Quick-MESS: A Fast Statistical Tool for Exoplanet Imaging Surveys

M. Bonavita*, E. J. W. de Mooij, R. Jayawardhana

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Several tools have been developed in the past few years for the statistical analysis of the exoplanet search surveys, mostly using a combination of Monte Carlo simulations or a Bayesian approach. Here we present Quick-MESS, a grid-based, non-Monte Carlo tool aimed to perform statistical analyses on results from direct imaging surveys, as well as help with the planning of these surveys. Quick-MESS uses the (expected) contrast curves for direct imaging surveys to assess for each target the probability that a planet of a given mass and semimajor axis can be detected. By using a grid-based approach, Quick-MESS is typically more than an order of magnitude faster than tools based on Monte Carlo sampling of the planet distribution. In addition, Quick-MESS is extremely flexible, enabling the study of a large range of parameter space for the mass and semimajor axes distributions without the need of resimulating the planet distribution. In order to show examples of the capabilities of Quick-MESS, we present the analysis of the Gemini Deep Planet Survey and the predictions for upcoming surveys with extreme-AO instruments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)849-856
Number of pages8
JournalPublications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Volume125
Issue number929
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013

Keywords

  • EXTRASOLAR GIANT PLANETS
  • SUN-LIKE STARS
  • BROWN DWARFS
  • MASS
  • DETECTABILITY
  • SIMULATION
  • SEARCH
  • YOUNG
  • RARE

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