This colloquium will be remote over zoom.
Title: Cosmic Building Blocks: Forming Planets from Tiny Grains of Dust
Abstract: Planet formation takes place in disks of dust and gas around young stars, where the dust grains are the building blocks to form new planets. Nevertheless, capturing the planet-formation process is challenging as disks are complex and dynamic environments. Observational studies of both disks and planet formation are rapidly changing with the development of high resolution and multi-wavelength instrumentation. With current capabilities, we can characterize structural features in disks, study their chemistry, and even detect young protoplanets embedded in these systems. In this presentation, I will provide an overview of both current and future capabilities, highlighting stunning images and results. I will also discuss some of the challenging open questions and how future research may tackle many of these questions.