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Variability of Kepler Solar-Like Stars Harboring Small Exoplanets

Howell, Steve B. and Ciardi, David R. and Giampapa, Mark S. and Everett, Mark E. and Silva, David R. and Szkody, Paula (2016) Variability of Kepler Solar-Like Stars Harboring Small Exoplanets. Astronomical Journal, 151 (2). Art. No. 43. ISSN 1538-3881.

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We examine Kepler light-curve variability on habitable zone transit timescales for a large uniform sample of spectroscopically studied Kepler exoplanet host stars. The stars, taken from Everett et al., are solar-like in their properties and each harbors at least one exoplanet (or candidate) of radius ≤2.5 R_e. The variability timescale examined is typical for habitable zone planets orbiting solar-like stars and we note that the discovery of the smallest exoplanets (≤1.2 R_e with corresponding transit depths of less than ~0.18 mmag occur for the brightest and photometrically quietest stars. Thus, these detections are quite rare in Kepler observations. Some brighter and more evolved stars (subgiants), the latter of which often show large radial velocity jitter, are found to be among the photometrically quietest solar-like stars in our sample and the most likely small planet transit hunting grounds. The Sun is discussed as a solar-like star proxy to provide insight into the nature and cause of photometric variability. It is shown that Kepler's broad, visible light observations are insensitive to variability caused by chromospheric activity that may be present in the observed stars.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Howell, Steve B.0000-0002-2532-2853
Ciardi, David R.0000-0002-5741-3047
Everett, Mark E.0000-0002-0885-7215
Silva, David R.0000-0002-7678-2155
Additional Information:© 2016 American Astronomical Society. Received 2014 May 12; accepted 2015 December 9; published 2016 February 2. We wish to thank the staff of the Kepler project, the NASA Exoplanet Archive, and the Kitt Peak National Observatory for their continued support of the Kepler mission and its data products. Some of the data used here was collected by the National Solar Observatory SOLIS (ISS) instrument. This research has made use of the NASA Exoplanet Archive, which is operated by the California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under the Exoplanet Exploration Program. M.E.E. wishes to acknowledge funding supporting this work at NOAO provided by NASA agreement number NNX13AB60A. Facilities: Mayall (RCSPEC), Kepler
Group:Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Subject Keywords:planetary systems; stars: fundamental parameters; surveys
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160324-101613172
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Official Citation:Steve B. Howell et al 2016 The Astronomical Journal 151 43
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:65653
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:24 Mar 2016 19:34
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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