NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2016B-0019

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Program Information for 2016B-0019


PI: Steve B Howell, NASA Ames Research Center, steve.b.howell@nasa.gov
Address: Ames Research Center, PO Box 1, M/S 244-30, Moffett Field, CA 94035 US

CoI: Mark Everett, NOAO
CoI: Elliott Horch, SCSU
CoI: Nic Scott, NASA Ames Research Center
CoI: Johanna Teske, Carnegie Institution of Washington
CoI: Stephen Kane, San Francisco State U.
CoI: Thomas Barclay, NASA Ames Research Center

Title: K2 and Radial Velocity Discovered Exoplanets: Small Planet Validation and Host Star Binarity

Abstract: The NASA K2 mission has been in operation for about two years and has already observed more stars than the original Kepler mission. There are currently over 100 validated K2 exoplanets and more than 400 additional candidates. Most of these planets (candidates) are small (rocky), orbit bright stars, and are amenable to RV mass determination. In the past two years, our team has shown that 1) $sim% of exoplanet host stars are binaries and that without a high resolution image of the host star 2) small planets, especially those in habitable zone orbits, can not be validated, and 3) any true exoplanet will have, on average, an incorrect radius by a factor of 1.5, that is the planet is larger than assumed. However, the true nature of the binaries in terms of their orbital period distribution, mass ratio, and even which star the postulated planet orbits are not yet known in any detail. This proposal will obtain high resolution imaging for K2 exoplanet candidate host stars thought to harbor small, habitable zone planets to provide validation and assess binarity. In addition, a sample of known RV exoplanet host stars will be observed to assess their binary nature and to search for the cause of any remaining trends in the velocity signatures. We will make all of our reduced data public immediately.

Program Type: Standard/NASA WIYN

Scheduled Nights:
Run 1 (2016B):  WIYN/DSSI -- 40hrs


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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