Credit : ESO - A.-M. Lagrange et al.

The discovery of planets around most stars has brought new emphasis on the question of the origin and diversity of worlds. What characteristics of these exoplanets depend on their host star ? How are they organised into planetary systems ? Can they be grouped into families of exoplanets with common properties ? Which ones could harbour life ?

Research topics

The "Exoplanètes" team is strongly involved in the detection and characterisation of exoplanets. The team has a leading role in developing and exploiting major instruments within large international consortia (SPHERE/VLT, SPIRou/CFHT, NIRPS/ESO) or on its own (ERC project ExTrA). It is very active in large programs making use of HARPS/ESO and SOPHIE/OHP. Its future projects include developing a SPHERE upgrade and a high contrast module for HARMONI/ELT.

A major goal of these projects is to find exoplanets whose atmosphere can be probed. Exoplanet atmospheres, from young jupiters to Earth-sized planets, will be characterised by using and combining observations at high angular resolution and high spectral resolution. The space telescope JWST will soon play a key role in this endeavour, followed by the ELT.

The team also studies the orbital dynamics and the small bodies (debris disks, zodiacal dust) of these exoplanetary systems, bringing in key insights and constraints on their architecture and evolution. The elaborate models thus constructed have become essential to interpret the data from the large radial velocity (HARPS, SPIRou) and imaging (SPHERE, MATISSE, JWST, ALMA) surveys.


Planets and satellites : atmospheres, composition, detection, dynamical evolution and stability, formation, fundamental parameters ; Planet-star interactions
 ; Zodiacal dust ; Stars : activity, fundamental parameters, Techniques : high angular resolution, image processing, imaging spectroscopy, interferometric, radial velocities


- Team leader : Xavier Delfosse
- Email : xavier.delfosse (at) univ-grenoble-alpes.fr
- Telephone : 04 76 63 55 10 (from abroad +33 4 76 63 55 10)