Spectro-Polarimetry of Self-Luminous Extrasolar Planets
Planets which are old and close to their parent stars are considered as reflecting planets because their intrinsic temperature is extremely low but they are heated strongly by the impinging stellar radiation and hence radiation of such planets are the reflected star light that is governed by the stellar radiation, orbital distance and albedo of the planet. These planets cannot be resolved from the host stars. The second kind of exoplanets are those which are very young and hence they have high intrinsic temperature. They are far away from their star and so they can be resolved by blocking the star-light. It is now realized that radiation of such planets are linearly polarized due to atmospheric scattering and polarization can determine various physical properties including the mass of such directly detected self-luminous exoplanets. It is suggested that a spectropolarimeter of even low spectral resolution and with a capacity to record linear polarization of 0.5–1% at the thirty-meter telescope would immensely help in understanding the atmosphere, especially the cloud chemistry of the self-luminous and resolvable exoplanets.
Volume 40 | Issue 3
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