On the potentially dramatic history of the super-Earth ρ 55 Cancri e

We demonstrate that tidal evolution of the inner planet (‘e') of the system orbiting the star ρ 55 Cancri could have led to passage through two secular resonances with other planets in the system. The consequence of this evolution is excitation of both the planetary eccentricity and inclination relative to the original orbital plane. The large mass ratio between the innermost planet and the others means that these excitations can be of substantial amplitude and can have dramatic consequences for the system organization. Such evolution can potentially explain the large observed mutual inclination between the innermost and outermost planets in the system, and implies that tidal heating could have substantially modified the structure of planet e, and possibly reduced its mass by Roche lobe overflow. Similar inner secular resonances may be found in many multiple planet systems and suggest that many of the innermost planets in these systems could have suffered similar evolutions.