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Space Telescopes for Exoplanet Science

Travis Barman
Travis Barman
Lunar and Planetary Laboratory
University of Arizona
Physics Auditorium (2020) and Zoom
Special Colloquium

I will introduce two new space telescopes concepts that can observe exoplanet systems across ultraviolet wavelengths. The first is SPARCS (Star-Planet Activity Research CubeSat), hopefully launching next year, and the second is UV-SCOPE (Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Characterization of Planets and their Environments) which is currently under review within NASA’s Medium-class Explorer program. Both SPARCS and UV-SCOPE are driven by the need to better understand the current and past UV exposure experienced by exoplanets and how this exposure influences the demographics and habitability of small exoplanets. Both missions will also improve our understanding of the UV history of M and K stars (the most likely hosts of potentially habitable worlds) as well as improve our understanding of two important exoplanet atmospheric phenomena --- cloud formation and atmospheric escape.

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