There are over 700 extra-solar planetary systems discovered so far and more are being discovered every year, with the hope of finding a system of planets similar to our own solar system. But our Solar System is composed of not only planets, but two rings of dust that make up our Solar System "Debris Disk": the asteroid belt and Kuiper belt—each of which have been shaped by our planets. Astronomers have found close to a thousand Solar System-like debris disks and those numbers are growing, and with it, comes the hope of detecting a system that looks like our own—maybe even one that has an Earth 2.0. In this talk, I will elaborate on the methods of detecting extra-solar debris disks and how we can deduce the presence of embedded extra-solar planets by looking at the structure of the disk!
Rahul Patel is a 5th year graduate student in Astronomy at Stony Brook whose research focuses on understanding the evolution and occurence rate of debris disks and planetary systems. Rahul graduated from Florida Intentional University in Miami and hails from both Miami and Toronto.