Disks, Dynamos, and Data: Confronting MHD Accretion Theory with Observations

Coordinators: Catherine Espaillat, Christian Knigge, Jim Stone, and Jean-Pierre Lasota-Hirszowicz

Accretion powers a wide range of astrophysical sources, from young stellar objects to quasars and active galactic nuclei (AGN). Over the past few decades, theoretical modeling of accretion flows has shown that magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) processes are crucial for angular momentum transport and for driving and collimating mass outflows and jets. Advances in numerical algorithms for MHD and computer hardware over this same time frame have enabled detailed time-dependent and three-dimensional modeling of MHD accretion flows, including radiation transport. In addition, new and advanced observational facilities such as ALMA, EVLA, NuSTAR, and the EHT are providing rich data sets that both challenge and constrain the theoretical models. The time is ripe for detailed comparisons between the results of MHD accretion models with the latest observational data.

This conference will bring together both theorists and observers to present and discuss the latest models and observations of accretion disks in a variety of systems, including young stellar objects, close binaries (such as dwarf novae and X-ray binaries), and AGN. The focus will be on connecting and confronting results from theory with the observational data, in order to assess the success, the puzzles, and the future of MHD accretion theory.

PLEASE NOTE: During the conference there will be an opportunity to present a poster. If you are interested in presenting a poster please visit the conference website and submit your title and abstract. Each poster board is 4 feet high x 6 feet wide. We ask that the posters be no larger than 44 inches high x 34 inches wide at the most.