A sub-Mercury-sized exoplanet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • T. Barclay
  • J.F. Rowe
  • J.J. Lissauer
  • D. Huber
  • S.B. Howell
  • S.T. Bryson
  • F. Mullally
  • J.L. Christiansen
  • M.R. Haas
  • C.E. Henze
  • R.C. Hunter
  • J.M. Jenkins
  • J. Li
  • R.L. Morris
  • E.V. Quintana
  • J.C. Smith
  • M. Still
  • S.E. Thompson
  • F. Fressin
  • J.-M. Désert
  • D. Ragozzine
  • G. Torres
  • E.R. Adams
  • D. Charbonneau
  • A.K. Dupree
  • J.C. Geary
  • D.W. Latham
  • S. Hekker
  • E.D. Lopez
  • J.J. Fortney
  • G.W. Marcy
  • H. Isaacson
  • E.B. Ford
  • E. Agol
  • D. Barrado
  • J. Lillo-Box
  • S. Basu
  • D.A. Fischer
  • T.R. Bedding
  • D. Stello
  • L.A. Buchhave
  • Jø. Christensen-Dalsgaard
  • R. Handberg
  • C. Karoff
  • H. Kjeldsen
  • M.N. Lund
  • M. Lundkvist
  • D. Ciardi
  • W.D. Cochran
  • M. Everett
  • E. Horch
  • A.W. Howard
  • S.D. Kawaler
  • T.C. Klaus
  • T.S. Metcalfe

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • California Institute of Technology
  • The University of Texas at Austin
  • University of Copenhagen
  • Aarhus Universitet
  • University of Sydney
  • Yale University
  • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
  • Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University, Cotter Road, Weston Creek, ACT 2611, Australia; Astronomy Department, King Abdulaziz University, PO Box 80203, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, 2680 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu, HI 96822, USA
  • University of Iowa
  • Orbital Sciences Corporation/NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035, USA
  • SETI Institute/NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA 94035, USA
  • NASA Ames Research Center, MS 244-30, Moffett Field, CA 94035, USA
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of California
  • Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
  • Washington State University, Pullman, Washington 99164, USA
  • Bay Area Environmental Research Institute
  • 211 Bryant Space Sciences Center
  • Centro Astronómico Hispano Alemán
  • ESAC Campus
  • National Optical Astronomy Observatory
  • Southern Connecticut State University
  • White Dwarf Research Corporation


Since the discovery of the first exoplanets, it has been known that other planetary systems can look quite unlike our own. Until fairly recently, we have been able to probe only the upper range of the planet size distribution, and, since last year, to detect planets that are the size of Earth or somewhat smaller. Hitherto, no planets have been found that are smaller than those we see in the Solar System. Here we report a planet significantly smaller than Mercury. This tiny planet is the innermost of three that orbit the Sun-like host star, which we have designated Kepler-37. Owing to its extremely small size, similar to that of the Moon, and highly irradiated surface, the planet, Kepler-37b, is probably rocky with no atmosphere or water, similar to Mercury.

Bibliographic note

Copyright 2013 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)452-454
Number of pages3
Issue number7438
Publication statusPublished - 28 Feb 2013