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Bouma, L. G., Hartman, J. D., Brahm, R., Evans, P., Collins, K. A., Zhou, G., et al. (2020). Cluster Difference Imaging Photometric Survey. II. TOI 837: A Young Validated Planet in IC 2602. Astron. J., 160(5), 20 pp.
Abstract: We report the discovery of TOI 837b and its validation as a transiting planet. We characterize the system using data from the NASA Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite mission, the ESA Gaia mission, ground-based photometry from El Sauce and ASTEP400, and spectroscopy from CHIRON, FEROS, and Veloce. We find that TOI 837 is a T = 9.9 mag G0/F9 dwarf in the southern open cluster IC 2602. The star and planet are therefore 35(-5)(+11) million years old. Combining the transit photometry with a prior on the stellar parameters derived from the cluster color-magnitude diagram, we find that the planet has an orbital period of 8.3 days and is slightly smaller than Jupiter (R-p = 0.77(0.07)(+0.09) R-Jup). From radial velocity monitoring, we limit M-p sin i to less than 1.20 M-Jup (3 sigma). The transits either graze or nearly graze the stellar limb. Grazing transits are a cause for concern, as they are often indicative of astrophysical false-positive scenarios. Our follow-up data show that such scenarios are unlikely. Our combined multicolor photometry, high-resolution imaging, and radial velocities rule out hierarchical eclipsing binary scenarios. Background eclipsing binary scenarios, though limited by speckle imaging, remain a 0.2% possibility. TOI 837b is therefore a validated adolescent exoplanet. The planetary nature of the system can be confirmed or refuted through observations of the stellar obliquity and the planetary mass. Such observations may also improve our understanding of how the physical and orbital properties of exoplanets change in time.
Kaye, L., Vissapragada, S., Gunther, M. N., Aigrain, S., Mikal-Evans, T., Jensen, E. L. N., et al. (2022). Transit timings variations in the three-planet system: TOI-270. Mon. Not. Roy. Astron. Soc., 510(4), 5464–5485.
Abstract: We present ground- and space-based photometric observations of TOI-270 (L231-32), a system of three transiting planets consisting of one super-Earth and two sub-Neptunes discovered by TESS around a bright (K-mag = 8.25) M3V dwarf. The planets orbit near low-order mean-motion resonances (5:3 and 2:1) and are thus expected to exhibit large transit timing variations (TTVs). Following an extensive observing campaign using eight different observatories between 2018 and 2020, we now report a clear detection of TTVs for planets c and d, with amplitudes of similar to 10 min and a super-period of similar to 3 yr, as well as significantly refined estimates of the radii and mean orbital periods of all three planets. Dynamical modelling of the TTVs alone puts strong constraints on the mass ratio of planets c and d and on their eccentricities. When incorporating recently published constraints from radial velocity observations, we obtain masses of M-b = 1.48 +/- 0.18 M-circle plus, M-c = 6.20 +/- 0.31 M-circle plus, and M-d = 4.20 +/- 0.16 M-circle plus for planets b, c, and d, respectively. We also detect small but significant eccentricities for all three planets : e(b) = 0.0167 +/- 0.0084, e(c) = 0.0044 +/- 0.0006, and e(d) = 0.0066 +/- 0.0020. Our findings imply an Earth-like rocky composition for the inner planet, and Earth-like cores with an additional He/H2O atmosphere for the outer two. TOI-270 is now one of the best constrained systems of small transiting planets, and it remains an excellent target for atmospheric characterization.