Status Report

Discovery of a Transiting Planet Near the Snow-Line

By SpaceRef Editor
July 20, 2014
Filed under , ,

David M. Kipping, Guillermo Torres, Lars A. Buchhave, Scott J. Kenyon, Christopher E. Henze, Howard Isaacson, Rea Kolbl, Geoff W. Marcy, Stephen T. Bryson, Keivan G. Stassun, Fabienne A. Bastien

(Submitted on 17 Jul 2014)

In most theories of planet formation, the snow-line represents a boundary between the emergence of the interior rocky planets and the exterior ice giants. The wide separation of the snow-line makes the discovery of transiting worlds challenging, yet transits would allow for detailed subsequent characterization. We present the discovery of Kepler-421b, a Uranus-sized exoplanet transiting a G9/K0 dwarf once every 704.2 days in a near-circular orbit. Using public Kepler photometry, we demonstrate that the two observed transits can be uniquely attributed to the 704.2 day period. Detailed light curve analysis with BLENDER validates the planetary nature of Kepler-421b to >4 sigmas confidence. Kepler-421b receives the same insolation as a body at ~2AU in the Solar System and for a Uranian albedo would have an effective temperature of ~180K. Using a time-dependent model for the protoplanetary disk, we estimate that Kepler-421b’s present semi-major axis was beyond the snow-line after ~3Myr, indicating that Kepler-421b may have formed at its observed location.

Comments: 14 pages, 10 figures, 3 tables. Accepted in ApJ

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)

Cite as: arXiv:1407.4807 [astro-ph.EP]

  (or arXiv:1407.4807v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: David Kipping [view email] 

[v1] Thu, 17 Jul 2014 20:00:10 GMT (1173kb)


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