ERC 576 ERC 576
Toward a More Complete Picture of Planet Formation
Abstract: The studies of planet formation have long been dominated by theoretical work because observing planets in formation has been challenging. The situation is, however, gradually changing. Thanks to increasingly powerful observing facilities and techniques, we are now able to peer into the birthplaces of planets - protoplanetary disks, routinely finding signposts of ongoing planet formation. I will introduce state-of-the-art observations of protoplanetary disks, made available by the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array and ground-based optical/IR telescopes equipped with adaptive optics. I will discuss how planet formation theories are being tested with and improved by observational data in conjunction with supercomputer simulations. I will conclude with a discussion of prospects for future directions, focusing on how we can connect studies of protoplanetary disks to those of solar and extrasolar planetary systems and develop a more complete picture of planet formation.