The carbon abundance in protoplanetary disks -- new data and implications
Carbon is a key element in the chemistry of protoplanetary
material, and the backbone of life. The abundance of carbon, X(C), in
the rocky cores and gaseous envelopes of planets relates directly to
chemical and physical processing in pre- and protoplanetary material.
I will discuss the difficulties of studying the carbon abundance in
disks, and will present recent progress based on very sensitive APEX
observations of key carbon reservoirs, including the first unambiguous
detections of atomic carbon in protoplanetary disks.