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The LHS 1678 System: Two Earth-Sized Transiting Planets and an Astrometric Companion Orbiting an M Dwarf Near the Convective Boundary at 20 pc

Abstract : We present the TESS discovery of the LHS 1678 (TOI-696) exoplanet system, comprised of two approximately Earth-sized transiting planets and a likely astrometric brown dwarf orbiting a bright ($V_J$=12.5, $K_s$=8.3) M2 dwarf at 19.9 pc. The two TESS-detected planets are of radius 0.70$\pm$0.04 $R_\oplus$ and 0.98$\pm$0.06 $R_\oplus$ in 0.86-day and 3.69-day orbits, respectively. Both planets are validated and characterized via ground-based follow-up observations. HARPS RV monitoring yields 97.7 percentile mass upper limits of 0.35 $M_\oplus$ and 1.4 $M_\oplus$ for planets b and c, respectively. The astrometric companion detected by the CTIO/SMARTS 0.9m has an orbital period on the order of decades and is undetected by other means. Additional ground-based observations constrain the companion to being a high-mass brown dwarf or smaller. Each planet is of unique interest; the inner planet has an ultra-short period, and the outer planet is in the Venus zone. Both are promising targets for atmospheric characterization with the JWST and mass measurements via extreme-precision radial velocity. A third planet candidate of radius 0.9$\pm$0.1 $R_\oplus$ in a 4.97-day orbit is also identified in multi-Cycle TESS data for validation in future work. The host star is associated with an observed gap in the lower main sequence of the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. This gap is tied to the transition from partially- to fully-convective interiors in M dwarfs, and the effect of the associated stellar astrophysics on exoplanet evolution is currently unknown. The culmination of these system properties makes LHS 1678 a unique, compelling playground for comparative exoplanet science and understanding the formation and evolution of small, short-period exoplanets orbiting low-mass stars.
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Preprints, Working Papers, ...
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https://hal-insu.archives-ouvertes.fr/insu-03458317
Contributor : Xavier Bonfils Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, November 30, 2021 - 8:18:53 PM
Last modification on : Monday, April 11, 2022 - 3:56:32 PM

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  • HAL Id : insu-03458317, version 1
  • ARXIV : 2110.12079

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Michele L. Silverstein, Joshua E. Schlieder, Thomas Barclay, Benjamin J. Hord, Wei-Chun Jao, et al.. The LHS 1678 System: Two Earth-Sized Transiting Planets and an Astrometric Companion Orbiting an M Dwarf Near the Convective Boundary at 20 pc. 2021. ⟨insu-03458317⟩

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