Contribution Invited Talk
Evolution of Solids -- The Missing Link
The evolution of solids in circumstellar disks is governed by transport processes and collisional growth. These processes are in turn driven by the dynamics of the gas disk. Dust evolution is therefore not only the first step towards forming planets, it is also a powerful probe of the structure and dynamics of the gas disk.
Furthermore, key volatiles such as water or CO form/freeze-out on the surfaces of grains. Many aspects of the chemical evolution of disks thus depend on the evolution of solids because particles efficiently migrate inward towards the star. Solids can therefore act as a conveyor belt for frozen-out volatiles. This mode of transport easily dominates other transport processes, such as diffusion or meridional flows.
Upcoming radio interferometers and high contrast imaging will soon deliver a wealth of observations of unprecedented resolution and sensitivity. To make use of the observed dust continuum and molecular line emission, the processes that drive the evolution of solids will have to be well understood. In this talk, I will review recent advances in theoretical modeling, their impact on disk chemistry, and how recent observations already foreshadow an exciting future of the field of planet formation and its chemistry.