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Proceedings Paper

How ELTs will acquire the first spectra of rocky habitable planets
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Paper Abstract

ELTs will offer angular resolution around 10mas in the near-IR and unprecedented sensitivity. While direct imaging of Earth-like exoplanets around Sun-like stars will stay out of reach of ELTs, we show that habitable planets around nearby M-type main sequence stars can be directly imaged. For about 300 nearby M dwarfs, the angular separation at maximum elongation is at or beyond 1 ë/D in the near-IR for an ELT. The planet to star contrast is 1e-7 to 1e-8, similar to what the upcoming generation of Extreme-AO systems will achieve on 8-m telescopes, and the potential planets are sufficiently bright for near-IR spectroscopy. We show that the technological solutions required to achieve this goal exist. For example, the PIAACMC coronagraph can deliver full starlight rejection, 100% throughput and sub-ë/D IWA for the EELT, GMT and TMT pupils. A closely related coronagraph is part of SCExAO on Subaru. We conclude that large ground-based telescopes will acquire the first high quality spectra of habitable planets orbiting M-type stars, while future space mission(s) will later target F-G-K type stars.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 September 2012
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 8447, Adaptive Optics Systems III, 84471X (13 September 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.927181
Show Author Affiliations
Olivier Guyon, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Steward Observatory, Univ. of Arizona (United States)
College of Optical Sciences, Univ. of Arizona (United States)
Frantz Martinache, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Eric J. Cady, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Ruslan Belikov, NASA Ames Research Ctr. (United States)
Kunjithapatham Balasubramanian, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Daniel Wilson, Jet Propulsion Lab. (United States)
Christophe S. Clergeon, Subaru Telescope, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (United States)
Mala Mateen, College of Optical Sciences, The Univ. of Arizona (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8447:
Adaptive Optics Systems III
Brent L. Ellerbroek; Enrico Marchetti; Jean-Pierre Véran, Editor(s)

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