Wednesday 08 Feb 2017Dust driven hydrodynamic instabilities in protoplanetary disks

Dr. Pablo Loren-Aguilar - University of Exeter

Physics, 4th Floor 14:00-15:00

Present observational techniques have allowed us to witness the process of planet formation up to an unprecedented level of detail. However, we are still far from having a universally accepted theoretical model for planet formation. Planets form around young stars in protoplanetary discs. Such discs are initially composed of a mixture of gas and small dust grains, with sizes ranging from a few microns up to a few millimetres. In order to form planets, such grains must gather together and stick, building bigger and bigger aggregates until the first planetary embryos (the so-called planetesimals) are formed. However, the exact mechanism capable of gathering the grains, letting them stick and grow is still unknown. In this talk, I will present the latest news related to our (not so) recently discovered hydrodynamical instability, driven by the presence of dust in protoplanetary discs, that could have a strong impact in the planet formation scenario.

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