# Investigations of the Formation and Evolution of Planetary Systems - Astrophysics > Earth and Planetary Astrophysics

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Abstract: Stars and planets are the fundamental objects of the Universe. Theirformation processes, though related, may differ in important ways. Stars almostcertainly form from gravitational collapse and probably have formed this waysince the first stars lit the skies. Although it is possible that planets formin this way also, processes involving accretion in a circumstellar disk havebeen favored. High fidelity high resolution images may resolve the question;both processes may occur in some mass ranges. The questions to be answered inthe next decade include:By what process do planets form, and how does the mode of formation determinethe character of planetary systems?What is the distribution of masses of planets? In what manner does themetallicity of the parent star influence the character of its planetary system?In this paper we discuss the observations of planetary systems from birth tomaturity, with an emphasis on observations longward of 100 $\mu$m which mayilluminate the character of their formation and evolution. Advantages of thisspectral region include lower opacity, availability of extremely highresolution to reach planet formation scales and to perform precision astrometryand high sensitivity to thermal emission.

Autor: Alwyn Wootten NRAO, Bryan Butler NRAO, Antonio Hales NRAO, Stuartt Corder NRAO, Robert Brown NAIC, David Wilner CfA

Fuente: https://arxiv.org/