NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2013B-0178

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Proposal Information for 2013B-0178


PI: Johanna Teske, University of Arizona, jteske@as.arizona.edu
Address: Astronomy Department, 933 North Cherry Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA

CoI: Simon Schuler, University of Tampa, Dept. of Chemistry and Physics
CoI: Katia Cunha, Observatorio Nacional, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
CoI: Verne Smith, NOAO

Title: C/O Ratios of Stars with Transiting Hot Jupiters: Connecting Stars to Planets

Abstract: Our proposal investigates what processes contribute to the creation of exoplanets, particularly the role of the initial protoplanetary disk and host star. We will determine stellar parameters for and measure the C/O ratios of a sample of Hot Jupiter (HJ) transiting exoplanet host stars. Measurements of stellar and exoplanetary atmospheres - possible with transiting planets - combined provide valuable insight into planet formation processes. HJs are ideal probes of different chemistry induced by different C/O ratios because the main C- and O-containing molecules dominate their IR spectra, and changing the C/O ratio alters their atmospheric temperature and chemistry structure, and thus observable spectral signatures. Though the initial protoplanetary disk composition is to first order that of the star, C/O_\rmplanet does not necessarily reflect C/O_\rmdisk-average, and depends on where formation occurs, how much of the atmosphere is accreted from gas versus solids, and how isolated the atmosphere is from the core. It is important to separate what effects the planet has on the star’s elemental abundances, and the starting abundances of the system. Studying transiting exoplanet (TEP) host stars provides a method for decoupling these two potential effects. This proposal aims to begin to address the question, ``Are the atmospheres of exoplanets and their host stars comprised of the same material?'' by obtaining C/O ratios for the most highly-studied TEP host stars to investigate the connection between star and planet compositions.


National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360



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