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Wednesday 02 Oct 2019[Seminar] Radiative transfer modelling of protoplanetary discs

Anna Laws - University of Exeter

4th floor, Physics building 14:00-15:00

Radiative transfer models can examine how light is scattered through a star-disc system. We use Monte Carlo Radiative Transfer (MCRT) methods that involve photon packets being emitted from the star and interacting with dust. The type of interaction and resulting direction of propagation of the photon packet is determined by random number generation, and physically would depend on the properties of dust in the disc. By running large numbers of photons (on the order of millions) we remove statistical anomalies and find a model that agrees with the analytical solution. We can apply models to a specific protoplanetary disc using its known parameters and geometry and matching the observed and model Spectral Energy Distributions from ultraviolet to millimetre wavelengths. Then we can make synthetic images to compare the brightness distribution between the model and observation. I will discuss early models of the dusty circumstellar environment of HD45677, an object we have previously observed with GPI (Gemini Planet Imager).

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