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The WASP discovery photometry (top) and follow-up transit lightcurves (bottom). Credit: Temple et al., 2018.
An international group of astronomers has detected a new "hot Jupiter" exoplanet making a near-grazing transit of its host star. The newly found alien world, designated WASP-174b, is most likely similar in size and mass to Jupiter, however much hotter than our solar system's biggest planet. The discovery is reported February 2 in a paper published on arXiv.org.
Grazing - Transit - Planet - Parent - Star
A grazing transit means that a planet only partially transits its parent star's disc. Such planets are important for researchers, as they offer a great opportunity to find additional bodies orbiting host stars. This is because other, yet undetected objects would perturb the grazing planet's orbit and could potentially induce periodic variations of the transit impact parameter, leading to transit duration variations. However, although astronomers have identified hundreds of exoplanets, only a handful of grazing extrasolar worlds have been discovered to date.
Recently, a team of researchers led by Lorna Temple of the Keele University, U.K., has found a new example of a grazing exoplanet as part of the WASP-South transit survey. The astronomers identified a transit signal in the light curve of the star WASP-174 from the spectroscopic data gathered by the WASP-South telescope at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in South Africa between May 2006 and June 2012. The planetary nature of this signal was later confirmed by Doppler tomography method using the HARPS spectrograph mounted on ESO's 3.6-m telescope, along with photometric data from the TRAPPIST South telescope and the SPECULOOS Southern Observatory, all located in Chile.
Discovery - Jupiter - Candidate - WASP-South - Transit
"We report here the discovery of a hot Jupiter found as a candidate in the WASP-South transit survey and confirmed by Doppler tomography using the ESO 3.6-m/HARPS spectrograph, together with follow-up photometry from the TRAPPISTSouth and SPECULOOS Southern Observatory telescopes,"...
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