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Proceedings Paper

Zodiac II: debris disk science from a balloon
Author(s): Geoffrey Bryden; Wesley Traub; Lewis C. Roberts; Robin Bruno; Stephen Unwin; Stan Backovsky; Paul Brugarolas; Supriya Chakrabarti; Pin Chen; Lynne Hillenbrand; John Krist; Charles Lillie; Bruce Macintosh; Dimitri Mawet; Bertrand Mennesson; Dwight Moody; Zahidul Rahman; Justin Rey; Karl Stapelfeldt; David Stuchlik; John Trauger; Gautam Vaischt
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Paper Abstract

Zodiac II is a proposed balloon-borne science investigation of debris disks around nearby stars. Debris disks are analogs of the Asteroid Belt (mainly rocky) and Kuiper Belt (mainly icy) in our Solar System. Zodiac II will measure the size, shape, brightness, and color of a statistically significant sample of disks. These measurements will enable us to probe these fundamental questions: what do debris disks tell us about the evolution of planetary systems; how are debris disks produced; how are debris disks shaped by planets; what materials are debris disks made of; how much dust do debris disks make as they grind down; and how long do debris disks live? In addition, Zodiac II will observe hot, young exoplanets as targets of opportunity. The Zodiac II instrument is a 1.1-m diameter SiC telescope and an imaging coronagraph on a gondola carried by a stratospheric balloon. Its data product is a set of images of each targeted debris disk in four broad visiblewavelength bands. Zodiac II will address its science questions by taking high-resolution, multi-wavelength images of the debris disks around tens of nearby stars. Mid-latitude flights are considered: overnight test flights within the United States followed by half-global flights in the Southern Hemisphere. These longer flights are required to fully explore the set of known debris disks accessible only to Zodiac II. On these targets, it will be 100 times more sensitive than the Hubble Space Telescope's Advanced Camera for Surveys (HST/ACS); no existing telescope can match the Zodiac II contrast and resolution performance. A second objective of Zodiac II is to use the near-space environment to raise the Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of SiC mirrors, internal coronagraphs, deformable mirrors, and wavefront sensing and control, all potentially needed for a future space-based telescope for high-contrast exoplanet imaging.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 September 2011
PDF: 16 pages
Proc. SPIE 8151, Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets V, 81511E (15 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.899688
Show Author Affiliations
Geoffrey Bryden, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Wesley Traub, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Lewis C. Roberts, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Robin Bruno, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Stephen Unwin, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Stan Backovsky, ATK Space Systems (United States)
Paul Brugarolas, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Supriya Chakrabarti, Boston Univ. (United States)
Pin Chen, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Lynne Hillenbrand, California Institute of Technology (United States)
John Krist, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Charles Lillie, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems (United States)
Bruce Macintosh, Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (United States)
Dimitri Mawet, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Bertrand Mennesson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Dwight Moody, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Zahidul Rahman, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Justin Rey, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems (United States)
Karl Stapelfeldt, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
David Stuchlik, NASA Wallops Flight Facility (United States)
John Trauger, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Gautam Vaischt, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8151:
Techniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets V
Stuart Shaklan, Editor(s)

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