Potential Stellar Targets for Future Exoplanet Missions

The exoplanet community has compiled a number of putative target lists for future exoplanet direct imaging missions. This is an ongoing process as mission concepts appear and evolve and our knowledge of the potential stellar targets improves, but here we provide three lists for use by the community.

Note that several stars in the Mission Star list are also in the Planetary Systems or K2 catalogs lists. These stars may have different stellar parameters in the Mission Stars table, as they are compiled from different references. The columns K2 Flag/K2 Campaign and Known RV System/Number of Planets in System indicate these stars. For K2 Campaign 0 targets, we have matched 2MASS objects to the K2 targets using the same procedure as described in the EPIC catalog description.

Release Year, Table Name, and Link to Table or .tgz File Number of Targets Description Exoplanet Archive API Support TAP Support Data Column Definitions
2024: Habitable Worlds Observatory Preliminary Input Catalog (.tgz file, 5MB)

DOI: 10.26133/NEA39

This is a list of ~13,000 bright, nearby objects from TESS and Gaia DR3 that are potential targets for space-based direct imaging with HWO.

The stellar parameters and derived astrophysical properties are compiled from an automated pipeline in Tuchow, Stark & Mamajek (2024) (pre-print PDF)

2023: HWO ExEP Precursor Science Stars 160

This is a provisional list of stars compiled by the NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program (ExEP) that are most likely (given current knowledge) to constitute target stars for the exo-Earth survey of the future Habitable Worlds Observatory (HWO) mission.

The stellar parameters are drawn from a number of literature sources and calculations described in Mamajek & Stapelfeldt (2023)

Use this table's information on any one planet or stellar host with caution, as the parameters in a given row may have been drawn from different sources.

2014: Mission Stars Table 360

This list comprises the Exo-S Starshade Probe-Class study list, the Exo-C Coronagraph Probe-Class study target list, the Large Binocular Telescope Interferometer target list, and an early NASA Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope target list.

The stellar parameters in this table are drawn from various literature sources.

2014: Mission Stars+ExoCat Table 2396

This list adds to the Mission Stars table (above), and the Exoplanet Direct Imaging Mission Planning Catalog (ExoCat) of stars within 30 pc compiled by M. Turnbull.

The stellar parameters for the ExoCat targets in this table are provided in Turnbull (2015).


Query-based Table Access

Where indicated, data sets presented in its own web-based, interactive table that can be searched, sorted, filtered and downloaded. Additionally, the two older tables (Mission Stars and Mission Stars+ExoCat) can be accessed through the archive's application programming interface (API); the 2023 (HWO) table can be accessed using the archive's Table Access Protocol (TAP) service.

Additional Mission and Archive Resources

Last updated: 14 May 2024