Tuesday, August 6, 2013

1308.0825 (Farzana Meru et al.)

Growth and fragmentation of centimetre-sized dust aggregates: the dependence on aggregate size and porosity    [PDF]

Farzana Meru, Ralf J. Geretshauser, Christoph Schaefer, Roland Speith, Wilhelm Kley
We carry out three-dimensional Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics simulations of spherical homogeneous SiO2 dust aggregates to investigate how the mass and the porosity of the aggregates affects their ability to survive an impact at various different collision velocities (between 1 - 27.5m/s). We explore how the threshold velocities for fragmentation vary with these parameters. Crucially, we find that the porosity plays a part of utmost importance in determining the outcome of collisions. In particular, we find that aggregates with filling factors >37% are significantly weakened and that the velocity regime in which the aggregates grow is reduced or even non-existent (instead, the aggregates either rebound off each other or break apart). At filling factors less than ~37% we find that more porous objects are weaker but not as weak as highly compact objects with filling factors >37%. In addition we find that (for a given aggregate density) collisions between very different mass objects have higher threshold velocities than those between very similar mass objects. We find that fragmentation velocities are higher than the typical values of 1m/s and that growth can even occur for velocities as high as 27.5m/s. Therefore, while the growth of aggregates is more likely if collisions between different sized objects occurs or if the aggregates are porous with filling factor <37%, it may also be hindered if the aggregates become too compact.
View original: http://arxiv.org/abs/1308.0825

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