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Measuring elemental abundance ratios in protoplanetary disks at millimeter wavelengths

Abstract : Over million years of evolution, gas dust and ice in protoplanetary disks can be chemically reprocessed. There is evidence that the gas-phase carbon and oxygen abundances are subsolar in disks belonging to nearby star forming regions. These findings have a major impact on the composition of the primary atmosphere of giant planets (but it may also be valid for super-Earths and sub-Neptunes) as they accrete their gaseous envelopes from the surrounding material in the disk. In this study, we performed a thermochemical modeling analysis with the aim of testing how reliable and robust are the estimates of elemental abundance ratios based on (sub)millimeter observations of molecular lines. We created a grid of disk models for the following different elemental abundance ratios: C/O, N/O, and S/O, and we computed the line flux of a set of carbon-nitrogen and sulphur-bearing species, namely CN, HCN, NO, C2H, c-C3H2, H2CO, HC3N, CH3CN, CS, SO, H2S, and H2CS, which have been detected with present (sub)millimeter facilities such as ALMA and NOEMA. We find that the line fluxes, once normalized to the flux of the 13CO J = 2-1 line, are sensitive to the elemental abundance ratios. On the other hand, the stellar and disk physical parameters have only a minor effect on the line flux ratios. Our results demonstrate that a simultaneous analysis of multiple molecular transitions is a valid approach to constrain the elemental abundance ratio in protoplanetary disks.
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Submitted on : Monday, June 27, 2022 - 3:24:35 PM
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D. Fedele, C. Favre. Measuring elemental abundance ratios in protoplanetary disks at millimeter wavelengths. Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A, EDP Sciences, 2020, 638, ⟨10.1051/0004-6361/202037927⟩. ⟨insu-03705208⟩

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