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Proceedings Paper

TPF-Emma: concept study of a planet finding space interferometer
Author(s): Stefan R. Martin; Daniel Scharf; Richard Wirz; Oliver Lay; David McKinstry; Bertrand Mennesson; George Purcell; Jose Rodriguez; Laurence Scherr; James R. Smith; Leonard Wayne
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Paper Abstract

A novel space interferometer design originating in Europe has been studied. The interferometer uses the technique of starlight nulling to enable detection of earth-like planets orbiting nearby stars. A set of four telescope spacecraft flying in formation with a fifth, beam-combiner spacecraft forms the interferometer. This particular concept shows potential for reducing the mission cost when compared with previous concepts by greatly reducing the complexity of the telescope spacecraft. These spacecraft have no major deployable systems, have simplified propulsion and a more rugged construction. The formation flying geometry provides for greater average separation between the spacecraft with commensurate risk reduction. Key aspects of the design have been studied at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory with a view to collaborations between NASA and the European Space Agency. An overview of the design study is presented with some comparisons with the TPF-FFI concept.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 September 2007
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 6693, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets III, 669309 (19 September 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.734835
Show Author Affiliations
Stefan R. Martin, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Daniel Scharf, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Richard Wirz, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Oliver Lay, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
David McKinstry, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Bertrand Mennesson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
George Purcell, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Jose Rodriguez, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Laurence Scherr, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
James R. Smith, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Leonard Wayne, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6693:
Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets III
Daniel R. Coulter, Editor(s)

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