Debra Fischer (Yale)

Title: Searching for Earths

Abstract: Doppler searches for exoplanets are now tightly focused on the search for habitable rocky planets, largely because such worlds seem suitable for life that we might recognize. Furthermore, one of the top recommendations from the 2010 Decadal survey is to invest in ground-based radial velocity searches for Earth-like planets around the nearest stars. Despite challenges to high precision Doppler observations (including instrumental, analysis, and astrophysical noise sources), a number of low mass planets have recently been discovered. This talk will highlight our current understanding of exoplanet architectures and the occurrence of lower mass planets and compare the statistical information from Doppler searches of nearby stars to the new exoplanet discoveries from the Kepler mission. This information feeds into plans for the next steps in exoplanet searches.