Author Topic: NASA - Kepler updates  (Read 162168 times)

Offline hop

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3177
  • Liked: 357
  • Likes Given: 692
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #320 on: 02/26/2014 08:49 PM »
What's interesting is that most of solar systems discovered so far don't look like ours with the planets widely spaced out, instead with these the planets seem to be stacked closer together near their stars.
It's worth emphasizing that this latest batch of 715 was from the first two years of data, so it's very biased toward shorter periods. Once they go through all the data, a very substantial number of longer period planets should show up.


I don't believe Kepler could detect Earth
It was designed to do exactly that. Various factors have made this more difficult than expected, but it's still quite possible one or more "earth twins" will show up.

Offline John44

  • Elite Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3812
  • Netherlands
    • space-multimedia
  • Liked: 151
  • Likes Given: 0
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #321 on: 02/26/2014 08:59 PM »

Offline RonM

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2102
  • Atlanta, Georgia USA
  • Liked: 988
  • Likes Given: 760
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #322 on: 02/26/2014 09:10 PM »
It was a signal to noise issue. The assumption was that the sun is a typical star, but it turns out that the sun is calmer than average. That issue could have been resolved with a few more years of observation, however, Kepler didn't last long enough. No complaints, it made it past its designed time.

Offline hop

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3177
  • Liked: 357
  • Likes Given: 692
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #323 on: 02/27/2014 03:54 AM »
The paper is now on arxiv http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.6534

Online jebbo

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 319
  • Cambridge, UK
  • Liked: 69
  • Likes Given: 59
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #324 on: 02/27/2014 07:11 AM »
And the other paper: http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.6352

Offline Bubbinski

Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #325 on: 02/27/2014 05:01 PM »
I tuned in to the conference and was stunned about the huge number of confirmations, 715 new planets.  And 4 are in the habitable zone, I believe 3 of them were "super earths". 

I tweeted a question to #asknasa about how close Kepler was to finding exomoons and was glad to have it answered.  Basically they're not sure how close they are because it's so difficult, but if there were any large earth size moons for the planets they've found so far (as close to their star as Venus is to our sun) they would have found them.
I'll even excitedly look forward to "flags and footprints" and suborbital missions. Just fly...somewhere.

Online jebbo

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 319
  • Cambridge, UK
  • Liked: 69
  • Likes Given: 59
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #326 on: 02/27/2014 06:07 PM »
All 4 are "super Earths" but really it is more likely they are "sub Neptunes" as their radii are between 1.73 and 2.33 times that of earth, so almost certainly big H/He envelope (the AP guy asked this).

I think they pointed you at HEK and David Kipping's work on exomoons didn't they?

[My own #AskNASA questions were answered on twitter later]

BTW, it turns out there is some scepticism over the "multiplicity method".  For example, see http://lostintransits.wordpress.com/2014/02/27/keplers-last-stand-verification-by-multiplicity/

I have a lot of sympathy with that: without RV confirmation to get the mass and better stellar properties, is it really that useful to be 99.8% certain there's a planet?  Kepler-296 is a good illustration of this: we don't even know which component of the binary the planets orbit.  But far better minds than mine will decide :-)

--- Tony

Offline Bubbinski

Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #327 on: 02/27/2014 08:34 PM »
Yes they did mention the HEK site.  I looked at it briefly and will keep it in my bookmarks.  Hoping they find something soon!
I'll even excitedly look forward to "flags and footprints" and suborbital missions. Just fly...somewhere.

Offline hop

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3177
  • Liked: 357
  • Likes Given: 692
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #328 on: 02/27/2014 08:54 PM »
I have a lot of sympathy with that: without RV confirmation to get the mass and better stellar properties, is it really that useful to be 99.8% certain there's a planet?  Kepler-296 is a good illustration of this: we don't even know which component of the binary the planets orbit.  But far better minds than mine will decide :-)
I thought that was a bit odd too. In a sense it doesn't matter, it's useful to have a set of systems where you can have a very high confidence that >99% are real, but seems a bit weird to call them planets when the paper itself says there are probably a couple of false positives. OTOH, my impression is that a lot of the non-Kepler planet "discoveries" are even less robust (lookin' at you, ACBb...)

Offline simonbp

Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #329 on: 02/28/2014 04:21 PM »
I have a lot of sympathy with that: without RV confirmation to get the mass and better stellar properties, is it really that useful to be 99.8% certain there's a planet?  Kepler-296 is a good illustration of this: we don't even know which component of the binary the planets orbit.  But far better minds than mine will decide :-)

For the vast majority of these systems, you are not going to get RV anytime soon. In fact, I'm pretty sure that nearly all the Kepler candidates which could have had RV detection already do. Only a small fraction of the Kepler host stars are bright enough for high-resolution spectroscopy (which by its nature needs a lot of photons), and many of stars that are bright enough are too active to see a good RV signal. So, transits are are good as you're going to get. And yes, they are interesting even without a mass because they still constrain the planetary formation models.

In fact, the prime reason TESS was selected was that it will primarily look for transiting systems around stars that are bright enough for RV follow-up. That is what we need to debias the Kepler statistics.

Online jebbo

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 319
  • Cambridge, UK
  • Liked: 69
  • Likes Given: 59
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #330 on: 02/28/2014 05:07 PM »
Though I agree we won't get RV for many, I disagree that the situation is as bleak as you say. For example, there is a large RV follow up campaign using HARPS-N going on at the moment (the best RV instrument at present). The Kepler field has 80 dedicated nights a year for the next five years, and I suspect non-GTO time will also go towards this as well.

Yes, knowing the radius is useful, but without any other data, I don't think it constrains formation models that much, particularly for compact systems and in the super-Earth region where I think the density range is needed to understand migration models.

Don't get me wrong: knowing there is a large population of planets that are 99.8% likely to be real is useful, if for nothing else than picking targets.  But I find it slightly hard to think it as qualitatively the same as confirmation by two methods.

I'm also looking forward to data from all the new instruments (GPI, SPHERE, GAIA, ESPRESSO, TESS, Cheops, JWST, E-ELT, etc).  As you say getting an unbiased sample (e.g. across the metallicity range; the Kepler field is above the galactic ecliptic and slightly biased towards lower metallicities) is critical.  Not just surveys of both bright stars for ground based follow up, but astrometric detection by Gaia which is most sensisitive to "cold Jupiters".

Very exciting times!!!

--- Tony
« Last Edit: 02/28/2014 05:10 PM by jebbo »

Offline Bubbinski

Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #331 on: 03/04/2014 02:22 AM »
Looks like some of these new Kepler discoveries made it into the Habitable Exoplanets Catalog tonight. Now there are 20 potentially habitable worlds listed.
I'll even excitedly look forward to "flags and footprints" and suborbital missions. Just fly...somewhere.

Online jebbo

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 319
  • Cambridge, UK
  • Liked: 69
  • Likes Given: 59
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #332 on: 03/04/2014 08:43 AM »
Yes, eight new ones were added.  Four from the recent Kepler haul and four from data from ESO's HARPS and UVES instruments.

Details are in table II here: http://phl.upr.edu/projects/habitable-exoplanets-catalog/data

--- Tony

Offline catdlr

  • Member
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4507
  • Marina del Rey, California, USA
  • Liked: 1396
  • Likes Given: 840
Tony De La Rosa

Offline jacqmans

  • Moderator
  • Global Moderator
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 16612
  • Houten, The Netherlands
  • Liked: 2334
  • Likes Given: 149
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #334 on: 04/15/2014 06:35 PM »

April 15, 2014

NASA Hosts Media Teleconference to Announce Latest Kepler Discovery


NASA will host a news teleconference at 2 p.m. EDT Thursday, April 17, to announce a new discovery made by its planet-hunting mission, the Kepler Space Telescope.

The journal Science has embargoed the findings until the time of the news conference.

The briefing participants are:

-- Douglas Hudgins, exoplanet exploration program scientist, NASA's Astrophysics Division in Washington
 -- Elisa Quintana, research scientist, SETI Institute at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif.
 -- Tom Barclay, research scientist, Bay Area Environmental Research Institute at Ames
 -- Victoria Meadows, professor of astronomy at the University of Washington, Seattle, and principal investigator for the Virtual Planetary Laboratory, a team in the NASA Astrobiology Institute at Ames

Launched in March 2009, Kepler is the first NASA mission capable of finding Earth-size planets in or near the habitable zone -- the range of distance from a star in which the surface temperature of an orbiting planet might sustain liquid water. The telescope has since detected planets and planet candidates spanning a wide range of sizes and orbital distances, including those in the habitable zone. These findings have led to a better understanding of our place in the galaxy.

For dial-in information, media should e-mail their name, affiliation and telephone number to J.D. Harrington at j.d.harrington@nasa.gov no later than noon Thursday.

The public is invited to listen to the teleconference live on UStream at:

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-arc

Audio of the teleconference also will be streamed live at:

http://www.nasa.gov/newsaudio

Questions can be submitted on Twitter using the hashtag #AskNASA.

A link to relevant graphics will be posted at the start of the teleconference on NASA's Kepler site:

http://www.nasa.gov/kepler

Offline Star One

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7995
  • UK
  • Liked: 1277
  • Likes Given: 168
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #335 on: 04/15/2014 06:42 PM »
SETI representative on the panel I see.

Offline Bubbinski

Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #336 on: 04/15/2014 07:08 PM »
Will be tuning in at noon Mountain Thursday.  Hoping it's the "holy grail" or something else super interesting like an exomoon or ringed planet.
I'll even excitedly look forward to "flags and footprints" and suborbital missions. Just fly...somewhere.

Online Alpha_Centauri

  • Full Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 542
  • England
  • Liked: 162
  • Likes Given: 110
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #337 on: 04/15/2014 08:01 PM »
SETI representative on the panel I see.

There has been a SETI representative on many of the Kepler announcements.  Based on the line of work of the participants it sounds like a habitability/atmospheric type announcement.



Sufficed to say it won't be aliens.
« Last Edit: 04/15/2014 08:08 PM by Alpha_Centauri »

Offline Star One

  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7995
  • UK
  • Liked: 1277
  • Likes Given: 168
NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #338 on: 04/15/2014 09:35 PM »
SETI representative on the panel I see.

There has been a SETI representative on many of the Kepler announcements.  Based on the line of work of the participants it sounds like a habitability/atmospheric type announcement.



Sufficed to say it won't be aliens.

Well I wasn't expecting that. But maybe something like a planet analogous to Earth.
« Last Edit: 04/16/2014 02:07 PM by Star One »

Online kevin-rf

  • Elite Veteran
  • Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8504
  • Overlooking the path Mary's little Lamb took..
  • Liked: 1021
  • Likes Given: 234
Re: NASA - Kepler updates
« Reply #339 on: 04/17/2014 11:59 AM »
Sufficed to say it won't be aliens.
If you're happy and you know it,
It's your med's!

Tags: updates