From Universe Today: “Two new Super-Earths Discovered Around a Red Dwarf Star”

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Universe Today

5 Dec , 2017
Matt Williams

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K2-18b and its neighbour, newly discovered K2-18c, orbit the red-dwarf star k2-18 locataed 111 light years away in the constellation Leo. Credit: Alex Boersma

The search for extra-solar planets has turned up some very interesting discoveries. Aside planets that are more-massive versions of their Solar counterparts (aka. Super-Jupiters and Super-Earths), there have been plenty of planets that straddle the line between classifications. And then there were times when follow-up observations have led to the discovery of multiple planetary systems.

This was certainly the case when it came to K2-18, a red dwarf star system located about 111 light-years from Earth in the constellation Leo. Using the ESO’s High Accuracy Radial Velocity Planet Searcher (HARPS), an international team of astronomers was recently examining a previously-discovered exoplanet in this system (K2-18b) when they noted the existence of a second exoplanet.

ESO 3.6m telescope & HARPS at Cerro LaSilla, Chile, 600 km north of Santiago de Chile at an altitude of 2400 metres.

ESO/HARPS at La Silla

The study which details their findings – Characterization of the K2-18 multi-planetary system with HARPS – is scheduled to be published in the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics. The research was supported by the Natural Sciences and Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and the Institute for Research on Exoplanets – a consortium of scientists and students from the University of Montreal and McGill University.

See the full article here .

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