Sunday, July 17, 2016

An Estimate of the Formation, Evolution and Dispersal of Protoplanetary Disks

From Birth to Death of Protoplanetary Disks: Modeling Their Formation, Evolution, and Dispersal


Kimura et al


Formation, evolution, and dispersal processes of protoplanetary disks are investigated and the disk lifetime is estimated. Gravitational collapse of a pre-stellar core forms both a central star and a protoplanetary disk. The central star grows by accretion from the disk, and irradiation by the central star heats up the disk and generates thermal wind, which results in the disk dispersal. We calculate the evolution of protoplanetary disks from their parent pre-stellar cores to dispersal of the disks. We find that the disk lifetimes of typical pre-stellar cores are around 2--4 million years (Myr). A pre-stellar core with high angular momentum forms a larger disk whose lifetime is long, while a disk around a X-ray luminous star has a short lifetime. Integrating the disk lifetimes under various mass and angular velocity of prestellar cores and X-ray luminosities of young stellar objects, we obtain disk fraction at a given stellar age and mean lifetime of the disks. Our model indicates that the mean lifetime of protoplanetary disks is 3.7 Myr, which is consistent with the observational estimate from young stellar clusters. We also find that the dispersion of X-ray luminosity is needed to reproduce the observed disk fraction.

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