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1 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA: On the Pathway toward Habitable Worlds R. D. Gehrz a, D. Angerhausen.

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Presentation on theme: "1 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA: On the Pathway toward Habitable Worlds R. D. Gehrz a, D. Angerhausen."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA: On the Pathway toward Habitable Worlds R. D. Gehrz a, D. Angerhausen b, E. E. Becklin c, M. A. Greenhouse d, S. Horner e, A. Krabbe b, M. R. Swain f, and E. T. Young c a Department of Astronomy, University of Minnesota, b Deutsches SOFIA Institut (DSI), University of Stuttgart, c Universities Space Research Association, d NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, e Lockheed Martin, f JPL/Caltech

2 2 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Outline SOFIA Description and Status Report SOFIA Performance Specifications SOFIA Studies of Extrasolar Planetary Systems Summary and Conclusions

3 3 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA Program Overview

4 4 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA Overview 2.5 m telescope in a modified Boeing 747SP aircraft –Imaging and spectroscopy from 0.3 m to 1.6 mm –Emphasizes the obscured IR ( m) Operational Altitude –39,000 to 45,000 feet (12 to 14 km) –Above > 99.8% of obscuring water vapor; Transmission > 80% Joint Program between the US (80%) and Germany (20%) –First Light in 2010 –20 year design lifetime –can respond to changing technology –Science Operations: NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA –Flight Operations: Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility, Palmdale, CA –Deployments to the Southern Hemisphere and elsewhere –> hour flights per year

5 5 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Above 99.8% of the water vapor Transmission at 14 km >80% from 1 to 800 µm; emphasis on the obscured IR regions from 30 to 300 µm Instrumentation: wide variety, rapidly interchangeable, state- of-the art – SOFIA is a new observatory every few years! Mobility: anywhere, anytime Twenty year design lifetime A near-space observatory that comes home after every flight The Advantages of SOFIA

6 6 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 The SOFIA Observatory open cavity (door not shown) TELESCOPE pressure bulkhead scientific instrument scientist stations, telescope and instrument control, etc. Educators work station

7 7 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Back End of the SOFIA Telescope

8 8 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA First Generation Spectroscopy 8 FIFI LS 6/16/2009 The Eight First Generation SOFIA Science Instruments (SIs)

9 9 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Photometric Sensitivity and Angular resolution SOFIA is diffraction limited beyond 25 µm (θmin ~ λ/10 in arcseconds) and can produce images three times sharper than those made by Spitzer SOFIA is as sensitive as ISO

10 10 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Early General Observer and Instrumentation Development Opportunities Early Basic Science for GOs in 2010 with FORCAST and GREAT –Draft call was released in Jan 2009 –Final call to be released in December 2009 –Longer period (~15 Flights) General Observer (GO) Science: First Call for proposals in late 2010 – 20 flights per year until full science operations begin in 2014 Next Call for New Instruments in FY 2011 –One new instrument or instrument upgrade per year –New calls every three years –Funding for new instruments is ~$10 M/yr

11 11 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIA Studies of Extrasolar Planetary Systems

12 12 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 The Physics and Chemistry of Protoplanetary Disks High spectral resolution enables dynamical studies and can establish where different atomic, molecular, and solid state species reside in the disk small stellar-centric radii are associated with wide, double- peaked line profiles; large radii with narrow line profiles Observing many disks of different ages will trace the temporal evolution of disk dynamics and chemistry Simulations from N. J. Evans et al. 2009

13 13 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Transits provide good estimates for the mass, size and density of the planet Transits can reveal the presence of, satellites, and/or planetary rings Spectroscopic observations can reveal the presence and composition of an atmosphere SOFIA and Extra-solar Planet Transits There are 358 extra-solar planets; more than 59 transit their primary star SOFIA flies above the scintillating component of the atmosphere where it can detect transits of planets across bright stars at high signal to noise HD b transit: a) artists concept and b) HST STIS data a) b)

14 14 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Using HIPO and FLITECAM for Observations of Exoplanet Transits HIPO: Fast Imager; operates from 0.3 to 1.1 µm with interference filters, spectral resolution TBD by application FLITECAM: Imager; operates from 1.0 to 5.5 µm with interference filters and grisms; spectral resolutions as high as R = = 2000 HIPO and FLITECAM can observe simultaneously using a dichroic beam splitter We will also evaluate the FORECAST Imager for doing exoplanet transit observations: operates from 5.6 to 38 µm with interference filters and grisms; spectral resolutions as high as R = = 2000

15 15 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Advantages of SOFIA for Transit Observations Observations are not dependant on the weather that affects ground-based telescopes > 6 hour transits (e. g. HD80606b) can be observed continuously with SOFIA (HST can only observe for 96 minute stretches) SOFIAs lifetime and mobility support long-term studies of temporal variations in exoplanet atmospheres. SOFIA can observe within 20 degrees of the Sun)

16 16 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Transit Spectroscopy of Exoplanet Atmospheres Barman, T., 2007, ApJ, 661, L191 Knutson et al., 2007, ApJ, 655, 564 Technique of Transit Spectroscopy relies on variation of planet radius with wavelength These STIS data reveal the signature of water HIPO and FLITECAM co-mounted on SOFIA will permit simultaneous observations over a broad wavelength range HD b Model atmospheric radii with H 2 O (dark red line) and without H 2 O(dotted red line) compared with observations (bars)

17 17 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Detection of Biogenic Molecules in Extrasolar Planetary Atmospheres by the transit Method M. R. Swain et al. 2009, ApJ, 690, L114 HD b

18 18 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Biogenic Molecules in the Atmospheres of Extrasolar Planets M. R. Swain et al. 2008, Nature, 452, 329 Methane in the atmosphere of HD b

19 19 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 First Direct Spectroscopic Comparison of two Exoplanet Atmospheres M. R. Swain et al. 2009, ApJL, in press Comparison of dayside emission spectra of HD b and HD b, shows: Significant CH 4 enhancement in HD b Suggestion of enhancement in the abundance of CH 4 and H 2 O in HD b

20 20 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Where SOFIA can Contribute to Spectroscopic Studies of Exoplanet Atmospheres Synthetic spectra of hypothetical exoplanet atmospheres with significant abundances of CH 4, H 2 O, & CO 2 shows that these atmospheres produce significant absorption and emission features at wavelengths obscured from the ground but available at SOFIA altitudes M. R. Swain et al. 2009, ApJL, in press

21 21 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Summary SOFIA will be a premier facility for far-IR and submillimeter spectroscopy for many years It will be especially effective for spectroscopic studies of the physics and chemistry of: Proto-planetary disks The atmosphers Extrasolar planets Special emphasis will be given to biogenic molecules Our Web site: This talk:

22 22 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 Backup

23 23 R. D. Gehrz Pathways toward Habitable Planets, Barcelona, Spain, 16 September, 2009 SOFIAs First-Generation Instruments * Facility-class instrument ** Developed as a PI-class instrument, but will be converted to Facility-class during operations


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