Sunday, June 19, 2016

Dust dynamics in 2D gravito-turbulent disks

Dust dynamics in 2D gravito-turbulent disks


Shi et al


The dynamics of solid bodies in protoplanetary disks are subject to the properties of any underlying gas turbulence. Turbulence driven by disk self-gravity shows features distinct from those driven by the magnetorotational instability (MRI). We study the dynamics of solids in gravito-turbulent disks with two-dimensional (in the disk plane), hybrid (particle and gas) simulations. Gravito-turbulent disks can exhibit stronger gravitational stirring than MRI-active disks, resulting in greater radial diffusion and larger eccentricities and relative speeds for large particles (those with dimensionless stopping times tstopΩ > 1, where Ω is the orbital frequency). The agglomeration of large particles into planetesimals by pairwise collisions is therefore disfavored in gravito-turbulent disks. However, the relative speeds of intermediate-size particles (tstopΩ ∼ 1) are significantly reduced as such particles are collected by gas drag and gas gravity into coherent filament-like structures with densities high enough to trigger gravitational collapse. First-generation planetesimals may form via gravitational instability of dust in marginally gravitationally unstable gas disks.

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