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The Gemini Planet Imager Exoplanet Survey: Giant Planet and Brown Dwarf Demographics from 10 to 100 au

Nielsen, Eric L. and Wang, Jason J. and Lee, Eve J. (2019) The Gemini Planet Imager Exoplanet Survey: Giant Planet and Brown Dwarf Demographics from 10 to 100 au. Astronomical Journal, 158 (1). Art. No. 13. ISSN 1538-3881.

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We present a statistical analysis of the first 300 stars observed by the Gemini Planet Imager Exoplanet Survey. This subsample includes six detected planets and three brown dwarfs; from these detections and our contrast curves we infer the underlying distributions of substellar companions with respect to their mass, semimajor axis, and host stellar mass. We uncover a strong correlation between planet occurrence rate and host star mass, with stars M* > 1.5 M⊙ more likely to host planets with masses between 2 and 13 M_(Jup) and semimajor axes of 3–100 au at 99.92% confidence. We fit a double power-law model in planet mass (m) and semimajor axis (a) for planet populations around high-mass stars (M* > 1.5 M⊙) of the form d^2N/dmda ∝ m^αa^β, finding α = −2.4 ± 0.8 and β = −2.0 ± 0.5, and an integrated occurrence rate of 9^(+5)_(−4)% between 5–13 M_(Jup) and 10–100 au. A significantly lower occurrence rate is obtained for brown dwarfs around all stars, with 0.8^(+0.8)_(−0.5)% of stars hosting a brown dwarf companion between 13–80 M_(Jup) and 10–100 au. Brown dwarfs also appear to be distributed differently in mass and semimajor axis compared to giant planets; whereas giant planets follow a bottom-heavy mass distribution and favor smaller semimajor axes, brown dwarfs exhibit just the opposite behaviors. Comparing to studies of short-period giant planets from the radial velocity method, our results are consistent with a peak in occurrence of giant planets between ~1 and 10 au. We discuss how these trends, including the preference of giant planets for high-mass host stars, point to formation of giant planets by core/pebble accretion, and formation of brown dwarfs by gravitational instability.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Nielsen, Eric L.0000-0001-6975-9056
Wang, Jason J.0000-0003-0774-6502
Lee, Eve J.0000-0002-1228-9820
Additional Information:© 2019 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2019 January 15; revised 2019 March 14; accepted 2019 April 2; published 2019 June 12. We thank the referee for helpful comments that improved the quality of this manuscript. Based on observations obtained at the Gemini Observatory, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under a cooperative agreement with the NSF on behalf of the Gemini partnership: the National Science Foundation (United States), the National Research Council (Canada), CONICYT (Chile), Ministerio de Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación Productiva (Argentina), and Ministério da Ciência, Tecnologia e Inovação (Brazil). This research has made use of the SIMBAD and VizieR databases, operated at CDS, Strasbourg, France. This work has made use of data from the European Space Agency (ESA) mission Gaia (, processed by the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC, Funding for the DPAC has been provided by national institutions, in particular the institutions participating in the Gaia Multilateral Agreement. This research used resources of the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center, a DOE Office of Science User Facility supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy under Contract No. DE-AC02-05CH11231. This work used the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE), which is supported by National Science Foundation grant number ACI-1548562. J.R., R.D., and D.L. acknowledge support from the Fonds de Recherche du Québec. J.R.M.'s work was performed in part under contract with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech)/Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) funded by NASA through the Sagan Fellowship Program executed by the NASA Exoplanet Science Institute. Support for M.M.B.'s work was provided by NASA through Hubble Fellowship grant no. 51378.01-A awarded by the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., for NASA, under contract NAS5-26555. Supported by NSF grants AST-1411868 (E.L.N., K.B.F., B.M., J.P., and J.H.), AST-141378 (G.D.), and AST-1518332 (R.D.R., J.J.W., T.M.E., J.R.G., P.G.K.). Supported by NASA grants NNX14AJ80G (E.L.N., S.C.B., B.M., F.M., and M.P.), NNX15AC89G and NNX15AD95G (B.M., J.E.W., T.M.E., R.J.D.R., G.D., J.R.G., P.G.K.), NN15AB52l (D.S.), and NNX16AD44G (K.M.M). K.W.D. is supported by an NRAO Student Observing Support Award SOSPA3-007. J.J.W. is supported by the Heising-Simons Foundation 51 Pegasi b postdoctoral fellowship. E.C. thanks Courtney Dressing for helpful discussions. Portions of this work were performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344. This work benefited from NASA's Nexus for Exoplanet System Science (NExSS) research coordination network sponsored by NASA's Science Mission Directorate. The Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds is supported by the Pennsylvania State University, the Eberly College of Science, and the Pennsylvania Space Grant Consortium. Facility: Gemini: South (GPI). - Software: Astropy (Astropy Collaboration et al. 2013), emcee (Foreman-Mackey et al. 2013), GPI DRP (Perrin et al. 2016), IDL Astronomy Library (Landsman 1993), pyKLIP (Wang et al. 2015).
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-AC02-05CH11231
Fonds de Recherche du QuébecUNSPECIFIED
NASA Hubble Fellowship51378.01-A
National Radio Astronomy ObservatorySOSPA3-007
Heising-Simons Foundation51 Pegasi b Fellowship
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-AC52-07NA27344
Pennsylvania State UniversityUNSPECIFIED
Eberly College of ScienceUNSPECIFIED
Pennsylvania Space Grant ConsortiumUNSPECIFIED
Gaia Multilateral AgreementUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:instrumentation: adaptive optics – planetary systems – planets and satellites: detection
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190612-083310853
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Eric L. Nielsen et al 2019 AJ 158 13
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:96311
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:12 Jun 2019 16:44
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 21:21

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