GD 66 Astrometry

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GD 66 Astrometry

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 6th May 2012, 8:11 pm

Precision Astrometry of the Exoplanet Host Candidate GD 66
http://arxiv.org/abs/1205.0806

The potential existence of a giant planet orbiting within a few AU of a stellar remnant has profound implications for both the survival and possible regeneration of planets during post-main sequence stellar evolution. This paper reports Hubble Space Telescope Fine Guidance Sensor and U.S. Naval Observatory relative astrometry of GD 66, a white dwarf thought to harbor a giant planet between 2 and 3 AU based on stellar pulsation arrival times. Combined with existing infrared data, the precision measurements here rule out all stellar-mass and brown dwarf companions, implying that only a planet remains plausible, if orbital motion is indeed the cause of the variations in pulsation timing.

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Re: GD 66 Astrometry

Post by Lazarus on 7th May 2012, 2:56 am

Judging by this talk at the Planets Around Stellar Remnants conference (pdf) it looks like the timing variations for GD 66 are caused by processes intrinsic to the star, rather than by an orbiting planet: the behaviour of other frequency modes does not match what the planet hypothesis predicts.
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