Towards the detection of exoearths

CARMENES [kár-men-es] (Calar Alto high-Resolution search for M dwarfs with Exoearths with Near-infrared and optical Échelle Spectrographs) is a next-generation instrument being built for the 3.5m telescope at the Calar Alto Observatory by a consortium of German and Spanish institutions. It consists of two separated spectrographs covering the wavelength ranges from 0.5 to 1.0 µm and from 1.0 to 1.7 µm with spectral resolutions R = 82,000, each of which shall perform high-accuracy radial-velocity measurements (∼1 m s-1) with long-term stability. The fundamental science objective of CARMENES is to carry out a survey of ∼300 late-type main-sequence stars with the goal of detecting low-mass planets in their habitable zones. We aim at being able to detect 2 MEarth planets in the habitable zone of M5V stars. The CARMENES first light is expected to occur in Summer 2015.

The NIR camera, made by Winlight, ready for installing its optics (11 Sep) • The NIR CalUnit, made in Tautenburg, starts its trip to Granada (25 Aug) • AIV of NIR vacuum tank, Pfeiffer pumps, CAHA interlocks, N2GPU and test facility also operate nicely in the IAA instrument assembly room (30 Jun) • Start of AIV phase of NIR channel in Granada in YouTube (IAA; May-Jun) • NTG VIS vacuum tank, Pfeiffer pumps and CAHA interlocks operate nicely in the MPIA instrument assembly room (16 Jun) • Read more news...