Lists of exoplanets

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Artist's concept of the potentially habitable exoplanet Kepler-186f

These are lists of exoplanets. As of 1 April 2023, there are 5,346 confirmed exoplanets in 3,943 planetary systems, with 855 systems having more than one planet.[1] Most of these were discovered by the Kepler space telescope. There are an additional 2,053 potential exoplanets from Kepler's first mission yet to be confirmed, as well as 978 from its "Second Light" mission and 4,053 from the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) mission.[2]

For yearly lists on physical, orbital and other properties, as well as on discovery circumstances and other aspects, see § Specific exoplanet lists.


The convention for designating exoplanets is an extension of the system used for designating multiple-star systems as adopted by the International Astronomical Union (IAU). For exoplanets orbiting a single star, the IAU designation is formed by taking the designated or proper name of its parent star, and adding a lower case letter.[3] Letters are given in order of each planet's discovery around the parent star, so that the first planet discovered in a system is designated "b" (the parent star is considered to be "a") and later planets are given subsequent letters. If several planets in the same system are discovered at the same time, the closest one to the star gets the next letter, followed by the other planets in order of orbital size. A provisional IAU-sanctioned standard exists to accommodate the designation of circumbinary planets. A limited number of exoplanets have IAU-sanctioned proper names. Other naming systems exist.

Methods of detection[edit]

Transit: 3,978 (74.9%)Radial velocity: 1,030 (19.4%)Microlensing: 177 (3.3%)Direct imaging: 64 (1.2%)Transit-timing variation: 25 (0.5%)Eclipse timing variation: 17 (0.3%)Orbital brightness modulation: 9 (0.2%)Pulsar timing variation: 7 (0.1%)Pulsation timing variation: 2 (0.0%)Astrometry: 2 (0.0%)Disk kinematics: 1 (0.0%)Circle frame.svg
  •   Transit: 3,978 (74.9%)
  •   Radial velocity: 1,030 (19.4%)
  •   Microlensing: 177 (3.3%)
  •   Direct imaging: 64 (1.2%)
  •   Transit-timing variation: 25 (0.5%)
  •   Eclipse timing variation: 17 (0.3%)
  •   Orbital brightness modulation: 9 (0.2%)
  •   Pulsar timing variation: 7 (0.1%)
  •   Pulsation timing variation: 2 (0.0%)
  •   Astrometry: 2 (0.0%)
  •   Disk kinematics: 1 (0.0%)

Direct imaging[edit]

Two directly imaged exoplanets around star Beta Pictoris, star-subtracted and artificially embellished with an outline of the orbit of one of the planets. The white dot in the center is the other exoplanet in the same system.
Directly imaged planet Beta Pictoris b

Planets are extremely faint compared with their parent stars. For example, a Sun-like star is about a billion times brighter than the reflected light from any exoplanet orbiting it. It is difficult to detect such a faint light source, and furthermore the parent star causes a glare that tends to wash it out. It is necessary to block the light from the parent star in order to reduce the glare while leaving the light from the planet detectable; doing so is a major technical challenge which requires extreme optothermal stability.[4] All exoplanets that have been directly imaged are both large (more massive than Jupiter) and widely separated from their parent star.

Specially designed direct-imaging instruments such as Gemini Planet Imager, VLT-SPHERE, and SCExAO will image dozens of gas giants, but the vast majority of known extrasolar planets have only been detected through indirect methods.

Indirect methods[edit]

Edge-on animation of a star-planet system, showing the geometry considered for the transit method of exoplanet detection
When the star is behind a planet, its brightness will seem to dim
If a planet crosses (or transits) in front of its parent star's disk, then the observed brightness of the star drops by a small amount. The amount by which the star dims depends on its size and on the size of the planet, among other factors. Because the transit method requires that the planet's orbit intersect a line-of-sight between the host star and Earth, the probability that an exoplanet in a randomly oriented orbit will be observed to transit the star is somewhat small. The Kepler telescope used this method.
Exoplanet detections per year as of June 2022.[5]
As a planet orbits a star, the star also moves in its own small orbit around the system's center of mass. Variations in the star's radial velocity—that is, the speed with which it moves towards or away from Earth—can be detected from displacements in the star's spectral lines due to the Doppler effect. Extremely small radial-velocity variations can be observed, of 1 m/s or even somewhat less.[6]
When multiple planets are present, each one slightly perturbs the others' orbits. Small variations in the times of transit for one planet can thus indicate the presence of another planet, which itself may or may not transit. For example, variations in the transits of the planet Kepler-19b suggest the existence of a second planet in the system, the non-transiting Kepler-19c.[7][8]
Animation showing difference between planet transit timing of one-planet and two-planet systems
When a planet orbits multiple stars or if the planet has moons, its transit time can significantly vary per transit. Although no new planets or moons have been discovered with this method, it is used to successfully confirm many transiting circumbinary planets.[9]
Microlensing occurs when the gravitational field of a star acts like a lens, magnifying the light of a distant background star. Planets orbiting the lensing star can cause detectable anomalies in the magnification as it varies over time. Unlike most other methods which have detection bias towards planets with small (or for resolved imaging, large) orbits, microlensing method is most sensitive to detecting planets around 1–10 AU away from Sun-like stars.
Astrometry consists of precisely measuring a star's position in the sky and observing the changes in that position over time. The motion of a star due to the gravitational influence of a planet may be observable. Because the motion is so small, however, this method has not yet been very productive. It has produced only a few disputed detections, though it has been successfully used to investigate the properties of planets found in other ways.
A pulsar (the small, ultradense remnant of a star that has exploded as a supernova) emits radio waves extremely regularly as it rotates. If planets orbit the pulsar, they will cause slight anomalies in the timing of its observed radio pulses. The first confirmed discovery of an extrasolar planet was made using this method. But as of 2011, it has not been very productive; five planets have been detected in this way, around three different pulsars.
Like pulsars, there are some other types of stars which exhibit periodic activity. Deviations from the periodicity can sometimes be caused by a planet orbiting it. As of 2013, a few planets have been discovered with this method.[10]
When a planet orbits very close to the star, it catches a considerable amount of starlight. As the planet orbits around the star, the amount of light changes due to planets having phases from Earth's viewpoint or planet glowing more from one side than the other due to temperature differences.[11]
Relativistic beaming measures the observed flux from the star due to its motion. The brightness of the star changes as the planet moves closer or further away from its host star.[12]
Massive planets close to their host stars can slightly deform the shape of the star. This causes the brightness of the star to slightly deviate depending how it is rotated relative to Earth.[13]
With polarimetry method, a polarized light reflected off the planet is separated from unpolarized light emitted from the star. No new planets have been discovered with this method although a few already discovered planets have been detected with this method.[14][15]
Disks of space dust surround many stars, thought to originate from collisions among asteroids and comets. The dust can be detected because it absorbs starlight and re-emits it as infrared radiation. Features in the disks may suggest the presence of planets, though this is not considered a definitive detection method.

Specific exoplanet lists[edit]

Distribution of confirmed exoplanets vis-à-vis distance from Solar System

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Schneider, J. "Interactive Extra-solar Planets Catalog". The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopedia. Retrieved 1 April 2023.
  2. ^ a b "Exoplanet and Candidate Statistics". NASA Exoplanet Archive. NASA Exoplanet Science Institute. Retrieved 17 March 2023.
  3. ^ "International Astronomical Union | IAU". Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  4. ^ Perryman, Michael (2011). The Exoplanet Handbook. Cambridge University Press. p. 149. ISBN 978-0-521-76559-6.
  5. ^ "Pre-generated Exoplanet Plots". NASA Exoplanet Archive. Retrieved 24 June 2022.
  6. ^ Pepe, F.; Lovis, C.; Ségransan, D.; Benz, W.; Bouchy, F.; Dumusque, X.; Mayor, M.; Queloz, D.; Santos, N. C.; Udry, S. (2011). "The HARPS search for Earth-like planets in the habitable zone". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 534: A58. arXiv:1108.3447. Bibcode:2011A&A...534A..58P. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201117055. S2CID 15088852.
  7. ^ Planet Hunting: Finding Earth-like Planets Archived 2010-07-28 at the Wayback Machine. Scientific Computing. 19 July 2010
  8. ^ Ballard, S.; Fabrycky, D.; Fressin, F.; Charbonneau, D.; Desert, J. M.; Torres, G.; Marcy, G.; Burke, C. J.; Isaacson, H.; Henze, C.; Steffen, J. H.; Ciardi, D. R.; Howell, S. B.; Cochran, W. D.; Endl, M.; Bryson, S. T.; Rowe, J. F.; Holman, M. J.; Lissauer, J. J.; Jenkins, J. M.; Still, M.; Ford, E. B.; Christiansen, J. L.; Middour, C. K.; Haas, M. R.; Li, J.; Hall, J. R.; McCauliff, S.; Batalha, N. M.; Koch, D. G.; et al. (2011). "The Kepler-19 System: A Transiting 2.2 R Planet and a Second Planet Detected Via Transit Timing Variations". The Astrophysical Journal. 743 (2): 200. arXiv:1109.1561. Bibcode:2011ApJ...743..200B. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/743/2/200. S2CID 42698813.
  9. ^ Pál, A.; Kocsis, B. (2008). "Periastron Precession Measurements in Transiting Extrasolar Planetary Systems at the Level of General Relativity". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 389 (1): 191–198. arXiv:0806.0629. Bibcode:2008MNRAS.389..191P. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13512.x. S2CID 15282437.
  10. ^ Silvotti, R.; Schuh, S.; Janulis, R.; Solheim, J. -E.; Bernabei, S.; Østensen, R.; Oswalt, T. D.; Bruni, I.; Gualandi, R.; Bonanno, A.; Vauclair, G.; Reed, M.; Chen, C. -W.; Leibowitz, E.; Paparo, M.; Baran, A.; Charpinet, S.; Dolez, N.; Kawaler, S.; Kurtz, D.; Moskalik, P.; Riddle, R.; Zola, S. (2007). "A giant planet orbiting the 'extreme horizontal branch' star V 391 Pegasi" (PDF). Nature. 449 (7159): 189–91. Bibcode:2007Natur.449..189S. doi:10.1038/nature06143. PMID 17851517. S2CID 4342338.
  11. ^ Jenkins, J.M.; Laurance R. Doyle (20 September 2003). "Detecting reflected light from close-in giant planets using space-based photometers". Astrophysical Journal. 1 (595): 429–445. arXiv:astro-ph/0305473. Bibcode:2003ApJ...595..429J. doi:10.1086/377165. S2CID 17773111.
  12. ^ Loeb, A.; Gaudi, B. S. (2003). "Periodic Flux Variability of Stars due to the Reflex Doppler Effect Induced by Planetary Companions". The Astrophysical Journal Letters. 588 (2): L117. arXiv:astro-ph/0303212. Bibcode:2003ApJ...588L.117L. doi:10.1086/375551. S2CID 10066891.
  13. ^ Atkinson, Nancy (2013-05-13). "Using the Theory of Relativity and BEER to Find Exoplanets". Universe Today. Retrieved 2023-02-12.
  14. ^ Schmid, H. M.; Beuzit, J. -L.; Feldt, M.; Gisler, D.; Gratton, R.; Henning, T.; Joos, F.; Kasper, M.; Lenzen, R.; Mouillet, D.; Moutou, C.; Quirrenbach, A.; Stam, D. M.; Thalmann, C.; Tinbergen, J.; Verinaud, C.; Waters, R.; Wolstencroft, R. (2006). "Search and investigation of extra-solar planets with polarimetry". Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union. 1: 165. Bibcode:2006dies.conf..165S. doi:10.1017/S1743921306009252.
  15. ^ Berdyugina, S. V.; Berdyugin, A. V.; Fluri, D. M.; Piirola, V. (2008). "First Detection of Polarized Scattered Light from an Exoplanetary Atmosphere". The Astrophysical Journal. 673 (1): L83. arXiv:0712.0193. Bibcode:2008ApJ...673L..83B. doi:10.1086/527320. S2CID 14366978.

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