| Exoplanetary Scratchpad|
Stellar fingerprinting suggests a high probability that a planet orbits star A, due to dearth of Iron around star. Russian astronomers announced the detection of a second planet orbiting the binary pair at 80 AU with a 100 year period, which appears to be false. The stars in the system will become markedly closer together in 2016, making observations much more difficult and one follow up failed to find it. The system is the first target for the European Cheops exoplanet space telescope.
First planet discovered is an Earth-massed rocky-iron planet with no atmosphere at epistellar distances around the orange dwarf star B found by HARPS. This is the least massive planet found around a sunlike star. The planet was informally and controversially named by Uwingu during a fund raising naming contest Albertus Alauda, after a participant's grandfather. Earthlike planets are not detectable in the habitable zone with present radial velocity methods. Technique for detection of planet is a source of doubt for some and it has yet to be independently verified. A team thought they might have detected a transit of this planet, but further observations showed the timing wasn't consistent. It is possible that a second further out (20.4 day period) Earth-sized planet is altering the transit times of the first. A cheap crowdfunded satellite devoted to studying this star could confirm the planets. The star was observed to be a good candidate to host a "super Habitable" planet, which would have 25% more gravity than the Earth, shallow seas, flatter landscape, higher atmospheric pressure, and the 6 BYO star would be stable for life longer.
Proxima, a small flare star, was discovered in 1915 by Robert Ines, who named it. Long suspected planet around Proxima found not to exist. The Pale Red Dot project is dedicated to finding a planet around Proxima using dopplar spectrometry. As Proxima passes in front of two stars (once in 2014, again in 2016), any planets within 5 AU should be detectable via microlensing using the HST. It is known that no planets of Neptune sized mass exist within 1 AU and no Jovians with periods up to 1000 days, or transiting planets exist. An Earth-like planet in the habitable zone was discovered around Proxima Centauri. In 2017, a large stellar flare erupted and bombarded the planet, making it likely that the atmosphere has been completely stripped away by events such as this and not a good candidate for life. It was thought that a lot of dust existed in the system, making it feasable that the star had a rich complement of planets, but this seems to not be the case.
It would be reeeally sweet if planet Ba turned out to be real, and even sweeter if the transit timing detected planet were real. Do we really need a satellite dedicated to observe this one star? A fleet of satellites observing a bunch of stars would be pretty neat. The relative positions of the two stars makes it so that you can only study it well in certain seasons. I hope we don't run into a bad season before we're able to confirm what we want to know. Just don't call the planet Albertus Alauda. I'm all for doing a nod to this name though, something kinda similar which is officially named after something else.
Alpha Centauri System Web PagesEdit
- book 2, 3
Alpha Centauri System In the NewsEdit
Initial Target for Proposed ExoplanetSat (Dec 2011)Edit
Stellar Fingerprinting Suggests Possibility of Earthlike Planet Around Star A (Oct 2012)Edit
Hot Rocky Planet Discovered Around Star B(Oct 2012)Edit
- * http://www.sciencenews.org/view/feature/id/347024/description/Earths_new_neighbor_looks_familiar
Potential Target for Project Icarus Interstellar Exploration Mission (Oct 2012)Edit
Top Target for Cheops (Oct 2012)Edit
Cool Layer Found in Star A's Atmosphere (Feb 2013)Edit
Uwingu Informal Naming Contest (Mar 2013)Edit
Some Doubts on Planet (May 2013)Edit
Star Occultation Allows Microlense Search for Proxima Planets (Jun 2013)Edit
Star B A Good Place for a Super Habitable Planet (Feb 2014)Edit
Planet Ab Not Detected (Apr 2014)Edit
Star A Likely Harbors Rocky Planets (Aug 2014)Edit
Second Planet Detected by Russians (Sep 2014)Edit
- Cannot find a second news source for this announcement
Evidence Planet Orbit b Not Viewed Face On, Put Limits on Mass (Mar 2015)Edit
Transit Timing Variation Reveals a Second Planet? (Apr 2015)Edit
How To Find Planets Around Binaries (Jan 2016)Edit
Pale Red Dot Hunts for Planets Around Proxima (Jan 2016)Edit
Potentially Habitable Planet found around Proxima (Aug 2016)Edit
Proxima Flare Blasts Planet b (Mar 2018)Edit