Rossby wave instability and three-dimensional vortices in accretion disks
AstroParticule et Cosmologie (APC), Université Paris Diderot, 10 rue A. Domon et L. Duquet, 75205 Paris Cedex 13, France e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 Laboratoire de Physique et Chimie de l'Environnement et de l'Espace (Université d'Orléans/CNRS), Orléans, France
Accepted: 31 March 2010
Context. The formation of vortices in accretion disks is of high interest in various astrophysical contexts, in particular for planet formation or in the disks of compact objects. But despite numerous attempts it has thus far not been possible to produce strong vortices in fully three-dimensional simulations of disks.
Aims. The aim of this paper is to present the first 3D simulation of a strong vortex, established across the vertically stratified structure of a disk by the Rossby wave instability.
Methods. Using the ersatile advection code (VAC), we set up a fully 3D cylindrical stratified disk potentially prone to the Rossby wave instability.
Results. The simulation confirms the basic expectations obtained from previous 2D analytic and numerical works. The simulation exhibits a strong vortex that grows rapidly and saturates at a finite amplitude. On the other hand the third dimension shows unexpected additional behaviors that could be of strong importance in the astrophysical roles that these vortices can play.
Key words: Accretion, accretion disks / protoplanetary disks / hydrodynamics / instabilities / methods: numerical
© ESO, 2010