Journal Article

Modelling circumstellar discs with three-dimensional radiation hydrodynamics

David M. Acreman, Tim J. Harries and David A. Rundle

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 403, issue 3, pages 1143-1155
Published in print April 2010 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2010 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Modelling circumstellar discs with three-dimensional radiation hydrodynamics

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We present the results of combining a grid-based radiative transfer code with a smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) code to produce a flexible system for modelling radiation hydrodynamics. We use a benchmark model of a circumstellar disc to determine a robust method for constructing a gridded density distribution from SPH particles. The benchmark disc is then used to determine the accuracy of the radiative transfer results. We find that the spectral energy distribution and the temperature distribution within the disc are sensitive to the representation of the disc inner edge, which depends critically on both the grid and SPH resolution. The code is then used to model a circumstellar disc around a T Tauri star. As the disc adjusts towards equilibrium, vertical motions in the disc are induced resulting in scaleheight enhancements which intercept radiation from the central star. Vertical transport of radiation enables these perturbations to influence the mid-plane temperature of the disc. The vertical motions decay over time, and the disc ultimately reaches a state of simultaneous hydrostatic and radiative equilibrium.

Keywords: hydrodynamics; radiative transfer; methods: numerical

Journal Article.  7958 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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