On the evolution of eccentric and inclined protoplanets embedded in protoplanetary disks
Astronomy Unit School of Mathematical Sciences, Queen Mary, University of London, Mile End Road, London E1 4NS, UK e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Institut für Astronomie & Astrophysik, Universität Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 10, 72076 Tübingen, Germany
Accepted: 11 July 2007
Context.Young planets embedded in their protoplanetary disk interact gravitationally with it leading to energy and angular momentum exchange. This interaction determines the evolution of the planet through changes to the orbital parameters.
Aims.We investigate changes in the orbital elements of a 20 Earth-mass planet due to the torques from the disk. We focus on the non-linear evolution of initially non-vanishing eccentricity, e, and/or inclination, i.
Methods.We treat the disk as a two- or three-dimensional viscous fluid and perform hydrodynamical simulations using finite difference methods. The planetary orbit is updated according to the gravitational torque exerted by the disk. We monitor the time evolution of the orbital elements of the planet.
Results.We find rapid exponential decay of the planet orbital eccentricity and inclination for small initial values of e and i, in agreement with linear theory. For larger values of the decay time increases and the decay rate scales as , consistent with existing theoretical models. For large inclinations () the inclination decay rate shows an identical scaling d. We find an interesting dependence of the migration on the eccentricity. In a disk with aspect ratio the migration rate is enhanced for small non-zero eccentricities (), while for larger values we see a significant reduction by a factor of ~4. We find no indication for a reversal of the migration for large e, although the torque experienced by the planet becomes positive when . This inward migration is caused by the persisting energy loss of the planet.
Conclusions.For non gap forming planets, eccentricity and inclination damping occurs on a time scale that is very much shorter than the migration time scale. The results of non linear hydrodynamic simulations are in very good agreement with linear theory for values of e and i for which the theory is applicable (i.e. e and ).
Key words: accretion, accretion disks / hydrodynamics / methods: numerical / planetary systems: formation
© ESO, 2007