I have an excellent track record of making significant discoveries using space-based telescopes. In my most recent high-impact, first-author publication, I dedicated 61 Hubble Space Telescope (HST) orbits to measure the spectroscopic phase curve of exoplanet WASP-43b (the first measurement of its kind for any instrument) between 1.1 and 1.7 μm. The level of precision obtained from observing three full orbits of WASP-43b is unprecedented in exoplanet characterization. My colleagues and I were able to construct a 2D map of the planet's atmospheric thermal structure and precisely constrain the planet's atmospheric water abundance. A time-lapse video of WASP-43b over one planet rotation is available here. With these data, WASP-43b is now one of the most intensely scrutinized exoplanets to date.
I am currently involved in two projects that make use of the Spitzer Space Telescope. The first is an extension of the above HST program to obtain broadband photometric phase curves of WASP-43b at 3.6 and 4.5 μm. The planet's day-night heat redistribution (as measured by HST) is in contention with previously-published Spitzer measurements of exoplanets with similar equilibrium temperatures. The new WASP-43b observations will connect what we have learned from past Spitzer phase curves to current and future HST data, thus permitting a more complete understanding of atmospheric circulation in these benchmark exoplanets. The second is an ongoing project to determine the complete architectures of several Kepler candidate planets undergoing transit-timing variations (TTVs). The ill-timed failure of Kepler has left us with an incomplete picture for several long-period multi-planet systems due to insufficient time baseline. We are using Spitzer to confirm and characterize these dynamically interacting systems of cool planets.