Formation of Jupiter using opacities based on detailed grain physics

Naor Movshovitz*, Peter Bodenheimer, Morris Podolak, Jack J. Lissauer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

145 Scopus citations


Numerical simulations, based on the core-nucleated accretion model, are presented for the formation of Jupiter at 5.2AU in three primordial disks with three different assumed values of the surface density of solid particles. The grain opacities in the envelope of the protoplanet are computed using a detailed model that includes settling and coagulation of grains and that incorporates a recalculation of the grain size distribution at each point in time and space. We generally find lower opacities than the 2% of interstellar values used in previous calculations (Hubickyj, O., Bodenheimer, P., Lissauer, J.J. [2005]. Icarus 179, 415-431; Lissauer, J.J., Hubickyj, O., D'Angelo, G., Bodenheimer, P. [2009]. Icarus 199, 338-350). These lower opacities result in more rapid heat loss from and more rapid contraction of the protoplanetary envelope. For a given surface density of solids, the new calculations result in a substantial speedup in formation time as compared with those previous calculations. Formation times are calculated to be 1.0, 1.9, and 4.0Myr, and solid core masses are found to be 16.8, 8.9, and 4.7M, for solid surface densities, σ, of 10, 6, and 4gcm-2, respectively. For σ=10 and σ=6gcm-2, respectively, these formation times are reduced by more than 50% and more than 80% compared with those in a previously published calculation with the old approximation to the opacity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)616-624
Number of pages9
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 2010


  • Accretion
  • Jovian planets
  • Jupiter, Interior
  • Planetary formation


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