Characteristics of M Dwarf Stars: Exoplanet Implications
Eric Hilton

The observational signatures of planets orbiting M dwarfs are relatively large, making these stars, which are abundant in the solar neighborhood, attractive candidates for planet searches. However, many of their key physical parameters remain difficult to measure, including radii, metallicities, and ages. Additionally, many M dwarfs show signatures of magnetic activity, hampering planet searches and possibility affecting the planetary atmospheres. I will present results from our work to characterize a large catalog of bright M dwarfs, including metallicity and activity determinations. I will also present our determination of the M dwarf flare rate. We found that active and later-type stars flare more frequently than inactive or early-type stars, and present quantitative predictions for the appearance of flares in time-domain surveys.