The Habitable Exoplanet Observatory (HabEx)
The Habitable-Exoplanet Observatory (HabEx) is a candidate flagship mission being studied by NASA and the astrophysics community in preparation of the 2020 Decadal Survey. The first HabEx mission concept that has been studied is a large (~4m) diffraction-limited optical space telescope, providing unprecedented resolution and contrast in the optical, with extensions into the near ulttraviolet and near infrared domains. We report here on our team's efforts in defining a scientifically compelling HabEx mission that is technologically executable, affordable within NASA's expected budgetary envelope, and timely for the next decade. We also briefly discuss our plans to explore less ambitious, descoped missions relative to the primary mission architecture discussed here.