Saturday, October 31, 2015

Spiral-driven Accretion in Protoplanetary Disks

Spiral-driven accretion in protoplanetary discs - I. 2D models


Lesur et al


We numerically investigate the dynamics of a 2D non-magnetised protoplanetary disc surrounded by an inflow coming from an external envelope. We find that the accretion shock between the disc and the inflow is unstable, leading to the generation of large-amplitude spiral density waves. These spiral waves propagate over long distances, down to radii at least ten times smaller than the accretion shock radius. We measure spiral-driven outward angular momentum transport with 1e-4 less than alpha less than 1e-2 for an inflow accretion rate Mout greater than 1e-8 Msun/yr. We conclude that the interaction of the disc with its envelope leads to long-lived spiral density waves and radial angular momentum transport with rates that cannot be neglected in young non-magnetised protostellar discs.

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