Planet-induced disk structures: A comparison between (sub)mm and infrared radiation
1 Universität zu Kiel, Institut für Theoretische und Astrophysik, Leibnitzstr. 15, 24098 Kiel, Germany
2 Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Königstuhl 17, 69117 Heidelberg, Germany
3 University of Chicago, The Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 5640 S. Ellis Ave, Chicago, IL 60637, USA
Received: 6 November 2013
Accepted: 5 November 2014
Context. Young giant planets, which are embedded in a circumstellar disk, will significantly perturb the disk density distribution. This effect can potentially be used as an indirect tracer for planets.
Aims. We investigate the feasibility of observing planet-induced gaps in circumstellar disks in scattered light.
Methods. We perform 3D hydrodynamical disk simulations combined with subsequent radiative transfer calculations in scattered light for different star, disk, and planet configurations. The results are compared to those of a corresponding study for the (sub)mm thermal re-emission.
Results. The feasibility of detecting planet-induced gaps in scattered light is mainly influenced by the optical depth of the disk and therefore by the disk size and mass. Planet-induced gaps are in general only detectable if the photosphere of the disks is sufficiently disturbed. Within the limitations given by the parameter space here considered, we find that gap detection is possible in the case of disks with masses below ~ 10−4···−3 M⊙. Compared to the disk mass that marks the lower Atacama Large (Sub)Millimeter Array (ALMA) detection limit for the thermal radiation re-emitted by the disk, it is possible to detect the same gap both in re-emission and scattered light only in a narrow range of disk masses around ~ 10-4 M⊙, corresponding to 16% of cases considered in our study.
Key words: radiation mechanisms: general / hydrodynamics / planet-disk interactions / planets and satellites: general / submillimeter: general / radiative transfer
© ESO, 2014