EAS Publications Series

Research Article

Exo-planet search from Dome C and space – a comparative study

2nd ARENA Conference: The Astrophysical Science Cases at Dome C, Potsdam, Germany.

H. Rauera1, T. Frutha1 and A. Eriksona1

a1 Institut für Planetenforschung, DLR, Rutherfordstr. 2, 12489 Berlin, Germany


The search for extrasolar transiting planets requires high accuracy photometric observations over a long time basis. The method therefore favors observing sites allowing for long uninterrupted observations, or observations with space satellites. The first space mission searching for planetary transits is the French-led CoRoT mission launched in December 2006. Its longest observing sequences span 150 days, whereas Dome C can provide a ground-based site for observations over 2–3 months. Full observational coverage of at least three transit events up to about two weeks orbital period can be obtained from Dome C during one winter season when realistic conditions for cloud coverage are taken into account. The efficiency can be further optimized if Dome C is combined with other sites at low-latitudes, closing the gap of the summer break in Antarctica.

(Online publication November 13 2008)