21 July 2014 High contrast imaging at the LBT: the LEECH exoplanet imaging survey
Author Affiliations +
In Spring 2013, the LEECH (LBTI Exozodi Exoplanet Common Hunt) survey began its ~130-night campaign from the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) atop Mt Graham, Arizona. This survey benefits from the many technological achievements of the LBT, including two 8.4-meter mirrors on a single fixed mount, dual adaptive secondary mirrors for high Strehl performance, and a cold beam combiner to dramatically reduce the telescope’s overall background emissivity. LEECH neatly complements other high-contrast planet imaging efforts by observing stars at L’ (3.8 μm), as opposed to the shorter wavelength near-infrared bands (1-2.4 μm) of other surveys. This portion of the spectrum offers deep mass sensitivity, especially around nearby adolescent (~0.1-1 Gyr) stars. LEECH’s contrast is competitive with other extreme adaptive optics systems, while providing an alternative survey strategy. Additionally, LEECH is characterizing known exoplanetary systems with observations from 3-5μm in preparation for JWST.
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Andrew J. Skemer, Andrew J. Skemer, Philip Hinz, Philip Hinz, Simone Esposito, Simone Esposito, Michael F. Skrutskie, Michael F. Skrutskie, Denis Defrère, Denis Defrère, Vanessa Bailey, Vanessa Bailey, Jarron Leisenring, Jarron Leisenring, Daniel Apai, Daniel Apai, Beth Biller, Beth Biller, Mickaël Bonnefoy, Mickaël Bonnefoy, Wolfgang Brandner, Wolfgang Brandner, Esther Buenzli, Esther Buenzli, Laird Close, Laird Close, Justin Crepp, Justin Crepp, Robert J. De Rosa, Robert J. De Rosa, Silvano Desidera, Silvano Desidera, Josh Eisner, Josh Eisner, Jonathan Fortney, Jonathan Fortney, Thomas Henning, Thomas Henning, Karl-Heinz Hofmann, Karl-Heinz Hofmann, Taisiya Kopytova, Taisiya Kopytova, Anne-Lise Maire, Anne-Lise Maire, Jared R. Males, Jared R. Males, Rafael Millan-Gabet, Rafael Millan-Gabet, Katie Morzinski, Katie Morzinski, Apurva Oza, Apurva Oza, Jenny Patience, Jenny Patience, Abhijith Rajan, Abhijith Rajan, George Rieke, George Rieke, Dieter Schertl, Dieter Schertl, Joshua Schlieder, Joshua Schlieder, Kate Su, Kate Su, Amali Vaz, Amali Vaz, Kimberly Ward-Duong, Kimberly Ward-Duong, Gerd Weigelt, Gerd Weigelt, Charles E. Woodward, Charles E. Woodward, Neil Zimmerman, Neil Zimmerman, "High contrast imaging at the LBT: the LEECH exoplanet imaging survey", Proc. SPIE 9148, Adaptive Optics Systems IV, 91480L (21 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2057277; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2057277

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