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Planet Formation

Planet Formation: From Disks to Planets and Everything in Between

Event Type
Department of Astronomy
134 Astronomy Building
wifi event
Feb 29, 2024   3:45 - 4:45 pm  
Jacob Simon
Daniel Franco
Originating Calendar
Astronomy Colloquium Speaker Calendar

How planets form is one of the largest unresolved questions in all of astrophysics. Answering it is crucial to understanding not only how exoplanets form in their numerous configurations, but also our place in the Universe and the origin of life itself. Furthermore, with continuing advances in computational astrophysics and observational capabilities, now is the quintessential time to answer outstanding questions in planet formation and move towards a comprehensive model for how planetary systems form.

In this talk, I will present my vision for and current efforts in building towards a complete model of planet formation. I will start with a description of my goals and the arc of progress in my group. I will then dive deeper into some of the projects my group is carrying out, namely with a focus on how planetesimals (i.e., the building blocks of fully grown planets) themselves form. In particular, by using computational fluid and particle dynamics run on large-scale supercomputing facilities, we are working towards understanding under what conditions planetesimals can or cannot form in circumstellar disks. I will then take a step back and discuss current and future work to address other essential questions in planetary astrophysics, such as how gas giant atmospheres might get enhanced with heavy elements and what we may be able to learn from JWST observations.

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