My Research

Planet formation has been my main research topic over the last few years. I am highly interested in getting as much information as possible from observations and setting accurate constraints for ongoing planet formation or detecting newborn planets in the best case.

ALMA is my main instrument. Since ALMA is an interferometer, the observations are contained in visibility measurements rather than counts/pixels as in optical data. My technical expertise is to get the best possible visibility description of the observations and recover the disk information by studying its Fourier-space data.

Check my full list of publications here (updated October 14 2022): ADS Library

Highlights of my work

RWAur binaries interacted a few hundred years ago

Extremely precise astrometry measurements made with ALMA observations, and historical multiwavelength observations, have allowed the determination of RWAur B orbit around A.

The periastron of the orbit is comparable to the extension of their gas disks, which indicates the systems collided a few hundred years ago.

Publication: Kurtovic et al. (in prep.)
Data: (Coming soon)

Planet formation around the binary system CSCha

The disk around the binary CS Cha shows a very small eccentricity, which we measured by modeling the interferometric visibilities.

Through hydro simulations, I demonstrate that the binaries cannot explain the disk morphology, and a Saturn-like planet orbiting at the edge of the cavity is more consistent with the observations.

Publication: Kurtovic et al. (2021), ADS
Data: All the fits files and calibrated ms files are available in my git-hub webpage.
Video Summary: 3min summary

The first uv-modeling of a Circumplanetary Disk: PDS70c

PDS 70 is the first disk where newborn planets have been directly detected in different wavelengths.

I used several uv-modeling techniques to recover the position and flux of PDS70b, and PDS70c at different epochs, which allowed us to set strong constraints over the PDS70c circumplanetary disk.

Publication: Benisty et al., incl. Kurtovic (2021), ADS
Data: Not self-calibrated data is available in the ALMA Archive. One of the epochs is available as a template in SIMIO.

Very Low Mass Stars show evidence of planet formation

I studied six disks around Very Low Mass Stars in Taurus. The sample shows evidence of strong dust radial drift, as high ratios between the gas and dust extent are detected.

I also found dust substructures in all the disks that are well resolved by our resolution of 0.1''. The results suggest that substructure detection is limited by resolution and sensitivity, even in VLMS.

Publication: Kurtovic et al. (2021), ADS
Data: All the fits files and calibrated ms files are available in my github webpage.

Substructures in Multiple Disk Systems (DSHARP-IV)

Tidal interactions between stars-disks in multiple stellar systems can interfere with planet formation processes.

I studied the dust substructures in the multiple stellar systems HT Lup and AS 205 and found: the first dust spirals in a binary system, truncated disks, fly-by interactions, and disk misalignments. Check all the details in the publication.

Publication: Kurtovic et al. (2018) ADS
Data: All DSHARP data products are available at: DSHARP data release

Do you want to discuss strategies to analyze your interferometric observations? Send me a message!

Over time I have learned and developed all the necessary tools to describe even the faintest emissions and complex morphology. Let us see if any of that is helpful for your project.