PEPPER: A photometer designed for the direct detection of extrasolar planets

Matthew C. Graham, Dan E. Potter, Laird Close

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


PEPPER, a high-speed differential Polarization-Encoded Photometer and Polarimeter, is designed to perform self-calibrated shot noise-limited photometry from the ground to directly detect the light from the phase changes of close-in extrasolar planets. This is accomplished by using high-speed electro-optical switching techniques coupled with zero-read noise photon counting detectors to eliminate errors due to sky and detector gain drift variability. Here we present the design concept behind the photometer mode of PEPPER as well as some initial results from lab and on-sky engineering tests of the prototype instrument. The polarimeter mode of the instrument is presented in a seperate paper.1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)545-552
Number of pages8
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Issue numberPART 1
StatePublished - 2004
EventGround-based Instrumentation for Astronomy - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: Jun 21 2004Jun 25 2004


  • Extrasolar planets
  • Photometry
  • Polarimetry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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