SIMBAD references

2013MNRAS.433.2294P - Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 433, 2294-2309 (2013/August-2)

Catastrophic evaporation of rocky planets.


Abstract (from CDS):

Short-period exoplanets can have dayside surface temperatures surpassing 2000K, hot enough to vaporize rock and drive a thermal wind. Small enough planets evaporate completely. We construct a radiative hydrodynamic model of atmospheric escape from strongly irradiated, low-mass rocky planets, accounting for dust-gas energy exchange in the wind. Rocky planets with masses ≲ 0.1M⊕ (less than twice the mass of Mercury) and surface temperatures ≳ 2000K are found to disintegrate entirely in ≲ 10Gyr. When our model is applied to Kepler planet candidate KIC 12557548b - which is believed to be a rocky body evaporating at a rate of {dot}M \gtrsim 0.1  M_⊕Gyr-1 - our model yields a present-day planet mass of ≲ 0.02M⊕ or less than about twice the mass of the Moon. Mass-loss rates depend so strongly on planet mass that bodies can reside on close-in orbits for Gyr with initial masses comparable to or less than that of Mercury, before entering a final short-lived phase of catastrophic mass-loss (which KIC 12557548b has entered). Because this catastrophic stage lasts only up to a few per cent of the planet's life, we estimate that for every object like KIC 12557548b, there should be 10-100 close-in quiescent progenitors with sub-day periods whose hard-surface transits may be detectable by Kepler - if the progenitors are as large as their maximal, Mercury-like sizes (alternatively, the progenitors could be smaller and more numerous). According to our calculations, KIC 12557548b may have lost ∼ 70percent of its formation mass; today we may be observing its naked iron core.

Abstract Copyright: © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society (2013)

Journal keyword(s): hydrodynamics - planets and satellites: atmospheres - planets and satellites: composition - planets and satellites: individual: KIC 12557548b - planets and satellites: physical evolution - planet-star interactions

Simbad objects: 5

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