Simultaneous photometric and CARMENES spectroscopic monitoring of fast-rotating M dwarf GJ 3270. Discovery of a post-flare corotating feature
Astronomy and Astrophysics
Context. Active M dwarfs frequently exhibit large flares, which can pose an existential threat to the habitability of any planet in orbit in addition to making said planets more difficult to detect. M dwarfs do not lose angular momentum as easily as earlier-type stars, which maintain the high levels of stellar activity for far longer. Studying young, fast-rotating M dwarfs is key to understanding their near stellar environment and the evolution of activity. Aims. We study stellar activity on
... fast-rotating M dwarf GJ 3270. Methods. We analyzed dedicated high cadence, simultaneous, photometric and high-resolution spectroscopic observations obtained with CARMENES of GJ 3270 over 7.7 h, covering a total of eight flares of which two are strong enough to facilitate a detailed analysis. We consult the TESS data, obtained in the month prior to our own observations, to study rotational modulation and to compare the TESS flares to those observed in our campaign. Results. The TESS data exhibit rotational modulation with a period of 0.37 d. The strongest flare covered by our observing campaign released a total energy of about 3.6 × 10 32 erg, putting it close to the superflare regime. This flare is visible in the B,V, r, i, and z photometric bands, which allows us to determine a peak temperature of about 10 000 K. The flare also leaves clear marks in the spectral time series. In particular, we observe an evolving, mainly blue asymmetry in chromospheric lines, which we attribute to a post-flare, corotating feature. To our knowledge this is the first time such a feature has been seen on a star other than our Sun. Conclusions. Our photometric and spectroscopic time series covers the eruption of a strong flare followed up by a corotating feature analogous to a post-flare arcadal loop on the Sun with a possible failed ejection of material.