Spitzer Microlensing Parallax for OGLE-2016-BLG-1067: a sub-Jupiter Orbiting an M-dwarf in the Disk [EPA]


We report the discovery of a sub-Jupiter mass planet orbiting beyond the snow line of an M-dwarf most likely in the Galactic disk as part of the joint Spitzer and ground-based monitoring of microlensing planetary anomalies toward the Galactic bulge. The microlensing parameters are strongly constrained by the light curve modeling and in particular by the Spitzer-based measurement of the microlens parallax, $\pi_\mathrm{E}$. However, in contrast to many planetary microlensing events, there are no caustic crossings, so the angular Einstein radius, $\theta_\mathrm{E}$ has only an upper limit based on the light curve modeling alone. Additionally, the analysis leads us to identify 8 degenerate configurations: the four-fold microlensing parallax degeneracy being doubled by a degeneracy in the caustic structure present at the level of the ground-based solutions. To pinpoint the physical parameters, and at the same time to break the parallax degeneracy, we make use of a series of arguments: the $\chi^2$ hierarchy, the Rich argument, and a prior Galactic model. The preferred configuration is for a host at $D_L=3.73_{-0.67}^{+0.66}~\mathrm{kpc}$ with mass $M_\mathrm{L}=0.30_{-0.12}^{+0.15}~\mathrm{M_\odot}$, orbited by a Saturn-like planet with $M_\mathrm{planet}=0.43_{-0.17}^{+0.21}~\mathrm{M_\mathrm{Jup}}$ at projected separation $a_\perp = 1.70_{-0.39}^{+0.38}~\mathrm{au}$, about 2.1 times beyond the system snow line. Therefore, it adds to the growing population of sub-Jupiter planets orbiting near or beyond the snow line of M-dwarfs discovered by microlensing. Based on the rules of the real-time protocol for the selection of events to be followed up with Spitzer, this planet will not enter the sample for measuring the Galactic distribution of planets.

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S. Novati, D. Suzuki, A. Udalski, et. al.
Fri, 19 Jan 18

Comments: Submitted to AAS Journals

Investigating the young Solar System analog HD95086 [EPA]


HD95086 (A8V, 17Myr) hosts a rare planetary system for which a multi-belt debris disk and a giant planet of 4-5MJup have been directly imaged. Our study aims to characterize the physical and orbital properties of HD95086b, search for additional planets at short and wide orbits and image the cold outer debris belt in scattered light. We used HARPS at the ESO 3.6m telescope to monitor the radial velocity of HD95086 over 2 years and investigate the existence of giant planets at less than 3au orbital distance. With the IRDIS dual-band imager and the IFS integral field spectrograph of SPHERE at VLT, we imaged the faint circumstellar environment beyond 10au at six epochs between 2015 and 2017. We do not detect additional giant planets around HD95086. We identified the nature (bound companion or background contaminant) of all point-like sources detected in the IRDIS field of view. None of them correspond to the ones recently discovered near the edge of the cold outer belt by ALMA. HD95086b is resolved for the first time in J-band with IFS. Its near-infrared spectral energy distribution is well fitted by a few dusty and/or young L7-L9 dwarf spectral templates. The extremely red 1-4um spectral distribution is typical of low-gravity objects at the L/T spectral type transition. The planet’s orbital motion is resolved between January 2015 and May 2017. Together with past NaCo measurements properly re-calibrated, our orbital fitting solutions favor a retrograde low to moderate-eccentricity orbit e=0.2 (0.0 to 0.5), with a semi-major axis 52au corresponding to orbital periods of 288$ yrs and an inclination that peaks at i = 141deg, which is compatible with a planet-disk coplanar configuration. Finally, we report the detection in polarimetric differential imaging of the cold outer debris belt between 100 and 300au, consistent in radial extent with recent ALMA 1.3mm resolved observations.

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G. Chauvin, R. Gratton, M. Bonnefoy, et. al.
Fri, 19 Jan 18

Comments: 23 pages, 19 figures, accepted in A&A (Dec 28th, 2017)

Finding Mountains with Molehills: The Detectability of Exotopography [EPA]


Mountain ranges, volcanoes, trenches, and craters are common on rocky bodies throughout the Solar System, and we might we expect the same for rocky exoplanets. With ever larger telescopes under design and a growing need to not just detect planets but also to characterize them, it is timely to consider whether there is any prospect of remotely detecting exoplanet topography in the coming decades. To test this, we devised a novel yet simple approach to detect and quantify topographical features on the surfaces of exoplanets using transit light curves. If a planet rotates as it transits its parent star, its changing silhouette yields a time-varying transit depth, which can be observed as an apparent and anomalous increase in the photometric scatter. Using elevation data for several rocky bodies in our solar system, we quantify each world’s surface integrated relief with a “bumpiness” factor, and calculate the corresponding photometric scatter expected during a transit. Here we describe the kinds of observations that would be necessary to detect topography in the ideal case of Mars transiting a nearby white dwarf star. If such systems have a conservative occurrence rate of 10%, we estimate that the upcoming Colossus or OWL telescopes would be able to detect topography with <20 hours of observing time, which corresponds to ~400 transits with a duration of 2 minutes and orbital period of ~10 hours.

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M. McTier and D. Kipping
Fri, 19 Jan 18

Comments: Accepted to MNRAS

Rings and gaps in the disc around Elias 24 revealed by ALMA [EPA]


We present Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array (ALMA) Cycle 2 observations of the 1.3 mm dust continuum emission of the protoplanetary disc surrounding the T Tauri star Elias 24 with an angular resolution of $\sim 0.2″$ ($\sim 28$ au). The dust continuum emission map reveals a dark ring at a radial distance of $0.47″$ ($\sim 65$ au) from the central star, surrounded by a bright ring at $0.58″$ ($\sim 81$ au). In the outer disc, the radial intensity profile shows two inflection points at $0.71″$ and $0.87″$ ($\sim 99$ and $121$ au respectively). We perform global three-dimensional smoothed particle hydrodynamic gas/dust simulations of discs hosting a migrating and accreting planet. Combining the dust density maps of small and large grains with three dimensional radiative transfer calculations, we produce synthetic ALMA observations of a variety of disc models in order to reproduce the gap- and ring-like features observed in Elias 24. We find that the dust emission across the disc is consistent with the presence of an embedded planet with a mass of $\sim 0.7\, \mathrm{M_{\mathrm{J}}}$ at an orbital radius of $\sim$ 60 au. Our model suggests that the two inflection points in the radial intensity profile are due to the inward radial motion of large dust grains from the outer disc. The surface brightness map of our disc model provides a reasonable match to the gap- and ring-like structures observed in Elias 24, with an average discrepancy of $\sim$ 5% of the observed fluxes around the gap region.

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G. Dipierro, L. Ricci, L. Perez, et. al.
Fri, 19 Jan 18

Comments: 17 pages, 11 figures. Accepted for publication in MNRAS

Analysis of June 2, 2016 bolide event [EPA]


On June 2, 2016 at 10h56m UTC, a $-18.9 \pm 0.5$ magnitude superbolide was observed over Arizona. We present analysis of this event based on 6 cameras and a multi-spectral sensor observations by the SkySentinel continuous fireball-monitoring camera network, supplemented by a dash cam footage and a fragmentation model. The bolide began its luminous flight at an altitude of $104.8 \pm 0.5$ km at coordinates $\phi = 34.59 \pm 0.04^\circ$ N planetographic latitude, $\lambda = 110.45 \pm 0.04^\circ$ W longitude, and it had a pre-atmospheric velocity of $17.6 \pm 0.5$ km/s. The calculated orbital parameters indicate that the meteoroid did not belong to any presently known asteroid family. From our calculations, the impacting object had an initial mass of $11.4 \pm 0.5$ metric tonnes with an estimated initial size of $1.89 \pm 0.07$ m.

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C. Palotai, R. Sankar, D. Free, et. al.
Wed, 17 Jan 18

Comments: 9 pages, 9 figures, 5 tables, submitted to MNRAS

Origin of orbits of secondaries in the discovered trans-Neptunian binaries [EPA]


The dependences of inclinations of orbits of secondaries in the discovered trans-Neptunian binaries on the distance between the primary and the secondary, on the eccentricity of orbits of the secondary around the primary, on the ratio of diameters of the secondary and the primary, and on the elements of heliocentric orbits of these binaries are studied. These dependences are interpreted using the model of formation of a satellite system in a collision of two rarefied condensations composed of dust and/or objects less than 1 m in diameter. It is assumed in this model that a satellite system forms in the process of compression of a condensation produced in such a collision. The model of formation of a satellite system in a collision of two condensations agrees with the results of observations: according to observational data, approximately 40% of trans-Neptunian binaries have a negative angular momentum relative to their centers of mass.

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S. Ipatov
Wed, 17 Jan 18

Comments: 8 pages, 3 figures

Formation of trans-Neptunian satellite systems at the stage of condensations [EPA]


The formation of trans-Neptunian satellite systems at the stage of rarefied preplanetesimals (i.e., condensations of dust and/or objects less than 1 m in diameter) is discussed. It is assumed that trans-Neptunian objects (including those with satellites) could form as a result of compression of parental rarefied preplanetesimals. The formulas for calculating the angular momentum of two colliding condensations with respect to their center of mass, which were applied earlier in (Ipatov, 2010) in the comparison of such momenta with the angular momenta of observed satellite systems, are used to estimate the angular momenta of condensations needed to form satellite systems. It is demonstrated that the angular velocities of condensations used in (Nesvorny et al., 2010) as the initial data in the computer simulation of compression of rarefied preplanetesimals and subsequent formation of trans-Neptunian satellite systems may be obtained in collisions of preplanetesimals with their radii comparable to the corresponding Hill radii. For example, these angular velocities are in the range of possible values of angular velocities of a parental rarefied preplanetesimal formed as a result of a merger of two colliding rarefied preplanetesimals that moved in circular heliocentric orbits before a collision. Some rarefied preplanetesimals formed as a result of collision of preplanetesimals in the region of formation of solid small bodies acquire such angular momenta that are sufficient to form satellite systems of small bodies. It is likely that the ratio of the number of rarefied preplanetesimals with such angular momenta to the total number of rarefied preplanetesimals producing classical trans-Neptunian objects with diameters larger than 100 km was 0.45 (the initial fraction of satellite systems among all classical trans-Neptunian objects).

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S. Ipatov
Wed, 17 Jan 18

Comments: 21 pages (two columns) in the journal, 27 pages in the attached file (one column)