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Evidence for Dust Clearing Through Resolved Submillimeter Imaging

Brown, J. M. and Blake, G. A. and Qi, C. and Dullemond, C. P. and Wilner, D. J. and Williams, J. P. (2009) Evidence for Dust Clearing Through Resolved Submillimeter Imaging. Astrophysical Journal, 704 (1). pp. 496-502. ISSN 0004-637X.

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Mid-infrared spectrophotometric observations have revealed a small subclass of circumstellar disks with spectral energy distributions (SEDs) suggestive of large inner gaps with low dust content. However, such data provide only an indirect and model-dependent method of finding central holes. Imaging of protoplanetry disks provides an independent check of SED modeling. We present here the direct characterization of three 33-47 AU radii inner gaps, in the disks around LkHα 330, SR 21N, and HD 135344B, via 340 GHz (880 μm) dust continuum aperture synthesis observations obtained with the Submillimeter Array (SMA). The large gaps are fully resolved at ~0".3 by the SMA data and mostly empty of dust, with less than (1-7.5) × 10^(–6)M_⊙ of fine grained solids inside the holes. Gas (as traced by atomic accretion markers and CO 4.7 μm rovibrational emission) is still present in the inner regions of all three disks. For each, the inner hole exhibits a relatively steep rise in dust emission to the outer disk, a feature more likely to originate from the gravitational influence of a companion body than from a process expected to show a more shallow gradient like grain growth. Importantly, the good agreement between the spatially resolved data and spectrophotometry-based models lends confidence to current interpretations of SEDs, wherein the significant dust emission deficits arise from disks with inner gaps or holes. Further SED-based searches can therefore be expected to yield numerous additional candidates that can be examined at high spatial resolution.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription DOIArticle
Blake, G. A.0000-0003-0787-1610
Qi, C.0000-0001-8642-1786
Wilner, D. J.0000-0003-1526-7587
Williams, J. P.0000-0001-5058-695X
Additional Information:© 2009 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2009 June 5; accepted 2009 August 26; published 2009 September 23. The Submillimeter Array is a joint project between the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory and the Acadenia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics and is funded by the Smithsonian Institution and the Academia Sinica.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Smithsonian InstitutionUNSPECIFIED
Academia SinicaUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:planetary systems: protoplanetary disks; stars: pre-main sequence
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20091026-113254645
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Official Citation:Evidence for Dust Clearing Through Resolved Submillimeter Imaging J. M. Brown, G. A. Blake, C. Qi, C. P. Dullemond, D. J. Wilner, and J. P. Williams 2009 ApJ 704 496-502 doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/704/1/496
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16477
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:29 Oct 2009 19:45
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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