Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Inferring giant planets from ALMA mm continuum and line observations in (transition) disks

Inferring giant planets from ALMA mm continuum and line observations in (transition) disks 


Facchini et al

Potential signatures of proto-planets embedded in their natal protoplanetary disk are radial gaps or cavities in the continuum emission in the IR-mm wavelength range. ALMA observations are now probing spatially resolved rotational line emission of CO and other chemical species. These observations can provide complementary information on the mechanism carving the gaps in dust and additional constraints on the purported planet mass. We post-process 2D hydrodynamical simulations of planet-disk models, where the dust densities and grain size distributions are computed with a dust evolution code. The simulations explore different planet masses (1MJ≤Mp≤15MJ) and turbulent parameters. The outputs are post-processed with the thermo-chemical code DALI, accounting for the radially and vertically varying dust properties as in Facchini et al. (2017). We obtain the gas and dust temperature structures, chemical abundances, and synthetic emission maps of both thermal continuum and CO rotational lines. This is the first study combining hydro simulations, dust evolution and chemistry to predict gas emission of disks hosting massive planets. All radial intensity profiles of the CO main isotopologues show a gap at the planet location. The ratio between the location of the gap as seen in CO and the peak in the mm continuum at the pressure maximum outside the orbit of the planet shows a clear dependence on planet mass. Due to the low dust density in the gaps, the dust and gas components can become thermally decoupled, with the gas being colder than the dust. The gaps seen in CO are due to a combination of gas temperature dropping at the location of the planet, and of the underlying surface density profile. In none of the models is a CO cavity observed, only CO gaps, indicating that one single massive planet is not able to explain the CO cavities observed in transition disks.

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