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Paper: Looking Beyond -- The Search for Other Planetary Systems
Volume: 107, Completing the Inventory of the Solar System
Page: 377
Authors: Cochran, W. D.
Abstract: For many years, our understanding of the formation and evolution of planetary systems had been constrained by only the single example of the system in which we live. We naively believed that all planetary systems must look something like our own, with rocky terrestrial planets near the star and with gas-giant planets at much greater distances. This changed dramatically in October 1995 with the discovery of a companion object of Jovian mass in a 4-day orbit around the solar-type star 51 Pegasi. The subsequent discoveries of possible planetary companions to 70~Virginis and 47~Ursae Majoris further destroyed the notion of our own solar system as the paradigm for planetary systems. Numerous searches are now underway to attempt to find additional planets around other stars. We review the various search techniques used, present the results to date (winter 1996) from these programs, and look at the prospects for future planetary system detections.
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