Found 30 talks width keyword exoplanets

Video
Friday April 1, 2011
Dr. Juan Carlos Suarez
Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucia, Spain

Abstract

I present a general overview of the PLAnetary Transits and Oscillations of stars (PLATO) space mission. PLATO was approved by ESA’s Science Programme Committee, together with Euclid and Solar Orbiter missions, to enter the so-called definition phase, i.e. the step required before the final decision is taken (only two missions will be implemented). To be launched in 2018, PLATO is a third generation mission, which will take advantage of the scientific return from the currently flying space missions CoRoT (CNES, ESA, launched in 2006), and Kepler (NASA, launched in 2009). Moreover, the preparation and exploitation of the missions will benefit from the GAIA (ESA) mission data, together with new generation ground-based instrumentation like North-HARPS, GIANO, CARMENES, etc. Finally, I summarize the current organization status of the mission,focusing on the Spanish role within the consortium.


Video
Friday November 19, 2010
Miss Victoria Moulds
Queen's University Belfast, Ireland

Abstract

The RV method is responsible for discovering the majority of planets that orbit stars other than our Sun. However, one problem with this technique is that stellar jitter can cause RV variations that mimic or mask out a planet signature. There have been several instances in the past when stars have shown periodic RV variations which are firstly attributed to a planet and later found to be due to stellar spots, e.g. BD+20 1790 (Figueira, P et al. 2010) and CJ674 (Turnball et al. 204). So far the method of choice to overcome these problems is to avoid observing stars which show levels of high activity. However, this does not solve the problem: it merely avoids it. We have therefore been developing a code which separates out stellar jitter from the RVs to enable active planets to be looked at for planets. I will talk about our technique as well as show some exciting preliminary results.

Video
Monday May 17, 2010
Dr. Vladimir Lipunov
Moscow State University and Sternberg Astronomical Institute, Russia

Abstract

The main goal of the MASTER-Net project is to produce a unique fast sky survey with all sky observed over a single night down to a limiting magnitude of 21. Such a survey will make it possible to address a number of fundamental problems: search for dark energy via the discovery and photometry of supernovae (including SNIa), search for exoplanets, microlensing effects, discovery of minor bodies in the Solar System, and space-junk monitoring. All MASTER telescopes can be guided by alerts, and we plan to observe prompt optical emission from gamma-ray bursts synchronously in several filters and in several polarization planes.

Video
Tuesday May 4, 2010
Dr. Hans Deeg
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain

Abstract

Among the over 450 known exoplanets, the planets that transit their central star stand out, due to the wealth of information that can be gained about both planet and central star. The CoRoT mission has been designed to detect smaller and longer-periodic transiting exoplanets than can be found from ground observations. CoRoT-9b was detected by the satellite in summer 2008 and underwent follow-up observations from ground for another year. It stands out as having the largest periastron distance of all transiting planets, being expected to maintain permanently a moderate surface temperature, estimated between 250 and 430K. It is also the first exoplanet to which planet evolution models can be applied, without uncertain corrections that have been needed for 'hot' transiting planets. These models indicate it to be rather similar to Jupiter. Temperate gas-giant planets with low-to-moderate eccentric orbits constitute the largest group of currently known planets; they are probably similar to the gas giants of the solar system. With CoRoT-9b being this group’s first transiting planet, it may give rise to a much better understanding of these common planets. While CoRoT-9b itself is certainly not habitable, moons around it could be similar to Titan and provide some chance of habitability. Upcoming observations with the Spitzer space telescope are designed to improve on planet parameters and to perform a deeper search for the detection of its moons.


Video
Thursday February 25, 2010
Dr. Eike Günther
Thüringer Landessternwarte, Germany

Abstract

Up to now more than 400 extrasolar planets have been discovered, about 60 of them are transiting. Transiting extra-solar planets are particularly interesting, because their masses, diameters, densities and orientations of their orbits can be determined. Observations with the CoRoT Satellite have now turned up 10 transiting extrasolar planets. Although most of them are gas giants, it turns out that each of them is very special, and many of them have surprising properties. An unexpected discovery was for example the detection of emission lines from CoRoT 1b. Other interesting discoveries are CoRoT 2b, a planet orbiting a young star, and CoRoT 3b the first transiting brown dwarf orbiting a main sequence star. While the detection of transiting gas giants is interesting, the ultimate goal of CoRoT clearly was the detection of rocky planets. CoRoT has detected a solar-like star which shows transits that are only 0.03% deep. In this talk it it is demonstrated that this planet is in fact the first planet found outside our solar system from which we can firmly say that it is a rocky planet. New observations of this interesting object even constrain the properties of its exosphere.


Video
Wednesday December 2, 2009
Dr. Elisa Delgado Mena
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain

Abstract

The surface abundance of lithium on the Sun is 140 times less than protosolar, yet the temperature at the base of the surface convective zone is not hot enough to burn Li. A large range of Li abundances in solar type stars of the same age, mass and metallicity is observed, but theoretically difficult to understand. An earlier suggestion that Li is more depleted in stars with planets was weakened by the lack of a proper comparison sample of stars without detected planets. Here we report Li abundances for an unbiased sample of solar-analogue stars with and without detected planets. We find that the planet-bearing stars have less than 1 per cent of the primordial Li abundance, while about 50 per cent of the solar analogues without detected planets have on average 10 times more Li. The presence of planets may increase the amount of mixing and deepen the convective zone to such an extent that the Li can be burned. We also present Be abundances for a sample of stars with and without known planets and discuss the possible relation of these light element with the presence of planetary systems.

Video
Friday November 6, 2009
Prof. Kazunari Shibata
Hida Observatories, Kyoto University, Japan

Abstract

The 3.8m optical and infrared telescope, which is Japan's first segmented mirror telescope, is now being constructed using the world's first super high precision, high speed grinding technology and the world's first truss structure drive system. This is the joint project between Kyoto University, Nagoya University, National Astronomical Observatory, and Nano-Optonics Energy (private company) with the budget of the Nnao-Optonics Energy and Dr Hiroshi Fujiwara (CEO of the Nano-Optonics Energy). The telescope will be completed in 2012 and installed in Okayama, and will become the biggest optical and infrared telescope in east Asia. The technologies for making this telescope such as (1) grinding technology, (2) segmented mirror, and (3) truss structure drive system are also basic technologies for the future extremely large telescope such as the 30m telescope. The scientific objective of the telescope is the search for the transient objects (gamma ray bursts, black hole binaries, stellar flares) and the extra solar planets. How this project has emerged and developed will be discussed in detail, including also the discussion about the possible future international collaboration.

Video
Friday June 12, 2009
Dr. Enric Pallé Bago
Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, Spain

Abstract

Of the 342 planets discovered so far orbiting other stars, 58 'transit' the stellar disk, meaning that they can be detected by a periodic decrease in the starlight flux. The light from the star passes through the atmosphere of the planet, and in a few cases the basic atmospheric composition of the planet can be estimated. As we get closer to finding analogues of Earth, an important consideration toward the characterization of exoplanetary atmospheres is what the transmission spectrum of our planet looks like. Here we report the optical and near-infrared transmission spectrum of the Earth, obtained during a lunar eclipse. Some biologically relevant atmospheric features that are weak in the reflected spectrum (such as ozone, molecular oxygen, water, carbon dioxide and methane) are much stronger in the transmission spectrum, and indeed stronger than predicted by modeling. We also find the fingerprints of the Earth's ionosphere and of the major atmospheric constituent, diatomic nitrogen (N2), which are missing in the reflected spectrum. Our results indicate that the technique of transit spectroscopy of rocky planets may be a very powerful tool for exoplanet atmospheric characterization, and is likely to provide the first detection of a habitable exobiosphere.

Video
Thursday January 29, 2009
Dr. Christopher Watson
University of Belfast, Northern Ireland

Abstract

SuperWASP is the UK's leading extra-solar planet detection program, having detected 22 of the 52 transiting planets known to date. This stems from the instruments ability to image ~500 square degrees every 60sec down to 16th mag (equivalent to the whole visible sky every 20 minutes). Recent experiments have shown that the data from SuperWASP can be reduced with 1 min of it being obtained and with further software development we will be able to identify transient sources within minutes of their observation. Detailed analysis of SuperWASP-N data has shown many populations of transient objects, including rapidly variable objects, which seem to correspond to extremely faint objects in the Sloan survey. Spectroscopy of these objects has proved challenging.

Video
Thursday October 30, 2008
Prof. Edward Guinan
Villanova University, USA

Abstract

Red Dwarf (dM) stars are the most numerous stars in our Galaxy. These faint, cool, long-lived, and low mass stars make up > 80% of all stars in the Universe. Determining the number of red dwarfs with planets and assessing planetary habitability (a planet’s potential to develop and sustain life) are critically important because such studies would indicate how common life is in the universe. Our program - "Living with a Red Dwarf" addresses these questions by investigating the long-term nuclear evolution and magnetic-dynamo coronal and chromospheric X-ray to Ultraviolet properties of red dwarf stars with widely different ages. The major focus of the program is to study the magnetic-dynamo generated X-ray-Ultraviolet emissions and flare properties of red dwarf stars from youth to old age. Emphasized are how the stellar X-UV emissions, flares & winds affect hosted planets and impact their habitability. We have developed age-rotation-activity relations and also are constructing irradiance tables (X-UV fluxes) that can be used to model the effects of X-UV radiation on planetary atmospheres and on possible life on nearby hosted planets. Despite the earlier pessimistic view that red dwarfs stars are not suitable for habitable planets - mainly because their low luminosities require a hosted planet to orbit quite close (r <0.3 AU) to be sufficiently warm to support life. Our initial results indicate that red dwarf stars (in particular the warmer dM stars) can indeed be suitable hosts for habitable planets capable of sustaining life for hundreds of billion years. Some examples of red dwarf stars currently known to host planets are discussed.

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