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Astro Seminar: Johanna Teske: A Statistical Population Study of Small Planets from TESS

When: Tuesday, February 16, 2021
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM Central

Where: Online

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Yas Shemirani  

Group: Physics and Astronomy Astrophysics Seminars

Category: Academic


Abstract: Recent results on the characterization of small planets have presented two questions: (1) Is there a range of super-Earth and/or sub-Neptune formation mechanisms? and (2) What is the precise and accurate planet mass-radius relation in the <4 Rearth regime? The Magellan-TESS Survey (MTS) is designed to address these two questions in a statistically robust, open framework that can connect observed planet distributions to true underlying populations. It will include mass constraints, host star compositions, and system architectures of 30 small planets detected by TESS across a range of insolation fluxes. Its statistical robustness arises from quantifiable and uniformly applied choices for transiting planet target selection and radial velocity observation cadencing, a new feature compared to most previous follow-up surveys. In this talk I will present the latest results from the MTS, including our hierarchical Bayesian modeling of the mass-radius relation, and discuss next steps for the survey and plans for complementary atmospheric follow-up. Overall, the MTS-style approach to population studies will become increasingly important as we move deeper into the era of exoplanet characterization where observational constraints are more technically challenging and expensive.


Speaker: Johanna Teske, Carnegie Science


Host: Sukrit Ranjan


If you know someone who would be interested in attending this talk, please contact Yas Shemirani ( to access the Zoom link.

Keywords: Physics, Astronomy, Astrophysics

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