Future space missions such as Darwin and TPF will enable direct imaging and spectroscopy for exoplanet spectra. To gain the full benefit of these missions, commensurate investments in basic atomic and molecular data as well as appropriately irradiated 3D circulation models will need to be made in order that synthetic spectra for exoplanet atmospheres will provide a worthy match. In the meantime very substantial advances are expected. A glimpse of the high quality of the space-based transit missions COROT and Kepler is provided by the first COROT press release announcing its first exoplanet whilst still undergoing system calibration.
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