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SPIRou: NIR velocimetry and spectropolarimetry at the CFHT

J.-F. Donati, D. Kouach, C. Moutou, R. Doyon, X. Delfosse, E. Artigau, S. Baratchart, M. Lacombe, G. Barrick, G. Hébrard, F. Bouchy, L. Saddlemyer, L. Parès, P. Rabou, Y. Micheau, F. Dolon, V. Reshetov, Z. Challita, A. Carmona, N. Striebig, S. Thibault, E. Martioli, N. Cook, P. Fouqué, T. Vermeulen, S.-Y. Wang, L. Arnold, F. Pepe, I. Boisse, P. Figueira, J. Bouvier, T. Ray, C. Feugeade, J. Morin, S. Alencar, M. Hobson, B. V. Castilho, S. Udry, N. C. Santos, O. Hernandez, T. Benedict, P. Vallée, G. Gallou, M. Dupieux, M. Larrieu, S. Perruchot, R. Sottile, F. Moreau, C. Usher, M. Baril, F. Wildi, B. Chazelas, L. Malo, X. Bonfils, D. Loop, D. Kerley, I. Wevers, J. Dunn, J. Pazder, S. Macdonald, B. Dubois, E. Carrié, H. Valentin, F. Henault, C. H. Yan, T. Steinmetz

This paper presents an overview of SPIRou, the new-generation near-infrared spectropolarimeter/precision velocimeter recently installed on the 3.6-m Canada–France–Hawaii Telescope (CFHT). Starting from the two main science goals, i.e., the quest for planetary systems around nearby M dwarfs and the study of magnetized star/planet formation, we outline the instrument concept that was designed to efficiently address these forefront topics, and detail the in-lab and on-sky instrument performances measured throughout the intensive testing phase that SPIRou was submitted to before passing the final acceptance review in early 2019 and initiating science observations. With a central position among the newly started programmes, the SPIRou Legacy Survey (SLS) Large Programme was allocated 300 CFHT nights until at least mid 2022. We also briefly describe a few of the first results obtained in the various science topics that SPIRou started investigating, focusing in particular on planetary systems of nearby M dwarfs, transiting exoplanets and their atmospheres, magnetic fields of young stars, but also on alternate science goals like the atmospheres of M dwarfs and the Earth’s atmosphere. We finally conclude on the key role that SPIRou and the CFHT can play in coordination with forthcoming major facilities like the JWST, the ELTs, PLATO, and ARIEL over the decade.

instrumentation: polarimeters; instrumentation: spectrographs; techniques: radial velocities; stars: formation; stars: magnetic fields; planetary systems; Astrophysics - Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics; Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astr

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume 498, Issue 4, Page 5684
2020 November

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Instituto de Astrofísica e Ciências do Espaço Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia