Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy
Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

The Formation of the Outer Solar System

Brett Gladman
University of British Columbia

Monday, February 24, 2003
11:00 AM @ Stirling 201

Abstract:

Our understanding of giant planet formation has been exposed as lacking over the last two decades due to increasing knowledge about the planets themselves (from space probes and ground-based telescopes) and the ability to simulate their formation. For the terrestrial planets a self-consistent set of steps, leading from one to the next, ends up creating terrestrial planets on time scales of 30-100 million years, agreeing with geochemical evidence. Only minor details with relatively identifiable solutions occur. In the case of the giant planets however, the two leading main models both suffer from major setbacks when faced with current constraints. I will describe our current understanding of planet formation and describe how theoretical and observational studies are providing more information to help us unravel these problems.

This talk will be accessible to undergraduate students.