The PLATO 2.0 Mission
Mareike Godolt  1@  , Heike Rauer  2, 1, *@  , And The Plato Consortium@
1 : German Aerospace Center  (DLR)  -  Website
2 : Technische Universität Berlin
* : Corresponding author

The PLATO Mission has been selected for ESA's M3 launch opportunity. PLATO will discover and bulk characterise extrasolar planets around hundreds of thousands of stars. With launch foreseen in early 2024, PLATO will follow the very successful space missions CoRoT and Kepler, as well as ESA's first small mission CHEOPS and NASA's mission TESS. PLATO will carry out high-precision, long-term photometric and astroseismic monitoring of up to a million of stars covering over 50% of the sky, and significantly increase the number of characterized small planets around bright stars in comparison to the previous missions. Its exquisite sensitivity will ensure that it detects hundreds of small planets at intermediate distances, up to the habitable zone around solar-like stars. PLATO will characterize planets for their radius, mass, and age. It will provide the first large-scale catalogue of well-characterized small planets at intermediate orbital periods, relevant for a meaningful comparison to planet formation theories and providing targets for future atmosphere spectroscopy. This data base of bulk characterized small planets will provide a solid basis to put the Solar System into a wider context and allow for comparative exo-planetology.

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