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Finding extraterrestrial life using ground-based high-dispersion spectroscopy

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The cancellation of both the Terrestrial Planet Finder and Darwin missions means that it is unlikely that a dedicated space telescope to search for biomarker gases in exoplanet atmospheres will be launched within the next 25 years. In this talk I will advocate that ground-based telescopes provide a strong alternative for finding biomarkers in exoplanet atmospheres through high-resolution transit observations. I will review some of the exciting result we have recently obtained on hot-Jupiter atmospheres, and will show what can be done with the planned E-ELT.

This talk is part of the Institute of Astronomy Colloquia series.

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