Andrew Cumming

Professor, McGill University

Professor Andrew Cumming’s research has the goal of understanding the fundamental physics processes at work in the formation and evolution of exoplanets. With the large number of exoplanets now known and the increasing quality of observations that can characterize them, the challenge for theory is to draw connections with observations so that we can learn about how planets form and evolve, and constrain the physical processes at work in their interiors.

He has worked on statistical studies of the exoplanet population, using both frequentist and Bayesian techniques to characterize their occurrence rates and orbital properties such as the distributions of masses, orbital periods, and eccentricities. He has worked on different aspects of the evolution of gas giant planets. These include the atmospheric flows on tidally locked hot jupiters and whether ohmic heating can be responsible for inflating their radii. Most recently, he developed models for cooling gas giants at large separations from their host star. The aim is to use observations of directly-imaged young gas giants to constrain the physical conditions during their formation.

Professor Cumming has also worked extensively on the physics of neutron stars, including physical processes that also occur in planet interiors such as chemical separation, compositionally-driven convection, and magnetohydrodynamic processes.

Former students (in the field of exoplanet only)
  • David Berardo, MSc 2017, McGill University; now PhD at MIT
  • Gabriel-Dominique Marleau, MSc 2012; PhD at MPIA/University of Heidelberg; now Postdoctoral researcher at Universität Bern
  • Diana Dragomir, MSc 2008; PhD University of British Columbia 2013; now Hubble Fellow at MIT since 2016
Contacts

Téléphone : 514-398-6494
Courriel : cumming@physics.mcgill.ca
Bureau : 3550 rue University, room 206, McGill University

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