Research Division Seminar
Hunting exoplanets with the ESPRESSO spectrograph

Dr. Pedro Figueira


The search for extrasolar planets is one of the fastest-growing fields of astronomy. This rapid growth was both made possible by the development of instrumentation and motivated it, creating a virtuous cycle that impacted positively several fields of research.

In this talk I will present the latest planet-hunting spectrograph ESPRESSO, installed at ESO's VLT. Targeting a radial velocity precision of 10 cm/s, ESPRESSO has the declared goal of detecting an Earth-mass planet inside the habitable zone of a main-sequence dwarf star. I will discuss the first results, ongoing campaigns, and reveal a bit of what the future holds for us.