Giant planets are expected to host a circumplanetary disc (CPD) made of gas and dust during their early formation process. The geometry and characteristics of these CPDs are vividly discussed by theorists, however, there exist only few observational case studies to put constraints on the theoretical models.
In this talk I will discuss the possibility of inferring the existence of circumplanetary material by intensity variation it can cause in the scattered light we observe from material in its hosting protoplanetary disk (PPD). Even if the giant planet itself is much too close to the central source of illumination to be directly detectable, the material around it may absorb and scatter the stellar light efficiently, leading to an intensity decrement in the outer, observable parts of the disc – a shadow cast by the CPD.
I will present the possibility of using the azimuthal movement of such a shadow between observational epochs to inform about the orbital distance of the giant planet to the central star, and highlight how we can infer important quantities of the CPD from the shadow’s shape. Finally, we will look at existing observations of V4046 Sgr, a circumbinary disc promising such a shadow detection.