References of "Gillon, Michaël"
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See detailExoplanetary Transits
Gillon, Michaël ULiege

Scientific conference (2017, September 15)

Exoplanetary Transits

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See detailThe EBLM project. III. A Saturn-size low-mass star at the hydrogen-burning limit
von Boetticher, Alexander; Triaud, Amaury H. M. J.; Queloz, Didier et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 604

We report the discovery of an eclipsing binary system with mass-ratio q ˜ 0.07. After identifying a periodic photometric signal received by WASP, we obtained CORALIE spectroscopic radial velocities and ... [more ▼]

We report the discovery of an eclipsing binary system with mass-ratio q ˜ 0.07. After identifying a periodic photometric signal received by WASP, we obtained CORALIE spectroscopic radial velocities and follow-up light curves with the Euler and TRAPPIST telescopes. From a joint fit of these data we determine that EBLM J0555-57 consists of a sun-like primary star that is eclipsed by a low-mass companion, on a weakly eccentric 7.8-day orbit. Using a mass estimate for the primary star derived from stellar models, we determine a companion mass of 85 ± 4 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB] (0.081 M[SUB]⊙[/SUB]) and a radius of 0.84[SUP]+ 0.14[/SUP][SUB]-0.04[/SUB]R[SUB]Jup[/SUB] (0.084 R[SUB]⊙[/SUB]) that is comparable to that of Saturn. EBLM J0555-57Ab has a surface gravity log g[SUB]2[/SUB] =5.50[SUP]+ 0.03[/SUP][SUB]-0.13[/SUB] and is one of the densest non-stellar-remnant objects currently known. These measurements are consistent with models of low-mass stars. The photometry tables and radial velocities are only available at the CDS and on demand via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (<A href="http://130.79.128.5">http://130.79.128.5</A>) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/604/L6">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/604/L6</A> [less ▲]

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See detailGround-based monitoring of comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko gas activity throughout the Rosetta mission
Opitom, C.; Snodgrass, C.; Fitzsimmons, A. et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 469

Simultaneously to the ESA Rosetta mission, a world-wide ground-based campaign provided measurements of the large scale activity of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko through measurement of optically active ... [more ▼]

Simultaneously to the ESA Rosetta mission, a world-wide ground-based campaign provided measurements of the large scale activity of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko through measurement of optically active gas species and imaging of the overall dust coma. We present more than 2 yr of observations performed with the FORS2 low-resolution spectrograph at the VLT, TRAPPIST and ACAM at the WHT. We focus on the evolution of the CN production as a tracer of the comet activity. We find that it is asymmetric with respect to perihelion and different from that of the dust. The CN emission is detected for the first time at 1.34 au pre-perihelion and production rates then increase steeply to peak about 2 weeks after perihelion at (1.00 ± 0.10) × 10[SUP]25[/SUP] molecules s[SUP]-1[/SUP], while the post-perihelion decrease is more shallow. The evolution of the comet activity is strongly influenced by seasonal effects with enhanced CN production when the Southern hemisphere is illuminated. [less ▲]

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See detailProbing the atmosphere of a sub-Jovian planet orbiting a cool dwarf
Sedaghati, Elyar; Boffin, Henri M. J.; Delrez, Laetitia et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 468

We derive the 0.01 $\mu$m binned transmission spectrum, between 0.74 and 1.0 $\mu$m, of WASP-80b from low resolution spectra obtained with the FORS2 instrument attached to ESO's Very Large Telescope. The ... [more ▼]

We derive the 0.01 $\mu$m binned transmission spectrum, between 0.74 and 1.0 $\mu$m, of WASP-80b from low resolution spectra obtained with the FORS2 instrument attached to ESO's Very Large Telescope. The combination of the fact that WASP-80 is an active star, together with instrumental and telluric factors, introduces correlated noise in the observed transit light curves, which we treat quantitatively using Gaussian Processes. Comparison of our results together with those from previous studies, to theoretically calculated models reveals an equilibrium temperature in agreement with the previously measured value of 825K, and a sub-solar metallicity, as well as an atmosphere depleted of molecular species with absorption bands in the IR ($\gg 5\sigma$). Our transmission spectrum alone shows evidence for additional absorption from the potassium core and wing, whereby its presence is detected from analysis of narrow 0.003 $\mu$m bin light curves ($\gg 5\sigma$). Further observations with visible and near-UV filters will be required to expand this spectrum and provide more in-depth knowledge of the atmosphere. These detections are only made possible through an instrument-dependent baseline model and a careful analysis of systematics in the data. [less ▲]

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See detailMonitoring of comets activity and composition with the TRAPPIST-North telescope
Moulane, Youssef ULiege; Benkhaldoun, Zouhair; Jehin, Emmanuel ULiege et al

in Journal of Physics: Conference Series (2017, July), 869

TRAPPIST-North (TRAnsiting Planets and PlanetesImals Small Telescope) is a 60-cm robotic telescope that was installed in May 2016 at the Oukaimeden Observatory. The project is led by the University of ... [more ▼]

TRAPPIST-North (TRAnsiting Planets and PlanetesImals Small Telescope) is a 60-cm robotic telescope that was installed in May 2016 at the Oukaimeden Observatory. The project is led by the University of Liège (Belgium) and the Caddi Ayad University of Marrakech (Morocco). This telescope is a twin of the TRAPPIST-South telescope, which was installed at the ESO La Silla Observatory in 2010. The TRAPPIST telescopes are dedicated to the detection and characterization of planets orbiting stars other than our Sun (exoplanets) and the study of comets and other small bodies in our solar system. For the comets research, these telescopes have very sensitive CCD cameras with complete sets of narrow band filters to measure the production rates of several gases (OH, NH, CN, C3 and C2) and the dust. With TRAPPIST-North we can also observe comets that would not be visible in the southern hemisphere. Therfore, with these two telescopes, we can now observe continuously the comets around their orbit. We project to study individually the evolution of the activity, chemical composition, dust properties, and coma morphology of several comets per year and of different origins (New comets and Jupiter Family comets) over a wide range of heliocentric distances, and on both sides of perihelion. We measure the production rates of each daughter molecules using a Haser model, in addition to the Afρ parameter to estimate the dust production in the coma. In this work, we present the first measurements of the production rates of comet C/2013 X1 (PANSTARRS) observed with TN in June 2016, and the measurements of comet C/2013 V5 (Oukaimeden) observed in 2014 with TRAPPIST-South. [less ▲]

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See detailA seven-planet resonant chain in TRAPPIST-1
Luger, Rodrigo; Sestovic, Marko; Kruse, Ethan et al

in Nature Astronomy (2017), 1

The TRAPPIST-1 system is the first transiting planet system found orbiting an ultracool dwarf star[SUP] 1 [/SUP]. At least seven planets similar in radius to Earth were previously found to transit this ... [more ▼]

The TRAPPIST-1 system is the first transiting planet system found orbiting an ultracool dwarf star[SUP] 1 [/SUP]. At least seven planets similar in radius to Earth were previously found to transit this host star[SUP] 2 [/SUP]. Subsequently, TRAPPIST-1 was observed as part of the K2 mission and, with these new data, we report the measurement of an 18.77 day orbital period for the outermost transiting planet, TRAPPIST-1 h, which was previously unconstrained. This value matches our theoretical expectations based on Laplace relations[SUP] 3 [/SUP] and places TRAPPIST-1 h as the seventh member of a complex chain, with three-body resonances linking every member. We find that TRAPPIST-1 h has a radius of 0.752 R [SUB]⊕[/SUB] and an equilibrium temperature of 173 K. We have also measured the rotational period of the star to be 3.3 days and detected a number of flares consistent with a low-activity, middle-aged, late M dwarf. [less ▲]

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See detail3D shape of asteroid (6)~Hebe from VLT/SPHERE imaging: Implications for the origin of ordinary H chondrites
Marsset, M.; Carry, B.; Dumas, C. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 604

Context. The high-angular-resolution capability of the new-generation ground-based adaptive-optics camera SPHERE at ESO VLT allows us to assess, for the very first time, the cratering record of medium ... [more ▼]

Context. The high-angular-resolution capability of the new-generation ground-based adaptive-optics camera SPHERE at ESO VLT allows us to assess, for the very first time, the cratering record of medium-sized (D~100-200 km) asteroids from the ground, opening the prospect of a new era of investigation of the asteroid belt's collisional history. Aims. We investigate here the collisional history of asteroid (6) Hebe and challenge the idea that Hebe may be the parent body of ordinary H chondrites, the most common type of meteorites found on Earth (~34% of the falls). Methods. We observed Hebe with SPHERE as part of the science verification of the instrument. Combined with earlier adaptive-optics images and optical light curves, we model the spin and three-dimensional (3D) shape of Hebe and check the consistency of the derived model against available stellar occultations and thermal measurements. Results. Our 3D shape model fits the images with sub-pixel residuals and the light curves to 0.02 mag. The rotation period (7.274 47 h), spin (343 deg,+47 deg), and volume-equivalent diameter (193 +/- 6km) are consistent with previous determinations and thermophysical modeling. Hebe's inferred density is 3.48 +/- 0.64 g.cm-3 , in agreement with an intact interior based on its H-chondrite composition. Using the 3D shape model to derive the volume of the largest depression (likely impact crater), it appears that the latter is significantly smaller than the total volume of close-by S-type H-chondrite-like asteroid families. Conclusions. Our results imply that (6) Hebe is not the most likely source of H chondrites. Over the coming years, our team will collect similar high-precision shape measurements with VLT/SPHERE for ~40 asteroids covering the main compositional classes, thus providing an unprecedented dataset to investigate the origin and collisional evolution of the asteroid belt. [less ▲]

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See detailThe HARPS search for southern extra-solar planets. XXXVI. Eight HARPS multi-planet systems hosting 20 super-Earth and Neptune-mass companions
Udry, S.; Dumusque, X.; Lovis, C. et al

in ArXiv e-prints (2017), 1705

We present radial-velocity measurement of eight stars observed with the HARPS Echelle spectrograph mounted on the 3.6-m telescope in La Silla (ESO, Chile). Data span more than ten years and highlight the ... [more ▼]

We present radial-velocity measurement of eight stars observed with the HARPS Echelle spectrograph mounted on the 3.6-m telescope in La Silla (ESO, Chile). Data span more than ten years and highlight the long-term stability of the instrument. We search for potential planets orbiting HD20003, HD20781, HD21693, HD31527, HD45184, HD51608, HD134060 and HD136352 to increase the number of known planetary systems and thus better constrain exoplanet statistics. After a preliminary phase looking for signals using generalized Lomb-Scargle periodograms, we perform a careful analysis of all signals to separate \emph{bona-fide} planets from spurious signals induced by stellar activity and instrumental systematics. We finally secure the detection of all planets using the efficient MCMC available on the Data and Analysis Center for Exoplanets (DACE web-platform), using model comparison whenever necessary. In total, we report the detection of twenty new super-Earth to Neptune-mass planets, with minimum masses ranging from 2 to 30 M$_{\rm Earth}$, and periods ranging from 3 to 1300 days. By including CORALIE and HARPS measurements of HD20782 to the already published data, we also improve the characterization of the extremely eccentric Jupiter orbiting this host. [less ▲]

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See detailThe 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko observation campaign in support of the Rosetta mission
Snodgrass, C.; A'Hearn, M. F.; Aceituno, F. et al

in Philosophical Transactions : Mathematical, Physical & Engineering Sciences (2017), 375

We present a summary of the campaign of remote observations that supported the European Space Agency's Rosetta mission. Telescopes across the globe (and in space) followed comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko ... [more ▼]

We present a summary of the campaign of remote observations that supported the European Space Agency's Rosetta mission. Telescopes across the globe (and in space) followed comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from before Rosetta's arrival until nearly the end of the mission in September 2016. These provided essential data for mission planning, large-scale context information for the coma and tails beyond the spacecraft and a way to directly compare 67P with other comets. The observations revealed 67P to be a relatively `well-behaved' comet, typical of Jupiter family comets and with activity patterns that repeat from orbit to orbit. Comparison between this large collection of telescopic observations and the in situ results from Rosetta will allow us to better understand comet coma chemistry and structure. This work is just beginning as the mission ends-in this paper, we present a summary of the ground-based observations and early results, and point to many questions that will be addressed in future studies. This article is part of the themed issue 'Cometary science after Rosetta'. [less ▲]

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See detailStudy of the plutino object (208996) 2003 AZ84 from stellar occultations: size, shape and topographic features
Dias-Oliveira, A.; Sicardy, B.; Ortiz, J. L. et al

in The Astronomical Journal (2017), 154(1), 13

We present results derived from four stellar occultations by the plutino object (208996) 2003~AZ$_{84}$, detected at January 8, 2011 (single-chord event), February 3, 2012 (multi-chord), December 2, 2013 ... [more ▼]

We present results derived from four stellar occultations by the plutino object (208996) 2003~AZ$_{84}$, detected at January 8, 2011 (single-chord event), February 3, 2012 (multi-chord), December 2, 2013 (single-chord) and November 15, 2014 (multi-chord). Our observations rule out an oblate spheroid solution for 2003~AZ$_{84}$'s shape. Instead, assuming hydrostatic equilibrium, we find that a Jacobi triaxial solution with semi axes $(470 \pm 20) \times (383 \pm 10) \times (245 \pm 8)$~km % axis ratios $b/a= 0.82 \pm 0.05$ and $c/a= 0.52 \pm 0.02$, can better account for all our occultation observations. Combining these dimensions with the rotation period of the body (6.75~h) and the amplitude of its rotation light curve, we derive a density $\rho=0.87 \pm 0.01$~g~cm$^{-3}$ a geometric albedo $p_V= 0.097 \pm 0.009$. A grazing chord observed during the 2014 occultation reveals a topographic feature along 2003~AZ$_{84}$'s limb, that can be interpreted as an abrupt chasm of width $\sim 23$~km and depth $> 8$~km or a smooth depression of width $\sim 80$~km and depth $\sim 13$~km (or an intermediate feature between those two extremes). [less ▲]

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See detailPeculiar architectures for the WASP-53 and WASP-81 planet-hosting systems★
Triaud, Amaury H. M. J.; Neveu-VanMalle, Marion; Lendl, Monika et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 467

We report the detection of two new systems containing transiting planets. Both were identified by WASP as worthy transiting planet candidates. Radial velocity observations quickly verified that the ... [more ▼]

We report the detection of two new systems containing transiting planets. Both were identified by WASP as worthy transiting planet candidates. Radial velocity observations quickly verified that the photometric signals were indeed produced by two transiting hot Jupiters. Our observations also show the presence of additional Doppler signals. In addition to short-period hot Jupiters, we find that the WASP-53 and WASP-81 systems also host brown dwarfs, on fairly eccentric orbits with semimajor axes of a few astronomical units. WASP-53c is over 16 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB]sin i[SUB]c[/SUB] and WASP-81c is 57 M[SUB]Jup[/SUB]sin i[SUB]c[/SUB]. The presence of these tight, massive companions restricts theories of how the inner planets were assembled. We propose two alternative interpretations: the formation of the hot Jupiters within the snow line or the late dynamical arrival of the brown dwarfs after disc dispersal. We also attempted to measure the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect for both hot Jupiters. In the case of WASP-81b, we fail to detect a signal. For WASP-53b, we find that the planet is aligned with respect to the stellar spin axis. In addition we explore the prospect of transit-timing variations, and of using Gaia's astrometry to measure the true masses of both brown dwarfs and also their relative inclination with respect to the inner transiting hot Jupiters. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Spitzer search for the transits of HARPS low-mass planets. II. Null results for 19 planets
Gillon, Michaël ULiege; Demory, B.-O.; Lovis, C. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 601

Short-period super-Earths and Neptunes are now known to be very frequent around solar-type stars. Improving our understanding of these mysterious planets requires the detection of a significant sample of ... [more ▼]

Short-period super-Earths and Neptunes are now known to be very frequent around solar-type stars. Improving our understanding of these mysterious planets requires the detection of a significant sample of objects suitable for detailed characterization. Searching for the transits of the low-mass planets detected by Doppler surveys is a straightforward way to achieve this goal. Indeed, Doppler surveys target the most nearby main-sequence stars, they regularly detect close-in low-mass planets with significant transit probability, and their radial velocity data constrain strongly the ephemeris of possible transits. In this context, we initiated in 2010 an ambitious Spitzer multi-Cycle transit search project that targeted 25 low-mass planets detected by radial velocity, focusing mainly on the shortest-period planets detected by the HARPS spectrograph. We report here null results for 19 targets of the project. For 16 planets out of 19, a transiting configuration is strongly disfavored or firmly rejected by our data for most planetary compositions. We derive a posterior probability of 83% that none of the probed 19 planets transits (for a prior probability of 22%), which still leaves a significant probability of 17% that at least one of them does transit. Globally, our Spitzer project revealed or confirmed transits for three of its 25 targeted planets, and discarded or disfavored the transiting nature of 20 of them. Our light curves demonstrate for Warm Spitzer excellent photometric precisions: for 14 targets out of 19, we were able to reach standard deviations that were better than 50 ppm per 30 min intervals. Combined with its Earth-trailing orbit, which makes it capable of pointing any star in the sky and to monitor it continuously for days, this work confirms Spitzer as an optimal instrument to detect sub-mmag-deep transits on the bright nearby stars targeted by Doppler surveys. The photometric and radial velocity time series used in this work are only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr</A> (<A href="http://130.79.128.5">http://130.79.128.5</A>) or via <A href="http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/601/A117">http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/qcat?J/A+A/601/A117</A> [less ▲]

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See detailWASP-167b/KELT-13b: Joint discovery of a hot Jupiter transiting a rapidly-rotating F1V star
Temple, L. Y.; Hellier, C.; Albrow, M. D. et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 471(3), 2743-2752

We report the joint WASP/KELT discovery of WASP-167b/KELT-13b, a transiting hot Jupiter with a 2.02-d orbit around a $V$ = 10.5, F1V star with [Fe/H] = 0.1 $\pm$ 0.1. The 1.5 R$_{\rm Jup}$ planet was ... [more ▼]

We report the joint WASP/KELT discovery of WASP-167b/KELT-13b, a transiting hot Jupiter with a 2.02-d orbit around a $V$ = 10.5, F1V star with [Fe/H] = 0.1 $\pm$ 0.1. The 1.5 R$_{\rm Jup}$ planet was confirmed by Doppler tomography of the stellar line profiles during transit. We place a limit of $<$ 8 M$_{\rm Jup}$ on its mass. The planet is in a retrograde orbit with a sky-projected spin-orbit angle of $\lambda = -165^{\circ} \pm 5^{\circ}$. This is in agreement with the known tendency for orbits around hotter stars to be more likely to be misaligned. WASP-167/KELT-13 is one of the few systems where the stellar rotation period is less than the planetary orbital period. We find evidence of non-radial stellar pulsations in the host star, making it a $\delta$-Scuti or $\gamma$-Dor variable. The similarity to WASP-33, a previously known hot-Jupiter host with pulsations, adds to the suggestion that close-in planets might be able to excite stellar pulsations. [less ▲]

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See detailReconnaissance of the TRAPPIST-1 exoplanet system in the Lyman-α line
Bourrier, V.; Ehrenreich, D.; Wheatley, P. J. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 599

The TRAPPIST-1 system offers the opportunity to characterize terrestrial, potentially habitable planets orbiting a nearby ultracool dwarf star. We performed a four-orbit reconnaissance with the Space ... [more ▼]

The TRAPPIST-1 system offers the opportunity to characterize terrestrial, potentially habitable planets orbiting a nearby ultracool dwarf star. We performed a four-orbit reconnaissance with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph onboard the Hubble Space Telescope to study the stellar emission at Lyman-α, to assess the presence of hydrogen exospheres around the two inner planets, and to determine their UV irradiation. We detect the Lyman-α line of TRAPPIST-1, making it the coldest exoplanet host star for which this line has been measured. We reconstruct the intrinsic line profile, showing that it lacks broad wings and is much fainter than expected from the stellar X-ray emission. TRAPPIST-1 has a similar X-ray emission as Proxima Cen but a much lower Ly-α emission. This suggests that TRAPPIST-1 chromosphere is only moderately active compared to its transition region and corona. We estimated the atmospheric mass loss rates for all planets, and found that despite a moderate extreme UV emission the total XUV irradiation could be strong enough to strip the atmospheres of the inner planets in a few billions years. We detect marginal flux decreases at the times of TRAPPIST-1b and c transits, which might originate from stellar activity, but could also hint at the presence of extended hydrogen exospheres. Understanding the origin of these Lyman-α variations will be crucial in assessing the atmospheric stability and potential habitability of the TRAPPIST-1 planets. [less ▲]

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See detailWASP-South transiting exoplanets: WASP-130b, WASP-131b, WASP-132b, WASP-139b, WASP-140b, WASP-141b & WASP-142b
Hellier, Coel; Anderson, D. R.; Collier Cameron, A. et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 465

We describe seven new exoplanets transiting stars of V = 10.1 to 12.4. WASP-130b is a "warm Jupiter" having an orbital period of 11.6 d, the longest yet found by WASP. It transits a V = 11.1, G6 star with ... [more ▼]

We describe seven new exoplanets transiting stars of V = 10.1 to 12.4. WASP-130b is a "warm Jupiter" having an orbital period of 11.6 d, the longest yet found by WASP. It transits a V = 11.1, G6 star with [Fe/H] = +0.26. Warm Jupiters tend to have smaller radii than hot Jupiters, and WASP-130b is in line with this trend (1.23 Mjup; 0.89 Rjup). WASP-131b is a bloated Saturn-mass planet (0.27 Mjup; 1.22 Rjup). Its large scale height coupled with the V = 10.1 brightness of its host star make the planet a good target for atmospheric characterisation. WASP-132b is among the least irradiated and coolest of WASP planets, being in a 7.1-d orbit around a K4 star. It has a low mass and a modest radius (0.41 Mjup; 0.87 Rjup). The V = 12.4, [Fe/H] = +0.22 star shows a possible rotational modulation at 33 d. WASP-139b is the lowest-mass planet yet found by WASP, at 0.12 Mjup and 0.80 Rjup. It is a "super-Neptune" akin to HATS-7b and HATS-8b. It orbits a V = 12.4, [Fe/H] = +0.20, K0 star. The star appears to be anomalously dense, akin to HAT-P-11. WASP-140b is a 2.4-Mjup planet in a 2.2-d orbit that is both eccentric (e = 0.047) and with a grazing transit (b = 0.93) The timescale for tidal circularisation is likely to be the lowest of all known eccentric hot Jupiters. The planet's radius is large (1.4 Rjup), but uncertain owing to the grazing transit. The host star is a V = 11.1, [Fe/H] = +0.12, K0 dwarf showing a prominent 10.4-d rotational modulation. The dynamics of this system are worthy of further investigation. WASP-141b is a typical hot Jupiter, being a 2.7 Mjup, 1.2 Rjup planet in a 3.3-d orbit around a V = 12.4, [Fe/H] = +0.29, F9 star. WASP-142b is a typical bloated hot Jupiter (0.84 Mjup, 1.53 Rjup) in a 2.1-d orbit around a V = 12.3, [Fe/H] = +0.26, F8 star. [less ▲]

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See detailTwo massive rocky planets transiting a K-dwarf 6.5 parsecs away
Gillon, Michaël ULiege; Demory, Brice-Olivier; Van Grootel, Valérie ULiege et al

in Nature Astronomy (2017), 1

HD 219134 is a K-dwarf star at a distance of 6.5 parsecs around which several low-mass planets were recently discovered[SUP]1,2[/SUP]. The Spitzer Space Telescope detected a transit of the innermost of ... [more ▼]

HD 219134 is a K-dwarf star at a distance of 6.5 parsecs around which several low-mass planets were recently discovered[SUP]1,2[/SUP]. The Spitzer Space Telescope detected a transit of the innermost of these planets, HD 219134 b, whose mass and radius (4.5 M[SUB]⊕[/SUB] and 1.6 R[SUB]⊕[/SUB] respectively) are consistent with a rocky composition[SUP]1[/SUP]. Here, we report new high-precision time-series photometry of the star acquired with Spitzer revealing that the second innermost planet of the system, HD 219134c, is also transiting. A global analysis of the Spitzer transit light curves and the most up-to-date HARPS-N velocity data set yields mass and radius estimations of 4.74 ± 0.19 M[SUB]⊕[/SUB] and 1.602 ± 0.055 R[SUB]⊕[/SUB] for HD 219134 b, and of 4.36 ± 0.22 M[SUB]⊕[/SUB] and 1.511 ± 0.047 R[SUB]⊕[/SUB] for HD 219134 c. These values suggest rocky compositions for both planets. Thanks to the proximity and the small size of their host star (0.778 ± 0.005 R[SUB]⊙[/SUB])[SUP]3[/SUP], these two transiting exoplanets — the nearest to the Earth yet found — are well suited for a detailed characterization (for example, precision of a few per cent on mass and radius, and constraints on the atmospheric properties) that could give important constraints on the nature and formation mechanism of the ubiquitous short-period planets of a few Earth masses. [less ▲]

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See detailSeven temperate terrestrial planets around the nearby ultracool dwarf star
Gillon, Michaël ULiege; Triaud, Amaury; Demory, Brice-Olivier et al

in Nature (2017), 542

One focus of modern astronomy is to detect temperate terrestrial exoplanets well-suited for atmospheric characterisation. A milestone was recently achieved with the detection of three Earth-sized planets ... [more ▼]

One focus of modern astronomy is to detect temperate terrestrial exoplanets well-suited for atmospheric characterisation. A milestone was recently achieved with the detection of three Earth-sized planets transiting (i.e. passing in front of) a star just 8% the mass of the Sun 12 parsecs away. Indeed, the transiting configuration of these planets combined with the Jupiter-like size of their host star - named TRAPPIST-1 - makes possible indepth studies of their atmospheric properties with current and future astronomical facilities. Here we report the results of an intensive photometric monitoring campaign of that star from the ground and with the Spitzer Space Telescope. Our observations reveal that at least seven planets with sizes and masses similar to the Earth revolve around TRAPPIST-1. The six inner planets form a near-resonant chain such that their orbital periods (1.51, 2.42, 4.04, 6.06, 9.21, 12.35 days) are near ratios of small integers. This architecture suggests that the planets formed farther from the star and migrated inward. The seven planets have equilibrium temperatures low enough to make possible liquid water on their surfaces. [less ▲]

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See detailSearching for Rapid Orbital Decay of WASP-18b
Wilkins, Ashlee N.; Delrez, Laetitia; Barker, Adrian J. et al

in Astrophysical Journal Letters (2017), 836

The WASP-18 system, with its massive and extremely close-in planet, WASP-18b (M [SUB] p [/SUB] = 10.3M [SUB] J [/SUB], a = 0.02 au, P = 22.6 hr), is one of the best-known exoplanet laboratories to ... [more ▼]

The WASP-18 system, with its massive and extremely close-in planet, WASP-18b (M [SUB] p [/SUB] = 10.3M [SUB] J [/SUB], a = 0.02 au, P = 22.6 hr), is one of the best-known exoplanet laboratories to directly measure Q‧, the modified tidal quality factor and proxy for efficiency of tidal dissipation, of the host star. Previous analysis predicted a rapid orbital decay of the planet toward its host star that should be measurable on the timescale of a few years, if the star is as dissipative as is inferred from the circularization of close-in solar-type binary stars. We have compiled published transit and secondary eclipse timing (as observed by WASP, TRAPPIST, and Spitzer) with more recent unpublished light curves (as observed by TRAPPIST and Hubble Space Telescope) with coverage spanning nine years. We find no signature of a rapid decay. We conclude that the absence of rapid orbital decay most likely derives from Q‧ being larger than was inferred from solar-type stars and find that Q‧ ≥ 1 × 10[SUP]6[/SUP], at 95% confidence; this supports previous work suggesting that F stars, with their convective cores and thin convective envelopes, are significantly less tidally dissipative than solar-type stars, with radiative cores and large convective envelopes. [less ▲]

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See detailStrong XUV irradiation of the Earth-sized exoplanets orbiting the ultracool dwarf TRAPPIST-1
Wheatley, Peter J.; Louden, Tom; Bourrier, Vincent et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 465

We present an XMM-Newton X-ray observation of TRAPPIST-1, which is an ultracool dwarf star recently discovered to host three transiting and temperate Earth-sized planets. We find the star is a relatively ... [more ▼]

We present an XMM-Newton X-ray observation of TRAPPIST-1, which is an ultracool dwarf star recently discovered to host three transiting and temperate Earth-sized planets. We find the star is a relatively strong and variable coronal X-ray source with an X-ray luminosity similar to that of the quiet Sun, despite its much lower bolometric luminosity. We find L_x/L_bol=2-4x10^-4, with the total XUV emission in the range L_xuv/L_bol=6-9x10^-4. Using a simple energy-limited model we show that the relatively close-in Earth-sized planets, which span the classical habitable zone of the star, are subject to sufficient X-ray and EUV irradiation to significantly alter their primary and perhaps secondary atmospheres. Understanding whether this high-energy irradiation makes the planets more or less habitable is a complex question, but our measured fluxes will be an important input to the necessary models of atmospheric evolution. [less ▲]

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See detailFirst limits on the occurrence rate of short-period planets orbiting brown dwarfs
He, Matthias Y.; Triaud, Amaury H. M. J.; Gillon, Michaël ULiege

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 464

Planet formation theories predict a large but still undetected population of short-period terrestrial planets orbiting brown dwarfs. Should specimens of this population be discovered transiting relatively ... [more ▼]

Planet formation theories predict a large but still undetected population of short-period terrestrial planets orbiting brown dwarfs. Should specimens of this population be discovered transiting relatively bright and nearby brown dwarfs, the Jupiter-size and the low luminosity of their hosts would make them exquisite targets for detailed atmospheric characterisation with JWST and future ground-based facilities. The eventual discovery and detailed study of a significant sample of transiting terrestrial planets orbiting nearby brown dwarfs could prove to be useful not only for comparative exoplanetology but also for astrobiology, by bringing us key information on the physical requirements and timescale for the emergence of life. In this context, we present a search for transit-signals in archival time-series photometry acquired by the Spitzer Space Telescope for a sample of 44 nearby brown dwarfs. While these 44 targets were not particularly selected for their brightness, the high precision of their Spitzer light curves allows us to reach sensitivities below Earth-sized planets for 75% of the sample and down to Europa-sized planets on the brighter targets. We could not identify any unambiguous planetary signal. Instead, we could compute the first limits on the presence of planets on close-in orbits. We find that within a 1.28 day orbit, the occurrence rate of planets with a radius between 0.75 and 3.25 R$_\oplus$ is {\eta} < 67 $\pm$ 1%. For planets with radii between 0.75 and 1.25 R$_\oplus$, we place a 95% confident upper limit of {\eta} < 87 $\pm$ 3%. If we assume an occurrence rate of {\eta} = 27% for these planets with radii between 0.75 and 1.25 R$_\oplus$, as the discoveries of the Kepler-42b and TRAPPIST-1b systems would suggest, we estimate that 175 brown dwarfs need to be monitored in order to guarantee (95%) at least one detection. [less ▲]

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