A Model-Independent Mass and Moderate Eccentricity for β Pic b

Trent J. Dupuy, Timothy D. Brandt, Kaitlin M. Kratter, Brendan P. Bowler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

We use a cross-calibration of Hipparcos and Gaia DR2 astrometry for β Pic to measure the mass of the giant planet β Pic b (13±3MJup) in a comprehensive joint orbit analysis that includes published relative astrometry and radial velocities. Our mass uncertainty is somewhat higher than previous work because our astrometry from the Hipparcos{Gaia Catalog of Accelerations accounts for the error in ation and systematic terms that are required to bring the two data sets onto a common astrometric reference frame, and because we fit freely for the host-star mass (1:84 ± 0:05MΘ). This first model-independent mass for a directly imaged planet is inconsistent with cold-start models given the age of the β Pic moving group (22 ± 6 Myr) but consistent with hot- and warm-start models, concordant with past work. We find a higher eccentricity (0:24 ± 0:06) for β Pic b compared to previous orbital fits. If confirmed by future observations, this eccentricity may help explain inner edge, scale height, and brightness asymmetry of β Pic's disk. It could also potentially signal that β Pic b has migrated inward to its current location, acquiring its eccentricity from interaction with the 3:1 outer Lindblad resonance in the disk.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberL4
Number of pages6
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 18 Jan 2019

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • astro-ph.EP
  • astro-ph.SR
  • stars: individual (bet Pic)
  • planetary systems
  • astrometry


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