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The path to the detection of Earth-type planets

Tuesday, 16 December, 2014 - 16:00
Salle Solvay
ULB Campus Plaine, Triomflaan toegang 2, 1050 Brussel
Solvay
colloquium

Astronomer Michel Mayor

In this Solvay Colloquium, professor Michel Mayor from Geneva University in Switzerland will look into our possibilities to detect and study planets as small as Earthanalogues. What are the instruments in development and their scientific goals? 

How many planets are there in the Milky Way? And how many planets are similar to our Earth? The possibilities to answer these questions are getting larger and larger. 

Over the last twenty years significant results have been obtained in the domain of extrasolar planets. More than one thousand planets have characterized orbits, for several hundred of them their radii are known. We have discovered an amazing diversity of planetary systems. These observations have revealed the importance of new physical process to be taken into account for the formation and evolution of planetary systems. The synergy between ground-based radial velocity measurements and the detection of transiting planets have permitted exciting possibilities to characterize planets. Already we have the possibility to get clues on the internal composition of exoplanets and their atmosphere.

This Solvay Colloqium takes place on Tuesday 16 December 2014 at 4.00 P.M. Coffee and tea will be served at 3.45 P.M., in front of the Solvay room, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Campus Plaine - Boulevard du Triomphe, Access 2, 1050 Brussels.

Michel Mayor has been awarded the Viktor Ambartsumian International Prize 2010 for his outstanding contributions in the field of planetary systems, together with two other astronomers.

The Solvay Colloquium is free for everybody.