Detection limit spectroscopic analysis of exoplanet atmospheres

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Detection limit spectroscopic analysis of exoplanet atmospheres

Post by Phill on 6th July 2013, 12:04 pm

Just wondering what's the detection limit in lightyears for current ground-based & space telescopes for spectroscopic "sniffing" of exoplanet atmospheres?
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Knowing that the 40 m class E-ELT will be able to check-out Jupiter-like worlds to a distance of 250 lightyears and Earth-anlogues to a distance of 15 lightyears sunny 
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Re: Detection limit spectroscopic analysis of exoplanet atmospheres

Post by Sirius_Alpha on 6th July 2013, 2:30 pm

When it comes to transmission spectroscopy of exoplanet atmospheres, the limiting factor is the host star's apparent brightness, not the distance. If a star in the Andromeda Galaxy had a transiting planet, and was bright enough to be V = 10, we could study it's planet just as well as we could if a V = 10 star in the solar neighbourhood had a transiting planet.

The second major factor is the radius ratio. The planet-to-star radius ratio should be fairly high to ensure a greater signal-to-noise ratio.

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