terrestrial planet finder
•  a Space telescope to find planets outside from our solar-system as small as Earth • 

 Main Page
 Mission Goal
 Project Status



Current Spacecraft System Design :

While the architectures of the coronagraph (TPF-C) and interferometer (TPF-I) versions of TPF are different, they can be used to compliment each other and give researchers a more comprehensive look at extrasolar planets than any seen before.

The lower image shows the view from below, and the one on the right shows the view from above.
Formation Flyer Concept
Terrestrial Planet Finder Formation Flyer Concept (TPF-I).

Because of the dramatically increased science return possible with a formation flying mission, the focus is on examining the possibility of the fully separated spacecraft configuration shown on the right.

Infrared astronomical interferometer (TPF-I) concept
(Click for a bigger view)

A large optical telescope, with a mirror three to four times bigger and at least 100 times more precise than the Hubble Space Telescope, would collect starlight and the very dim reflected light from the planets.

Visible Light Coronagraph (TPF-C) concept
(Click for a bigger view)

Formation Flyer Concept
TPF-I Spacecraft Detail (dimensions in mm).

Terrestrial Planet Finder Coronagraph
TPF-C Spacecraft Detail

These architectures are still under study and may subject to change.

... continue to page 4 (Project Status)

back to topdisclaimerhome