Transit Timing and Duration Variations for the Discovery and Characterization of Exoplanets
Agol et al
Transiting exoplanets in multi-planet systems have non-Keplerian orbits which can cause the times and durations of transits to vary. The theory and observations of transit timing variations (TTV) and transit duration variations (TDV) are reviewed. A watershed since the last review is that the Kepler spacecraft has detected several hundred perturbed planets. In a few cases, these data have been used to discover additional planets, which has historical resonance with how Neptune was discovered in our own Solar System. However, the more impactful aspect of TTV and TDV studies has been characterization of planetary systems in which multiple planets transit. After addressing the equations of motion and parameter scalings, the main dynamical mechanisms for TTV and TDV are described, with citations to the observational literature for real examples. We describe parameter constraints, particularly how the mass/eccentricity degeneracy comes about and is overcome by the high-frequency component of the signal. On the observational side, derivation of timing precision and introduction to the timing diagram are given. Science results are reviewed, with an emphasis on mass measurements of transiting sub-Neptunes and super-Earths, which allows access to the mass-radius diagram and hence inference of bulk compositions.