Poster Abstracts

Name/Affiliation:  Jonathan Irwin (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory)

Title:  The MEarth-North and MEarth-South transit surveys: searching for habitable super-Earth exoplanets around nearby M-dwarfs

Detection and characterization of potentially habitable Earth-size extrasolar planets is one of the major goals of contemporary astronomy. By applying the transit method to very low-mass M-dwarfs, it is possible to find these planets from the ground with present-day instrumentation and observational techniques. The MEarth project is one such survey with stations in both hemispheres: MEarth-North at Mount Hopkins, Arizona, and MEarth-South at CTIO, Chile. We present an update on recent results of this survey, for planet occurrence rates, and interesting stellar astrophysics, for which our sample of 3000 nearby mid-to-late M-dwarfs has been very fruitful. All light curves gathered during the survey are made publicly available after one year, and we describe how to access and use these data.