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C/O Ratios of Stars with Transiting Hot Jupiter Exoplanets

By SpaceRef Editor
March 28, 2014
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C/O Ratios of Stars with Transiting Hot Jupiter Exoplanets

Johanna K. Teske (1), Katia Cunha (1, 2), Verne V. Smith (3), Simon C. Schuler (4), Caitlin A. Griffith (5) ((1) Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA, (2) Observatorio Nacional, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, (3) National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Tucson, AZ, USA, (4) University of Tampa, Tampa, FL, USA, (5) Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA)

(Submitted on 26 Mar 2014)

The relative abundances of carbon and oxygen have long been recognized as fundamental diagnostics of stellar chemical evolution. Now, the growing number of exoplanet observations enable estimation of these elements in exoplanetary atmospheres. In hot Jupiters, the C/O ratio affects the partitioning of carbon in the major observable molecules, making these elements diagnostic of temperature structure and composition. Here we present measurements of carbon and oxygen abundances in 16 stars that host transiting hot Jupiter exoplanets, and compare our C/O ratios to those measured in larger samples of host stars, as well as those estimated for the corresponding exoplanet atmospheres. With standard stellar abundance analysis we derive stellar parameters as well as [C/H] and [O/H] from multiple abundance indicators, including synthesis fitting of the [O I] 6300 {\AA} line and NLTE corrections for the O I triplet. Our results, in agreement with recent suggestions, indicate that previously-measured exoplanet host star C/O ratios may have been overestimated. The mean transiting exoplanet host star C/O ratio from this sample is 0.54 (C/O$_{solar}$=0.54), versus previously-measured C/O$_{host~star}$ means of $\sim$0.65-0.75. We also observe the increase in C/O with [Fe/H] expected for all stars based on Galactic chemical evolution; a linear fit to our results falls slightly below that of other exoplanet host stars studies but has a similar slope. Though the C/O ratios of even the most-observed exoplanets are still uncertain, the more precise abundance analysis possible right now for their host stars can help constrain these planets’ formation environments and current compositions.

Comments:accepted in ApJ; 44 pages, 8 tables, 5 figures

Subjects:Solar and Stellar Astrophysics (astro-ph.SR); Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)

Cite as:arXiv:1403.6891 [astro-ph.SR]

 (or arXiv:1403.6891v1 [astro-ph.SR] for this version)

Submission history

From: Johanna Teske 

[v1] Wed, 26 Mar 2014 23:22:16 GMT (189kb)


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