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Perspectives of the Radial Velocity Method: Physical Modeling of the Wavelength Solution & Exoplanetary Detections around Giant Stars

Tala Pinto, Marcelo Said

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First, I present the design and construction of the Front-end of the Waltz Spectrograph. I designed upgrades in the system to optimize its mechanical stability and light coupling efficiency. To improve the instrument performance, I changed the original spectrograph fiber for one with slightly larger core and better focal ratio degradation, providing a spectral resolving power of 60.000, a mean spectral sampling of 2.6 pixels and only 5% losses due to focal ratio degradation. In the second part I present a ray tracing software that calculates the optical path of individual rays through an echelle spectrograph from the slit to the detector. By including the effects of the environment on the physical properties of the optical elements that compose the spectrograph, I am able to reproduce some of the trends observed in the time series of the spectral line positions of the calibration data. Finally, I report the discovery of two planets orbiting the stars HD 25723 and 17 Sco and two planet candidates orbiting 3 Cnc and 44 Uma. Also, I investigate the planet occurrence rates as a function of evolutionary stage for two surveys, Lick and EXPRESS, concluding that there is no strong effect of stellar evolution in planet occurrence rates.

Item Type: Dissertation
Supervisor: Quirrenbach, Prof. Dr. Andreas
Place of Publication: Heidelberg
Date of thesis defense: 16 July 2019
Date Deposited: 30 Jul 2019 09:36
Date: 2019
Faculties / Institutes: The Faculty of Physics and Astronomy > Dekanat der Fakultät für Physik und Astronomie
Subjects: 520 Astronomy and allied sciences
Controlled Keywords: Astronomisches Instrument, Planetensystem, Landessternwarte Königstuhl
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