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Early Dynamics and Evolution of Extrasolar Planetary Systems


Goldberg, Max Elliot (2024) Early Dynamics and Evolution of Extrasolar Planetary Systems. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/cn1v-e821.


Of the thousands of discovered exoplanets, the vast majority were born billions of years ago. The process of their formation was only a tiny fraction of their lifespan and observing formation of new planets is very difficult with current techniques. However, these planets, and the planetary systems they are a part of, retain distinct fingerprints of how and when they formed. This thesis presents six studies that aim to uncover the environment in which planets form by investigating how the architectures of multiplanet systems are shaped by physical processes. I show that varying degrees of planet-planet interactions, planet-disk interactions, and tidal dissipation successfully reproduce many bulk features of the small planet census. Furthermore, analysis of selected individual systems can recover detailed measurements of the protoplanetary disk environment and orbital histories of the planets. Similar processes unfold in the satellite systems of giant planets, which are akin to scaled-down exoplanet systems.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:planet formation; celestial mechanics; exoplanets
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Physics, Mathematics and Astronomy
Major Option:Astrophysics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Batygin, Konstantin
Thesis Committee:
  • Howard, Andrew W. (chair)
  • Batygin, Konstantin
  • Fuller, James
  • Hillenbrand, Lynne A.
  • Mawet, Dimitri
Defense Date:5 February 2024
Funding AgencyGrant Number
David and Lucile Packard FoundationUNSPECIFIED
National Science FoundationAST 2109276
Caltech Center for Comparative Planetary EvolutionUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:02102024-215953210
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription adapted for Ch. 2 adapted for Ch. 3 adapted for Ch. 4 adapted for Ch. 5 adapted for Ch. 6
Goldberg, Max Elliot0000-0003-3868-3663
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16291
Deposited By: Max Goldberg
Deposited On:20 Feb 2024 19:50
Last Modified:27 Feb 2024 16:55

Thesis Files

[img] PDF - Final Version
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