CCD photometric precision for the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) ; Charge coupled device photometric precision for TESS

by Lulu Liu

Institution: MIT
Department: Physics
Year: 2009
Keywords: Physics.
Record ID: 1845184
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1721.1/51596


We seek to fully characterize all noise contributions along the CCD and electronics signal path specific to the equipment to be used on board the TESS all-sky space observatory. We adjust physical variables in such a way as to minimize this noise and achieve a photometric precision limited in large part by shot noise. Ultimately, the goal is to demonstrate in the lab, by analyzing photon data generated by LED simulated stars and using relative photometric techniques, that TESS CCDs and electronics are capable of performing photometry at the 100ppm (parts per million) level as required by the goals of the space mission. In our investigation, we are limited by unusually high readout noise in the CCD electronics but still able to achieve reliable sub-200ppm level photometry in the lab.