Accueil > Équipes > Magnétisme Solaire et Stellaire > donati > STEPS PhD position on "Modeling exoplanet hosts : characterizing the optical and nIR spectra of low-mass PMS and MS stars for the SPIRou Legacy Survey"

 

STEPS PhD position on "Modeling exoplanet hosts : characterizing the optical and nIR spectra of low-mass PMS and MS stars for the SPIRou Legacy Survey"

Par Jean-Francois Donati - 29/04/2015

 

STEPS PhD position on "Modeling exoplanet hosts : characterizing the optical and nIR spectra of low-mass PMS and MS stars for the SPIRou Legacy Survey"


Practical information

deadline for application : June 15th, 2015
Job category : PhD position
Duration : 3 yr
Institute / Company name : Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie (IRAP) / Observatoire Midi-Pyrénées (OMP) / Université Fédérale Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées (UFTMiP)
Address : IRAP / OMP / UFTMiP, 14 avenue Belin, F-31400 Toulouse, France
Attention to : Drs JF Donati, G Hussain & J Morin emails for contact & submissions : jean-francois.donati @ irap . omp . eu + ghussain @ eso . org + Julien . Morin @ univ-montp2 . fr


Job description

Applications are invited for a 3yr PhD position in observational stellar astrophysics at IRAP/OMP/UFTMiP. The successful candidate will work with Drs JF Donati (CNRS/IRAP/OMP/UFTMiP), G Hussain (ESO, Chaire d’Attractivité at UFTMiP) and J Morin (Université de Montpellier) on the modeling of exoplanet hosts, by characterizing the optical and nIR spectra of low-mass PMS and MS stars for the SPIRou Legacy Survey.

SPIRou is a new generation near-infrared (nIR) spectropolarimeter / velocimeter currently in construction, and to be installed at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) in 2017. Science wise, SPIRou aims at becoming world-leader on two major science topics, (i) the quest for Earth-like planets in the habitable zones of very-low-mass stars, and (ii) the study of low-mass star & planet formation in the presence of magnetic fields. SPIRou is ideally phased with other forefront exoplanet space missions like TESS & JWST, aiming at detecting Earth-like exoplanets transiting their hosts, and at looking for the potential presence of biomarkers in their atmospheres.

The SPIRou Legacy Survey is a major survey dedicated to the two main science goals of SPIRou, to be carried out over several hundreds of CFHT nights starting in 2018. In this survey, we will observe hundreds of low-mass pre-main sequence (PMS) and main- sequence (MS) low-mass stars that we will need to characterize in detail through their spectra, to accurately determine their photospheric temperatures, surface gravities, and metallicities in a first step (using Phoenix atmospheric models and spectral synthesis), and their masses, radii and ages in a second step (through the Lyon, Grenoble and/or Dartmouth evolutionary models). SPIRou being also a spectropolarimeter, we will also be able to obtain information on the sizes and complexities of the surface magnetic fields of all targeted PMS and MS stars as part of this survey. This accurate characterization is crucial to the success of the SPIRou Legacy Survey.

The goal of this PhD is to construct, test and validate a numerical tool based on spectral synthesis and capable of accurately characterizing the atmospheric properties (including magnetic fields) of the PMS and MS low-mass stars of masses 0.1-1 solar mass, on which the SPIRou Legacy Survey will extensively focus. In a first step, this characterization will be carried out using optical spectra collected with two spectropolarimeters, ESPaDOnS at CFHT and HARPS-Pol at ESO (many of them being already available) ; in a second step, this tool will be ported to nIR wavelengths, e.g., using archival CRIRES spectra of low-mass standard stars and nIR échelle spectra collected specifically in this purpose, and will be used to further validate / complement atmospheric characterization from optical spectra. In particular, this study will make it possible to investigate the impact of magnetic fields on fundamental properties of low mass stars.

The successful candidate will need to have a Master degree in Astrophysics, to be well versed in stellar evolution & formation as well as in astrophysical spectroscopy, and to have some experience in scientific programming (C, Python). He / she will be based at IRAP / OMP / UFTMiP and will regularly visit LUPM and ESO during the course of his / her PhD. Applicants should send their complete CV with full publication list, along with their long-term research project, to jean-francois.donati @ irap . omp . eu, ghussain @ eso . org and Julien . Morin @ univ-montp2 . fr by 2015 June 15th.

Located in Toulouse, France, IRAP / OMP / UFTMiP provides a productive research environment, with 250+ persons working in most domains of astrophysics, from theoretical research to instrumentation.

For more information on SPIRou, visit the SPIRou web site

 

 

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