Exoplanet Studies for Potential Icarus Destination Stars

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A. Hale (2013), JBIS, 66, 38-42

Refcode: 2013.66.38
Keywords: Exoplanets, Exoplanet Detection Methods, Interstellar Spaceflight

Project Icarus is an endeavor to design a robotic mission to one or more nearby stars, utilizing reasonable extrapolations of present-day technology. Among its scientific objectives is to deliver useful scientific data about any associated planetary bodies, and in particular ``planetological and astrobiological data from the close up study of terrestrial planets or satellites'' [1]. Accordingly, it is essential that knowledge of the existence of such worlds be utilized in determining the appropriate stellar destination(s) for Icarus. We examine the techniques currently utilized for exoplanet detection and research, and summarize some of the important discoveries that have been made thus far. We then discuss future planned and potential endeavors, including spacecraft missions, that can specifically detect and analyze exoplanets and other bodies that are of particular interest to Icarus' scientific objectives and that are within the set of Icarus' potential destination stars. This paper is a submission of the Project Icarus Study Group.

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