Thanks to ALMA, the study of protoplanetary disks is undergoing a revolution, with a wide variety of results being reported on statistics of disks, fascinating substructures in dust and gas, and surprisingly weak CO emission. This talk will present a brief overview as well as recent results from our group and collaborators on ALMA observations and associated models of disks. First, the latest statistics on disk masses in nearby star-forming regions will be presented, including low vs high mass regions, with implications for disk evolution. Second, the differences in sizes of gas vs dust disks will be discussed: do they indeed provide evidence for radial drift of mm-sized grains? Third, how do the large (transitional) disks with cavities and rings fit into the overall disk population? How strong is the evidence for just-formed planets in those disks?
Ewine F. van Dishoeck is professor of molecular astrophysics at Leiden University, the Netherlands. She graduated at Leiden in 1984 and held positions at Harvard, Princeton and Caltech before returning to Leiden in 1990. The work of her group innovatively combines the world of chemistry with that of physics and astronomy to study the molecular trail from star-forming clouds to planet-forming disks. She has mentored several dozens of students and postdocs and has been heavily involved in planning new observational facilities such as Herschel, ALMA and JWST. She has received many awards, including the 2000 Dutch Spinoza award, the 2015 Albert Einstein World Award of Science, and the 2018 Kavli Prize for Astrophysics. She is a Member or Foreign Associate of several academies, including that of the Netherlands, USA, Germany and Norway. Since 2007, she is the scientific director of the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA). As of 2018, Ewine serves as the president of the International Astronomical Union (IAU).