CTC Seminar for 2023-12-13

Series: CTC Seminar
Date: Wednesday 13-Dec-2023
Time: 11:30-12:30 pm
Location: PSC 1136
Speaker: Corey Spohn (NASA GSFC)
Title: Scheduling direct imaging observations and surveys of exoplanets already detected with radial velocity

Abstract: NASA is in the early planning phase of a flagship, space-based telescope called the Habitable Worlds Observatory (HWO), which has a preliminary goal of directly imaging 25 Earth-like exoplanets to search for biosignatures. Earth-like exoplanets will be among the faintest objects ever observed, possibly requiring weeks of observation time per target. This makes the efficiency of the observations incredibly important for both the success of the survey and maximizing the time available for other science programs. Obviously, it is easier to image an Earth-like exoplanet if it has already been detected and the expectation is that radial velocity (RV) data will be used to inform HWO's survey. This presentation demonstrates, with many fun animations, what RV data can and cannot provide for imaging, how to estimate when a planet detected with RV will be detectable with an imaging instrument, and how to solve the Travelling Salesman-like problem of generating efficient imaging schedules with constraint programming. Full simulations show that an HWO-like telescope can directly image 32 Earth-like exoplanets in 375 days of observation time if a 5-year extreme precision RV survey takes place before the launch of HWO.

Guidelines and format for the CTC Lunch seminars.
Past CTC Lunch seminars.
For other questions, contact the CTC Lunch host: Matt Nixon


Special accommodations for individuals with disabilities can be made by calling (301) 405-3001. It would be appreciated if we are notified at least one week in advance.


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