Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso


  • David W. Latham
  • Nader Haghighipour
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_727-5



HIRES (High Resolution Echelle Spectrometer) is a high-resolution spectrograph on the Keck I telescope in Hawaii. It was originally designed as a general-purpose instrument, but one of its main applications has been the determination of radial-velocity orbits for stars hosting exoplanets in order to derive planetary masses. Because the input is a slit, an iodine gas absorption cell is introduced into the stellar beam in order to calibrate the instrumental profile and wavelength scale of each stellar observation. The data analysis requires also a high-quality template observation of each star without the iodine and a fundamental calibration of the spectrum of the absorption cell at very high spectral resolution. HIRES has achieved a performance approaching velocities as low as 1 m/s. HIRES has contributed to the discovery of several hundred extrasolar planets including the first super-Earth, GJ 876 d, several potentially habitable...


Absorption Cell Spectral Resolution Main Application High Spectral Resolution Extrasolar Planet 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for AstrophysicsCambridgeUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, University of Hawaii-ManoaHonoluluUSA