On dust entrainment in photoevaporative winds

Mark A. Hutchison, Daniel J. Price, Guillaume Laibe, Sarah T. Maddison

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We investigate dust entrainment by photoevaporative winds in protoplanetary discs using dusty smoothed particle hydrodynamics. We use unequal-mass particles to resolve more than five orders of magnitude in disc/outflow density and a one-fluid formulation to efficiently simulate an equivalent magnitude range in drag stopping time. We find that only micron-sized dust grains and smaller can be entrained in extreme-UV radiation-driven winds. The maximum grain size is set by dust settling in the disc rather than aerodynamic drag in the wind. More generally, there is a linear relationship between the base flow density and the maximum entrainable grain size in the wind. A pileup of micron-sized dust grains can occur in the upper atmosphere at critical radii in the disc as grains decouple from the low-density wind. Entrainment is a strong function of location in the disc, resulting in a size sorting of grains in the outflow - the largest grain being carried out between 10 and 20 au. The peak dust density for each grain size occurs at the inner edge of its own entrainment region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)742-759
Number of pages18
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2016


  • Circumstellarmatter
  • planets and satellites: atmospheres
  • Protoplanetary discs
  • Stars: pre-main-sequence

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