In Their JWST Era: Searching for Atmospheres on Planets of All Sizes

Apr 06, 2023 - 11:00 am to 12:00 pm

Campus, PAB 102/103

Erin May (APL) In Person and zoom

Zoom Recording

As with many subfields of astrophysics, the successful launch and commissioning of JWST has revolutionized the study of exoplanet atmospheres. In this talk I will put our current state of knowledge of exoplanet atmospheres into context with historic Solar System observations and discuss the new dynamical and atmospheric regimes we’re now sensitive to since the launch of JWST. I will present multi-instrument JWST results on the atmosphere of a gaseous hot Jupiter, compared to previous observations with Hubble and Spitzer, as well as work searching for atmospheres on rocky exoplanets orbiting M-dwarfs with an eye towards the characterization of habitable worlds — a regime truly not accessible until JWST began operations. Finally, I will highlight some of the upcoming transiting exoplanet observations remaining in Cycle 1 and the new ground they will break.