Masses, radii, and orbits of small Kepler planets: The transition from gaseous to rocky planets

Geoffrey W. Marcy, Howard Isaacson, Andrew W. Howard, Jason F. Rowe, Jon M. Jenkins, Stephen T. Bryson, David W. Latham, Steve B. Howell, Thomas N. Gautier, Natalie M. Batalha, Leslie Rogers, David Ciardi, Debra A. Fischer, Ronald L. Gilliland, Hans Kjeldsen, Jørgen Christensen-Dalsgaard, Daniel Huber, William J. Chaplin, Sarbani Basu, Lars A. BuchhaveSamuel N. Quinn, William J. Borucki, David G. Koch, Roger Hunter, Douglas A. Caldwell, Jeffrey Van Cleve, Rea Kolbl, Lauren M. Weiss, Erik Petigura, Sara Seager, Timothy Morton, John Asher Johnson, Sarah Ballard, Chris Burke, William D. Cochran, Michael Endl, Phillip Macqueen, Mark E. Everett, Jack J. Lissauer, Eric B. Ford, Guillermo Torres, Francois Fressin, Timothy M. Brown, Jason H. Steffen, David Charbonneau, Gibor S. Basri, Dimitar D. Sasselov, Joshua Winn, Roberto Sanchis-Ojeda, Jessie Christiansen, Elisabeth Adams, Christopher Henze, Andrea Dupree, Daniel C. Fabrycky, Jonathan J. Fortney, Jill Tarter, Matthew J. Holman, Peter Tenenbaum, Avi Shporer, Philip W. Lucas, William F. Welsh, Jerome A. Orosz, T. R. Bedding, T. L. Campante, G. R. Davies, Y. Elsworth, R. Handberg, S. Hekker, C. Karoff, S. D. Kawaler, M. N. Lund, M. Lundkvist, T. S. Metcalfe, A. Miglio, V. Silva Aguirre, D. Stello, T. R. White, Alan Boss, Edna Devore, Alan Gould, Andrej Prsa, Eric Agol, Thomas Barclay, Jeff Coughlin, Erik Brugamyer, Fergal Mullally, Elisa V. Quintana, Martin Still, Susan E. Thompson, David Morrison, Joseph D. Twicken, Jean Michel Désert, Josh Carter, Justin R. Crepp, Guillaume Hébrard, Alexandre Santerne, Claire Moutou, Charlie Sobeck, Douglas Hudgins, Michael R. Haas, Paul Robertson, Jorge Lillo-Box, David Barrado

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

382 Scopus citations


We report on the masses, sizes, and orbits of the planets orbiting 22 Kepler stars. There are 49 planet candidates around these stars, including 42 detected through transits and 7 revealed by precise Doppler measurements of the host stars. Based on an analysis of the Kepler brightness measurements, along with high-resolution imaging and spectroscopy, Doppler spectroscopy, and (for 11 stars) asteroseismology, we establish low false-positive probabilities (FPPs) for all of the transiting planets (41 of 42 have an FPP under 1%), and we constrain their sizes and masses. Most of the transiting planets are smaller than three times the size of Earth. For 16 planets, the Doppler signal was securely detected, providing a direct measurement of the planet's mass. For the other 26 planets we provide either marginal mass measurements or upper limits to their masses and densities; in many cases we can rule out a rocky composition. We identify six planets with densities above 5 g cm-3, suggesting a mostly rocky interior for them. Indeed, the only planets that are compatible with a purely rocky composition are smaller than 2 R ⊕. Larger planets evidently contain a larger fraction of low-density material (H, He, and H2O).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • planetary systems
  • planets and satellites: detection
  • stars: Individual
  • techniques: photometric
  • techniques: radial velocities


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