Warm terrestrial planet with half the mass of Venus transiting a nearby star

Demangeon, O. D. S.; Zapatero Osorio, M. R.; Alibert, Y.; Barros, S. C. C.; Adibekyan, V.; Tabernero, H. M.; Antoniadis-Karnavas, A.; Camacho, J. D.; Suárez Mascareño, A.; Oshagh, M.; Micela, G.; Sousa, S. G.; Lovis, C.; Pepe, F. A.; Rebolo, R.; Cristiani, S.; Santos, N. C.; Allart, R.; Allende Prieto, C.; Bossini, D.; Bouchy, F.; Cabral, A.; Damasso, M.; Di Marcantonio, P.; D'Odorico, V.; Ehrenreich, D.; Faria, J.; Figueira, P.; Génova Santos, R.; Haldemann, J.; Hara, N.; González Hernández, J. I.; Lavie, B.; Lillo-Box, J.; Lo Curto, G.; Martins, C. J. A. P.; Mégevand, D.; Mehner, A.; Molaro, P.; Nunes, N. J.; Pallé, E.; Pasquini, L.; Poretti, E.; Sozzetti, A.; Udry, S.
Bibliographical reference

Astronomy and Astrophysics

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In recent years, the advent of a new generation of radial velocity instruments has allowed us to detect planets with increasingly lower mass and to break the one Earth-mass barrier. Here we report a new milestone in this context by announcing the detection of the lowest-mass planet measured so far using radial velocities: L 98-59 b, a rocky planet with half the mass of Venus. It is part of a system composed of three known transiting terrestrial planets (planets b-d). We announce the discovery of a fourth nontransiting planet with a minimum mass of 3.06−0.37+0.33 M⊕ and an orbital period of 12.796−0.019+0.020 days and report indications for the presence of a fifth nontransiting terrestrial planet. With a minimum mass of 2.46−0.82+0.66 M⊕ and an orbital period 23.15−0.17+0.60 days, this planet, if confirmed, would sit in the middle of the habitable zone of the L 98-59 system. L 98-59 is a bright M dwarf located 10.6ṗc away. Positioned at the border of the continuous viewing zone of the James Webb Space Telescope, this system is destined to become a corner stone for comparative exoplanetology of terrestrial planets. The three transiting planets have transmission spectrum metrics ranging from 49 to 255, which undoubtedly makes them prime targets for an atmospheric characterization with the James Webb Space Telescope, the Hubble Space Telescope, Ariel, or ground-based facilities such as NIRPS or ESPRESSO. With an equilibrium temperature ranging from 416 to 627 K, they offer a unique opportunity to study the diversity of warm terrestrial planets without the unknowns associated with different host stars. L 98-59 b and c have densities of 3.6−1.5+1.4 and 4.57−0.85+0.77 g cm−3, respectively, and have very similar bulk compositions with a small iron core that represents only 12 to 14% of the total mass, and a small amount of water. However, with a density of 2.95−0.51+0.79 g cm−3 and despite a similar core mass fraction, up to 30% of the mass of L 98-59 d might be water.

Full Table B.1 is only available at the CDS via anonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via http://cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr/viz-bin/cat/J/A+A/653/A41

Based in part on Guaranteed Time Observations collected at the European Southern Observatory under ESO programme(s) 1102.C-0744, 1102.C-0958, and 1104.C-0350 by the ESPRESSO Consortium.
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