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Solar and Planetary Systems

The activities of the team are focused on three major investigations: study of the processes of evolution of the planetary bodies of the Solar System, study of exoplanets, and study of the initial conditions of the Solar System. More specifically, we attempt to study:

- evolution processes by observations of differentiated bodies (terrestrial and giant planets, satellites). These activities are performed through space instruments mounted on orbital or in situ platforms;
- the extra-solar planets by a theoretical but also observational approach through the COROT, PLATO and ARIEL missions;
- the initial conditions for the formation of the Solar System through the study of primitive matter: cometary grains, meteorites, observations of primitive bodies and the interplanetary environment.

Our approach consists in coupling the observation acquired by space instruments, extensive data reduction, numerical modeling and laboratory measurements. These multiple approaches are based on as strong and major instrumental developments with the constant concern to combine both scientific and technological challenges.

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Dernières news

3 months 3 weeks ago

Friday June 2nd was the 20th anniversary of the launch of the first ESA probe towards another planet, Mars. A celebration was held at the ESA control center (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany. Several colleagues from IAS were there representing the laboratory and the OMEGA team.

5 months 1 week ago

The launch of the JUICE mission was carried out perfectly thanks to the penultimate Ariane 5, Friday April 14, 2023 at 2:14 p.m. Paris time. The first crucial hours of the mission, which included the first communication signals with the spacecraft, first TC and deployment of the solar panels took place nominally. Direction Jupiter and its icy moons!

1 year 2 weeks ago

Using the orbital imaging spectroscopy instruments OMEGA (Mars Express) and CRISM (MRO), the Solar System team has released the first global and high resolution map of hydrated minerals on Mars. These minerals hold the distinction of having been formed through interaction between the ancient Martian crust and liquid water, while many of them still contain some amount of water trapped within their structure. Such hydrated minerals are excellent tracers of past water-bearing environments and are a primary target of exobiology missions to Mars.

1 year 2 months ago

The PLATO project has reached a new decisive stage in the development of the calibration structure for the cameras intended for flight at IAS. The first EM (Engineering Model) camera to be calibrated by the three Test Houses of the PLATO consortium has just arrived at the IAS. This measurement campaign will allow the three production sites to be validated with the same functional camera, which is a prerequisite for being authorised to host all the flight cameras.