Terrestrial Planet Formation: Dynamical Shake-up and the Low Mass of Mars

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
April 4, 2017
Filed under
Terrestrial Planet Formation: Dynamical Shake-up and the Low Mass of Mars

We consider a dynamical shake-up model to explain the low mass of Mars and the lack of planets in the asteroid belt. In our scenario, a secular resonance with Jupiter sweeps through the inner solar system as the solar nebula depletes, pitting resonant excitation against collisional damping in the Sun’s protoplanetary disk.

We report the outcome of extensive numerical calculations of planet formation from planetesimals in the terrestrial zone, with and without dynamical shake-up. If the Sun’s gas disk within the terrestrial zone depletes in roughly a million years, then the sweeping resonance inhibits planet formation in the asteroid belt and substantially limits the size of Mars. This phenomenon likely occurs around other stars with long-period massive planets, suggesting that asteroid belt analogs are common.

Benjamin C. Bromley, Scott J. Kenyon
(Submitted on 30 Mar 2017)

Comments: AJ, in press; 49 pages, 8 figures
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Solar and Stellar Astrophysics (astro-ph.SR)
Cite as: arXiv:1703.10618 [astro-ph.EP (or arXiv:1703.10618v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Benjamin Bromley
[v1] Thu, 30 Mar 2017 18:01:53 GMT (167kb)

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