April 16, 2021


Virtual via WebEx
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The ExoExplorer Science Series presents talks by cohort members David Coria (U Kansas) and Jason Williams (USC/Carnegie) on April 16, 2021 from 1-2 pm Pacific / 4-5 pm Eastern. Connection information below

David Coria (U Kansas)

"The Missing Link: Connecting Exoplanets and Galactic Chemical Evolution via Stellar Abundances"

Jason Williams (USC/Carnegie)

"The Design and Construction of Henrietta, a high-precision low resolution near-infrared spectrograph to explore exoatmospheres"

When JWST comes online in 2022, it will usher in a golden age of exoatmosphere characterization. Given that available time for exoatmosphere studies will be limited with JWST, it will be impossible for it to survey most exoplanet atmospheres. Thus, it is critically important not only that we have the capability to prioritize the most promising targets for JWST follow-ups, but also multiple instruments available to study the multitude of targets JWST won’t get a chance to survey. These considerations have led to the design of Henrietta, a high-precision, low resolution near-infrared spectrograph for the 1-m Swope Telescope at Las Campanas Observatory. I will talk about why high-precision ground-based spectrophotometry is so challenging in the infrared and how Henrietta’s design choices seek to mitigate these issues. If successful, Henrietta will operate near the photon noise limit and will have ample amounts of telescope time. This will not only provide a consistent stream of targets to JWST, but will also be extremely scientifically productive in its own right - allowing us to begin to place exoplanet atmospheres in a statistical context - and serve as a pathfinder instrument for future ground-based exoatmosphere instruments.

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