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Marina Lafarga Magro

Research overview

I am a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Astronomy & Astrophysics groupLink opens in a new window at the University of Warwick working on exoplanets in the Neptune desert with Dr David ArmstrongLink opens in a new window's group.

Before that, I worked with Dr Heather CeglaLink opens in a new window's research group Towards Other Earths. I studied the alignment between the planetary orbit and the stellar spin of a set of planets in the Neptunian desert. To do that, I made use of the Rossiter-McLaughlin distortion observed in spectroscopic observations during a planetary transit, which is sensitive to the spin-orbit angle of the system. Additionally, I also studied the variability of the star behind the transit chord through the "reloaded" Rossiter-McLaughlin approach, which isolates the stellar light behind the planet as it transits.

Also at Warwick, in collaboration with Dr Matteo Brogi, I worked on the characterisation of the atmosphere of the bloated super-Neptune WASP-166 b. I focused on applying the cross-correlation method to simultaneously study the presence of water and clouds in the planetary atmosphere using high-resolution, optical observations of the instrument ESPRESSO. I also improved a principal component analysis technique to mitigate the effect of telluric lines in the observed spectra.

Previously, I completed my PhD under the supervision of Dr Ignasi Ribas at the Institut de Ciències de l'Espai (IEEC, CSIC)Link opens in a new window and the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, working on the exploitation of high-resolution spectra of M dwarf stars obtained with the CARMENESLink opens in a new window instrument. I led the development and application of the cross-correlation technique for CARMENES GTO observations. This work resulted in an open source pipeline (raccoon)Link opens in a new window to build weighted binary masks, compute cross-correlation functions, and derive radial velocities and stellar variability indicators. I also studied the effects of stellar variability in M dwarf high-resolution spectra using CARMENES data. In particular, I analysed the temporal behaviour of several spectroscopic proxies of stellar activity in a range of M dwarfs of different mass and activity level. I also performed line-by-line studies in a set of active M dwarf stars.

I am a committee member of Equitea.

Selected publications

First author refereed publications

4. Lafarga, M., Ribas, I., Zechmeister, M., Reiners, A., et al., 2023, "The CARMENES search for exoplanets around M dwarfs. Sensitivity to activity of M dwarf spectral lines", A&A, 674, A61, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/202245602Link opens in a new window

3. Lafarga, M., Brogi, M., Gandhi, S., Cegla, H. M., et al., 2023, "The hot Neptune WASP-166 b with ESPRESSO III: A blue-shifted tentative water signal constrains the presence of clouds", MNRAS, 521, 1233-1252, DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stad480Link opens in a new window

2. Lafarga, M., Ribas, I., Reiners, A., Quirrenbach, A., et al., 2021, "The CARMENES search for exoplanets around M dwarfs. Mapping stellar activity indicators cross the dwarf domain", A&A, 652, A28, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/202140605Link opens in a new window

1. Lafarga, M., Ribas, I., Lovis, C., Perger, M., et al., 2020, "The CARMENES search for exoplanets around M dwarfs. Radial velocities and activity indicators from cross-correlation functions with weighted binary masks" A&A, 636, A36, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201937222Link opens in a new window

For more information see:

Marina Lafarga Magro

Contact details:

Dr Marina Lafarga Magro
Department of Physics,
University of Warwick,
Coventry CV4 7AL, UK
Pronouns: she/her
E-Mail: marina.lafarga-magro [at]