Extrasolar planets orbiting M dwarfs may represent our best chance to discover habitable worlds in the coming decade. The ultraviolet spectrum incident upon both Earth-like and Jovian planets is critically important for proper modeling of their atmospheric heating and chemistry. In order to provide a more realistic input for atmospheric models of planets orbiting low-mass stars, MUSCLES acquired ultraviolet and X-ray observations of 8 M dwarf and 4 K dwarf exoplanet host stars using the Hubble Space Telescope, the Chandra X-ray Observatory, and XMM-Newton.
The SPRITE CubeSat is a NASA-funded mission led by the University of Colorado that is designed to study how gas and dust is processed in galaxies by star-formation and supernovae, and how energetic ionizing radiation is transported from hot stars into the intergalactic medium between galaxies.
UMIS Integral Field Spectrograph
The Ultraviolet Micromirror Integral-field Spectrograph (UMIS) is a joint LASP, Ball Aerospace and Planetary Science Institute project to use MEMS micromirror devices to “dissect” a telescope focal plane and reformat it into one dimension, thereby allowing spectroscopy without spectral confusion.
UV Fibers - Hollow-Core Fibers for the Far-Ultraviolet Regime
Fiber optics provide a great deal of capability for science instruments that can’t easily be replicated with mirrors or lenses. Fibers can re-organize a focal plane into arbitrary shapes, mix light sources from different lamps to provide specific illumination spectra, breakout signals to multiple detectors, combine signals from various instruments into a single detector, and many more.