ESA Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory (EChO)

2012

ESA Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory (EChO)Project overview

The Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory, EChO, will be the first dedicated mission to investigate the physics and chemistry of Exoplanetary Atmospheres. It will place our Solar System in context and by addressing the suitability of planets for life will allow us to address some of the fundamental questions of the Cosmic Visions programme.

EChO will provide high resolution, simultaneous multi-wavelength spectroscopic observations on a stable platform that will allow very long exposures. The use of passive cooling, few moving parts and well established technology gives a low-risk and potentially long-lived mission.

The University of Reading is currently undergoing a feasibility study for the design and development of mid-infrared dichroic beamsplitters for EChO with on-going future research looking into the fabrication of precision thin-film coatings.

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