Stellar noise and planet detection. I. Oscillations, granulation and sun-like spots
Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Spectrographs like HARPS can now reach a sub-m/s precision in radial-velocity (RV) (Pepe & Lovis 2008). At this level of accuracy, we start to be confronted with stellar noise produced by 3 different physical phenomena: oscillations, granulation phenomena (granulation, meso- and super-granulation) and activity. On solar type stars, these 3 types of perturbation can induce m/s RV variation, but on different time scales: 3 to 15 minutes for oscillations, 15 minutes to 1.5 days for granulation
... for granulation phenomena and 10 to 50 days for activity. The high precision observational strategy used on HARPS, 1 measure per night of 15 minutes, on 10 consecutive days each month, is optimized, due to a long exposure time, to average out the noise coming from oscillations (Dumusque et al. 2010) but not to reduce the noise coming from granulation and activity. The smallest planets found with this strategy (Mayor et al. 2009) seems to be at the limit of the actual observational strategy and not at the limit of the instrumental precision. To be able to find Earth mass planets in the habitable zone of solar-type stars (200 days for a K0 dwarf), new observational strategies, averaging out simultaneously all type of stellar noise, are required.