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Extrasolar Planets: July 2021


The Keck Planet Imager and Characterizer (KPIC) is a purpose-built instrument to demonstrate new technological and instrumental concepts initially developed for the exoplanet direct imaging field.

The discovery of a large number of terrestrial exoplanets in the habitable zones of their stars, many of which are qualitatively different from Earth, has led to a growing need for fast and flexible 3D climate models, which could model such planets and explore multiple possible climate states and surface conditions.

In the search for life in the cosmos, transiting exoplanets are currently our best targets. In the search for life in the cosmos, transiting exoplanets are currently our best targets. With thousands already detected, our search is entering a new era of discovery with upcoming large telescopes that will look for signs of life in the atmospheres of transiting worlds.

Many exoplanets have opaque atmospheres, obscured by clouds or hazes that make it hard for astronomers to characterize their chemical compositions. A new study shows that haze particles produced under different conditions have a wide range of properties that can determine how clear or hazy a planet's atmosphere is likely to be.