Status of the Planet Formation Imager (PFI) concept

Michael J. Ireland*, John D. Monnier, Stefan Kraus, Andrea Isella, Stefano Minardi, Romain Petrov, Theo Ten Brummelaar, John Young, Gautam Vasisht, David Mozurkewich, Stephen Rinehart, Ernest A. Michael, Gerard Van Belle, Julien Woillez

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


The Planet Formation Imager (PFI) project aims to image the period of planet assembly directly, resolving structures as small as a giant planet's Hill sphere. These images will be required in order to determine the key mechanisms for planet formation at the time when processes of grain growth, protoplanet assembly, magnetic fields, disk/planet dynamical interactions and complex radiative transfer all interact-making some planetary systems habitable and others inhospitable. We will present the overall vision for the PFI concept, focusing on the key technologies and requirements that are needed to achieve the science goals. Based on these key requirements, we will define a cost envelope range for the design and highlight where the largest uncertainties lie at this conceptual stage.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOptical and Infrared Interferometry and Imaging V
EditorsFabien Malbet, Michelle J. Creech-Eakman, Peter G. Tuthill
Place of PublicationBellingham, Washington
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781510601949
ISBN (Print)9781510601932
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventOptical and Infrared Interferometry and Imaging V - Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 27 Jun 20161 Jul 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherOptical and Infrared Interferometry and Imaging V
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • interferometry
  • mid-infrared
  • exoplanets
  • planet formation
  • astronomy
  • facilities
  • imaging
  • infrared


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