Science Processing Support for the TESS Mission

Grant #: NNX14AH97A TESS
Senior Scientist: Douglas Caldwell



In April 2013, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) was selected for flight in August 2017 by NASA’s Explorer Program to discover the 1,000 exoplanets best suited for follow-up and characterization with existing, impending, and future facilities and projects such as the James Webb Space Telescope. It achieves this goal through all-sky transit photometry by monitoring a minimum of 500,000 main-sequence stars for at least 27 days each over a primary mission lasting 2 years to detect signatures of planets transiting their host stars. NASA Ames Research Center was selected to develop and operate the Science Processing Operations Center (SPOC) for TESS. Dr. Jon Jenkins was selected as the Co-Investigator for Data Processing and is the lead for the SPOC. This proposal seeks to support the development of science algorithms for the SPOC prior to launch and science support for the science pipeline in the operations phase.