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Cold Debris Disks as Strategic Targets for the 2020s

Debes, John H. and Choquet, Élodie and Faramaz, Virginie C. and Duchêne, Gaspard and Hines, Dean and Stark, Chris and Ygouf, Marie and Girard, Julien and Moro-Martín, Amaya and Arriaga, Pauline and Chen, Christine and Currie, Thayne and Dodson-Robinson, Sally and Douglas, Ewan S. and Kalas, Paul and Lisse, Carey M. and Mawet, Dimitri and Mazoyer, Johan and Mennesson, Bertrand and Millar-Blanchaer, Max A. and Sivramakrishnan, Anand and Wang, Jason (2019) Cold Debris Disks as Strategic Targets for the 2020s. Astro2020 Science White Paper, . (Unpublished)

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Cold debris disks (T<200 K) are analogues to the dust in the Solar System's Kuiper belt--dust generated from the evaporation and collision of minor bodies perturbed by planets, our Sun, and the local interstellar medium. Scattered light from debris disks acts as both a signpost for unseen planets as well as a source of contamination for directly imaging terrestrial planets, but many details of these disks are poorly understood. We lay out a critical observational path for the study of nearby debris disks that focuses on defining an empirical relationship between scattered light and thermal emission from a disk, probing the dynamics and properties of debris disks, and directly determining the influence of planets on disks. We endorse the findings and recommendations published in the National Academy reports on Exoplanet Science Strategy and Astrobiology Strategy for the Search for Life in the Universe. This white paper extends and complements the material presented therein with a focus on debris disks around nearby stars. Separate complementary papers are being submitted regarding the inner warm regions of debris disks (Mennesson et al.), the modeling of debris disk evolution (Gaspar et al.), studies of dust properties (Chen et al.), and thermal emission from disks (Su et al.).

Item Type:Report or Paper (White Paper)
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Debes, John H.0000-0002-1783-8817
Choquet, Élodie0000-0002-9173-0740
Hines, Dean0000-0003-4653-6161
Ygouf, Marie0000-0001-7591-2731
Girard, Julien0000-0001-8627-0404
Moro-Martín, Amaya0000-0001-9504-8426
Currie, Thayne0000-0002-7405-3119
Kalas, Paul0000-0002-6221-5360
Lisse, Carey M.0000-0002-9548-1526
Mawet, Dimitri0000-0002-8895-4735
Mazoyer, Johan0000-0002-9133-3091
Mennesson, Bertrand0000-0003-4205-4800
Millar-Blanchaer, Max A.0000-0001-6205-9233
Wang, Jason0000-0003-0774-6502
Group:Astronomy Department
Series Name:Astro2020 Science White Paper
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190621-081621109
Persistent URL:
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:96616
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:21 Jun 2019 17:43
Last Modified:07 Apr 2020 18:10

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