Monitoring the high-energy radiation environment of exoplanets around low-mass stars with SPARCS (Star-Planet Activity Research CubeSat)

Paul Scowen, Evgenya Shkolnik, David Ardila, Travis Berman, Matthew Beasley, Judd Bowman, Michael Fitzgerald, Varoujan Gorjian, Daniel Jacobs, April Jewell, Joe Llama, Victoria Meadows, Shouleh Nikzad, Constance Spittler, Mark Swain, Robert Zellem

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Roughly 40 billion M dwarfs in our galaxy host at least one small planet in the habitable zone (HZ). The stellar ultraviolet (UV) radiation from M dwarfs is strong and highly variable, and impacts planetary atmospheric loss, composition and habitability. These effects are amplified by the extreme proximity of their HZs (0.1-0.4 AU). Knowing the UV environments of M dwarf planets will be crucial to understanding their atmospheric composition and a key parameter in discriminating between biological and abiotic sources for observed biosignatures. The Star-Planet Activity Research CubeSat (SPARCS) will be a 6U CubeSat devoted to photometric monitoring of M stars in the far-UV and near-UV, measuring the time-dependent spectral slope, intensity and evolution of low-mass star high-energy radiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSpace Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018
Subtitle of host publicationUltraviolet to Gamma Ray
EditorsShouleh Nikzad, Jan-Willem A. Den Herder, Kazuhiro Nakazawa
PublisherSPIE
Volume10699
ISBN (Print)9781510619517
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018
EventSpace Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray - Austin, United States
Duration: Jun 10 2018Jun 15 2018

Other

OtherSpace Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
CountryUnited States
CityAustin
Period6/10/186/15/18

    Fingerprint

Keywords

  • Cubesat
  • Exoplanet
  • Habitability
  • Imaging
  • Low Mass Stars
  • Photometry
  • Radiation Environment
  • Ultraviolet

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

Cite this

Scowen, P., Shkolnik, E., Ardila, D., Berman, T., Beasley, M., Bowman, J., Fitzgerald, M., Gorjian, V., Jacobs, D., Jewell, A., Llama, J., Meadows, V., Nikzad, S., Spittler, C., Swain, M., & Zellem, R. (2018). Monitoring the high-energy radiation environment of exoplanets around low-mass stars with SPARCS (Star-Planet Activity Research CubeSat). In S. Nikzad, J-W. A. Den Herder, & K. Nakazawa (Eds.), Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray (Vol. 10699). [106990F] SPIE. https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2315543