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CoRoT-27b: A Massive and Dense Planet

7 Jan 2014, 10:54 UTC
CoRoT-27b: A Massive and Dense Planet
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Parviainen H. et al. (2014) report the discovery of a massive high-density planet on a close-in 3.58 day orbit around a 4.2 billion year old Sun-like star. The planet is identified as CoRoT-27b. Like Jupiter, CoRoT-27b is a gas-giant planet. Its presence was detected by the CoRoT space telescope as the planet periodically transits its parent star and blocks a small fraction of the star’s light. CoRoT-27b weighs in at 10.39 ± 0.55 Jupiter-masses and has 1.01 ± 0.04 times the radius of Jupiter. This gives CoRoT-27b a mean density of 12.6 times the density of water, which is more than twice the mean density of Earth and almost 10 times the mean density of Jupiter.Figure 1: Artist’s impression of a gas-giant planet.Like Jupiter, CoRoT-27b is a gaseous planet comprised primarily of hydrogen and helium. The structure and composition of CoRoT-27b can be inferred from two models. For the first model, the planet is assumed to be made of a central rocky core surrounded by an extensive hydrogen-helium envelop. The 1st model is consistant with a heavy element mass fraction of 0.11, representing a core mass of 366 Earth-masses. For the second model, a central rocky core is absent and ...

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