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Colloquium by Xuening Bai (Tsinghua University)

Toward Realistic Understandings of Protoplanetary Disks


Abstract: Planet formation takes place in gas-rich protoplanetary disks (PPDs) orbiting newly born stars. The internal density and flow structures of PPDs, as well as their long-term evolution, play a crucial role in almost all stages of planet formation, yet they are far from being well understood largely due to the complex interplay among various microphysical processes. I will review the basic physical processes in PPDs that govern disk structure and evolution, highlighting the fundamental role of disk ionization and magnetic fields, described by non-ideal magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) effects. Incorporating these processes, I will first discuss previous local disk simulations that led to a paradigm shift in understanding PPD gas dynamics, as well as their limitations. I will then present global simulations of PPDs aiming to incorporate most realistic disk microphysics, which demonstrate unusual flow structures with major implications on planet formation. The results will also be discussed in the context of current and future observations.

Time: Sep. 13, 2017, 14:30 pm

Venue: A601, NAOC