Astrophysics of Planet Formation: Summer Term 2011
This is the course home-page for Astrophysics of planet formation. This is a graduate level (PhD-student) course, taught in the summer term 2011. Lectures are 2-3pm on Thursdays, in room F11.
The aim of the course is to give students a broad overview of how planets form. Our approach will largely consider planet formation from an astrophysical perspective (rather than a planetary science or cosmochemistry approach), and the course will discuss both observational and theoretical research into planets and their formation. The course consists of six one-hour lectures: slides and supporting handouts from the lectures will be available here after the lectures have been given.
Lecture 3: Protoplanetary discs II
Textbooks & Background ReadingI will list individual papers and articles at the end of the notes for each lecture, but there are several books that provide excellent background reading. By far the most relevant textbook for this course is Astrophysics of Planet formation, by Phil Armitage. It covers most of the material in the course (usually in greater detail than we will), and is an invaluable and up-to-date summary of the field. The book itself is available from the library, and there are also several copies in the department. Phil has also made his lecture notes (on which the book is based) available on-line here.
The other recommended course textbook is Accretion processes in star formation, by Lee Hartmann. This is a standard textbook for the study of star formation and protoplanetary discs, and is very well written. It doesn't cover planet formation in detail, but is very relevant to the content of lectures 2 and 3.
In addition, the Protostars & Planets series provides a large collection of review articles that cover all aspects of star and planet formation. The PP meetings have been held approximately once every 7-8 years since the 1970s, and the proceedings books (which usually exceed 1000 pages in length) serve as standard reference texts in the field. The articles from PPIV (2000) are available online from the University of Arizona Press. The contents page for PPV (2007), the most recent edition, is here; most (but not all) of the articles can be found on astro-ph. PPIII (1993) and earlier volumes can (only) be found in the library. (The PPVI meeting has recently been announced - it will be in Heidelberg in July 2013.)
Finally, the field of planet formation was intially driven forward by the pioneering work of Victor Safronov in the 1960s. His book, Evolution of the protoplanetary cloud and formation of the earth and the planets, was many years ahead of its time, and still provides a fascinating historical perspective. The English translation of the book has been out of print for many years, and copies are very scarce (despite the fact that it is still widely cited!). I have a reprinted version, bought from NASA: stop by my office if you would like to borrow it.
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