Colloquium: William Cochran

"Searching for other Earths: Results from the Kepler Mission"

Abstract: The Kepler spacecraft, launched in March 2009, is designed to detect potentially habitable Earths around other stars by detecting the transits of these planets across the disks of their parent stars. This requires performing differential photometry to a precision of 20ppm on a sample of 170,000 stars for a period of 3.5 years. I will present scientific results from the first 2.5 years of Kepler data. In addition to showing details of several transiting multi-planet systems, I will present statistical results on the frequency of planetary candidates around Kepler target stars, and observations of several other interesting (non-planetary) objects.

William Cochran , Senior Research Scientist
The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Astronomy