How to infer the mass of the planets that are forming in protoplanetary disks based on resolved disk observations?

Planets form in gaseous protoplanetary disks surrounding newborn stars. Very recently, spatially resolved observations of protoplanetary disks with high angular resolution have discovered rich structures in these disks, such as gaps and spiral arms. Although the origins of these structures are not entirely clear, they may be produced by embedded (unseen) planets forming in disks through gravitational disk-planet interactions. By comparing observations with theoretical models of planet-disk interactions, the masses of these still forming planets may be constrained. Such planets help us to directly test various planet formation models. I’ll introduce a few mechanisms that have been invented to infer the mass of the feature-producing planets in disks, and discuss their applications in testing planet formation models.

Robin Dong, University of Arizona
DoA, Rm 2907
Mon, 2017-03-13 12:00 to 13:00