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The PICTURE-C Direct Imaging Exoplanetary Balloon Mission: Second Flight Preparation and the Future of the PICTURE Program

Presentation #516.04 in the session “Extrasolar Planets: Direct Imaging 2”.

Published onJan 11, 2021
The PICTURE-C Direct Imaging Exoplanetary Balloon Mission: Second Flight Preparation and the Future of the PICTURE Program

The Planetary Imaging Concept Testbed Using a Recoverable Experiment - Coronagraph (PICTURE-C) mission will directly image debris disks and exozodiacal dust around nearby stars from a high-altitude balloon using a vector vortex coronagraph. The first flight of PICTURE-C launched from the NASA Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility in Ft. Sumner, NM on September 28, 2019. This flight successfully demonstrated many key technologies for exoplanetary direct imaging missions and all hardware components for the second, science-focused, flight of PICTURE-C scheduled for the spring of 2021. This talk will provide a status update on PICTURE-C, focusing on the implementation of high-order wavefront control to reach the required 1e-7 contrast. It will also present two visions of future PICTURE missions, PICTURE-D and PICTURE-J, which will directly image multiple debris disks and the first exo-Jupiter in reflected visible light from an ultra long duration balloon.


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