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Proceedings Paper

ESPRESSO, an exo-Earths hunter for the VLT
Author(s): Denis Mégevand; Filippo M. Zerbi; Paolo Di Marcantonio; Alexandre Cabral; Francesco Pepe; Stefano Cristiani; Rafael Rebolo; Nuno C. Santos; Hans Dekker; Manuel Abreu; Michael Affolter; Matteo Aliverti; Manuel Amate; Gerardo Avila; Veronica Baldini; Paul Bristow; Christopher Broeg; Roberto Cirami; João Coelho; Paolo Conconi; Igor Coretti; Guido Cupani; Valentina D'Odorico; Vincenzo De Caprio; Bernard Delabre; Reinhold Dorn; Pedro Figueira; Ana Fragoso; Samuele Galeotta; Ludovic Genolet; Ricardo Gomes; Jonay Gonzalez Hernandez; Ian Hughes; Olaf Iwert; Florian Kerber; Marco Landoni; Jean-Louis Lizon; Christophe Lovis; Charles Maire; Marco Mannetta; Carlos Martins; Paolo Molaro; Manuel Monteiro; Antonio Oliveira; Maria Rosa Zapatero Osorio; Ennio Poretti; José Luis Rasilla; Marco Riva; Samuel Santana Tschudi; Pedro Santos; Danuta Sosnowska; Sergio Sousa; Fabio Tenegi; Giorgio Toso; Eros Vanzella; Matteo Viel
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Paper Abstract

ESPRESSO is the next European exoplanets hunter. It will combine the efficiency of modern echelle spectrograph with extreme radial-velocity precision. It will be installed at Paranal's VLT in order to achieve two magnitudes gain with respect to its predecessor HARPS, and the instrumental radial-velocity precision will be improved to reach 10 cm/s level. We have constituted a Consortium of astronomical research institutes to fund, design and build ESPRESSO on behalf of and in collaboration with ESO, the European Southern Observatory. The project has passed the final design review in May 2013. The spectrograph will be installed at the Combined Coudé Laboratory of the VLT, it will be linked to the four 8.2 meters Unit Telescopes through four optical "Coudé trains" and will be operated either with a single telescope or with up to four UTs, enabling an additional 1.5 magnitude gain. Thanks to its characteristics and ability of combining incoherently the light of 4 large telescopes, ESPRESSO will offer new possibilities in many fields of astronomy. Our main scientific objectives are, however, the search and characterization of rocky exoplanets in the habitable zone of quiet, near-by G to M-dwarfs, and the analysis of the variability of fundamental physical constants. In this paper, we will present the scientific objectives, the capabilities of ESPRESSO, the technical solutions for the system and its subsystems, enlightening the main differences between ESPRESSO and its predecessors. The project aspects of this facility are also described, from the consortium and partnership structure to the planning phases and milestones.

Paper Details

Date Published: 26 September 2013
PDF: 22 pages
Proc. SPIE 8864, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets VI, 88640E (26 September 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2022520
Show Author Affiliations
Denis Mégevand, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Filippo M. Zerbi, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Paolo Di Marcantonio, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Alexandre Cabral, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Francesco Pepe, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Stefano Cristiani, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Rafael Rebolo, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Nuno C. Santos, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Hans Dekker, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Manuel Abreu, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Michael Affolter, Univ. Bern (Switzerland)
Matteo Aliverti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Manuel Amate, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Gerardo Avila, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Veronica Baldini, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Paul Bristow, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Christopher Broeg, Univ. Bern (Switzerland)
Roberto Cirami, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
João Coelho, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Paolo Conconi, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Igor Coretti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Guido Cupani, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Valentina D'Odorico, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Vincenzo De Caprio, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Bernard Delabre, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Reinhold Dorn, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Pedro Figueira, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Ana Fragoso, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Samuele Galeotta, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Ludovic Genolet, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Ricardo Gomes, LOLS, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Jonay Gonzalez Hernandez, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Ian Hughes, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Olaf Iwert, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Florian Kerber, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Marco Landoni, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Jean-Louis Lizon, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Christophe Lovis, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Charles Maire, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Marco Mannetta, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Carlos Martins, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Paolo Molaro, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Manuel Monteiro, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Antonio Oliveira, LOLS, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Maria Rosa Zapatero Osorio, Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (Spain)
Ennio Poretti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
José Luis Rasilla, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Marco Riva, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Samuel Santana Tschudi, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Pedro Santos, LOLS, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Danuta Sosnowska, Observatoire de Genève (Switzerland)
Sergio Sousa, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Fabio Tenegi, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Giorgio Toso, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Eros Vanzella, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Matteo Viel, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8864:
Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets VI
Stuart Shaklan, Editor(s)

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