Evenings with Astronomers: Breakthroughs in Discerning New Worlds – Dr. Heather Knutson

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The past decade has marked a period of great progress in our quest to discover and characterize exoplanets, or planets outside of our own solar system. Observations of transiting exoplanets, in which the planet periodically passes in front of and then behind its parent star as seen from Earth, have given us fascinating insights into exoplanet meteorology. Caltech Professor Heather A. Knutson and her team are leaders in studying the diverse properties of these distant atmospheres, including their compositions, temperatures, and global circulation patterns, using a combination of both space- and ground-based facilities, including the W. M. Keck Observatory. Enjoy this grand tour of what is currently known about the nature of these alien worlds and Knutson’s plans for further exploration of earth-like planets.

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UCLA observers will work with MOSFIRE tonight. And UCI/UCB observers will work with NIRC2-LGS/NIRC2-NGS. Sun set 05:59:00pm rise 06:12:00am
Observers from UCR will use MOSFIRE on Keck 1, while on Keck 2, UCI observers will use DEIMOS. Sun set 06:00:00pm rise 06:12:00am
On Keck 1, we have UCR observers using LRIS-ADC. On Keck 2, we have Swinburne observers using ESI. Sun set 06:00:00pm rise 06:11:00am
CIT observers will use LRISP-ADC on Keck 1, and UCSC observers will use ESI on Keck 2 tonight. Sun set 06:01:00pm rise 06:11:00am
Our guests tonight are observers from UCSC and Swinburne, using LRISP-ADC and DEIMOS respectively. Sun set 06:02:00pm rise 06:10:00am