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Numerical simulations of protostellar encounters - II. Coplanar disc-disc encounters

Watkins, S. J., Bhattal, A. S., Boffin, H. M. J., Francis, N. and Whitworth, Anthony Peter 1998. Numerical simulations of protostellar encounters - II. Coplanar disc-disc encounters. Monthly Notices- Royal Astronomical Society 300 (4) , pp. 1205-1213.

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It is expected that an average protostar will undergo at least one impulsive interaction with a neighbouring protostar whilst a large fraction of its mass is still in a massive, extended disc. Such interactions must have a significant impact upon the evolution of the protostars and their discs. We have carried out a series of simulations of coplanar encounters between two stars, each possessing a massive circumstellar disc, using an SPH code that models gravitational, hydrodynamic and viscous forces. We find that during a coplanar encounter, disc material is swept up into a shock layer between the two interacting stars, and the layer then fragments to produce new protostellar condensations. The truncated remains of the discs may subsequently fragment; and the outer regions of the discs may be thrown off to form circumbinary disc-like structures around the stars. Thus coplanar disc-disc encounters lead efficiently to the formation of multiple star systems and small-N clusters, including substellar objects

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 0035-8711
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Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 07:54

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