E. van Dishoeck (Leiden University, the Netherlands/ MPE, Germany),
E. Bergin (University of Michigan, Astronomy, United States),
D. Lis (California Institute of Technology, Physics & Astronomy, United States),
J. Lunine (Cornell University, Planetary sciences, United States)

Water is key molecule in the chemistry and physics of protostellar and (proto)planetary environments and is associated with the emergence of life on Earth and likely on planets elsewhere in the universe. Investigations of interstellar water have been complicated, however, by the fact that thermal water vapor emission can only be observed from space platforms. Thanks to a number of recent space missions, culminating with the Herschel Space Observatory, an enormous step forward has been made in our understanding of where water is formed in space, what its abundance is in various physical environments, and how it is transported from collapsing clouds to forming planetary systems. At the same time, new results are emerging on water in our own Solar system and in the atmospheres of exo-planets. This talk will attempt to tie together the latest information on water from the different subfields of "Protostars & Planets" into a coherent story of the water trail from clouds to planets. Recent results will be summarized and open questions highlighted.

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