In September 2014, ExEP initiated four ‘Quick Studies’ of science topics of major interest to the three exoplanet mission concepts currently underway, to help the STDTs in preparing their Final Reports (due January 2015):

The Studies were chartered to address what physical properties of known radial-velocity gas giant planets could be characterized via a reference mission with direct-imaging space telescope, and how well those properties and disks could be estimated.

For these Studies, the reference mission was considered to be a generic observing system in space, comprising either a telescope with an internal coronagraph or a telescope with an external star shade. Both types of systems were assumed to be capable of providing visible photometry and spectra according to the following guideline performance parameters:

  • Spectral range 400 to 1000 nm
  • Broad-band (~10-15%) photometric images of the systems, in 3 or more bands across the spectrum
  • SNR values of 5 or more
  • Spectra at a resolution of about 50-70 with contrast-limited SNR with an integral field spectrometer from 600-1000 nm
  • Polarization capability (Wollaston prism in imaging mode)

The Quick Study leads delivered their reports in November 2014. The reports are available on ArXiv through the following links: