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A 5 µm image of β Pictoris b at a sub-Jupiter projected separation: evidence for a misalignment between the planet and the inner, warped disk

By T. Currie, C. Thalmann, S. Matsumura, N. Madhusudhan, A. Burrows and M. Kuchner


We present and analyze a new M' detection of the young exoplanet β Pictoris b from 2008 VLT/NaCo data at a separation of 4 AU and a high signal-to-noise rereduction of L' data taken in 2009 December. Based on our orbital analysis, the planet's orbit is viewed almost perfectly edge-on (i ~ 89 deg) and has a Saturn-like semimajor axis of 9.50 AU+3.93 AU - 1.7 AU. Intriguingly, the planet's orbit is aligned with the major axis of the outer disk (Ω ~ 31 deg) but is probably misaligned with the warp/inclined disk at 80 AU, often cited as a signpost for the planet's existence. Our results motivate new studies to clarify how β Pic b sculpts debris disk structures and whether a second planet is required to explain the warp/inclined disk

Topics: FNWI top publication
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1088/2041-8205/736/2/l33
OAI identifier:
Provided by: NARCIS
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