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Gravitational Instability in Protostellar Discs

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In the ALMA and SPHERE era of observational astronomy, we are availed of a multitude of spatially resolved protostellar discs, revealing a plethora of substructure such as warps, rings and spirals. While it is now becoming increasingly clear that ring-like morphology at ~mm wavelengths is probably due to planet-disc interaction, things remain more unclear for spiral morphology. I begin with a general overview of accretion discs and gravitational instability, before discussing the role gravitational instability may play in forming these features. I conclude with recent results from global hydrodynamics simulations and population synthesis models, and what they may mean for GI planet formation theory.

This talk is part of the Exoplanet Meetings series.

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