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Published January 2017 | Published + Submitted
Journal Article Open

Probability of Physical Association of 104 Blended Companions to Kepler Objects of Interest Using Visible and Near-Infrared Adaptive Optics Photometry


We determine probabilities of physical association for stars in blended Kepler Objects of Interest (KOIs), and find that 14.5%_(-3.4%)^(+3.8%) of companions within ~ 4" are consistent with being physically unassociated with their primary. This produces a better understanding of potential false positives in the Kepler catalog and will guide models of planet formation in binary systems. Physical association is determined through two methods of calculating multi-band photometric parallax using visible and near-infrared adaptive optics observations of 84 KOI systems with 104 contaminating companions within ~ 4". We find no evidence that KOI companions with separations of less than 1" are more likely to be physically associated than KOI companions generally. We also reinterpret transit depths for 94 planet candidates, and calculate that 2.6% ± 0.4% of transits have R > 15R_⊕, which is consistent with prior modeling work.

Additional Information

© 2016 American Astronomical Society. Received 2016 April 26. Accepted 2016 September 28. Published 2016 December 22. D.A. is supported by a NASA Space Technology Research Fellowship, grant NNX13AL75H. The authors thank the NSTRF staff and the Office of the Chief Technologist for their assistance. C.B. acknowledges support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. This work was partially supported by the NASA XRP grant NNX15AC91G. The Robo-AO system was developed by collaborating partner institutions, the California Institute of Technology and the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, and supported by the National Science Foundation under grants AST-0906060, AST-0960343, and AST-1207891, the Mt. Cuba Astronomical Foundation and by a gift from Samuel Oschin. Some of the data presented herein were obtained at the W.M. Keck Observatory, which is operated as a scientific partnership among the California Institute of Technology, the University of California and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The Observatory was made possible by the generous financial support of the W.M. Keck Foundation. The authors wish to recognize and acknowledge the very significant cultural role and reverence that the summit of Maunakea has always had within the indigenous Hawaiian community. We are most fortunate to have the opportunity to conduct observations from this mountain. This paper includes data collected by the Kepler mission. Funding for the Kepler mission is provided by the NASA Science Mission directorate. Some of the data presented in this paper were obtained from the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST). STScI is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555. Support for MAST for non-HST data is provided by the NASA Office of Space Science via grant NNX09AF08G and by other grants and contracts. Facilities: PO:1.5m (Robo-AO) - , Keck:II (NIRC2-LGS). -

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Submitted - 1609.09512.pdf

Published - Atkinson_2017_AJ_153_25.pdf


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August 22, 2023
August 22, 2023