The Near-infrared Transmission Spectra of TRAPPIST-1 Planets b, c, d, e, f, and g and Stellar Contamination in Multi-epoch Transit Spectra
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Dept Astron, Steward Observ
Keywordsplanets and satellites: atmospheres
planets and satellites: individual (TRAPPIST-1)
planets and satellites: terrestrial planets
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherIOP PUBLISHING LTD
CitationZhanbo Zhang et al 2018 AJ 156 178
Rights© 2018. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at email@example.com.
AbstractThe seven approximately Earth-sized transiting planets in the TRAPPIST-1 system provide a unique opportunity to explore habitable-and nonhabitable-zone small planets within the same system. Its habitable-zone exoplanets-due to their favorable transit depths-are also worlds for which atmospheric transmission spectroscopy is within reach with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). We present here an independent reduction and analysis of two HST Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) near-infrared transit spectroscopy data sets for six planets (b through g). Utilizing our physically motivated detector charge-trap correction and a custom cosmic-ray correction routine, we confirm the general shape of the transmission spectra presented by de Wit et al. Our data reduction approach leads to a 25% increase in the usable data and reduces the risk of confusing astrophysical brightness variations (e.g., flares) with instrumental systematics. No prominent absorption features are detected in any individual planet's transmission spectra; by contrast, the combined spectrum of the planets shows a suggestive decrease around 1.4 mu m similar to an inverted water absorption feature. Including transit depths from K2, the SPECULOOS-South Observatory, and Spitzer, we find that the complete transmission spectrum is fully consistent with stellar contamination owing to the transit light source effect. These spectra demonstrate how stellar contamination can overwhelm planetary absorption features in low-resolution exoplanet transit spectra obtained by HST and JWST and also highlight the challenges in combining multi-epoch observations for planets around rapidly rotating spotted stars.
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsNational Aeronautics and Space Administration; National Science Foundation [DGE-1143953]; NASA's Science Mission Directorate; NASA through Space Telescope Science Institute [14241, 15060]; GO programs at the Space Telescope Science Institute [14500, 14873]; NASA [NAS5-26555]
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Precise radial velocities of giant starsOrtiz, Mauricio; Reffert, Sabine; Trifonov, Trifon; Quirrenbach, Andreas; Mitchell, David S.; Nowak, Grzegorz; Buenzli, Esther; Zimmerman, Neil; Bonnefoy, Mickaël; Skemer, Andy; et al. (EDP SCIENCES S A, 2016-10-28)Context. For over 12 yr, we have carried out a precise radial velocity (RV) survey of a sample of 373 G- and K-giant stars using the Hamilton Echelle Spectrograph at the Lick Observatory. There are, among others, a number of multiple planetary systems in our sample as well as several planetary candidates in stellar binaries. Aims. We aim at detecting and characterizing substellar and stellar companions to the giant star HD 59686 A (HR 2877, HIP 36616). Methods. We obtained high-precision RV measurements of the star HD 59686 A. By fitting a Keplerian model to the periodic changes in the RVs, we can assess the nature of companions in the system. To distinguish between RV variations that are due to non-radial pulsation or stellar spots, we used infrared RVs taken with the CRIRES spectrograph at the Very Large Telescope. Additionally, to characterize the system in more detail, we obtained high-resolution images with LMIRCam at the Large Binocular Telescope. Results. We report the probable discovery of a giant planet with a mass of m(p) sin i = 6.92(-0.24)(+0.18) M-Jup orbiting at a(p) = 1.0860(-0.0007)(+0.0006) aufrom the giant star HD 59686 A. In addition to the planetary signal, we discovered an eccentric (e(B) = 0.729(-0.003)(+0.004)) binary companionwith a mass of m(B) sin i = 0.5296(-0.0008)(+0.0011) M-circle dot orbiting at a close separation from the giant primary with a semi-major axis of a(B) = 13.56(-0.14)(+0.18) au. Conclusions. The existence of the planet HD 59686 Ab in a tight eccentric binary system severely challenges standard giant planet formation theories and requires substantial improvements to such theories in tight binaries. Otherwise, alternative planet formation scenarios such as second-generation planets or dynamical interactions in an early phase of the system's lifetime need to be seriously considered to better understand the origin of this enigmatic planet.
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