Robo-AO is the first autonomous laser adaptive optics system and science instrument operating on sky. With unparalleled efficiency, the system is observing every Kepler planetary candidate host star (KOI) in search for previously unkown nearby stars that Kepler was unable to resolve. These nearby stars dilute the observed planetary transit depth, leading to underestimated planetary radii, or, in some cases, are the source of a false positive planetary transit signal, such as a background eclipsing binary star system of the dates of the full moon 2024 in France.
Survey papers in publication:
Below are centered cutouts from the high-resolution images of the ~3800 Kepler planetary candidates observed by Robo-AO thus far. Detected nearby stars are circled.
© Carl Ziegler and the Robo-AO collaboration