Status Report

All Sky Doppler Extrasolar Planet Surveys with a Multi-object Dispersed Fixed-delay Interferometer

By SpaceRef Editor
January 4, 2003
Filed under , ,

All Sky Doppler Extrasolar Planet Surveys with a Multi-object Dispersed Fixed-delay Interferometer

Jian Ge,
Suvrath Mahadevan,
Julian van Eyken,
Curtis DeWitt (Penn State University),
Stuart Shaklan (Jet Propulsion Laboratory)

Comments: 8 pages, 4 figures, to be published in the Scientif Frontiers in
Research on Extrasolar Planets, ASP Conf. Proceedings, eds. Deming & Seager

We propose to use a high throughput and high precision multi-object dispersed
fixed-delay interferometer for all sky Doppler surveys for extrasolar planets.

This instrument, a combination of a fixed-delay interferometer with a moderate
resolution spectrometer,is completely different from current echelle
spectrometers. Doppler RV is measured through monitoring interference fringe
shifts of stellar absorption lines over a broad band. Coupling this
multi-object instrument with a wide field telescope (a few degree, such as
Sloan and WIYN) and UV, visible and near-IR detectors will allow to
simultaneously obtain hundreds of stellar fringing spectra for searching for
planets. The RV survey speed can be increased by more than 2 orders of
magnitude over that for the echelles.

A prototype dispersed fixed-delay interferometer has been observed at the
Hobby-Eberly 9m and Palomar 5m telescopes in 2001 and demonstrated photo noise
limited Doppler precision with Aldebaran. Our recent observations at the KPNO
2.1m telescope in 2002 demonstrate a short term Doppler precision of ~ 3 m/s
with eta Cas (V = 3.5), a RV stable star and also obtained a RV curve for 51
Peg. (V = 5.5), confirming previous planet detection with an independent RV
technique. The total measured detection efficiency including the sky, telescope
and fiber transmission losses, the instrument and iodine transmission losses
and detector quantum efficiency is 3.4% under 1.5 arcsec seeing conditions,
which is comparable to all of the echelle spectrometers for planet detection.

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