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15 July 2010 An optical frequency comb for infrared spectrograph calibration
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The search for extrasolar planets is an exciting new field of astronomy. Since detection of a planet orbiting the sun-like star 51 Peg,1 the field of planet finding has pushed the limits of sensitivity and accuracy in astronomical photometry and spectroscopy. To date 455 exoplanets have been detected*, of which the radial velocity technique is responsible for nearly 80%.2 Radial velocity measurements are also an important complement to photometric missions such as Kepler and CoRoT, which survey vast numbers of stars simultaneously but which require follow up measurements for positive identification of planets. The chief objective in the search for exoplanets is the identification of habitable Earth-like planets in close proximity to our solar system. Of the currently detected exoplanets, only a few are Earth-like,3 the vast majority being giants in close orbits. While it is possible that these planets are the most common type, it is likely that an inherent selection bias in planet finding techniques is the cause. Simply, large radial velocity shifts and high contrast occultations are the most detectable by radial velocity spectroscopy and photometry, and so we primarily observe planets capable of inducing them.
© (2010) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Gabriel G. Ycas, Franklyn Quinlan, Steven Osterman, Gillian Nave, and Scott A. Diddams "An optical frequency comb for infrared spectrograph calibration", Proc. SPIE 7735, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy III, 77352R (15 July 2010);

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