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An introduction to exoplanets
An introduction to exoplanets

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6  Summary of Week 7

This week, you’ve learned about the concept of transmission spectroscopy, and you’ve had the opportunity to try out being an exoplanet atmosphere detective. You’ve also learned about measurement uncertainty – one of the most important concepts in all scientific disciplines – and you’ve discussed some of the things that can affect it. You’ve been introduced to some of the most exciting and wonderful exoplanets we’ve discovered so far, and looked for the most up-to-date news on them.

You should now be able to:

  • have a qualitative appreciation of how transmission spectroscopy tells us which atoms and molecules are present in exoplanet atmospheres
  • appreciate why astronomers can get better measurements when an object is nearby
  • recognise the importance of:
    • HD 189733 b, HD 209458 b and WASP-12 b
    • GJ 1214 b and GJ 1132 b
    • Kepler-1520 b
    • the TRAPPIST-1 system.

Next week, you’ll look at potentially the most important exoplanet discovery there will ever be. You’ll also learn how we expect to find out even more about these brave new worlds with future observatories.

You can now go to Week 8 [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .