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Space Telescope Science Institute
Space Missions for the Detection of Exo-Planets: The European Efforts

J.-M. Mariotti
Observatoire de Paris, Meudon, France

The search for other planetary systems has raised considerable interest in Europe during the last decade. The recent indirect discovery of extra-solar planets around solar-type nearby stars has been considered as the answer to a long standing conjecture, even if the physical nature of these planets was completely unexpected.

Indeed several space missions have been proposed during the recent years with a possible impact on the topic of exo-planets: this includes searches by photometric transit (STARS, COROT), by astrometry (GAIA) and by direct imaging in the infrared (DARWIN).

The latter is a mission dedicated to exo-planets, both as a searching survey and as a pointed instrument for the characterization through infrared spectroscopy of Earth-like candidates.