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Astrophysics Colloquium

The ExoGRAVITY Large Program: New Constraints on Planet Formation Models from Dual-field Optical Interferometry
Presented by Mathias Nowak
Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge

Thursday, November 12, 2020
Virtual Event starts at 11:00 A.M.

With the detection of the giant planet HR 8799 e with VLTI/GRAVITY (Gravity Collaboration et al. 2019), optical interferometry is now a new arrow in the quiver of exoplanet observers. By taking advantage of the angular resolution offered by 100+ meter baselines, optical interferometers can separate a dim exoplanet from the overwhelming residual starlight.

Starting from the physics of long-baseline interferometry, I will go through a description of VLTI/GRAVITY, its peculiar "dual-field" mode, and explain how exoplanets are observed with this instrument. I will then discuss the most recent results obtained, and in particular the direct observation of the young giant beta Pictoris c. I will show how GRAVITY, when used in conjunction with other facilities and instruments, can bring new constraints on planet formation models.

JPL Contact: Bertrand Mennesson

SVCP Astrophysics

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