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The Astrophyical Journal




The American Astronomical Society


The characterization of gas in the inner disks around young stars is of particular interest because of its connection to planet formation. In order to study the gas in inner disks, we have obtained high-resolution K- and M-band spectroscopy of 14 intermediate-mass young stars. In sources that have optically thick inner disks, i.e., E(K-L)>1, our detection rate of the rovibrational CO transitions is 100%, and the gas is thermally excited. Of the five sources that do not have optically thick inner disks, we only detect the rovibrational CO transitions from HD 141569. In this case, we show that the gas is excited by UV fluorescence and that the inner disk is devoid of gas and dust. We discuss the plausibility of the various scenarios for forming this inner hole. Our modeling of the UV-fluoresced gas suggests an additional method by which to search for and/or place stringent limits on gas in dust-depleted regions in disks around Herbig Ae/Be stars.


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