Protostars and Planets VI, Heidelberg, July 15-20, 2013
The Survival of Molecules in Cavities of Transition Disks
Bruderer, Simon (MPE Garching)
van Dishoeck, Ewine (Leiden Observatory, MPE Garching)
Planet formation is closely related to the evolution of protoplanetary disks. Before protoplanetary disks disperse, they enter a transition phase where a gap in the dust surface density opens up. Different mechanism for the origin of this gap have been suggested, including the clearing up by a newly formed planet, grain growth or photoevaporation. The amount of gas inside the gap is still unclear, however key to distinguish between the different scenarios. Since proto-planetary bodies evolve significantly in the transition disk phase, knowledge of the disk dissipation process is crucial for the understanding of planetary system evolution.
ALMA allows for the first time to spatially resolve the gas content of cavities. To analyse the new observations and study the physical/chemical composition of gas inside a gap, we have developed new radiative thermo-chemical models of the inner disk. The models are based on Bruderer et al. 2012 and solve for the chemical abundance self-consistently with the dust radiative transfer, thermal balance and molecular/atomic excitation. The models are used to constrain the conditions that allow molecules to survive in cavities. We further present ALMA predictions from a grid of transition disk models.
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