NGTS is a wide-field photometric survey designed to discover transiting exoplanets of Neptune-size and smaller around bright stars, providing the prime targets for characterization by VLT, ELT and JWST. These bright targets provide the key to understanding planetary structure and evolution, as well as atmospheric composition.
To do so, NGTS will employ an array of fully-robotic 20-cm telescopes operating in the 600-900nm band, thereby maximizing sensitivity to bright (magnitude V<13) but relatively small host stars.
NGTS will be sited at ESO-Paranal, which meets strict requirements for low water vapor and excellent photometric conditions.
The NGTS project is a partnership between the University of Cambridge, Queen’s University Belfast, University of Warwick, University of Leicester, Observatoire de Genève, DLR (Berlin) and Universidad Catolica de Chile. The first data are expected during summer 2014.