This paper describes a proposed third-generation Hubble instrument for extra-solar planet detection, the Hubble Extra-Solar Planet Interferometer (HESPI). This instrument would be able to achieve starlight cancellation at the 10 exp 6 to 10 exp 8 level, given a stellar wavefront with phase errors comparable to the present Hubble telescope wavefront. At 10 exp 6 starlight cancellation, HESPI would be able to detect a Jupiter-like planet next to a star at a distance of about 10 parsec, for which there are about 400 candidate stars. This paper describes a novel approach for starlight suppression, using a combination of active control and single-mode spatial filters, to achieve starlight suppression far below the classical limit set by scattering due to microsurface imperfections. In preliminary lab experiments, suppression by a factor of 40 below the classical scatter limit due to optical wavefront errors has been demonstrated.© (1991) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.