Signatures of planets in spatially unresolved debris disks

Amaya Moro-Martín, Sebastian Wolf, Renu Malhotra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Main-sequence stars are commonly surrounded by debris disks, composed of cold dust continuously replenished by a reservoir of undetected dust-producing planetesimals. In a planetary system with a belt of planetesimals (like the solar system's Kuiper Belt) and one or more interior giant planets, the trapping of dust particles in the mean motion resonances with the planets can create structure in the dust disk, as the particles accumulate at certain semimajor axes. Sufficiently massive planets may also scatter and eject dust particles out of a planetary system, creating a dust-depleted region inside the orbit of the planet. In anticipation of future observations of spatially unresolved debris disks with the Spitzer Space Telescope, we are interested in studying how the structure carved by planets affects the shape of the disk's spectral energy distribution (SED) and consequently whether the SED can be used to infer the presence of planets. We numerically calculate the equilibrium spatial density distributions and SEDs of dust disks originated by a belt of planetesimals in the presence of interior giant planets in different planetary configurations and for a representative sample of chemical compositions. The dynamical models are necessary to estimate the enhancement of particles near the mean motion resonances with the planets and to determine how many particles drift inside the planet's orbit. On the basis of the SEDs and predicted Spitzer colors we discuss what types of planetary systems can be distinguished and the main parameter degeneracies in the model SEDs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1079-1097
Number of pages19
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume621
Issue number2 I
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 10 2005

Fingerprint

debris
planets
planet
signatures
dust
protoplanets
planetary systems
planetesimal
spectral energy distribution
orbits
Kuiper belt
Space Infrared Telescope Facility
main sequence stars
solar system
trapping
energy
density distribution
chemical composition
particle
color

Keywords

  • Circumstellar matter
  • Interplanetary medium
  • Kuiper Belt
  • Methods: n-body simulations
  • Planetary systems
  • Radiative transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Signatures of planets in spatially unresolved debris disks. / Moro-Martín, Amaya; Wolf, Sebastian; Malhotra, Renu.

In: Astrophysical Journal, Vol. 621, No. 2 I, 10.03.2005, p. 1079-1097.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Moro-Martín, Amaya ; Wolf, Sebastian ; Malhotra, Renu. / Signatures of planets in spatially unresolved debris disks. In: Astrophysical Journal. 2005 ; Vol. 621, No. 2 I. pp. 1079-1097.
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