The Exoplanet Laboratory


I am a Professor in the Department of Astronomy at Harvard University and an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  My research goals are to detect and characterize planets orbiting other stars.  These worlds are known as exoplanets.  I am fascinated by planets in edge-on orbits, such that the planet periodically passes in front of its star.  These systems offer unparalleled opportunities to determine the properties of the planet and its atmosphere. I am currently pursuing the following four investigations:

The MEarth Project:

Hunting for habitable super-Earths orbiting nearby small stars

The Kepler Mission:

Surveying for Earth-like planets orbiting Sun-like stars

The EPOXI Mission:

Characterizing known exoplanets and the Earth as an exoplanet

Exo Atmospheres:

Determining their chemistry, dynamics, and temperatures.

I have just returned from a delightful sabbatical visiting colleagues at the Geneva Observatory and in Spring 2015 I will be teaching Astronomy 189, a graduate / upper division undergraduate course on Exoplanets.

Kepler Team Members: Access the KeplerPapers Wiki here!

I also serve on the AAS Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy and I am a contributing blogger for Women in Astronomy.

My biography, CV, a list of publications, and some photos are also available.

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden Street MS-16, Cambridge, MA 02138 USA
dcharbonneau <at>        Office: 617 496 6515        Fax: 617 495 7049


David Charbonneau, Harvard University