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2021 Sagan Exoplanet Summer Virtual Workshop

Circumstellar Disks and Young Planets

July 19-23, 2021
Hosted by The NASA Exoplanet Science Institute, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA

Join us for the 21st Sagan Summer Workshop!

The 2021 Sagan Summer Workshop will focus on young planets and the circumstellar disks from which they form during the first few million years of a star's lifetime. As a protoplanet accretes material from the disk, dynamical interactions drive migration and produce disk substructures such as the gaps, rings and spirals now detected in high-resolution optical, near-infrared, and submillimter images. Over the next 100 million years, planetary systems continue to evolve through processes such as collisions, differentiation, and scattering. These late-epoch evolutionary processes are reflected in the structure and distribution of secondary dust disks. These debris disks, formed as the result of planetesimals stirring, serve as signposts for the presence of planetary systems.

The workshop will address how transformational new datasets are allowing us to address key questions about the formation and evolution of planets and their potential habitability; topics will include:

  • Properties of transiting young planets detected by the Kepler/K2 and TESS missions
  • Gaia identification of groups of young stars and determination of their ages
  • Properties of planets and disks imaged directly with ground-based faculties (e.g., Gemini/GPI, SPHERE/VLTI, Keck and ALMA) and space-based telescopes (Spitzer, HST and, soon, JWST)
  • Environment influence of an active young star on the evolution of the primordial atmosphere of a young planet
  • Theoretical bases for the formation and evolution of a planetary systems, including both the disk and planets

As with last year, we expect that the 2021 workshop will be fully virtual. However we will post updates to this page should that change.

The Sagan Summer Workshops are aimed at advanced undergraduates, grad students, and postdocs, however all are welcome to attend. There is no registration fee for these workshops.

Attendees will also participate in hands-on tutorials and have the chance to meet in smaller groups with our speakers.

We ask all participants to follow this Code of Conduct.

Twitter: #sagan2021

Scientific Organizing Committee

Local Organizing Committee

Lisa Prato, Chair (Lowell Observatory)

Megan Crane (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Chas Beichman (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Elise Furlan (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Beth Biller (University of Edinburgh)

Ellen O'Leary (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Christine Chen (STScI)

Elise Furlan (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Dawn Gelino (Caltech/IPAC-NExScI)

Mark Marley (NASA Ames)

Tom Megeath (University of Toledo)

Christoph Mordasini (University of Bern)

Peter Plavchan (George Mason University)

Karl Stapelfeldt (NASA JPL)


View presentations from previous summer workshops on the Sagan Exoplanet Workshop YouTube Channel.

Sagan_Workshop@ipac.caltech.edu: for questions or to be added to our email list for the 2021 workshop:


(last updated November 23rd, 2020 16:48:09)