IAS Program on Particle Theory

Optimizing Kilopixel MKID Arrays for Exoplanet Direct Imaging


Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors (MKIDs) could provide the leap in capabilities required to directly detect terrestrial exoplanets. Exoplanet high contrast imagers are currently limited by a residual speckle pattern noise that cannot be sensed by the telescope adaptive optics. MKIDs offer read- and dark-noise free photon counting and energy resolving capabilities, on kilo-pixel arrays. These unique properties allow for new speckle suppression techniques to enable the detection of lower mass planets at smaller separations. In this talk, the speaker will outline some of the challenges in setting up a kilo-pixel class MKID array for high contrast imaging, some of the first on-sky results of the DARKNESS instrument, and up-coming research formally characterizing these instruments in the context of extremely large telescopes.

About the program

For more information, please refer to the program website at http://iasprogram.ust.hk/particle_theory.

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