“Characterizing the Diversity of Atmospheres: From Planets to Brown Dwarfs”
Abstract: Atmospheres are the most readily observable aspect of an exoplanet; it is critical to understand the physics and chemistry operating in planetary atmospheres if we are to understand exoplanets as a whole. I will give a broad overview on what we can learn about exoplanet atmospheres from observing them in transit with a focus on how transit transmission and occultation observations can provide insight into their thermal structure, chemistry, and dynamics as well as their formation environments. Furthermore, I will discuss how brown dwarfs can be used as exoplanet analogues in order to gain a better understanding of atmospheric processes. Finally, I will discuss future prospects for characterizing exoplanet atmospheres with the James Webb Space Telescope and smaller space based surveyor missions.