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Astronomy Colloquium: "Protoplanetary Disks in Multiple Star Systems"

SpeakerRobert Harris, University of Illinois
Date Nov 5, 2013
Time 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm  
Location Astronomy 134
Sponsor Department of Astronomy
Event type Seminar/Symposium
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Most stars are born in multiple systems.  Because of this ubiquity, planets in these systems could comprise a large fraction of all planets.  On the other hand, theory indicates that stellar companions reduce the likelihood of planet formation by stripping away mass from young protoplanetary disks and by inhibiting grain growth to large sizes.  Significant evidence of this reduction in planet-formation efficiency, however, has been elusive,  in large part, due to the comparatively low sensitivity of the previous generation of millimeter/centimeter-wave instruments.  In this talk, I present results from recent millimeter and centimeter-wave continuum interferometric surveys that attempt to determine the role multiplicity plays in both the determination of bulk disk properties, like masses and radii, as well as the detailed progression of grain growth to ~ cm-sizes in these disks.  I will also highlight the connections that we can draw between the results of these surveys and those of planet-finding surveys.

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