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Finding Exoplanets with the Gemini Planet Imager

September 1, 2017 @ 7:00 pm

- Free

The Gemini Planet Imager Exoplanet Survey (GPIES) officially launched in November 2014 is an ambitious multi-year study dedicated to observing 600 young nearby star systems to image young Jupiters and planet forming debris disks using the GPI instrument installed on the Gemini South telescope in Chile. The GPI instrument team and the GPIES survey team are composed of researchers from several dozen institutions in North and South America; the teams are led by Bruce Macintosh at Stanford University.Project challenges run the gamut from instrument engineering to data analysis to theoretical modeling of planets’ atmospheres. The engineering challenges are daunting: GPI takes pictures of planets orbiting stars many lightyears away. These high-resolution images must be able to detect planets a million times fainter than their host stars despite looking through Earth’s turbulent atmosphere. Adaptive Optics Vanessa’s specialty is a key to obtaining these images. In this talk Vanessa will give us an overview of the challenges of building and operating a planet imaging instrument the role of adaptive optics and some of GPIES’ exciting and unexpected results.Speaker: Dr. Vanessa Bailey Stanford


September 1, 2017
7:00 pm