20 July 2010 The habitable zone planet finder: a proposed high-resolution NIR spectrograph for the Hobby Eberly Telescope to discover low-mass exoplanets around M dwarfs
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Abstract
The Habitable Zone Planet Finder (HZPF) is a proposed instrument for the 10m class Hobby Eberly telescope that will be capable of discovering low mass planets around M dwarfs. HZPF will be fiber-fed, provide a spectral resolution R~ 50,000 and cover the wavelength range 0.9-1.65μm, the Y, J and H NIR bands where most of the flux is emitted by midlate type M stars, and where most of the radial velocity information is concentrated. Enclosed in a chilled vacuum vessel with active temperature control, fiber scrambling and mechanical agitation, HZPF is designed to achieve a radial velocity precision < 3m/s, with a desire to obtain <1m/s for the brightest targets. This instrument will enable a study of the properties of low mass planets around M dwarfs; discover planets in the habitable zones around these stars, as well serve as an essential radial velocity confirmation tool for astrometric and transit detections around late M dwarfs. Radial velocity observation in the near-infrared (NIR) will also enable a search for close in planets around young active stars, complementing the search space enabled by upcoming high-contrast imaging instruments like GPI, SPHERE and PALM3K. Tests with a prototype Pathfinder instrument have already demonstrated the ability to recover radial velocities at 7-10 m/s precision from integrated sunlight and ~15-20 m/s precision on stellar observations at the HET. These tests have also demonstrated the ability to work in the NIR Y and J bands with an un-cooled instrument. We will also discuss lessons learned about calibration and performance from our tests and how they impact the overall design of the HZPF.
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Suvrath Mahadevan, Suvrath Mahadevan, Larry Ramsey, Larry Ramsey, Jason Wright, Jason Wright, Michael Endl, Michael Endl, Stephen Redman, Stephen Redman, Chad Bender, Chad Bender, Arpita Roy, Arpita Roy, Stephanie Zonak, Stephanie Zonak, Nathaniel Troupe, Nathaniel Troupe, Leland Engel, Leland Engel, Steinn Sigurdsson, Steinn Sigurdsson, Alex Wolszczan, Alex Wolszczan, Bo Zhao, Bo Zhao, } "The habitable zone planet finder: a proposed high-resolution NIR spectrograph for the Hobby Eberly Telescope to discover low-mass exoplanets around M dwarfs", Proc. SPIE 7735, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy III, 77356X (20 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.857551; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.857551
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