Volume 539, March 2012
|Number of page(s)||4|
|Section||Planets and planetary systems|
|Published online||22 February 2012|
Transition disks: four candidates for ongoing giant planet formation in Ophiuchus
1 Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Tećnicas
2 Departamento de Física y Astronomía, Universidad de Valparaíso, Av. Gran Bretaña 1111, Valparaíso, Chile
3 Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI 96822, Sagan Fellow
4 Herschel Science Centre, European Space Astronomy Centre (ESA), PO Box 78, 28691 Villanueva de la Cañada ( Madrid), Spain
5 Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden St. MS 78, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
6 Instituto de Astronomía y Física del Espacio, C.C. 67, Suc. 28, (1428) Buenos Aires, Argentina
Received: 8 July 2011
Accepted: 21 November 2011
Among the large set of Spitzer-selected transitional disks that we have examined in the Ophiuchus molecular, four disks have been identified as (giant) planet-forming candidates based on the morphology of their spectral energy distributions (SEDs), their apparent lack of stellar companions, and evidence of accretion. Here we characterize the structures of these disks modeling their optical, infrared, and (sub)millimeter SEDs. We use the Monte Carlo radiative transfer package RADMC to construct a parametric model of the dust distribution in a flared disk with an inner cavity and calculate the temperature structure that is consistent with the density profile, when the disk is in thermal equilibrium with the irradiating star. For each object, we conducted a Bayesian exploration of the parameter space generating Monte Carlo Markov chains (MCMC) that allow the identification of the best-fit model parameters and to constrain their range of statistical confidence. Our calculations imply that evacuated cavities with radii ~2–8 AU are present that appear to have been carved by embedded giant planets. We found parameter values that are consistent with those previously given in the literature, indicating that there has been a mild degree of grain growth and dust settling, which deserves to be investigated with further modeling and follow-up observations. Resolved images with (sub)millimeter interferometers would be required to break some of the degeneracies of the models and more tightly constrain the physical properties of these fascinating disks.
Key words: stars: pre-main sequence / protoplanetary disks / submillimeter: planetary systems
© ESO, 2012
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