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Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method Documents

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Main Document

Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method 

written by Mario Belloni

The Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method model simulates the detection of exoplanets by using the transit method. In this method, the light curve from a star, and how it changes over time due to exoplanet transits, is observed and then analyzed. In this simulation the exoplanet orbits the star (sun-sized) in circular motion via Kepler's third law.  When the exoplanet passes in front of the star (transits), it blocks part of the starlight. This decrease in starlight is shown on the graph.  If the exoplanet is close enough to the central star, and has sufficient reflectivity, or albedo, it can reflect enough of the starlight to be seen on the light curve. In the simulation the star-exoplanet system is shown as seen from Earth (edge on view) but magnified greatly, and with the star and planet sizes not shown to the scale of the orbit. The radius of the central star (relative to the radius of Sun),semi-major axis of the exoplanet (in AU), radius of the exoplanet (relative to the radius of Jupiter), the exoplanet's albedo (reflectivity), and the inclination of the system relative to Earth can be changed.

The simulation uses either simple 3D or Java 3D (if installed) to render the view the star and exoplanet. If Java 3D is not installed, the simulation defaults to simple 3D using Java.

The Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method model was created using the Easy Java Simulations (EJS) modeling tool.  It is distributed as a ready-to-run (compiled) Java archive.  Double clicking the ejs_astronomy_exoplanet_transits.jar file will run the program if Java is installed.

Last Modified June 25, 2012

This file has previous versions.

Source Code Documents

Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method Source Code 

The source code zip archive contains an XML representation of the  Exoplanet Detection: Transit Method Model.   Unzip this archive in your EJS workspace to compile and run this model using EJS.

Published June 29, 2010
Last Modified June 25, 2012

This file has previous versions.

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