SIMBAD references

2008ApJ...673.1160A - Astrophys. J., 673, 1160-1164 (2008/February-1)

Ocean planet or thick atmosphere: on the mass-radius relationship for solid exoplanets with massive atmospheres.


Abstract (from CDS):

The bulk composition of an exoplanet is commonly inferred from its average density. For small planets, however, the average density is not unique within the range of compositions. Variations of a number of important planetary parameters–which are difficult or impossible to constrain from measurements alone–produce planets with the same average densities but widely varying bulk compositions. We find that adding a gas envelope equivalent to 0.1%-10% of the mass of a solid planet causes the radius to increase 5%-60% above its gas-free value. A planet with a given mass and radius might have substantial water ice content (a so-called ocean planet), or alternatively a large rocky iron core and some H and/or He. For example, a wide variety of compositions can explain the observed radius of GJ 436b, although all models require some H/He. We conclude that the identification of water worlds based on the mass-radius relationship alone is impossible unless a significant gas layer can be ruled out by other means.

Abstract Copyright:

Journal keyword(s): Planets and Satellites: General - Stars: Planetary Systems - Stars: Individual: Alphanumeric: GJ 436

Simbad objects: 4

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