NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2016A-0382

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Program Information for 2016A-0382


PI: Adam Kraus, U. of Texas, Austin, alk@astro.as.utexas.edu
Address: 2515 Speedway Ave, Stop C1400, Austin, TX, USA 78701 USA

CoI: Lucas Cieza, Universidad Diego Portales
CoI: David Lafreniere, University of Montreal
CoI: Michael Ireland, Australian National U.
CoI: Anand Sivaramakrishnan, STScI
CoI: Marshall Perrin, STScI
CoI: Alexandra Greenbaum, Johns Hopkins U.
CoI: Peter Tuthill, U. of Sydney
CoI: James Lloyd, Cornell U.
CoI: Sylvestre Lacour, Observatoire de Paris
CoI: Jennifer Patience, Arizona State U.
CoI: Anthony Cheetham, U. of Sydney
CoI: Aaron C Rizzuto, U. of Texas, Austin
CoI: John Carpenter, California Institute of Technology
CoI: Laurent Pueyo, STScI
CoI: David Principe, Universidad Diego Portales
CoI: Simon Casassus, Universidad de Chile
CoI: Alice Zurlo, Universidad Diego Portales
CoI: Sasha Hinkley, University of Exeter

Title: The Planetary Systems of Young Massive Stars

Abstract: We propose to use the Gemini Planet Imager with nonredundant mask interferometry (NRM) to study planet formation around 38 massive stars in the Upper Scorpius region of the 5-20 Myr old Scorpius- Centaurus OB association. Sco-Cen is the nearest large population of young massive stars (d=150 pc), but analogs of our own gas giants (5-20 AU) have projected separations of only ~40-150 mas and thus fall inside the inner working angle of the GPI coronagraph. The extremely young planets in this separation range should be quite bright (contrasts of ~1000:1 in K-band), but even so, traditional imaging cannot efficiently access this separation range. As our team has demonstrated with precursor science at Keck and the VLT, advanced techniques such as NRM are needed to achieve the necessary sensitivity at these small separations. Indeed, GPI-NRM will reach a contrast (>8 magnitudes, >2000:1 at 5-sigma) which is sufficient to detect massive gas giants in Sco-Cen down to the diffraction limit (~40 mas), and even slightly below. GPI-NRM provides the only means of probing the same region of orbital space for more massive stars as will be probed for closer, less massive stars with coronagraphic imaging. Through this unique approach, our survey will fill a major hole in our understanding of extrasolar planets by measuring the frequency of planetary companions around 2--5 Msun stars, determining the primordial state of planetary systems and testing interior and evolution models of giant planets.

Program Type: Standard/Galactic

Scheduled Nights:
Run 1 (2016A):  GEM-SQ/GPI -- 17.4hrs band 1 (GS-2016A-Q-23)


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