Current group members
Dr. Meng Xiang-Gruess
Meng is working on the evolution of planetary systems with focus on their interaction with their environments. One major mechanism is thereby the interaction between the planets and the so-called protoplanetary discs in which they have been formed. In her current project, she also investigates possible influences of stellar objects onto a planetary system. Meng is interested in misaligned planets as well as the three-dimensional evolution of gaseous discs. Meng performs numerical simulations with N-body as well as SPH codes which are massively parallelized. For more information please go to her email@example.com
Andreas is investigating the evolution of protoplanetary discs in the context of star-disc encounters. He is especially interested in a possible generalised treatment of such events. For future high resolution simulations of encounters, considering also viscous forces, he has developed a Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method for the highly scalable tree-code PEPC. more...firstname.lastname@example.org
Kirsten is currently investigating the influence of a stellar cluster environment on the young solar system. She combines both the cluster simulations and the star-disc encounter simulations to identify encounters which yield the young circumstellar disks with a radius between 30-50 AU. Such a protoplantary disc is believed to have formed the present day solar system. more...email@example.com
Mai studies the influence of a cluster environment on protoplanetary discs. She investigates stellar encounters and the resulting changes in the discs' mass and size as a function of the local density around the host star. This connects the properties of the star's birth environment with its protoplanetary discs and eventually forming planetary system. more...firstname.lastname@example.org
Asmita is investigating the effect of non-coplanar stellar encounters on protoplanetary discs. In order to generalise the impact of such encounters especially on the final size of the disc, she considers different mass-ratios, periastron distances and inclinations. Possible consequences of such an encounter in the early history of the solar system are also investigated. more...email@example.com
Former group members
Dr. Christina Korntreff
Christina simulated binary systems embedded in their surrounding gas to investigate the embedded cluster phase until the gas is removed by strong winds and radiation from massive stars. During this embedded phase, stars and binary systems experience dynamical friction with the ambient gas, which leads to energy and angular momentum loss resulting in a shrinking of the binary orbit and possibly merging of the two stars. more... See also here.
Dr. Manuel Steinhausen
Manuel has investigated the influence of stellar encounters on protoplanetary discs around young stars. His focus was on how far the initial disc-mass distribution alters the structure of the perturbed discs within a young dense cluster environment. A hierarchical tree code was used to investigate single star-disc encounters while the cluster dynamics were simulated using Nbody6. more...
Dr. Thomas Kaczmarek
Thomas has worked on the evolution of young dense star clusters and the evolution of their binary population. Using Nbody simulations he investigated how the binary population in the clusters is altered due to gravitational interactions and how the initial cluster model influences the evolution of the clusters themselves. more...