Optical/infrared discoveries around nearby stars

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Optical and infrared telescopes have recently been used to discover planets especially through detection of the motion of their parent stars. Most detections have been made by measuring the periodic doppler shifts of lines in the spectrum of the star as it moves around the center of mass of the star-planet system.

Planets Discovered Around Other Sunlike Stars

Star Distance to star (Earth-Sun = 1) Orbital periodLower limit on mass (Jupiter = 1) Notes
51 Pegasi0.054.3 days0.5First exoplanet, "hot Jupiter"
47 Ursae Majoris2.11103 days2.4
70 Virginisecc. orbit116.7 days6.6Possible brown dwarf
55 Cancri0.1114.76 days0.8"Hot Jupiter"
55 Cancri>5unknown>5
HD 114762ecc. orbit84.01 days10Possible brown drawf
Tau Bootis0.00473.31 days3.7"Hot Jupiter"
Upsilon Andromedae0.0544.61 days0.6"Hot Jupiter"
Lalande 211852.25.8 days0.9Astrometric detection
Lalande 211851130 years1.1Astrometric detection (uncertain)
Source: Science, Vol. 273, July 26, 1996

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The pulsar called PSR 1257+12 also has an orbiting planetary system. This was the FIRST star around which exoplanets were discovered (contrary to popular misconception, exoplanets were discovered by radio astronomers!).

Suggested readings:


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