PEPSI deep spectra
III. Chemical analysis of the ancient planet-host star Kepler−444★
Leibniz-Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP),
An der Sternwarte 16,
2 University of Tampa, Tampa, FL 33606, USA
Accepted: 15 December 2017
Context. With the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT), we obtained a spectrum with PEPSI, its new optical high-resolution échelle spectrograph. The spectrum has very high resolution and a high signal-to-noise (S/N) and is of the K0V host Kepler−444, which is known to host five sub-Earth-sized rocky planets. The spectrum has a resolution of R ≈ 250 000, a continuous wavelength coverage from 4230 Å to 9120 Å, and an S/N between 150–550:1 (blue to red).
Aim. We performed a detailed chemical analysis to determine the photospheric abundances of 18 chemical elements. These were used to place constraints on the bulk composition of the five rocky planets.
Methods. Our spectral analysis employs the equivalent-width method for most of our spectral lines, but we used spectral synthesis to fit a small number of lines that required special care. In both cases, we derived our abundances using the MOOG spectral analysis package and Kurucz model atmospheres.
Results. We find no correlation between elemental abundance and condensation temperature among the refractory elements (TC > 950 K). In addition, using our spectroscopic stellar parameters and isochrone fitting, we find an age of 10 ± 1.5 Gyr, which is consistent with the asteroseismic age of 11 ± 1 Gyr. Finally, from the photospheric abundances of Mg, Si, and Fe, we estimate that the typical Fe-core mass fraction for the rocky planets in the Kepler−444 system is approximately 24%.
Conclusions. If our estimate of the Fe-core mass fraction is confirmed by more detailed modeling of the disk chemistry and simulations of planet formation and evolution in the Kepler−444 system, then this would suggest that rocky planets in more metal-poor and α-enhanced systems may tend to be less dense than their counterparts of comparable size in more metal-rich systems.
Key words: stars: abundances / stars: atmospheres / stars: late-type / stars: activity / planetary systems
Based on data acquired with PEPSI using the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT). The LBT is an international collaboration among institutions in the United States, Italy, and Germany. LBT Corporation partners are the University of Arizona on behalf of the Arizona university system; Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica, Italy; LBT Beteiligungsgesellschaft, Germany, representing the Max-Planck Society, the Leibniz-Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam (AIP), and Heidelberg University; the Ohio State University; and the Research Corporation, on behalf of the University of Notre Dame, University of Minnesota and University of Virginia.
© ESO 2018