CAREER: Next Generation Models of Planet Formation and Evolution

NSF Faculty Early Career Development Program

Start Date: 12/01/2023
Project #: 1966
End Date: 07/31/2024
Award #: 2405121
Project Description

Transferred from University of Oklahoma

Using state of the art tools, Award 1846388 proposes multiple research objectives modeling the dynamical evolution of the solar system and other planetary systems. Our first objective is to use a GPU accelerated N body code to model rocky protoplanet accretion at different heliocentric distances. Second, we will use the same code to reassess the outer solar system’s evolution using a gravitationally self interacting Kuiper belt. Third, we will use a newly modified version of the popular MERCURY simulation package to understand the likelihood for planetary evolution and instabilities within the Alpha Centauri triple star system. Finally, we will also model how binary companions alter the stability of their planetary systems while they are perturbed by their stellar birth clusters. In concert with these research activities, our project proposed to establish planetary science and astronomy education modules within Oklahoma’s state natural history museum. Below we highlight the progress made under each of these individual objectives