Finding Planets with Microlensing: Present and Future

Event Date: 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - 4:00pm

Event Location: 

  • Broida Conference Room 3302

Event Contact: 

Kristian Finlator

Speaker:

Jennifer Yee (Ohio State University)

I will discuss some of the recent microlensing planet discoveries. Even though the numbers are small, these initial discoveries enabled the first measurement of the frequency of planets beyond the snow line. New, second-generation microlensing surveys are coming online, allowing an order of magnitude more stars to be effectively monitored for microlensing planets. In order to take maximum advantage of these new surveys, we need to systematically analyze all events for planets. I will present initial work I have done to explore these thresholds so that real signals may be separated from systematics. Understanding the detection thresholds will allow us to find planets even at the limits of detection and create a large, statistically rigorous sample of planets with which we can study properties of the planet population beyond the snow line.