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Proceedings Paper

ESPRESSO: the radial velocity machine for the VLT
Author(s): Denis Mégevand; Filippo M. Zerbi; Paolo Di Marcantonio; Alexandre Cabral; Marco Riva; Manuel Abreu; Francesco Pepe; Stefano Cristiani; Rafael Rebolo Lopez; Nuno C. Santos; Hans Dekker; Matteo Aliverti; Carlos Allende; Manuel Amate; Gerardo Avila; Veronica Baldini; Timothy Bandy; 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 González Hernández; Ian Hughes; Olaf Iwert; Florian Kerber; Marco Landoni; Jean-Louis Lizon; Christophe Lovis; Charles Maire; Marco Mannetta; Carlos C. J. A. P. Martins; Paolo Molaro; Manuel A. S. Monteiro; Manuele Moschetti; Antonio Oliveira; Maria Rosa Zapatero Osorio; Ennio Poretti; José Luis Rasilla; Samuel Santana Tschudi; Pedro Santos; Danuta Sosnowska; Sérgio Sousa; Fabio Tenegi; Giorgio Toso; Eros Vanzella; Matteo Viel
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Paper Abstract

ESPRESSO is the next generation ground based European exoplanets hunter. It will combine the efficiency of modern echelle spectrograph with extreme radial-velocity and spectroscopic 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 spectrograph will be installed at the Combined Coudé Laboratory (CCL) 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. The project is, for most of its workpackages, in the procurement or development phases, and the CCL infrastructure is presently under adaptation work. In this paper, we present the scientific objectives, the capabilities of ESPRESSO, the technical solutions for the system and its subsystems. 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: 8 July 2014
PDF: 18 pages
Proc. SPIE 9147, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy V, 91471H (8 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2055816
Show Author Affiliations
Denis Mégevand, Observatoire de l’Univ. 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)
Marco Riva, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Manuel Abreu, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Francesco Pepe, Observatoire de l’Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
Stefano Cristiani, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Rafael Rebolo Lopez, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Nuno C. Santos, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Hans Dekker, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Matteo Aliverti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Carlos Allende, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Manuel Amate, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Gerardo Avila, European Southern Observatory (Germany)
Veronica Baldini, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Timothy Bandy, Univ. Bern (Switzerland)
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 l’Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
Ricardo Gomes, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Jonay González Hernández, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Ian Hughes, Observatoire de l’Univ. 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 l’Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
Charles Maire, Observatoire de l’Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
Marco Mannetta, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Carlos C. J. A. P. Martins, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Paolo Molaro, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Trieste (Italy)
Manuel A. S. Monteiro, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
Manuele Moschetti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
Antonio Oliveira, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Maria Rosa Zapatero Osorio, Ctr. de Astrobiología (Spain)
Ennio Poretti, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera (Italy)
José Luis Rasilla, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Samuel Santana Tschudi, Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain)
Pedro Santos, Univ. de Lisboa (Portugal)
Danuta Sosnowska, Observatoire de l’Univ. de Genève (Switzerland)
Sérgio 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. 9147:
Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy V
Suzanne K. Ramsay; Ian S. McLean; Hideki Takami, Editor(s)

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