Dust outflows and inner gaps generated by massive planets in debris disks

Amaya Moro-Martín, Renu Malhotra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Main-sequence stars are commonly surrounded by debris disks, formed by cold far-IR-emitting dust that is thought to be continuously replenished by a reservoir of undetected dust-producing planetesimals. We have investigated the orbital evolution of dust particles in debris disks harboring massive planets. Small dust grains are blown out by radiation pressure, as is well known; in addition, gravitational scattering by the giant planets also creates an outflow of large grains. We describe the characteristics of this large-particle outflow in different planetary architectures and for different particle sizes. In addition, the ejection of particles is responsible for the clearing of dust inside the orbit of the planet. We study the efficiency of particle ejection and the resulting dust density contrast inside and outside the orbit of the planet as a function of the planet's mass and orbital elements and the particle size. We discuss its implications for exoplanetary debris disks and for the interpretation of in situ dust detection experiments on space probes traveling in the outer solar system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1150-1167
Number of pages18
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2 I
StatePublished - Nov 10 2005


  • Circumstellar matter
  • Interplanetary medium
  • Kuiper belt
  • Methods: n-body simulations
  • Planetary systems
  • Planetary systems: protoplanetary disks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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