Discovery and spectroscopy of the young jovian planet 51 Eri b with the Gemini Planet Imager

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DOIResolve DOI: http://doi.org/10.1126/science.aac5891
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TypeArticle
Journal titleScience
ISSN0036-8075
Volume350
Issue6256
Pages6467; # of pages: 4
Subjectmethane; absorption; astronomy; imaging method; Jupiter; methane; planet; planetary evolution; spectroscopy; air temperature; contrast; Gemini Planet Imager; luminance; molecular weight; near infrared spectroscopy; photometry; priority journal; sun; telescope; water vapor
AbstractDirectly detecting thermal emission from young extrasolar planets allows measurement of their atmospheric compositions and luminosities, which are influenced by their formation mechanisms. Using the Gemini Planet Imager, we discovered a planet orbiting the ∼20-million-year-old star 51 Eridani at a projected separation of 13 astronomical units. Near-infrared observations show a spectrum with strong methane and water-vapor absorption. Modeling of the spectra and photometry yields a luminosity (normalized by the luminosity of the Sun) of 1.6 to 4.0 × 10-6 and an effective temperature of 600 to 750 kelvin. For this age and luminosity, "hot-start" formation models indicate a mass twice that of Jupiter. This planet also has a sufficiently low luminosity to be consistent with the "cold-start" core-accretion process that may have formed Jupiter.
Publication date
PublisherAmerican Association for the Advancement of Science
LanguageEnglish
AffiliationNational Research Council Canada (NRC-CNRC); National Science Infrastructure
Peer reviewedYes
NPARC number21277402
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Record identifier5f6d98db-3f3d-4c56-b8d7-f824fdcb790f
Record created2016-03-09
Record modified2016-05-09
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