Detecting life outside our solar system with a large high-contrast-imaging mission

Ignas A.G. Snellen*, F. Snik, M. Kenworthy, S. Albrecht, G. Anglada-Escudé, I. Baraffe, P. Baudoz, W. Benz, J. L. Beuzit, B. Biller, J. L. Birkby, A. Boccaletti, R. van Boekel, J. de Boer, Matteo Brogi, L. Buchhave, L. Carone, M. Claire, R. Claudi, B. O. DemoryJ. M. Désert, S. Desidera, B. S. Gaudi, R. Gratton, M. Gillon, J. L. Grenfell, O. Guyon, T. Henning, S. Hinkley, E. Huby, M. Janson, C. Helling, K. Heng, M. Kasper, C. U. Keller, O. Krause, L. Kreidberg, N. Madhusudhan, A. M. Lagrange, R. Launhardt, T. M. Lenton, M. Lopez-Puertas, A. L. Maire, N. Mayne, V. Meadows, B. Mennesson, G. Micela, Y. Miguel, J. Milli, M. Min, E. de Mooij, D. Mouillet, M. N’Diaye, V. D’Orazi, E. Palle, I. Pagano, G. Piotto, D. Queloz, H. Rauer, I. Ribas, G. Ruane, F. Selsis, A. Sozzetti, D. Stam, C. C. Stark, A. Vigan, Pieter de Visser

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

In this White Paper, which was submitted in response to the European Space Agency (ESA) Voyage 2050 Call, we recommend the ESA plays a proactive role in developing a global collaborative effort to construct a large high-contrast imaging space telescope, e.g. as currently under study by NASA. Such a mission will be needed to characterize a sizable sample of temperate Earth-like planets in the habitable zones of nearby Sun-like stars and to search for extraterrestrial biological activity. We provide an overview of relevant European expertise, and advocate ESA to start a technology development program towards detecting life outside the Solar System.

Original languageEnglish
JournalExperimental Astronomy
ISSN0922-6435
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

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