PSJC #33 Feb 18 2009

Adam Burgasser (MIT)

The Brown Dwarf-Exoplanet Connection

The observable atmospheres of brown dwarfs and exoplanets share several common features, including gas temperatures, the prevalence of molecules, and condensation processes. These similarities, coupled with the relative ease of direct observations, have made brown dwarfs important for establishing "ground truth" in planetary atmosphere models and guiding direct detection efforts. There are also critical differences between brown dwarf and exoplanetary atmospheres, however, including gas pressures, chemical abundances and radiative forcing (from a host star), that result in very different atmospheric physics. In this talk, I review some of the critical similarities and differences between brown dwarf and exoplanetary atmospheres (focusing particularly on transiting and directly-detected exoplanets). I also summarize some recent results on detailed brown dwarf atmospheric processes which may prove relevant in future exoplanet measurements.

This presentation is available on the speaker's website.