Measuring the Rotation Speed of Giant Stars from Gravitational Microlensing

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During some gravitational lensing events, the lens transits the disk of the star. This event causes a shift in the apparent radial velocity of the star proportional to the star's rotation speed. The magnification of such an event is different from that expected for a point source. By measuring both effects, one can determine the rotation parameter v sin i. The method is especially useful for K-giant stars because these stars have turbulent velocities that are typically large compared with their rotation speed. By making a series of radial velocity measurements, one can typically determine v sin i to the same accuracy as the individual radial velocity measurements. There are approximately 10 microlensing transit events per year that would be suitable for these measurements.



gravitational lensing, stars: late-type, stars: rotation


Andrew Gould, "Measuring the Rotation Speed of Giant Stars from Gravitational Microlensing," The Astrophysical Journal 483, no. 1 (1997), doi:10.1086/304244