Sofis Savvidou (Greece)
savvidou @ mpia.de
Thermal structures of protoplanetary discs
The thermal structure of protoplanetary discs is regulated by their dust content and the
opacity that dust grains provide. Therefore it is important to investigate the effect grain growth
has on the disc structure.
We use hydrodynamical simulations coupled to a new opacity model that calculates the
opacity as a function of temperature for a dust population taking into account the particle
size, composition and abundance. We compare simulations utilizing single grain sizes to two
different multi-grain size distributions at dfferent levels of turbulence strengths, parameterized
through the alpha viscosity. In the first grain size distribution, the number density follows
an MRN power-law, while the second begins with the same mass distribution, but takes into
consideration the relative velocities for particles of different sizes and gives different slopes
for the mass distribution depending on the particle sizes and their aerodynamical properties.
Moreover, we will study the extend to which stellar irradiation in
uences the disc and how radial dust drift changes the size distribution.
We aim to then use the aforementioned simulations to study how the thermal structure
of protoplanetary discs affects planetesimal formation, for example through the location of the
iceline, explore the implications of these new disc structures on planet migration and ultimately
compare them with observations.
Supervisor: Bertram Bitsch (MPIA)