[en] The prime objective of GENIE (Ground-based European Nulling Interferometry Experiment) is to obtain experience with the design, construction and operation of an IR nulling interferometer, as a preparation for the DARWIN / TPF mission. In this context, the detection of a planet orbiting another star would provide an excellent demonstration of nulling interferometry. Doing this through the atmosphere, however, is a formidable task. In this paper we assess the prospects of detecting with nulling interferometry on ESO's VLTI, low-mass companions in orbit around their parent stars. With the GENIE science simulator (GENIEsim) we can model realistic detection scenarios for the GENIE instrument operating in the VLTI environment, and derive detailed requirements on control-loop performance, IR background subtraction and the accuracy of the photometry calibration. We analyse the technical feasibility of several scenarios for the detection of low-mass companions in the L'-band.
Copyright 2004 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.