Schedule Mar 17, 2004
Shigeru Ida (Tokyo Institute of Technology)

We carried out simulations to predict the distributions of masses and semi major axes (periods) of extra solar planets, modelling the accretion of cores of giant planets from planetesimals, gas accretion onto the cores, and their orbital migration. We adopted a working model for nascent protostellar disks with a wide variety of surface density distributions, which are comparable to those inferred from the observations of circumstellar disks of T Tauri stars. Since planets' masses grow rapidly from 10 M_E to 100 M_E, we predict that the gas giant planets rarely form with asymptotic masses in this intermediate mass range at < 3AU. We refer to this deficit as a ``planet desert''. We also predict that the frequency of gas giant planets that are detectable with current radial velocity search is greatly enhanced in metal-rich protostellar disks, which is consistent with the observation. Protoplanetary cores can grow to several Earth masses prior to the disk gas depletion in such environment and these large masses are required for the cores to initiate rapid gas accretion and to transform into giant planets. We also suggest that more than ninety percent of planets migrated to the vicinity of their host stars are perished.

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