Prompt Planet Formation: Evidence from Disks, Computers, and the Kuiper Belt

Wed 16 Sep 2020

This colloquium is hosted by STScI and will be held as a fully virtual event.


3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Contact Information:

Have questions? Please contact STScI.


In this talk I will review progress in planet formation, with a focus on a basic question: is it fast or slow? Solar System evidence traditionally favors a slow track, with the final assembly of terrestrial planets taking 100 Myr, and Uranus and Neptune interpreted as would-be gas giants that timed-out. Recent observations of protoplanetary disk substructure, interpreted as planet-disk interactions, suggest a dramatically different history, with planets forming rapidly even at large orbital distances. Fast planet formation, if confirmed, would support a modern theoretical scenario that starts with planetesimal formation via gravitational collapse and continues with a dominant role for pebble accretion in growth. I will finish by discussing our simulation work on prompt planetesimal formation, and how that piece of the puzzle can be independently tested via observations in the Kuiper Belt.

Speaker: Philip Armitage (Stony Brook University/Flatiron Institute CCA)


All 2020 Fall Colloquium talks are presented virtually on Wednesdays.

Please direct questions or comments to contact above.  The 2020-2021 committee members are:  Karoline Gilbert (STScI co-chair), Ethan Vishniac (JHU co-chair), Graeme Addison (JHU), Martha Boyer (STScI), Joshua Peek (STScI), Kevin Schlaufman (JHU), Raymond Simons (STScI).