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Colloquium by Jian Ge (University of Florida)

The Dharma Planet Survey of Rocky Planets around Nearby Solar Type Stars


The Dharma Planet Survey (DPS) is designed to detect and characterize close-in low-mass planets at the orbital region amenable to future space-imaging missions. The ultimate survey goal is to detect potentially habitable super-Earth planet candidates to independently measure its occurrence rate and provide high priority targets for future space imaging missions (such as WFIRST-AFTA and LUVOIR surveyor) to identify possible biomarkers supporting life. DPS is to monitor ~100 nearby very bright FGK dwarfs (V£7) with high cadence (~100 measurements over 450 days) and high precision (~1 m/s) starting in the fall of 2016 using the TOU optical very high resolution spectrograph (R~100,000) at a dedicated 50-inch automatic Telescope on Mt. Lemmon. A pilot survey of 12 FGK dwarfs was carried out in 2015 with a Doppler precision of 0.7-1.8 m/s (RMS) achieved for all of RV stable stars (V=3-6.5). Both RMS of 0.7 m/s achieved with Tau Ceti and the long-term instrument RV stability of ~0.7 m/s are better than that achieved by the current state-of-the-art HARPS instruments. Two strong planet candidates with Neptune and Saturn masses, respectively, have been identified among five new-search stars. The survey plan and early science results will be presented.

Time: June 15, 2016, 2:30 pm

Venue: A601, NAOC