism is linked to the binary orbit, and therefore periodic. DQ Tau makes a strong case for multi-wavelength follow-up studies, performed in parallel, of future flares to help determine whether magnetospheric and dynamical interactions in a proto-binary system are independent.
Key words: radio continuum: stars / stars: individual: DQ Tau / stars: pre-main sequence / stars: binaries: spectroscopic / stars: flare / stars: magnetic fields
© ESO, 2008