I found this article http://www.epj-conferences.org/articles/epjconf/pdf/2011/01/epjconf_ohp2010_03005.pdf from 2011 announcing that two dozen secondary eclipses of "hot Jupters" have been seen in Kepler data. I even think I have seen a light curve showing phase changes of a transiting planet. This makes me think that there should be evidence in the Kepler data for non-transiting planets since the amplitude of the light curve due to planetary phase changes shouldn't be much different from that of a secondary eclipse as long as there is a fairly high inclination (say over 60 degrees).

Is anybody aware of such an examination of the data?

  • $\begingroup$ Good question. Without a prori knowing the orbital period and phase it would be extremely difficult because there are all sorts of day to day variations in the measured brightness, both astrophysical and due to problems with Kepler. $\endgroup$
    – ProfRob
    Commented Apr 1, 2016 at 16:36
  • $\begingroup$ I know of no one who has done such an examination, but it is hypothetically possible to do. As Jeffries suggests though, it will be difficult due to sources of noise. You'd need a large number of orbits to get any statistically significant signal. It wouldn't hurt to also have a relatively quiescent star. $\endgroup$
    – zephyr
    Commented Apr 1, 2016 at 20:35
  • $\begingroup$ I found an article aanda.org/articles/aa/pdf/2010/10/aa14303-10.pdf that describes how CoRoT may have done this, but it was a known planet with a known period. If I am interpreting correctly, they had to superimpose many 3 day signals to come up with a good light curve. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 2, 2016 at 23:59

1 Answer 1


Here's an example paper looking for phase curves of non-transiting planets in the Kepler data: Millholland & Laughlin (2017) "Supervised Learning Detection of Sixty Non-transiting Hot Jupiter Candidates".

The candidates themselves can be found on this webpage.

Unfortunately I'm not aware of any RV followup on them to determine which of these candidates are actually planets.


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