A Three-dimensional Simulation of a Magnetized Accretion Disk: Fast Funnel Accretion onto a Weakly Magnetized Star

Shinsuke Takasao, Kengo Tomida, Kazunari Iwasaki, Takeru K. Suzuki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We present the results of a global, three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamics simulation of an accretion disk with a rotating, weakly magnetized central star. The disk is threaded by a weak, large-scale poloidal magnetic field, and the central star has no strong stellar magnetosphere initially. Our simulation investigates the structure of the accretion flows from a turbulent accretion disk onto the star. The simulation reveals that fast accretion onto the star at high latitudes occurs even without a stellar magnetosphere. We find that the failed disk wind becomes the fast, high-latitude accretion as a result of angular momentum exchange mediated by magnetic fields well above the disk, where the Lorentz force that decelerates the rotational motion of gas can be comparable to the centrifugal force. Unlike the classical magnetospheric accretion scenario, fast accretion streams are not guided by magnetic fields of the stellar magnetosphere. Nevertheless, the accretion velocity reaches the free-fall velocity at the stellar surface due to the efficient angular momentum loss at a distant place from the star. This study provides a possible explanation why Herbig Ae/Be stars whose magnetic fields are generally not strong enough to form magnetospheres also show indications of fast accretion. A magnetically driven jet is not formed from the disk in our model. The differential rotation cannot generate sufficiently strong magnetic fields for the jet acceleration because the Parker instability interrupts the field amplification.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume857
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Apr 10

Keywords

  • accretion, accretion disks
  • magnetohydrodynamics (MHD)
  • stars: pre-main sequence
  • stars: protostars
  • stars: variables: T Tauri, Herbig Ae/Be

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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