Journal Article

Detection of sodium absorption in WASP-17b with Magellan

G. Zhou and D. D. R. Bayliss

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 426, issue 3, pages 2483-2488
Published in print November 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online November 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Detection of sodium absorption in WASP-17b with Magellan

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We present the detection of sodium absorption in the atmosphere of the extrasolar planet WASP-17b, an inflated ‘hot Jupiter’ in a tight orbit around an F6 dwarf. In-transit observations of WASP-17 made with the Magellan Inamori Kyocera Echelle (MIKE) spectrograph on the 6.5-m Magellan Telescope were analysed for excess planetary atmospheric absorption in the Na i ‘D’ doublet spectral region. Using the interstellar sodium absorption lines as reference, we detect a 0.58 ± 0.13 per cent transit signal, with 4.5σ confidence, at 1.5 Å  bandwidth around the stellar sodium absorption feature. This result is consistent with the previous Very Large Telescope detection of sodium in WASP-17b, confirming that the planet has a highly inflated atmosphere.

Keywords: methods: observational; techniques: spectroscopic; planets and satellites: atmospheres; planets and satellites: individual: WASP-17b; stars: individual: WASP-17; planetary systems

Journal Article.  3864 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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