Venue: The Linnean Society of London, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BF, UK
Molten Exoplanets as a Window into the Earliest Earth
Dr Tim Lichtenberg (Winton Award Geophysics delayed from March 2023)
Due to the absence of a reliable rock record from the Hadean eon, our understanding of the environment that gave rise to life on our own planet is clouded. Current and upcoming exoplanet surveys, however, significantly widen our view of the distribution and variability of rocky planets and their chemical inventories, giving opportunity to test scenarios of early planetary evolution and atmospheric formation. I will describe how rocky exoplanets in a partially or fully molten state open a novel window into on the earliest, high-temperature evolutionary regime of rocky worlds. Increasing reconnaissance of high-temperature super-Earths will enable us to infer the early climatic and geodynamic evolution of temperate rocky worlds, providing crucial information on the environmental context of the origins of life on Earth and are the next key step toward the characterisation of prebiotic and potentially habitable exoplanets.
Dr Tim Lichtenberg: PhD 2018, ETH Zurich, Department of Earth Sciences, 2018-2022 SNSF & Simons Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Oxford, Atmospheric Physics Since autumn 2022, Assistant Professor, Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, University of Groningen
Dr Oliver Allanson (Fowler Award Geophysics)
“Understanding the Earth’s radiation belts: our local, superscale, relativistic particle accelerator”
Weighing exoplanets through a telescope network
Dr Annelies Mortier
The radial velocity (RV) technique, using high-resolution spectra, is currently the only viable technique to measure masses of small exoplanets. Due to inherent limitations of the transit technique, longer period exoplanets such as those resembling planets in the Solar System, are also better detected via RVs. An inherent barrier to finding many small long-period exoplanets is observing time. Due to the combination of signal aliasing, stellar variability, and the long-period nature of these planet signals, it is crucial to have densely sampled data over a long period of time. This talk will describe the current state of the field, the need for a stabilised spectroscopy network, and the wide variety of science such a network can unlock.
Annelies Mortier is an assistant professor at the University of Birmingham. After her undergraduate studies at the Universities of Ghent (Be) and Leiden (NL), she obtained her PhD from the University of Porto (PT). Before moving to Birmingham in 2022, she has done a postdoc at the University of St Andrews and a senior Kavli Fellowship at the University of Cambridge. She is an observational astronomer playing around with stars and their exoplanets.