Starshade Imaging Simulation Toolkit for Exoplanet Reconnaissance (SISTER)



Sergi R. Hildebrandt 1,a , Stuart B. Shaklan 1,b , Eric J. Cady 1,c , and Margaret C. Turnbull 2,1,d

1: Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology. 2: SETI Institute, Carl Sagan Center for Life in the Universe.

a: srh.jpl.caltech@gmail.com, b: stuart.b.shaklan@jpl.nasa.gov, c: eric.j.cady@jpl.nasa.gov, d: turnbull.maggie@gmail.com


The Starshade Imaging Simulations tool is a versatile tool designed to provide enough accuracy and variety when predicting how an exoplanet system would look like in an instrument that utilizes an Starshade to block the light from the host star: AAS233 Poster

The tool allows for controlling a set of parameters of the whole instrument that have to do with: (1) the Starshade design, (2) the exoplanetary system, (3) the optical system (telescope) and (4) the detector (camera). There is a built-in plotting software added, but the simulations may be stored on disk and be plotted with any other software.

The optical response of a starshade design is computed making use of the boundary diffraction wave method developed by Eric Cady (JPL/Caltech): SPIE, PDF


Sign-up        SISTER Handbook        SISTER Imaging Basis


SISTER Examples

WFIRST RENDEZVOUS MISSION (GREEN BAND): Left: Noiseless simulation with SISTER of the solar system with some background objects at 10 pc and with an inclination of 60 degrees (Data from the Haystacks Project with local zodiacal light added). Right: Same as left, but including detector noise (standard CCD, not EMCCD) and shot noise. (see scene_5 in SISTER Handbook)

WFIRST RENDEZVOUS MISSION (BLUE BAND): SOLAR SYSTEM at 10 pc. Left: orbits for an inclination of 75 degrees and a position angle of 45 degrees. Right: Actual simulation with effective EMCCD noise and shot noise.