We present an early result from an automated search of Kepler eclipsing binary systems for circumbinary companions. An intriguing tertiary signal has been discovered in the short period eclipsing binary KIC002856960. This third body leads to transit-like features in the light curve occurring every 204.2 days, while the two other components of the system display eclipses on a 6.2 hour period. The variations due to the tertiary body last for a duration of \sim1.26 days, or 4.9 binary orbital periods. During each crossing of the binary orbit with the tertiary body, multiple individual transits are observed as the close binary stars repeatedly move in and out of alignment with the tertiary object. We are at this stage unable to distinguish between a planetary companion to a close eclipsing binary, or a hierarchical triply eclipsing system of three stars. Both possibilities are explored, and the light curves presented.
|Journal||Astronomy and Astrophysics|
|Publication status||Published - 17 Aug 2012|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science