Seminar Series

KMTNet: A Cold Exoplanet Census Through a Global Microlensing Survey

Calen Henderson, The Ohio State University

21 Aug 2014 - 15:00

The unique sensitivity of gravitational microlensing to low-mass planets at or beyond the snow line makes it an indispensable tool for understanding the distribution and formation mechanisms of exoplanets. The Korean Microlensing Telescope Network (KMTNet) consists of three 1.6m telescopes each with a 4 square degree field of view and will be dedicated to monitoring the Galactic Bulge in order to detect exoplanets via gravitational microlensing. With its relatively large aperture, large field of view, high cadence, and near-complete longitudinal coverage of the Galactic Bulge for 8 months a year, KMTNet will provide the opportunity to probe exoplanet demographics in a way unbiased by human target selection. I will summarize the prospects of KMTNet's survey based on detailed simulations, highlighting its sensitivity to sub-Earth-mass planets, its expected haul of solivagant planets, and the potential for exoplanet characterization.

LCO Seminar Series,
6740 Cortona Dr, Suite 102,
Goleta, CA 93117