SPIROU au Pic du midi (SPIP) est un spectropolarimètre IR (1-2,4µm) spécialisé dans l’étude des exo-terres orbitant en zone habitable autour d’étoiles jeunes de faible masse. SPIROU/SPIP étudierons la naissance des systèmes planétaires et l’importance cruciale des champs magnétiques dans le processus de formation des bébés étoiles et planètes.

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Le projet scientifique de SPIP:

spip2-tbl.pdf 318,47 kB

Présentation de SPIP au colloque de prospective PNPS (24-27 février 2014):

spip-pnps.pdf 4,00 MB

SPIP Science goals & consortium

We recall here the main science programs of SPIP, derived & adapted from those of SPIRou. Like SPIRou, SPIP will mostly concentrate on two main scientific goals. The first one is the search & characterization of habitable exo-Earths orbiting low- mass & very-low mass stars (LMSs & vLMSs) using high-precision radial velocity (RV) spectroscopic measurements. This search will expand the initial, exploratory studies carried out with visible instruments (HARPS & SOPHIE) and will survey in particular a much larger sample of stars.

The second main goal is to explore the impact of magnetic fields on Sun-like star & planet formation, by detecting magnetic fields of various types of low-mass protostars (eg classical T Tauri stars / cTTSs, weak-line T Tauri stars / wTTSs) and by characterizing their large-scale topologies. SPIP will also be capable of investigating the potential presence of close-in giant planets (hot Jupiters / hJs) around protostars, with the aim of clarifying how they form & migrate.

Being both a velocimeter and a spectropolarimeter, SPIP should in particular offer the opportunity of implementing novel techniques to correct RV curves from the activity jitter – a major challenge for future searches of habitable Earth-like planets around Sun-like stars.

SPIP will also be able to tackle a wide variety of other science issues in stellar & planetary physics, as well as in galactic astronomy.

The observing time needed to complete the 2 main science goals only (described in Secs 2.1 & 2.2) is estimated to ~190 nights per year for one decade (see below), comparable to the maximum observing load that TBL can take (given the ~50% clear weather statistics). Counting in all additional programs on SPIP and NARVAL as well, it guarantees in particular that demand for observing time on TBL remains quite high for at least one decade.