Tarleton Observatory Data Confirms Exoplanet Discovery


Tuesday, October 12, 2021

STEPHENVILLE, Texas — Data gathered from the Tarleton State University observatory was cited in a recent paper announcing new extensive analysis of three exoplanets.

The planets, called hot Jupiters, were discovered in other surveys.

“What we did was new detailed observations with the telescope, extensive analysis and modeling,” said Dr. Shaukat Goderya, Director of Tarleton’s astronomy program.

“It is a first paper in exoplanets using Tarleton observatory data confirming the capability of the telescope and its ability to obtain high-precision data. It paves the way for us to carry out our own survey for finding new exoplanets.”

Hot Jupiters are a class of gas giant exoplanets thought to be physically similar to Jupiter but with short orbital periods.

According to the paper, follow-up ground-based photometric surveys, like those from the Tarleton observatory, play an important role in the discovery of exoplanets. The research is helpful in detailed parametric studies, and the data is then entered in an online database.

“Exoplanets are in the forefront of research in astronomy,” Dr. Goderya said, “and I feel gratified that our observatory has the capability and capacity to do this type of data acquisition and research.”

A founding member of The Texas A&M System, Tarleton State is breaking records — in enrollment, research, scholarship, athletics, philanthropy and engagement — while transforming the lives of nearly 17,000 students in Stephenville, Fort Worth, Waco, Bryan and online. True to Tarleton’s values of excellence, integrity and respect, academic programs emphasize real world learning and address regional, state and national needs.