Wednesday, February 15, 2017

A Candidate Massive Saturn Analog Orbiting HD 30177 Authors:


Wittenmyer et al


We report the discovery of a second long-period giant planet orbiting HD 30177, a star previously known to host a massive Jupiter analog (HD 30177b: a=3.8±0.1 au, m sin i=9.7±0.5 Mjup). HD 30177c can be regarded as a massive Saturn analog in this system, with a=9.9±1.0 au and m sin i=7.6±3.1 Mjup. The formal best fit solution slightly favours a closer-in planet at a∼7 au, but detailed n-body dynamical simulations show that configuration to be unstable. A shallow local minimum of longer-period, lower-eccentricity solutions was found to be dynamically stable, and hence we adopt the longer period in this work. The proposed ∼32 year orbit remains incomplete; further monitoring of this and other stars is necessary to reveal the population of distant gas giant planets with orbital separations a∼10 au, analogous to that of Saturn.

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