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Title: GROUND-BASED TRANSIT OBSERVATIONS OF THE SUPER-EARTH 55 Cnc e

We report the first ground-based detections of the shallow transit of the super-Earth exoplanet 55 Cnc e using a 2 m class telescope. Using differential spectrophotometry, we observed one transit in 2013 and another in 2014, with average spectral resolutions of ∼700 and ∼250, spanning the Johnson BVR photometric bands. We find a white light planet-to-star radius ratio of 0.0190{sub −0.0027}{sup +0.0023} from the 2013 observations and 0.0200{sub −0.0018}{sup +0.0017} from the 2014 observations. The two data sets combined result in a radius ratio of 0.0198{sub −0.0014}{sup +0.0013}. These values are all in agreement with previous space-based results. Scintillation noise in the data prevents us from placing strong constraints on the presence of an extended hydrogen-rich atmosphere. Nevertheless, our detections of 55 Cnc e in transit demonstrate that moderate-sized telescopes on the ground will be capable of routine follow-up observations of super-Earth candidates discovered by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite around bright stars. We expect it also will be possible to place constraints on the atmospheric characteristics of those planets by devising observational strategies to minimize scintillation noise.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ; ;  [3] ;  [4]
  1. Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto (Canada)
  2. Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA (United States)
  3. Isaac Newton Group of Telescopes, La Palma (Spain)
  4. Physics and Astronomy, York University, Toronto (Canada)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22364838
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 797; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; DETECTION; HYDROGEN; LIMITING VALUES; NOISE; PLANETS; RESOLUTION; SATELLITES; SPECTROPHOTOMETRY; STARS; TELESCOPES; VISIBLE RADIATION