First planet confirmation with a dispersed fixed-delay interferometer

J. C. Van Eyken, J. Ge, S. Mahadevan, C. Dewitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


The Exoplanet Tracker is a prototype of a new type of fiber-fed instrument for performing high-precision relative Doppler measurements to detect extrasolar planets. A combination of Michelson interferometer and medium-resolution spectrograph, this low-cost instrument facilitates radial velocity measurements with high throughput over a small bandwidth (∼300 Å) and has the potential to be designed for multiobject operation with moderate bandwidths (∼1000 Å). We present the first planet detection with this new type of instrument, a successful confirmation of the well-established planetary companion to 51 Peg, showing an rms precision of 11. 5 m s-1 over 5 days. We also show comparison measurements of the radial velocity stable star, η Cas, showing an rms precision of 7.9 m s -1 over 7 days. These new results are starting to approach the precision levels obtained with traditional radial velocity techniques based on cross-dispersed echelles. We anticipate that this new technique could have an important impact in the search for extrasolar planets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L79-L82
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 II
StatePublished - Jan 1 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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