Direct Imaging of exoplanets in the mid-infrared regime
Dr. Prashant Pathak
University of Liège, Belgium
Date & Time :
The direct imaging of rocky exoplanets is one of the key science goals of current and upcoming large telescopes. The contrast requirement for imaging such planets is challenging. However, the mid-IR (infrared) regime provides the optimum contrast to directly detect the thermal signatures of exoplanets in our solar neighborhood. In this talk, I will cover two mid-IR high-contrast imaging (HCI) instruments: NEAR (Earths in the Alpha Cen Region) and METIS (mid-infrared imager and spectrograph). The NEAR experiment: demonstration of HCI capability at ten microns, can reach sub-mJy detection sensitivity in a few hours of observation time, which is sufficient to detect a few Jupiter mass planets in nearby systems. I will cover the working and science results obtained with the instrument. METIS is the 1st generation ELT (Extremely Large Telescope) instrument. I will discuss its HCI capabilities, and the system engineering behind its final design and performance.
About Speaker :
Dr. Pathak is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at STAR Institute, University of Liege, Belgium. Before that, he was an Engineering and Technology Research Fellow at ESO, Garching, Germany between 2018 and 2021. He obtained his Ph.D. in astronomical instrumentation at SOKENDAI, Japan in 2017. His main research interests are (i) direct imaging and characterization of Exoplanets, (ii) Adaptive optics and wavefront control techniques, and (iii) Ground and space-based infrared instrumentation. This seminar is a part of the activities commemorating "75 years of India's Independence: Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav" at ARIES.