Static compression of porous dust aggregates

A. Kataoka, H. Tanaka, S. Okuzumi, K. Wada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Context. In protoplanetary disks, dust grains coagulate with each other and grow to form aggregates. While these aggregates are growing by coagulation, their filling factor φ decreases to φ â‰- 1; however, comets, the remnants of these early planetesimals, have φ ~ 0.1. Thus, static compression of porous dust aggregates is important in planetesimal formation. However, the static compressive strength has only been investigated for relatively high-density aggregates (φ > 0.1). Aims. We investigate and find the compressive strength of highly porous aggregates (φ â‰- 1). Methods. We performed three-dimensional N-body simulations of aggregate compression with a particle-particle interaction model. We introduced a new method of static compression: the periodic boundary condition was adopted, and the boundaries move with low speed to get closer. The dust aggregate is compressed uniformly and isotropically by themselves over the periodic boundaries. Results. We empirically derive a formula of the compressive strength of highly porous aggregates (φ â‰- 1). We check the validity of the compressive strength formula for wide ranges of numerical parameters, such as the size of initial aggregates, the boundary speed, the normal damping force, and material. We also compare our results to the previous studies of static compression in the relatively high-density region (φ > 0.1) and confirm that our results consistently connect to those in the high-density region. The compressive strength formula is also derived analytically.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA4
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Methods: analytical
  • Methods: numerical
  • Planets and satellites: formation
  • Protoplanetary disks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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