The Kepler Space Telescope was the workhorse of exoplanet discovery until its second reaction wheel failed, rendering it incapable of continuing its original mission. Now, Kepler is back in the game of planet hunting.
The recent discoveries of alien worlds seemingly rich in carbon reveal a lot of diverse information about the history and further evolutionary paths of exoplanets. However, a correct physical understanding of the investigated systems is crucial for getting the most out of incoming data and is an area of very active research. Therefore, the theoretical modeling of exoplanetary systems must be advanced to a state which includes the long-term evolution of the distribution of detectable molecular species in the planet forming environment.
Super-Earths could form close-in to their stars… but what about their atmospheres?
MINERVA: Detecting Super-Earths from the ground in a modular, cost-effective manner.
The Kepler Mission has measured planet radii and orbital periods for 3,000+ light curves. So what is next? Either we convince the continental USA to become amateur astronomers… Or we figure out ways to retrieve more planetary parameters from the Kepler data set. I’ll stick with the later. And so will the authors or this paper.
Habitable zone estimations take the climate regulation of the carbon cycle into account. But are we drawing the edges of the habitable zone too wide?
Are you on the lookout to see if there are habitable planets are out there? Or do you want to see how or if physical ‘constants’ have varied with time? Why not design a versatile instrument capable at tackling a wealth of outstanding questions in astronomy: a sort of a “scientific pandora’s box” for extremely high precision astronomical research? This is where ESPRESSO comes in…
We have one canonical idea of what life looks like on Earth: nitrogen, water, carbon dioxide. But would this be true on another world? When looking for life in the atmospheres of exoplanets, we might want to consider searching for something completely different.
Over the past decade the study of planetary debris at white dwarfs has become an increasingly exciting area. Observations of this debris have allowed us to make unique discoveries about the chemical composition of extrasolar rocky planets, as well as revealing the endpoints of the evolution of planetary systems very similar to our own…