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Kimran Dhaliwal

I am a PhD student studying protoplanetary disks under the supervision of Dr Farzana Meru in the Astronomy and Astrophysics research group at the University of Warwick.


Recent images of protoplanetary disks reveal substructures in exquisite detail that are often linked to forming planets. Such planets can perturb the dust and gas profiles in the disk which can explain gaps and rings and may lead to the formation of a pressure maximum. Due to inwards radial drift, dust grains can become trapped at pressure maxima which may accelerate the formation process. However, due to computational expense, dust coagulation is often left out of simulations. To fully understand the processes at play and their effects on young planets and their dust environments, it is important that hydrodynamical simulations are coupled with dust coagulation and fragmentation physics. My current research focuses on simulating the growth and evolution of planets in protoplanetary discs through the use of numerical code and how dust growth proceeds in dust rings. I use high performance computers to also look at how different components of the protoplanetary disc evolve over time.

Some of my past work has involved critically studying the most popular planet formation theories in the community as well as looking at second and third generation discs due to mass transfer in late stage binary star systems.



For my publications in the Journal of Physics Special Topics please see Volume 17, No 1 (2018).

Conferences and Workshops:

  • On the LOC for NAM 2022
  • STFC Solar-Stellar Connection Summer School 2020

  • IMPRS School (August -September 2020, virtually based in Heidelberg)
  • Exoplanets 3 (August 2020, virtually based in Heidelberg)
  • EAS 2020 (June-July 2020, virtually based in Leiden)
  • MIAPP Planet Formation Conference (June 2020, virtually based in Munich)
  • UKRI STFC Workshop (August 2019, University of Kent)

Posters and Talks:

  • Poster- EAS 2020, July 2020 - 'On the Coagulation and Fragmentation of dust in protoplanetary disks'.
  • Poster- RAS Poster Exhibition, September 2020 - 'On the Coagulation and Fragmentation of dust in protoplanetary disks'.

Departmental work and Outreach:

  • From May 2020 - June 2020 I was a tutor for the novel Warwick Online Learning Certificate for approximately 100 first year undergraduates, assisting them academically and pastorally through this mandatory course. I also collated feedback from the course for the University.
  • From October 2019 - March 2020, I assessed the second year Undergraduate Astronomy laboratory scripts as well as invigilating examinations across the University.
  • Since October 2019 I have also worked with students in Higher Education who have Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities throughout various STEM (undergraduate) disciplines.

From 2017-2018 I was a Science Interpreter at the National Space Centre. My time consisted mostly of science communication, public engagement and blog writing, links to which are below.

I often give talks in schools as part of my continuing contribution to outreach.

Please feel free to contact me should you wish to know more about my research or experience in science communication.

Write to:

Kimran Dhaliwal,
Department of Physics,
University of Warwick,
Coventry CV4 7AL

Contact details: