University of Cambridge > > Cavendish Astrophysics Seminars > PICSAT: A space mission dedicated to the transit of Beta Pictoris b

PICSAT: A space mission dedicated to the transit of Beta Pictoris b

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In 2003, Beta Pictoris b, a giant planet, was directly imaged around its host star. The orbit was later refined to a period of approximately 18 years. The orbit agrees with a transit coinciding with previous photometric variations in Nov 81. The next transit event is expected end of 2017, with several months of uncertainty. It is a unique opportunity to characterise an exoplanet in its infancy, to constrain its density, mass, and evolutionary models. PICSAT is a nano satellite currently developed with the main goal of observing this transit. It is based on a 3U Cubsat architecture scheduled for a launch around mid-2017. During this talk, I will present the science goals of the mission, as well as the technical issues we are facing.

This talk is part of the Cavendish Astrophysics Seminars series.

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