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AT: Formation Of The Sun And Its Planets
October 25, 2020 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pmFree
About this Event
In October, join Professor Patrick Hartigan of Rice University as he explains the formation of the sun & its planets. In the last few decades, astronomers have learned a great deal about how stars and planets form. New telescopes and instruments have enabled us to see deep within stellar nurseries and observe firsthand what goes on in these regions. The discovery of thousands of planets around other stars has provided much-needed data about solar systems in general, and new studies of the oldest rocks and meteors on Earth, together with numerical models, have put together an intriguing picture of the history of the Sun and its planets. This talk will go over some of the basics of how and why stars form, and then turn to some recent results relating to star and planet formation. In our own solar system, the interactions of Jupiter and Saturn at the earliest times may have had a profound impact upon how our Earth came to be. We actually have an opportunity right now to see both these planets close together in the sky. Professor Hartigan will spend the last 10-15 minutes of his talk discussing their conjunction, which happens every 20 years or so and will be easy to follow during the next month or two.