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Instability-driven Dynamical Evolution Model of a Primordially Five-planet Outer Solar System

Batygin, Konstantin and Brown, Michael E. and Betts, Hayden (2012) Instability-driven Dynamical Evolution Model of a Primordially Five-planet Outer Solar System. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 744 (1). Art. No. L3. ISSN 2041-8205. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/744/1/L3.

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Over the last decade, evidence has mounted that the solar system's observed state can be favorably reproduced in the context of an instability-driven dynamical evolution model, such as the "Nice" model. To date, all successful realizations of instability models have concentrated on evolving the four giant planets onto their current orbits from a more compact configuration. Simultaneously, the possibility of forming and ejecting additional planets has been discussed, but never successfully implemented. Here we show that a large array of five-planet (two gas giants + three ice giants) multi-resonant initial states can lead to an adequate formation of the outer solar system, featuring an ejection of an ice giant during a phase of instability. Particularly, our simulations demonstrate that the eigenmodes that characterize the outer solar system's secular dynamics can be closely matched with a five-planet model. Furthermore, provided that the ejection timescale of the extra planet is short, orbital excitation of a primordial cold classical Kuiper Belt can also be avoided in this scenario. Thus, the solar system is one of many possible outcomes of dynamical relaxation and can originate from a wide variety of initial states. This deems the construction of a unique model of solar system's early dynamical evolution impossible.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Batygin, Konstantin0000-0002-7094-7908
Brown, Michael E.0000-0002-8255-0545
Alternate Title:Instability-Driven Dynamical Evolution Model of a Primordially 5 Planet Outer Solar System
Additional Information:© 2012 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2011 July 28; accepted 2011 November 15; published 2011 December 8. We thank Alessandro Morbidelli, Hal Levison, and Peter Goldreich for useful conversations. We thank Naveed Near-Ansari for operational help with the PANGU supercomputer. K.B. acknowledges support from NASA NESSF Graduate Fellowship.
Group:UNSPECIFIED, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NASA Earth and Space Science FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Kuiper Belt: general; planets and satellites: dynamical evolution and stability
Issue or Number:1
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20120123-080136917
Persistent URL:
Official Citation: Instability-driven Dynamical Evolution Model of a Primordially Five-planet Outer Solar System Konstantin Batygin et al. 2012 ApJ 744 L3
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:28903
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:23 Jan 2012 16:44
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 17:01

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