Past Event

Protoplanetary Discussions

7–11 March 2016
Edinburgh, United Kingdom


Recent observations of protoplanetary discs revealed intriguing and frequent non-symmetric structures including spiral arms, gaps and rings, holes, and warps. These structures are detected in the gas and dust, in scattered light and thermal emission. Identifying their nature, whether they are caused by disc-planet interactions or by other physical processes remains challenging and controversial.

In this conference, we invite observers from all wavelength regimes to share their latest results with modellers from the thermo-chemical and hydrodynamic communities in order to foster collaboration across this exciting and rapidly expanding field. What observational quantities are essential to constrain the models? How can models help to guide future observational campaigns? What do different wavelength regimes reveal? What are the possible interpretations from hydrodynamic, chemical and radiative transfer modelling? What are the signposts for planet formation?

The particular session topics are :

1) Disc-hosting stars - How does stellar evolution, accretion and the UV and X-ray properties of the central stars affect the disc structure, dynamics and chemistry?
2) The inner disc - How do we understand the near-IR excess? How can we constrain the properties of the inner disc by means of IR interferometry and near/mid-IR molecular emission lines?
3) The structure of protoplanetary discs - What is the predicted gas and dust temperature structure in discs as affected by e.g. gaps, warps and vortices? How can we deduce the spatial shape of discs, and gas & dust separation from observations?
4) Disc chemistry - What is the location and abundance of observable chemical species in the disc, where are the ice-lines? How is the chemistry affected by disc structure and dynamics? What is the ionisation fraction in the midplane?
5) Disc dynamicsHow effective is dust settling and radial drift? Which dynamical processes and instabilities cause deviations from axial symmetry? How can we merge hydrodynamics with heating & cooling, chemistry and radiative transfer?
6) The disc-planet connection - How do we observe disc-planet interactions? How do disc structures, dynamics and chemistry affect planet formation? How do we develop a comprehensive model framework?

The conference will consist of invited/contributed talks and posters sessions, but will also include time for participant-led open discussion and collaboration sessions, with the goal of exploring common ground between the communities and discovering new avenues for investigation.

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