Cool Stars in the near-Infrared (CSI)


Principal Investigator: Elisa Delgado Mena


Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia

This project takes advantage of our privileged access to the Guaranteed Time Observations (GTO) data from the NIRPS (Near InfraRed Planet Searcher) spectrograph to examine the stellar variability of two populations of stars, namely, M dwarfs and cool massive giants. These stars are excellent targets for near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy due to their high emitted flux at long wavelengths. Spectra and radial velocities (RVs) obtained in the NIR will be compared to their optical counterparts obtained simultaneously with HARPS (High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher) and will help establish what are the best stellar activity indicators in the NIR depending on the type of star. This, in turn, will allow us to differentiate the origin of the RV variations we observe in these stars. With the results of this project in hand, we will be in a much better position to corroborate the tentative planetary signals we have previously found and to address some of the open questions in exoplanetology. Our team has a large experience in the search and characterisation of planets and has developed different tools that will be used and further improved for the purposes of this project. The goal of this project is thus to test novel techniques and explore the viability of different methods using spectra from stars observed through the NIRPS GTO survey. In particular, we are going to search for new activity indicators in the NIR and explore new ways to model stellar activity in these wavelengths so as to improve planet detection and characterisation of cool dwarfs and massive evolved stars. The outcome of the project will likely be highly beneficial not only to NIRPS users, but also in the context of other existing and future NIR planet-hunting surveys.

Total funding: € 50.000,00