Seminar Series

The growing field of post-main-sequence exoplanetary science


Dimitri Veras, Astrophysicist


University of Warwick

Time & Place

Fri, 27 Apr 2018 11:00:00 NZST in West 531

All are welcome


Connecting planetary systems at different stages of stellar evolution helps us understand their formation, evolution and fate, as well as provides us with crucial insights about their dynamics and chemistry. Post-main-sequence stars -- white dwarfs, giant branch stars and pulsars -- all host planetary systems. Here I review our knowledge of these systems. I show how this interdisciplinary field incorporates several facets of stellar physics and chemistry as well as solar system physics and chemistry, and detail the field's predicted growth with current and upcoming ground-based facilities and space-based missions.


I am an astrophysicist who researches the contents of planetary systems (including our own) in a wide variety of contexts, across both time and space. I have published academic articles about forming, destroying and evolving planets, asteroids, moons and comets while they interact with their parent star or stars. You can view some media attention regarding my work here from The Independent, National Geographic 1, National Geographic 2, Physics Today, New Scientist 1, New Scientist 2, New Scientist 3, Huffington Post, Universe Today, Astronomy Now, The Daily Mail, USA Today and AAAS Science.

My current research focus aims to answer some of the biggest mysteries regarding the ultimate fate of extrasolar planets - how they die, and how they can "pollute" very old stars known as "white dwarfs". The Sun will become a white dwarf, and might very well be polluted by asteroids, comets or even planets such as the Earth!

I am a Proleptic Assistant Professor and STFC Ernest Rutherford Fellow working with both the exoplanet and white dwarf research groups here at the University of Warwick. I am also a member of the University of Warwick's Centre for Exoplanets and Habitability. My biography includes postdoctoral research appointments at the University of Cambridge and University of Florida. I obtained my PhD at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and my Bachelor's degree at Yale University