La grande conférence – Exo-Earths’ atmospheres

La grande conférence – Exo-Earths’ atmospheres

How can we detect and study the exoplanets that most resemble our planet? What gases can we expect to find in their atmosphere thanks to large observatories on the ground and in space? What can these gases tell us about the potential habitability of these new worlds?

Join us for another edition of our Grandes conférences de l’iREx on March 15, 2023 at 7:00 pm, and learn about these water-covered worlds. The lecture will be presented in French by Dr. Thomas J. Fauchez, a researcher from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

This free event will take place at the campus MIL of the Université de Montréal (free admission), and will be broadcast online, on Facebook and YouTube. The iREx’s public talks are intended for anyone interested in astronomy and exoplanets, and require no prior knowledge of science or astronomy.


With the arrival of the first data from the James Webb Space Telescope, exoplanet research has truly taken a new turn. It is now possible to learn so much more about the atmosphere of exoplanets. In this context, the search for an Earth-like exoplanet occupies a prominent place. Dozens of Earth-sized exoplanets have been identified, but to date no atmosphere has been detected on them.

During this talk, Dr. Fauchez will discuss research that is being conducted to model the atmospheric composition of rocky exoplanets that orbit different types of stars, as well as their climate and habitability. He will also detail the strategies that are being implemented to establish whether the atmospheres of these rocky planets will be detectable with space telescopes such as Webb or on the ground with future giant telescopes like the European-Extremely Large Telescope.

Our Speaker

Dr. Thomas J. Fauchez is a space research scientist working for the American University at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in the Planetary Systems Laboratory. His research focuses on modeling the atmospheres, climate, and circulation of exoplanets, with a particular emphasis on their clouds. In particular, he is interested in better understanding the atmospheres of rocky exoplanets and is investigating how future space-based observatories can detect biosignatures on them.

Prior to this position, Thomas Fauchez was a postdoctoral researcher at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in the Climate and Radiation Laboratory. He received his Ph.D. in atmospheric physics from the Lille University at the Laboratoire d’Optique Atmosphérique (LOA). He also obtained a master’s degree in space science with the GAPHE group at the University of Liege, in Belgium. His master thesis focused on the study of massive binary star systems with collisional winds using the XMM Newton x-ray telescope.


To attend the talk

Meet at the Science Complex of the Université de Montréal’s MIL campus (1375 Thérèse-Lavoie-Roux Avenue, Montréal, QC, H2V 0B3), entrance A, amphitheatre A.3502.1 (3rd floor). Admission is free, but seating is limited. Come early! The talk will begin at 7.00 pm.

The conference will also be broadcast online on Facebook and our YouTube channel. No registration is required. Simply visit our social media channels.