Planetary Candidates Observed by Kepler, III: Analysis of the First 16 Months of Data

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New transiting planet candidates are identified in sixteen months (May 2009 - September 2010) of data from the Kepler spacecraft. Nearly five thousand periodic transit-like signals are vetted against astrophysical and instrumental false positives yielding 1091 viable new planet candidates, bringing the total count up to over 2,300. Improved vetting metrics are employed, contributing to higher catalog reliability. Most notable is the noise-weighted robust averaging of multiquarter photo-center offsets derived from difference image analysis which identifies likely background eclipsing binaries. Twenty-two months of photometry are used for the purpose of characterizing each of the new candidates. Ephemerides (transit epoch, T{sub ... continued below

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Batalha, Natalie M.; U., /San Jose State; Rowe, Jason F.; /NASA, Ames; Bryson, Stephen T.; /NASA, Ames et al. February 1, 2012.

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New transiting planet candidates are identified in sixteen months (May 2009 - September 2010) of data from the Kepler spacecraft. Nearly five thousand periodic transit-like signals are vetted against astrophysical and instrumental false positives yielding 1091 viable new planet candidates, bringing the total count up to over 2,300. Improved vetting metrics are employed, contributing to higher catalog reliability. Most notable is the noise-weighted robust averaging of multiquarter photo-center offsets derived from difference image analysis which identifies likely background eclipsing binaries. Twenty-two months of photometry are used for the purpose of characterizing each of the new candidates. Ephemerides (transit epoch, T{sub 0}, and orbital period, P) are tabulated as well as the products of light curve modeling: reduced radius (R{sub P}/R{sub {star}}), reduced semi-major axis (d/R{sub {star}}), and impact parameter (b). The largest fractional increases are seen for the smallest planet candidates (197% for candidates smaller than 2R{sub {circle_plus}} compared to 52% for candidates larger than 2R{sub {circle_plus}}) and those at longer orbital periods (123% for candidates outside of 50 day orbits versus 85% for candidates inside of 50 day orbits). The gains are larger than expected from increasing the observing window from thirteen months (Quarter 1 - Quarter 5) to sixteen months (Quarter 1 - Quarter 6). This demonstrates the benefit of continued development of pipeline analysis software. The fraction of all host stars with multiple candidates has grown from 17% to 20%, and the paucity of short-period giant planets in multiple systems is still evident. The progression toward smaller planets at longer orbital periods with each new catalog release suggests that Earth-size planets in the Habitable Zone are forthcoming if, indeed, such planets are abundant.

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  • Journal Name: Submitted to Astrophys.J.Suppl.

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  • Report No.: FERMILAB-PUB-12-057-AE
  • Grant Number: AC02-07CH11359
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1035923
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc831705

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  • February 1, 2012

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  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • Aug. 29, 2016, 2:42 p.m.

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Batalha, Natalie M.; U., /San Jose State; Rowe, Jason F.; /NASA, Ames; Bryson, Stephen T.; /NASA, Ames et al. Planetary Candidates Observed by Kepler, III: Analysis of the First 16 Months of Data, article, February 1, 2012; Batavia, Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc831705/: accessed September 25, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.