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  1. Abstract

    M dwarfs are ubiquitous in our Galaxy, and the rate at which they host stellar companions, and the properties of these companions, provide a window into the formation and evolution of the star(s), and of any planets that they may host. The Pervasive Overview of “Kompanions” of Every M dwarf in Our Neighborhood (POKEMON) speckle survey of nearby M dwarfs is volume limited from M0V through M9V out to 15 pc, with additional targets at larger distances. In total, 1125 stars were observed, and 455 of these are within the volume-limited, 15 pc sample of M-dwarf primaries. When we combine the speckle observations with known companions from the literature, we find that the stellar multiplicity rate of M dwarfs within 15 pc is 23.5% ± 2.0%, and that the companion rate is 28.8% ± 2.1%. We also find that the projected separation distribution for multiples that are known to host planets peaks at 198 au, while the distribution for multiples that are not yet known to host planets peaks at 5.57 au. This result suggests that the presence of close-in stellar companions inhibits the formation of M-dwarf planetary systems, similar to what has been found for FGK stars.

     
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  2. Abstract

    Stellar multiplicity is correlated with many stellar properties, yet multiplicity measurements have proven difficult for the M dwarfs—the most common type of star in our galaxy—due to their faintness and the fact that a reasonably complete inventory of later M dwarfs did not exist until recently. We have therefore carried out the Pervasive Overview of “Kompanions” of Every M dwarf in Our Neighborhood (POKEMON) survey, which made use of the Differential Speckle Survey Instrument on the 4.3 m Lowell Discovery Telescope, along with the NN-EXPLORE Exoplanet Stellar Speckle Imager on the 3.5 m WIYN telescope. The POKEMON sample is volume limited from M0V through M9V out to 15 pc, with additional brighter targets at larger distances. In total, 1125 targets were observed. New discoveries were presented in the first paper in the series. In this second paper in the series, we present all detected companions, gauge our astrometric and photometric precision, and compare our filtered and filterless speckle observations. We find that the majority (58.9%) of the companions we detect in our speckle images are not resolved in Gaia, demonstrating the need for high-resolution imaging in addition to long-term astrometric monitoring. Additionally, we find that the majority (73.2%) of simulated stellar companions would be detectable by our speckle observations. Specifically within 100 au, we find that 70.3% of simulated companions are recovered. Finally, we discuss future directions of the POKEMON survey.

     
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  3. Abstract

    Young terrestrial worlds are critical test beds to constrain prevailing theories of planetary formation and evolution. We present the discovery of HD 63433 d—a nearby (22 pc), Earth-sized planet transiting a young Sun-like star (TOI-1726, HD 63433). HD 63433 d is the third planet detected in this multiplanet system. The kinematic, rotational, and abundance properties of the host star indicate that it belongs to the young (414 ± 23 Myr) Ursa Major moving group, whose membership we update using new data from the third data release of the Gaia mission and TESS. Our transit analysis of the TESS light curves indicates that HD 63433 d has a radius of 1.1Rand closely orbits its host star with a period of 4.2 days. To date, HD 63433 d is the smallest confirmed exoplanet with an age less than 500 Myr, and the nearest young Earth-sized planet. Furthermore, the apparent brightness of the stellar host (V≃ 6.9 mag) makes this transiting multiplanet system favorable to further investigations, including spectroscopic follow-up to probe the atmospheric loss in a young Earth-sized world.

     
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 10, 2025
  4. ABSTRACT

    We present the confirmation of a hot super-Neptune with an exterior Neptune companion orbiting a bright (V  = 10.1 mag) F-dwarf identified by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). The two planets, observed in sectors 45, 46, and 48 of the TESS extended mission, are $4.74_{-0.14}^{+0.16}$ and $3.86_{-0.16}^{+0.17}$ R⊕ with $5.4588385_{-0.0000072}^{+0.0000070}$ and $17.8999_{-0.0013}^{+0.0018}$ d orbital periods, respectively. We also obtained precise space-based photometric follow-up of the system with ESA’s CHaracterising ExOplanets Satellite to constrain the radius and ephemeris of TOI-5126 b. TOI-5126 b is located in the ‘hot Neptune Desert’ and is an ideal candidate for follow-up transmission spectroscopy due to its high-predicted equilibrium temperature (Teq = ${1442}_{-40}^{+46}$ K) implying a cloud-free atmosphere. TOI-5126 c is a warm Neptune (Teq = $971_{-27}^{+31}$ K) also suitable for follow-up. Tentative transit timing variations have also been identified in analysis, suggesting the presence of at least one additional planet, however this signal may be caused by spot-crossing events, necessitating further precise photometric follow-up to confirm these signals.

     
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  5. Abstract

    We report on the discovery and validation of a transiting long-period mini-Neptune orbiting a bright (V= 9.0 mag) G dwarf (TOI 4633;R= 1.05R,M= 1.10M). The planet was identified in data from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite by citizen scientists taking part in the Planet Hunters TESS project. Modelling of the transit events yields an orbital period of 271.9445 ± 0.0040 days and radius of 3.2 ± 0.20R. The Earth-like orbital period and an incident flux of1.560.16+0.20Fplaces it in the optimistic habitable zone around the star. Doppler spectroscopy of the system allowed us to place an upper mass limit on the transiting planet and revealed a non-transiting planet candidate in the system with a period of 34.15 ± 0.15 days. Furthermore, the combination of archival data dating back to 1905 with new high angular resolution imaging revealed a stellar companion orbiting the primary star with an orbital period of around 230 yr and an eccentricity of about 0.9. The long period of the transiting planet, combined with the high eccentricity and close approach of the companion star makes this a valuable system for testing the formation and stability of planets in binary systems.

     
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  6. Abstract

    M dwarfs are favorable targets for exoplanet detection with current instrumentation, but stellar companions can induce false positives and inhibit planet characterization. Knowledge of stellar companions is also critical to our understanding of how binary stars form and evolve. We have therefore conducted a survey of stellar companions around nearby M dwarfs, and here we present our new discoveries. Using the Differential Speckle Survey Instrument at the 4.3 m Lowell Discovery Telescope, and the similar NN-EXPLORE Exoplanet Stellar Speckle Imager at the 3.5 m WIYN telescope, we carried out a volume-limited survey of M-dwarf multiplicity to 15 parsecs, with a special emphasis on including the later M dwarfs that were overlooked in previous surveys. Additional brighter targets at larger distances were included for a total sample size of 1070 M dwarfs. Observations of these 1070 targets revealed 26 new companions; 22 of these systems were previously thought to be single. If all new discoveries are confirmed, then the number of known multiples in the sample will increase by 7.6%. Using our observed properties, as well as the parallaxes and 2MASSKmagnitudes for these objects, we calculate the projected separation, and estimate the mass ratio and component spectral types, for these systems. We report the discovery of a new M-dwarf companion to the white dwarf Wolf 672 A, which hosts a known M-dwarf companion as well, making the system trinary. We also examine the possibility that the new companion to 2MASS J13092185-2330350 is a brown dwarf. Finally, we discuss initial insights from the POKEMON survey.

     
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  7. Abstract The observed correlation between outer giant planets and inner super-Earths is emerging as an important constraint on planet formation theories. In this study, we focus on Kepler-167, which is currently the only system known to contain both inner transiting super-Earths and a confirmed outer transiting gas giant companion beyond 1 au. Using long-term radial velocity monitoring, we measure the mass of the gas giant Kepler-167e ( P = 1071 days) to be 1.01 − 0.15 + 0.16 M J , thus confirming it as a Jupiter analog. We refit the Kepler photometry to obtain updated radii for all four planets. Using a planetary structure model, we estimate that Kepler-167e contains 66 ± 19 M ⊕ of solids and is significantly enriched in metals relative to its solar-metallicity host star. We use these new constraints to explore the broader question of how systems like Kepler-167 form in the pebble accretion framework for giant planet core formation. We utilize simple disk evolution models to demonstrate that more massive and metal-rich disks, which are the most favorable sites for giant planet formation, can also deliver enough solids to the inner disk to form systems of super-Earths. We use these same models to constrain the nature of Kepler-167's protoplanetary disk and find that it likely contained ≳300 M ⊕ of dust and was ≳40 au in size. These values overlap with the upper end of the observed dust mass and size distributions of Class 0 and I disks and are also consistent with the observed occurrence rate of Jupiter analogs around Sun-like stars. 
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  8. Abstract

    TESS has proven to be a powerful resource for finding planets, including those that orbit the most prevalent stars in our galaxy: M dwarfs. Identification of stellar companions (both bound and unbound) has become a standard component of the transiting planet confirmation process in order to assess the level of light-curve dilution and the possibility of the target being a false positive. Studies of stellar companions have also enabled investigations into stellar multiplicity in planet-hosting systems, which has wide-ranging implications for both exoplanet detection and characterization, as well as for the formation and evolution of planetary systems. Speckle and AO imaging are some of the most efficient and effective tools for revealing close-in stellar companions; we therefore present observations of 58 M-dwarf TOIs obtained using a suite of speckle imagers at the 3.5 m WIYN telescope, the 4.3 m Lowell Discovery Telescope, and the 8.1 m Gemini North and South telescopes. These observations, as well as near-infrared adaptive optics images obtained for a subset (14) of these TOIs, revealed only two close-in stellar companions. Upon surveying the literature, and cross-matching our sample with Gaia, SUPERWIDE, and the catalog from El-Badry et al., we reveal an additional 15 widely separated common proper motion companions. We also evaluate the potential for undetected close-in companions. Taking into consideration the sensitivity of the observations, our findings suggest that the orbital period distribution of stellar companions to planet-hosting M dwarfs is shifted to longer periods compared to the expected distribution for field M dwarfs.

     
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  9. Abstract We combine multiple campaigns of K2 photometry with precision radial velocity measurements from Keck-HIRES to measure the masses of three sub-Neptune-sized planets. We confirm the planetary nature of the massive sub-Neptune K2-182 b ( P b = 4.7 days, R b = 2.69 R ⊕ ) and derive refined parameters for K2-199 b and c ( P b = 3.2 days, R b = 1.73 R ⊕ and P c = 7.4 days, R c = 2.85 R ⊕ ). These planets provide valuable data points in the mass–radius plane, especially as TESS continues to reveal an increasingly diverse sample of sub-Neptunes. The moderately bright ( V = 12.0 mag) early K dwarf K2-182 (EPIC 211359660) was observed during K2 campaigns 5 and 18. We find that K2-182 b is potentially one of the densest sub-Neptunes known to date (20 ± 5 M ⊕ and 5.6 ± 1.4 g cm −3 ). The K5V dwarf K2-199 (EPIC 212779596; V = 12.3 mag), observed in K2 campaigns 6 and 17, hosts two recently confirmed planets. We refine the orbital and planetary parameters for K2-199 b and c by modeling both campaigns of K2 photometry and adding 12 Keck-HIRES measurements to the existing radial velocity data set ( N = 33). We find that K2-199 b is likely rocky, at 6.9 ± 1.8 M ⊕ and 7.2 − 2.0 + 2.1 g cm −3 , and that K2-199 c has an intermediate density at 12.4 ± 2.3 M ⊕ and 2.9 − 0.6 + 0.7 g cm −3 . We contextualize these planets on the mass–radius plane, discuss a small but intriguing population of “superdense” sub-Neptunes ( R p < 3 R ⊕ , M p >20 M ⊕ ), and consider our prospects for the planets’ atmospheric characterization. 
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  10. Abstract

    With JWST’s successful deployment and unexpectedly high fuel reserves, measuring the masses of sub-Neptunes transiting bright, nearby stars will soon become the bottleneck for characterizing the atmospheres of small exoplanets via transmission spectroscopy. Using a carefully curated target list and observations from more than 2 yr of APF-Levy and Keck-HIRES Doppler monitoring, the TESS-Keck Survey is working toward alleviating this pressure. Here we present mass measurements for 11 transiting planets in eight systems that are particularly suited to atmospheric follow-up with JWST. We also report the discovery and confirmation of a temperate super-Jovian-mass planet on a moderately eccentric orbit. The sample of eight host stars, which includes one subgiant, spans early-K to late-F spectral types (Teff= 5200–6200 K). We homogeneously derive planet parameters using a joint photometry and radial velocity modeling framework, discuss the planets’ possible bulk compositions, and comment on their prospects for atmospheric characterization.

     
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