Protostars and Planets VI, Heidelberg, July 15-20, 2013
The planet next door: an earth mass planet orbiting Alpha Centauri B
Dumusque, Xavier (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics)
Pepe, Francesco (Observatory of Geneva)
Lovis, Christophe (Observatory of Geneva)
Segransan, Damien (Observatory of Geneva)
Sahlmann, Johannes (Observatory of Geneva)
Benz, Willy (Physics institute, University of Bern)
Bouchy, Francois (Institut d Astrophysique de Paris)
Mayor, Michel (Observatory of Geneva)
Queloz, Didier (Observatory of Geneva)
Santos, Nuno (Centro de Astrophysica da Universidade do Porto)
Udry, Stephane (Observatory of Geneva)
After having found hundreds of extra-solar planets, the radial-velocity (RV) technique starts to be limited by intrinsic stellar signals. Indeed, at the level of the best spectrographs, one starts to see the effects induced by stellar pressure waves, convection, surface activity coupled with stellar rotation, and magnetic cycles.
The questions of how to extract and analyse the different stellar signals from RV data, and how to mitigate their contributions will be studied. In addition, optimizing the observational strategy to look for planets can also help in mitigating short-term stellar signal effects.
As a result, Alpha Centauri Bb, the lightest extra-solar planet detected so far with the RV technique and the closest one to our Solar System, have been discovered using new techniques to account for stellar signals.
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