A metal-biased planet search
We have begun a metal-rich planet search project using the HARPS instrument in La Silla, Chile to target planets with a high potential to transit their host star and add to the number of bright benchmark transiting planets. The sample currently consists of 100, bright (7.5V9.5) solar-type stars (0.5B−V0.9) in the southern hemisphere which are both inactive (log RHK−4.5) and metal-rich ([Fe/H]0.1 dex). We determined the chromospheric activity and metallicity status of our sample using high resolution FEROS spectra. We also introduce the first result from our HARPS planet search and show that the radial-velocity amplitude of this star is consistent with an orbiting planetary-mass companion (i.e. M sin i<0.5 MJ) with a period of ~5 days. We are currently engaged in follow-up to confirm this signal as a bonafide orbiting planet.