Habitable Planet Formation
Time-Evolution of Planet Formation in Our Galaxy


Planet Formation around a Newborn Star


Purpose of the Research Project

Stars continuously form in our Milky Way Galaxy. Heavy atomic elements, such as metals, are created inside stars and blown out into the interstellar space of the Galaxy. This process provides atomic elements heavier than hydrogen and helium, such as carbon and oxygen, which is critically important for the existence of living creatures in the universe. In our Milky Way Galaxy, the enrichment of heavy elements starts in the inner Galactic regions and gradually expands toward the outer regions of the Galactic disk. This implies that the environment for generating habitable planets and biological entities are developed inside-out in the Galactic Disk over a timescale of the age of the universe. Understanding the origin and evolution of our solar system requires the comprehension of the environment of the birth place of the solar system about 4.6 billion years ago that is expected to be different from its current location in the Galaxy. This requires our understanding of the evolution of our Galaxy itself, over the timescale comparable to the age of the universe. We will try to understand this by extending the recently developed theory of star formation and describing the formation of star clusters. In addition, we will develop the planet formation theory and try to solve multiple puzzling questions regarding the origin of the solar system. This would be done by the collaboration of all the relevant researchers in Japan and this work is expected to lead a paradigm shift in the investigation of the origin of our solar system. We will also try to find possible siblings of the Sun that would have been born at the same time in the same star cluster, i.e., the expected birth place of the Sun. The results of our project are expected to provide a quantitative picture for the distribution of habitable planets in the Galaxy, and hence, provide a new strategy for future observations of exo-planets.

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Content of the Research Project