William F. Welsh, Jerome A. Orosz, Donald R. Short, William D. Cochran, Michael Endl, Erik Brugamyer, Nader Haghighipour, Lars A. Buchhave, Laurance R. Doyle, Daniel C. Fabrycky, Tobias Cornelius Hinse, Stephen R. Kane (+13 others)
2015 Astrophysical Journal  
We present the discovery of KIC 9632895b, a 6.2 Earth-radius planet in a low-eccentricity, 240.5-day orbit about an eclipsing binary. The binary itself consists of a 0.93 and 0.194 solar mass pair of stars with an orbital period of 27.3 days. The plane of the planet's orbit is rapidly precessing, and its inclination only becomes sufficiently aligned with the primary star in the latter portion of the Kepler data. Thus three transits are present in the latter half of the light curve, but none of
more » ... curve, but none of the three conjunctions that occurred during the first half of the light curve produced transits. The precession period is ~103 years, and during that cycle, transits are visible only ~8% of the time. This has the important implication that for every system like KIC 9632895 that we detect, there are ~12 circumbinary systems that exist but are not currently exhibiting transits. The planet's mass is too small to noticeably perturb the binary, consequently its mass is not measurable with these data; but our photodynamical model places a 1-sigma upper limit of 16 Earth masses. With a period 8.8 times that of the binary, the planet is well outside the dynamical instability zone. It does, however, lie within the habitable zone of the binary, and making it the third of ten Kepler circumbinary planets to do so.
doi:10.1088/0004-637x/809/1/26 fatcat:n4zoshawjrgzhix6mpz5x444gm