Univ. ManchesterFaculty of SEPhysics & AstronomyJodrell BankIntranet

research projects

Below are a few projects that I am currently working on, or have recently completed.

projects: current

Transmission spectroscopy of exoplanet atmospheres. Together with my former PhD student, Dr Supachai Awiphan (NARIT), I lead SPEARNET (Spectroscopy and Photometry of Exoplanetary Atmospheres Research Network). SPEARNET is a systematic transmission spectrosopy survey of the atmospheres of hot transiting exoplanets. We are gathering observations using a world-wide heterogeneous telescope network. Our first study involving the hot neptune GJ3470b, confirmed Rayleigh scattering in its atmosphere and also placed limits on the mass and proximity of neighbouring planets in the system.

Space-based microlensing detection of cool exoplanets. Microlensing is the best available method for detecting cool low-mass exoplanets, a vital but currently under-explored region of exoplanet discovery space. Such surveys may be undertaken from space in the near-future by the ESA Euclid and/or NASA WFIRST missions. I supervised the development of one of the most advanced microlensing exoplanet simulators. It is now being used by ESA and NASA to evaluate exoplanet science programmes with Euclid and WFIRST. I co-lead the ESA Exoplanet Science Working Group.

The VVV survey - A massive infrared survey of variable stars in the inner Galaxy, to be conducted with the World's largest infrared telescope, which will help us to understand its 3D structure in greater detail

Synthetic microlensing models - The full exploitation of Galactic microlensing datasets is ever more demanding as the datasets continue to accumulate. One promising approach is to use theoretical microlensing predictions based upon state-of-the-art synthetic models of our Galaxy

(more about these projects...)

projects: previous

The POINT-AGAPE survey - A microlensing survey which looked for evidence of astrophysical dark matter in the Andromeda Galaxy, our nearest giant galactic neighbour

The Angstrom Project - Detecting microlensing events in the Andromeda Galaxy, as they happen, in order to probe the 3D structure if its inner regions, and maybe even open the door to detecting planets in other galaxies!

Classical Novae in M31 - The first automated selection of novae in the Andromeda Galaxy as determined from their brightness profiles, and a possible resolution to the apparently different nova rates in Andromeda and our own Galaxy

(more about these projects...)

If you are interested in pursuing an MSc or PhD and would like to work on microlensing then you are encouraged to email me via the address on the left-hand panel. You should also look at the microlensing group web page on the main Jodrell Bank website for more details on microlensing work carried out here.

Last updated
25 Oct 2017
by Eamonn Kerins