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Kepler Science Center

The lists of science goals and targets are not intended to be complete or exhaustive, but provide a flavor of K2's potential. The science community are encouraged to propose for all science targets possible, and all science goals - standard and innovative - in order to maximize K2's scientific yield through the independent, peer reviewed Guest Observer competition.


K2 Small Planet Yield Provide a yield of hot planets around bright stars for follow-up transit spectroscopy in order to facilitate rapid advances in exoplanet atmosphere chemistry and the search for water, clouds and greenhouse gases

Provide a yield of small planets around bright and small stars in order to facilitate the most precise follow-up measurements to date of masses, densities and compositions

Identify locations and characteristics of potentially-habitable planets around bright M-dwarfs in the solar neighborhood

Determine if hot gas giants exist around young stars, or whether they migrate to small orbits at a later epoch by tidal or other interactions

Kepler Science Targets Determine the relationship between stellar structure, rotation and activity within stellar associations over a range of ages and metallicity

Identify the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae from photometric structure in the rise to outburst maximum

Discover and characterize binary stars within open clusters and stellar associations

Characterize internal stellar structure and fundamental properties of stars using the tools of asteroseismology

Provide a large, regular cadence survey of AGN activity in the optical bandpass

Conduct multi-mission, multi-band monitoring campaigns of ecliptic targets using K2 with additional space-based hardware or ground-based telescopes

  • Possible transiting planet hosts
  • Pulsational variable stars
  • Rotationally variable stars
  • Flaring stars
  • Accreting stars and interacting binaries
  • Binary stars
  • Open clusters
  • Stellar associations
  • Galaxies and supernovae
  • Active Galactic Nuclei
  • Microlenses
K2 Small Planet Yield

Questions concerning K2's science opportunities and open programs, public archive or community tools? Contact us via the email address.
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Editor: Thomas Barclay
NASA Official: Jessie Dotson
Last Updated: May 29, 2014
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