Extrasolar planets in the classroom

George, S.J., 2011, Physics Education, 46, 403 – arXiv:1103.5690

The field of extrasolar planets is still, in comparison with other astrophysical topics, in its infancy. There have been about 300 or so extrasolar planets detected and their detection has been accomplished by various different techniques. Here we present a simple laboratory experiment to show how planets are detected using the transit technique. Following the simple analysis procedure describe we are able to determine the planetary radius to be 1.27 +/- 0.20 R_{J} which, within errors agrees with the establish value of 1.32 +/- 0.25 R_{J}.

Exoplanet Diagram for transit

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