The quest to detect an Earth-analog has been one of the driving forces behind decades of exoplanet science. I will give an overview of advancements in precision photometry and RV instrumentation which have moved us closer to this goal, as well as the challenges that must still be addressed before we can achieve it. Though a true Earth-analog around a G-type star remains out of reach for the moment, nearby K- and M-dwarfs are extremely promising targets around which to search for small (R < 4 R_E, M ~< 10 M_E), possibly terrestrial worlds. I will make the case that it is K-dwarfs, not M-dwarfs, which hold the best overall prospects for detection with current instruments, characterization with upcoming facilities (such as the Habitable Worlds Observatory), and opportunities for astrobiology. I will also discuss preliminary results from my ongoing NEID survey, SNEAK, a Search for Nearby Exoplanets Around K-dwarfs.
Host: Jessica Libby-Roberts
Seminar held in 538 Davey or please email CEHW-SEMINAR-QUESTIONS@lists.psu.edu to attend virtually.