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National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO)

The Strange Orbits of ‘Tatooine’ Planetary Disks

19 Mar 2020, 14:00 UTC
The Strange Orbits of ‘Tatooine’ Planetary Disks ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), I. Czekala and G. Kennedy; NRAO/AUI/NSF, S. Dagnello

Astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) have found striking orbital geometries in protoplanetary disks around binary stars. While disks orbiting the most compact binary star systems share very nearly the same plane, disks encircling wide binaries have orbital planes that are severely tilted. These systems can teach us about planet formation in complex environments.

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