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Paper: The Detection of Terrestrial Planets via Gravitational Microlensing: Space vs. Ground-based Surveys
Volume: 321, Extrasolar Planets: Today and Tomorrow
Page: 59
Authors: Bennett, D.P.
Abstract: I compare an aggressive ground-based gravitational microlensing survey for terrestrial planets to a space-based survey. The Ground-based survey assumes a global network of very wide field-of-view ~2m telescopes that monitor fields in the central Galactic bulge. I find that such a space-based survey is ~100 times more effective at detecting terrestrial planets in Earth-like orbits. The poor sensitivity of the ground-based surveys to low-mass planets is primarily due to the fact that the main sequence source stars are unresolved in groundbased images of the Galactic bulge, and this gives rise to systematic photometry errors that preclude the detection of most of the planetary light curve deviations for low mass planets.
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