LIFE workshop and NAoS publication
The next LIFE workshop will take place January 23/24, 2019, at DLR in Berlin/Adlershof. A program will be announced in due time, but the number of participants is limited. If you are interested in participating, please contact us.
The National Academy of Sciences published their “Exoplanet Science Strategy” report. While the report puts a strong emphasis on future missions detecting planets in reflected light in a first step, mid-infrared interferometry is considered key in the long-run. One of the finding states: “Technology development support in the next decade for future characterization concepts such as mid-infrared (MIR) interferometers […] will be needed to enable strategic exoplanet missions beyond 2040.” Even more important is the following statement: “That said, the common (although often unspoken) belief is that such a nulling, near-infrared (NIR) interferometer would be a necessary follow-up to any reflected light direct imaging mission, as detecting the exoplanet in thermal emission is not only required to measure the temperature of the planet, but is also needed to measure its radius, and so (with an astrometric or radial velocity detection of […] the mass of the planet) measure its density and thus determine if it is truly terrestrial.” In other words, without a mission like LIFE, confirming the true terrestrial nature of a large sample of exoplanets will be impossible!