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Astrophysics > Earth and Planetary Astrophysics

Title: Discovery and Rossiter-McLaughlin Effect of Exoplanet Kepler-8b

Authors: Jon M. Jenkins, William J. Borucki, David G. Koch, Geoffrey W. Marcy, William D. Cochran, Gibor Basri, Natalie M. Batalha, Lars A. Buchhave, Tim M. Brown, Douglas A. Caldwell, Edward W. Dunham, Michael Endl, Debra A. Fischer, Thomas N. Gautier III, John C. Geary, Ronald L. Gilliland, Steve B. Howell, Howard Isaacson, John Asher Johnson, David W. Latham, Jack J. Lissauer, David G. Monet, Jason F. Rowe, Dimitar D. Sasselov, William F.Welsh, Andrew W. Howard, Phillip MacQueen, Hema Chandrasekaran, Joseph D. Twicken, Stephen T. Bryson, Elisa V. Quintana, Bruce D. Clarke, Jie Li, Christopher Allen, Peter Tenenbaum, Hayley Wu, Soren Meibom, Todd C. Klaus, Christopher K. Middour, Miles T. Cote, Sean McCauliff, Forrest R. Girouard, Jay P. Gunter, Bill Wohler, Jennifer R. Hall, Khadeejah Ibrahim, et al. (7 additional authors not shown)
Abstract: We report the discovery and the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect of Kepler-8b, a transiting planet identified by the NASA Kepler Mission. Kepler photometry and Keck-HIRES radial velocities yield the radius and mass of the planet around this F8IV subgiant host star. The planet has a radius RP = 1.419 RJ and a mass, MP = 0.60 MJ, yielding a density of 0.26 g cm^-3, among the lowest density planets known. The orbital period is P = 3.523 days and orbital semima jor axis is 0.0483+0.0006/-0.0012 AU. The star has a large rotational v sin i of 10.5 +/- 0.7 km s^-1 and is relatively faint (V = 13.89 mag), both properties deleterious to precise Doppler measurements. The velocities are indeed noisy, with scatter of 30 m s^-1, but exhibit a period and phase consistent with the planet implied by the photometry. We securely detect the Rossiter-McLaughlin effect, confirming the planet's existence and establishing its orbit as prograde. We measure an inclination between the projected planetary orbital axis and the projected stellar rotation axis of lambda = -26.9 +/- 4.6 deg, indicating a moderate inclination of the planetary orbit. Rossiter-McLaughlin measurements of a large sample of transiting planets from Kepler will provide a statistically robust measure of the true distribution of spin-orbit orientations for hot jupiters in general.
Comments: 26 pages, 8 figures, 2 tables; In preparation for submission to the Astrophysical Journal
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
Cite as: arXiv:1001.0416 [astro-ph.EP]
  (or arXiv:1001.0416v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Jon Jenkins [view email]
[v1] Mon, 4 Jan 2010 20:00:37 GMT (296kb)