New super-earth discovered in orbit around red dwarf

(ORDO NEWS) — In recent years, researchers have been conducting detailed studies of red dwarf systems in search of exoplanets.

These stars have effective surface temperatures ranging from 2,400 to 3,700 Kelvin (more than 2,000 degrees lower than the Sun) and masses from 0.08 to 0.45 times the mass of our star. In this context, a team of researchers led by Borja Toledo Padrón of the Canary Astrophysical Institute, Spain, specializing in the search for planets orbiting stars of this type, has discovered a super-earth that orbits around the star GJ 740, a red dwarf located on a distance of about 36 light years from Earth.

The planet revolves around the parent star with a period of 2.4 days, and its mass is approximately 3 Earth masses. Because the star is very close to the Sun and the planet is very close to the star, this new super-earth could be the subject of future research using very large-diameter telescopes that will be operational before the end of this decade.

“This planet ranks second in the list of planets closest to stars of this type in their planetary systems. The mass of the planet and its orbital period indicate a rocky planet with a radius of about 1.4 Earth’s radius, which can be confirmed by subsequent observations with the TESS satellite, ”explained Borja Toledo Padrón, who is the main author of the article.

These data also indicate the presence of a second planet in the system, the orbital period of which is estimated at 9 years, and the mass is comparable to the mass of Saturn (about 100 Earth masses), however, this signal, processed using the method of radial velocities, may be false positive and actually due to magnetic cycle of the star (similar to the magnetic cycle of the Sun), therefore additional observations are required to confirm the planetary nature of the signal.

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