Master's Thesis Defence by Mikkel Mathiasen – Niels Bohr Institute - University of Copenhagen

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Master's Thesis Defence by Mikkel Mathiasen

The search for extrasolar planets has become an important scientific
research area over the last decade.
In this defence I will introduce a detection method that has the particular
advantage that it is in principle able to detect Earth-like exoplanets.
Where most detection methods (f.x. the radial velocity method) have strong
biases towards discovering massive Jupiter-like planets in close orbits, the
microlensing technique is free of this bias. This means that this method can
help significally to improve our understanding of the statistical
distribution of planets with different masses.

An issue of great concern when dealing with groundbased observations of
microlensing events, is how to optimize the photometry. The defence will
introduce a new photometric approach that has been used to analyse parts of
the 2008 and 2009 microlensing data observed with the Danish 1.54m telescope
at La Silla in Chile.
The new method is the image subtraction method, and the results from this
new approach has been able to improve the photometry with up to 33% compared
to the aperture photometry previously used.
Results of the thesis include photometric data on several microlensing
events including several exoplanet discoveries which will be presented at
the defence.

The defence will basically be in Danish.