Protoplanetary Disks and Backward Spinning Stars with J. J. Zanazzi

We typically expect physical phenomena to follow certain rules: an apple falls from a tree under the influence of gravity, a skater will eventually slow down from the friction between their skates and the ice, a star spins in a similar direction as the planets in its solar system... Here's the interesting bit, the last one doesn't always hold true. In fact, astrophysicists theorized that there are solar systems in outer space that don't follow this rule. And in 2019, scientists measured this counterintuitive phenomenon in a solar system almost 900 light-years away called K2-290. Their findings were published earlier this year and we got a chance to interview one of the co-authors of this paper, Dr J. J Zanazzi from the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics at the University of Toronto covering topics like the formation of protoplanetary disks, the effect of neighbouring stars and what we know about planet formation. 

 

Primary readings discussed: 

https://www.pnas.org/content/118/8/e2017418118

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