The Frequency of Potentially Habitable Planets Orbiting Small Stars and the Characterization of Planets Orbiting Bright Kepler Targets
Courtney Dressing (Harvard)
January 29, 2015
Abstract: I will estimate the frequency of potentially habitable planets orbiting M dwarfs and describe an ongoing effort to constrain the compositions of small planets based on measurements made by the Kepler space telescope and the HARPS-N spectrograph at the Italian National Telescope Galileo. I will concentrate specifically on the rocky planet Kepler-93b, a planet roughly 1.5 times the size of the Earth orbiting a bright, asteroseismically-characterized host star. Comparing Kepler-93b to other small planets with precisely-determined masses and radii, we find that all dense planets smaller than 2.7 Earth radii can be explained by a single Earth-like compositional model.