MIT Kavli Institute Directory

Julien de Wit

EAPS Postdoctoral Associate with an MKI Affiliation Postdoctoral Scholar
Research interests: 

Julien’s primary interest and expertise lie in the field of data science where Math and Science are brought together to make sense of newly accessible pieces of Reality! Over the past five years, he has developed and applied new analysis techniques to map exoplanet atmospheres, study the radiative and tidal planet-star interactions in eccentric planetary systems, and constrain the atmospheric properties and mass of exoplanets solely from transmission spectroscopy.

Representative publications: 

Julien de Wit et al. (2016), Planet-induced stellar pulsations in HAT-P-2's eccentric system, Astrophysical Journal Letters, doi: 10.3847/2041-8213/836/2/L17

de Wit, J. et al. (2016), A combined transmission spectrum of the Earth-sized exoplanets TRAPPIST-1 b and c, Nature (published online July 20 2016), doi: 10.1038/nature18641

Gillon, M., Jehin, E., Lederer, S., Delrez, L., de Wit, J., et al. (2016), Temperate Earth-sized planets transiting a nearby ultracool dwarf star, Nature 533, 221–224 (12 May 2016), doi: 10.1038/nature17448

Demory, B.-O., Gillon, M., de Wit, J., et al. (2016), A map of the large day–night temperature gradient of a super-Earth exoplanet, Nature 532, 207–209 (14 April 2016), doi: 10.1038/nature17169

de Wit, J., Lewis N. K., Langton J., Laughlin G., et al. (2016), Direct Measure of Radiative and Dynamical Properties of an Exoplanet Atmosphere, The Astrophysical Journal Letters, Volume 820, Number 2, doi: 10.3847/2041-8205/820/2/L33

Parmentier, V., Showman, A. P., and de Wit, J. (2015), Unveiling the atmospheres of giant exoplanets with an EChO-class mission, Experimental Astronomy, Volume 40, Issue 2-3, pp. 481-500, doi: 10.1007%2Fs10686-014-9395-0

de Wit, J. and S. Seager (2013), Constraining Exoplanet Mass from Transmission Spectroscopy, Science (20 Dec 2013), Vol. 342, Issue 6165, pp. 1473-1477, doi: 10.1126/science.1245450Science 342:1473-1473

Demory, B.-O., de Wit, J., Lewis, N., Fortney, J., Zsom, A., Seager, S., Knutson, K., Heng, K., Madhusudan, N., Gillon, M., Barclay, T., Desert, J.-M., Parmentier, V., Cowan, N. B. (2013), Inference of Inhomogeneous Clouds in an Exoplanet Atmosphere, The Astrophysical Journal Letters, Volume 776, Number 2, doi: 10.1088/2041-8205/776/2/L25 

Zsom, A., Seager S., de Wit, J., Stamenkovic, V. (2013), Towards the Minimum Inner Edge Distance of the Habitable Zone, The Astrophysical Journal, Volume 778, Number 2, doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/778/2/109

de Wit, J., Gillon, M., Demory, B.-O., Seager, S. (2012), Towards consistent mapping of distant worlds: Secondary-eclipse scanning of the exoplanet HD 189733b, Astronomy & Astrophysics, Vol. 548 (December 2012) A128, doi: 10.1051/0004-6361/201219060


Honors and awards: 

2015 AILg Early Carrer Scientific Award | 2011-2014 WBI-World Excellence Fellow | 2012 Belgian American Educational Foundation Fellow | 2012 Top Industrial Manager for Europe Award | 2011 Odissea Prize of the Belgian Senate | 2011 ArcelorMittal Best Master Thesis Award (A.I.Lg) | 2011 Grayce B. Kerr Fellow | 2010 Duesberg-Baily Thil Lorrain Foundation Fellow

Contact Information

t: 617-258-0209
e: jdewit@MIT.EDU

Research Areas


PhD. Planetary Sciences, MIT, 2014; M. Aerospace Engineering, Université de Liège, 2011; UPAERO Graduate Engineer, Institut Supérieur de l'Aéronautique et de l'Espace, 2010