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Stuttgart, Germany

Backhaus U.,University of Duisburg - Essen | Bauer S.,Leibniz Gymnasium | Beuermann K.,University of Gottingen | Diese J.,Max Planck Gymnasium | And 38 more authors.
Astronomy and Astrophysics | Year: 2012

As part of an ongoing collaboration between student groups at high schools and professional astronomers, we have searched for the presence of circum-binary planets in a bona-fide unbiased sample of twelve post-common envelope binaries (PCEBs) from the Catalina Sky Survey (CSS) and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). Although the present ephemerides are significantly more accurate than previous ones, we find no clear evidence for orbital period variations between 2005 and 2011 or during the 2011 observing season. The sparse long-term coverage still permits O-C variations with a period of years and an amplitude of tens of seconds, as found in other systems. Our observations provide the basis for future inferences about the frequency with which planet-sized or brown-dwarf companions have either formed in these evolved systems or survived the common envelope (CE) phase. © ESO, 2012.

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