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New Entry in High Precision Spectroscopy

10 Jan 2020, 18:38 UTC
New Entry in High Precision Spectroscopy NSF’s National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory/KPNO/NSF/AURA

With NEID, we continue the movement in radial velocity studies down to measurements well below 1 meter per second. Long-time Centauri Dreams readers will know that for a long time, the HARPS spectrograph (High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher) at the ESO La Silla 3.6m telescope, has been considered the gold standard, taking us down to 1 meter per second, meaning that scientists could discern via Doppler methods the tiny pull of a planet on the star first towards us, and then away from Earth. The ESPRESSO instrument (Echelle Spectrograph for Rocky OxoPlanet and Stable Spectroscopic Observations) installed at the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile, takes us into centimeters per second range, which means detecting habitable zone planets around Sun-like stars.

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