SFB 676 Colloquium

Probing matter under planetary interior conditions

by Prof. Ronald Redmer (Universität Rostock)

Wednesday, November 29, 2017 from to (Europe/Berlin)
at DESY Hamburg ( Room 2, Building 2a )
Description The behavior of warm dense matter (pressures up to the TPa region and temperatures up to several eV) is of paramount importance for understanding the interior, evolution, and magnetic field of solar and extrasolar planets. While the light elements H and He are the main components of gas giants like Jupiter, mixtures of C-N-O-H are relevant for Neptune-like planets, and minerals of the MgO-FeO-SiO2 complex are the building blocks of rocky planets (Earth, super-Earths). However, the high-pressure phase diagram of these elements and mixtures is not well known, in particular the slope of the melting curve. Furthermore, insulator-to-metal transitions and phase separation may occur in warm dense matter. These high-pressure phenomena have a strong impact on interior, evolution, and dynamo models for planets and, simultaneously, constitute a major challenge to high-pressure, plasma, and computational physics.
Molecular dynamics simulations based on finite-temperature density functional theory are used to predict the equation of state, the high-pressure phase diagram, and the transport properties of warm dense matter for a wide range of densities and temperatures as typical for the interior of planets. These data are benchmarked against diamond-anvil-cell and shock-wave experiments and then applied to construct interior and evolution models for solar and extrasolar planets.