Kepler Numbers During the Extended Mission

Since the first announcement of Kepler-discovered planets, confirmed planets have been given Kepler number designations (e.g. Kepler-12 b). In general, these numbers are easier to remember than the corresponding KOI or KIC/KepID designations and are intended to clearly indicate a class of objects that have been confirmed or validated as planets - a step up from the planet candidate designation. The Kepler Project intends to continue this practice during the extended mission, and has asked NExScI to administer and track the process.

Kepler numbers will be assigned to all confirmed or validated planets that appear in accepted, peer-reviewed journal papers. In the case of planets described as potential or preliminary, or if multiple papers exist with different conclusions, the science staff at NExScI will make a decision on the assignment of a Kepler number. All planets with assigned Kepler numbers will be included in the confirmed planets table at the NASA Exoplanet Archive. All assigned Kepler numbers are available in the Kepler Names interactive table.

There is a similar policy and procedure for requesting K2 numbers.

How to Request a Kepler Number

To request Kepler numbers for use in a published paper, please use the following procedure:

  1. During preparation and submission of the paper, use an alternate name for each confirmed planet (e.g., KOI number, KIC/KepID, or Kepler XXb).

  2. After the paper is accepted, but before the final page proofs are submitted, send an email to keplernumber@ipac.caltech.edu including:

    • A copy of the letter/notice of acceptance to a peer-reviewed journal
    • A copy of the accepted manuscript
    • A list of the objects which need Kepler numbers, including their KOI and KIC/KepID designations, and
    • The number of planets confirmed around each star.

    Letters for multiple planet systems will be assigned by increasing orbital period. If another order is desired, please explain why and give the requested order.

  3. Kepler numbers will be assigned within two business days unless additional information is required.
  4. Once Kepler numbers are received, replace the alternate (or placeholder) names with the new Kepler numbers as part of the final page-proof process.

Please note the editors of most major astronomical journals have approved this procedure. Newly assigned Kepler numbers will be posted to the Exoplanet Archive once the paper is publicly available (at the journal, astro-ph or other widely available site).

Last updated: 4 February 2015