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Planet formation: The case for large efforts on the computational side

Lyra, Wladimir and Haworth, Thomas and Bitsch, Bertram and Casassus, Simon and Cuello, Nicolás and Currie, Thayne and Gáspár, Andras and Jang-Condell, Hannah and Klahr, Hubert and Leigh, Nathan and Lodato, Giuseppe and Mac Low, Mordecai-Mark and Maddison, Sarah and Mamatsashvili, George and McNally, Colin and Isella, Andrea and Pérez, Sebastián and Ricci, Luca and Sengupta, Debanjan and Stamatellos, Dimitris and Szulágyi, Judit and Teague, Richard and Turner, Neal and Umurhan, Orkan and White, Jacob and Wootten, Al and Alarcon, Felipe and Apai, Daniel and Bayo, Amelia and Bergin, Edwin and Carrera, Daniel and Cleeves, Ilse and Cooray, Asantha and Golabek, Gregor and Gressel, Oliver and Gurwell, Mark and Krijt, Sebastiaan and Hall, Cassandra and Dong, Ruobing and Du, Fujun and Pascucci, Ilaria and Ilee, John and Izidoro, Andre and Jorgensen, Jes and Kama, Mihkel and Mawet, Dimitri and Kim, Jinyoung Serena and Leisawitz, David and Lichtenberg, Tim and van der Marel, Nienke and Meixner, Margaret and Monnier, John and Picogna, Giovanni and Pontoppidan, Klaus and Shang, Hsien and Simon, Jake and Wilner, David (2019) Planet formation: The case for large efforts on the computational side. Astro2020 Science White Paper, . (Unpublished)

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Modern astronomy has finally been able to observe protoplanetary disks in reasonable resolution and detail, unveiling the processes happening during planet formation. These observed processes are understood under the framework of disk-planet interaction, a process studied analytically and modeled numerically for over 40 years. Long a theoreticians' game, the wealth of observational data has been allowing for increasingly stringent tests of the theoretical models. Modeling efforts are crucial to support the interpretation of direct imaging analyses, not just for potential detections but also to put meaningful upper limits on mass accretion rates and other physical quantities in current and future large-scale surveys. This white paper addresses the questions of what efforts on the computational side are required in the next decade to advance our theoretical understanding, explain the observational data, and guide new observations. We identified the nature of accretion, ab initio planet formation, early evolution, and circumplanetary disks as major fields of interest in computational planet formation. We recommend that modelers relax the approximations of alpha-viscosity and isothermal equations of state, on the grounds that these models use flawed assumptions, even if they give good visual qualitative agreement with observations. We similarly recommend that population synthesis move away from 1D hydrodynamics. The computational resources to reach these goals should be developed during the next decade, through improvements in algorithms and the hardware for hybrid CPU/GPU clusters. Coupled with high angular resolution and great line sensitivity in ground based interferometers, ELTs and JWST, these advances in computational efforts should allow for large strides in the field in the next decade.

Item Type:Report or Paper (White Paper)
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Lyra, Wladimir0000-0002-3768-7542
Mawet, Dimitri0000-0002-8895-4735
Group:Astronomy Department
Series Name:Astro2020 Science White Paper
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190619-102652824
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:96556
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:19 Jun 2019 17:33
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 21:23

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