Spyratos, P, Nikolov, NK, Constantinou, S, Southworth, J, Madhusudhan, N, Sedaghati, E, Ehrenreich, D and Mancini, L (2023) A precise blue-optical transmission spectrum from the ground: evidence for haze in the atmosphere of WASP-74b. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 521 (2). 2163 - 2180. ISSN 0035-8711

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We report transmission spectroscopy of the bloated hot Jupiter WASP-74b in the wavelength range from 4000 to 6200 Å. We observe two transit events with the Very Large Telescope (VLT) Focal Reducer and Spectrograph and present a new method to measure the exoplanet transit depth as a function of wavelength. The new method removes the need for a reference star in correcting the spectroscopic light curves for the impact of atmospheric extinction. It also provides improved precision, compared to other techniques, reaching an average transit depth uncertainty of 211 ppm for a solar-type star of V = 9.8 mag and over wavelength bins of 80 Å. The VLT transmission spectrum is analysed both individually and in combination with published data from Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer. The spectrum is found to exhibit a mostly featureless slope and equilibrium chemistry retrievals with PLATON favour hazes in the upper atmosphere of the exoplanet. Free chemistry retrievals with AURA further support the presence of hazes. While additional constraints are possible depending on the choice of atmospheric model, they are not robust and may be influenced by residual systematics in the data sets. Our results demonstrate the utility of new techniques in the analysis of optical, ground-based spectroscopic data and can be highly complementary to follow-up observations in the infrared with JWST.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Astronomical Society This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/open_access/funder_policies/chorus/standard_publication_model) The final version of this article and all relevant information related to it, including copyrights, can be found on the publisher website.
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QB Astronomy > QB600 Planets. Planetology
Q Science > QB Astronomy > QB799 Stars
Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Chemical and Physical Sciences
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 02 May 2023 14:59
Last Modified: 02 May 2023 14:59
URI: https://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/12351

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