Posts Tagged solar system

Recent Postings from solar system

The Occurrence and Architecture of Exoplanetary Systems

The basic geometry of the Solar System — the shapes, spacings, and orientations of the planetary orbits — has long been a subject of fascination as well as inspiration for planet formation theories. For exoplanetary systems, those same properties have only recently come into focus. Here we review our current knowledge of the occurrence of planets around other stars, their orbital distances and eccentricities, the orbital spacings and mutual inclinations in multiplanet systems, the orientation of the host star’s rotation axis, and the properties of planets in binary-star systems.

Titan interaction with the supersonic solar wind

After 9 years in the Saturn system, the Cassini spacecraft finally observed Titan in the supersonic solar wind. These unique observations reveal that Titan interaction with the solar wind is in many ways similar to un-magnetized planets Mars and Venus in spite of the differences in the properties of the solar plasma in the outer solar system. In particular, Cassini detected a collisionless, supercritical bow shock and a well-defined induced magnetosphere filled with mass-loaded interplanetary magnetic field lines, which drape around Titan ionosphere. Although the flyby altitude may not allow the detection of an ionopause, Cassini reports enhancements of plasma density compatible with plasma clouds or streamers in the flanks of its induced magnetosphere or due to an expansion of the induced magnetosphere. Because of the upstream conditions, these observations are also relevant for unmagnetized bodies in the outer solar system such as Pluto, where kinetic processes are expected to dominate.

Symplectic map description of Halley's comet dynamics

The main features of 1P/Halley chaotic dynamics can be described by a two dimensional symplectic map. Using Mel’nikov integral we semi-analytically determine such a map for 1P/Halley taking into account gravitational interactions from the Sun and the eight planets. We determine the Solar system kick function ie the energy transfer to 1P/Halley along one passage through the Solar system. Our procedure allows to compute for each planet its contribution to the Solar system kick function which appears to be the sum of the Keplerian potential of the planet and of a rotating circular gravitational dipole potential due to the Sun movement around Solar system barycenter. We test the robustness of the symplectic Halley map by directly integrating Newton’s equations over $\sim 2.4\cdot 10^4$ yr around Y2K and by reconstructing the Solar system kick function. Our results show that the Halley map with fixed parameters gives a reliable description of comet dynamics on time scales of $10^4$ yr while on a larger scales the parameters of the map are slowly changing due to slow oscillations of orbital momentum.

A Precise Water Abundance Measurement for the Hot Jupiter WASP-43b

The water abundance in a planetary atmosphere provides a key constraint on the planet’s primordial origins because water ice is expected to play an important role in the core accretion model of planet formation. However, the water content of the Solar System giant planets is not well known because water is sequestered in clouds deep in their atmospheres. By contrast, short-period exoplanets have such high temperatures that their atmospheres have water in the gas phase, making it possible to measure the water abundance for these objects. We present a precise determination of the water abundance in the atmosphere of the 2 $M_\mathrm{Jup}$ short-period exoplanet WASP-43b based on thermal emission and transmission spectroscopy measurements obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope. We find the water content is consistent with the value expected in a solar composition gas at planetary temperatures (0.4-3.5x solar at 1 $\sigma$ confidence). The metallicity of WASP-43b’s atmosphere suggested by this result extends the trend observed in the Solar System of lower metal enrichment for higher planet masses.

Light Element Nucleosynthesis in a Molecular Cloud Interacting with a Supernova Remnant and the Origin of Beryllium-10 in the Protosolar Nebula

The presence of short-lived radionuclides in the early solar system provides important information about the astrophysical environment in which the solar system formed. The discovery of now extinct $^{10}$Be in calcium-aluminum-rich inclusions (CAIs) with Fractionation and Unidentified Nuclear isotope anomalies (FUN-CAIs) suggests that a baseline concentration of $^{10}$Be in the early solar system was inherited from the protosolar molecular cloud. In this paper, we first show that the $^{10}$Be recorded in FUN-CAIs cannot have been produced in situ by cosmic-ray (CR) irradiation of the FUN-CAIs themselves. We then show that trapping of Galactic CRs (GCRs) in the collapsing presolar cloud core induced a negligible $^{10}$Be contamination of the protosolar nebula. Irradiation of the presolar molecular cloud by background GCRs produced a steady-state $^{10}$Be/$^9$Be ratio ~2.3 times lower than the ratio recorded in FUN-CAIs, which suggests that the presolar cloud was irradiated by an additional source of CRs. Considering a detailed model for CR acceleration in a supernova remnant (SNR), we find that the $^{10}$Be abundance recorded in FUN-CAIs can be explained within two alternative scenarios: (i) the irradiation of a giant molecular cloud by CRs produced by >50 supernovae exploding in a superbubble of hot gas generated by a large star cluster of at least 20,000 members and (ii) the irradiation of the presolar molecular cloud by freshly accelerated CRs escaped from an isolated SNR at the end of the Sedov-Taylor phase. The second model naturally provides an explanation for the injection of other short-lived radionuclides of stellar origin into the cold presolar molecular cloud ($^{26}$Al, $^{41}$Ca and $^{36}$Cl) and is in agreement with the solar system originating from the collapse of a molecular cloud shocked by a supernova blast wave.

The Luminosities of the Coldest Brown Dwarfs

In recent years brown dwarfs have been extended to a new Y-dwarf class with effective temperatures colder than 500K and masses in the range 5-30 Jupiter masses. They fill a crucial gap in observable atmospheric properties between the much colder gas-giant planets of our own Solar System (at around 130K) and both hotter T-type brown dwarfs and the hotter planets that can be imaged orbiting young nearby stars (both with effective temperatures of in the range 1500-1000K). Distance measurements for these objects deliver absolute magnitudes that make critical tests of our understanding of very cool atmospheres. Here we report new distances for nine Y dwarfs and seven very-late T dwarfs. These reveal that Y dwarfs do indeed represent a continuation of the T dwarf sequence to both fainter luminosities and cooler temperatures. They also show that the coolest objects display a large range in absolute magnitude for a given photometric colour. The latest atmospheric models show good agreement with the majority of these Y dwarf absolute magnitudes. This is also the case for WISE0855-0714 the coldest and closest brown dwarf to the Sun, which shows evidence for water ice clouds. However, there are also some outstanding exceptions, which suggest either binarity or the presence of condensate clouds. The former is readily testable with current adaptive optics facilities. The latter would mean that the range of cloudiness in Y dwarfs is substantial with most hosting almost no clouds — while others have dense clouds making them prime targets for future variability observations to study cloud dynamics.

Constraining the Oblateness of Kepler Planets

We use Kepler short cadence light curves to constrain the oblateness of planet candidates in the Kepler sample. The transits of rapidly rotating planets that are deformed in shape will lead to distortions in the ingress and egress of their light curves. We report the first tentative detection of an oblate planet outside of the solar system, measuring an oblateness of $0.22 \pm 0.11$ for the 18 $M_J$ mass brown dwarf Kepler 39b (KOI-423.01). We also provide constraints on the oblateness of the planets (candidates) HAT-P-7b, KOI-686.01, and KOI-197.01 to be < 0.067, < 0.251, and < 0.186, respectively. Using the Q’-values from Jupiter and Saturn, we expect tidal synchronization for the spins of HAT-P-7b, KOI-686.01 and KOI-197.01, and for their rotational oblateness signatures to be undetectable in the current data. The potentially large oblateness of KOI-423.01 (Kepler 39b) suggests that the Q’-value of the brown dwarf needs to be two orders of magnitude larger than that of the solar system gas giants to avoid being tidally spun-down.

Towards a comprehensive model of Earth's disk-integrated Stokes vector

A significant body of work on simulating the remote appearance of Earth-like exoplanets has been done over the last decade. The research is driven by the prospect of characterizing habitable planets beyond the Solar System in the near future. In this work, I present a method to produce the disk-integrated signature of planets that are described in their three-dimensional complexity, i.e. with both horizontal and vertical variations in the optical properties of their envelopes. The approach is based on pre-conditioned backward Monte Carlo integration of the vector Radiative Transport Equation and yields the full Stokes vector for outgoing reflected radiation. The method is demonstrated through selected examples inspired by published work at wavelengths from the visible to the near infrared and terrestrial prescriptions of both cloud and surface albedo maps. A clear advantage of this approach is that its computational cost does not appear to be significantly affected by non-uniformities in the planet optical properties. Earth’s simulated appearance is strongly dependent on wavelength; both brightness and polarisation undergo diurnal variations arising from changes in the planet cover, but polarisation yields a better insight into variations with phase angle. There is partial cancellation of the polarised signal from the northern and southern hemispheres so that the outgoing polarisation vector lies preferentially either in the plane parallel or perpendicular to the planet scattering plane, also for non-uniform cloud and albedo properties and various levels of absorption within the atmosphere. The evaluation of circular polarisation is challenging; a number of one-photon experiments of 1E9 or more is needed to resolve hemispherically-integrated degrees of circular polarisation of a few times 1E-5. Last, I introduce brightness curves…

On the Stability of the Interstellar Wind through the Solar System

As a follow-up of a recent study, we challenge the claim that the flow of interstellar helium through the solar system has changed substantially over the last decades. We argue that only the IBEX-Lo 2009-2010 measurements are discrepant with older consensus values. Then we show that the probability of the claimed variations of longitude and velocity are highly unlikely (about 1 per cent), in view of the absence of change in latitude and absence of change in the (flow velocity, flow longitude) relation, while random values would be expected. Finally, we report other independent studies showing the stability of Helium flow and the Hydrogen flow over the years 1996-2012, consistent with the seventies earlier determinations of the interstellar flow.

The ancient heritage of water ice in the solar system

Identifying the source of Earth’s water is central to understanding the origins of life-fostering environments and to assessing the prevalence of such environments in space. Water throughout the solar system exhibits deuterium-to-hydrogen enrichments, a fossil relic of low-temperature, ion-derived chemistry within either (i) the parent molecular cloud or (ii) the solar nebula protoplanetary disk. Utilizing a comprehensive treatment of disk ionization, we find that ion-driven deuterium pathways are inefficient, curtailing the disk’s deuterated water formation and its viability as the sole source for the solar system’s water. This finding implies that if the solar system’s formation was typical, abundant interstellar ices are available to all nascent planetary systems.

On the filtering and processing of dust by planetesimals 1. Derivation of collision probabilities for non-drifting planetesimals

Context. Circumstellar disks are known to contain a significant mass in dust ranging from micron to centimeter size. Meteorites are evidence that individual grains of those sizes were collected and assembled into planetesimals in the young Solar System. Aims. We assess the efficiency of dust collection of a swarm of planetesimals with radii ranging from 1 to 10^3 km and beyond. Methods. We derive analytical expressions of the probability for drifting dust to collide with planetesimals. Results. For standard turbulence conditions (i.e. a turbulence parameter {\alpha} = 10^-2), filtering is found to be inefficient, meaning that when crossing a minimum-mass solar nebula belt of planetesimals extending between 0.1 and 35 AU most dust particles are eventually accreted by the central star. However, if the disk is weakly turbulent ({\alpha} = 10^-4) filtering becomes efficient in two regimes: (i) For planetesimals smaller than about 10km in size and dust of all sizes and (ii) for planetary embryos larger than about 1000km in size and dust of millimeter-size or larger. The first regime strongly favors short orbital distances while the second only weakly depends on orbital distance. Dust particles much smaller than millimeter-size tend to be only captured by the smallest planetesimals. [Abridged]

On the filtering and processing of dust by planetesimals 1. Derivation of collision probabilities for non-drifting planetesimals [Replacement]

Context. Circumstellar disks are known to contain a significant mass in dust ranging from micron to centimeter size. Meteorites are evidence that individual grains of those sizes were collected and assembled into planetesimals in the young solar system. Aims. We assess the efficiency of dust collection of a swarm of non-drifting planetesimals {\rev with radii ranging from 1 to $10^3$\,km and beyond. Methods. We calculate the collision probability of dust drifting in the disk due to gas drag by planetesimal accounting for several regimes depending on the size of the planetesimal, dust, and orbital distance: the geometric, Safronov, settling, and three-body regimes. We also include a hydrodynamical regime to account for the fact that small grains tend to be carried by the gas flow around planetesimals. Results. We provide expressions for the collision probability of dust by planetesimals and for the filtering efficiency by a swarm of planetesimals. For standard turbulence conditions (i.e., a turbulence parameter $\alpha=10^{-2}$), filtering is found to be inefficient, meaning that when crossing a minimum-mass solar nebula (MMSN) belt of planetesimals extending between 0.1 AU and 35 AU most dust particles are eventually accreted by the central star rather than colliding with planetesimals. However, if the disk is weakly turbulent ($\alpha=10^{-4}$) filtering becomes efficient in two regimes: (i) when planetesimals are all smaller than about 10 km in size, in which case collisions mostly take place in the geometric regime; and (ii) when planetary embryos larger than about 1000 km in size dominate the distribution, have a scale height smaller than one tenth of the gas scale height, and dust is of millimeter size or larger in which case most collisions take place in the settling regime. These two regimes have very different properties: we find that the local filtering efficiency $x_{filter,MMSN}$ scales with $r^{-7/4}$ (where $r$ is the orbital distance) in the geometric regime, but with $r^{-1/4}$ to $r^{1/4}$ in the settling regime. This implies that the filtering of dust by small planetesimals should occur close to the central star and with a short spread in orbital distances. On the other hand, the filtering by embryos in the settling regime is expected to be more gradual and determined by the extent of the disk of embryos. Dust particles much smaller than millimeter size tend only to be captured by the smallest planetesimals because they otherwise move on gas streamlines and their collisions take place in the hydrodynamical regime. Conclusions. Our results hint at an inside-out formation of planetesimals in the infant solar system because small planetesimals in the geometrical limit can filter dust much more efficiently close to the central star. However, even a fully-formed belt of planetesimals such as the MMSN only marginally captures inward-drifting dust and this seems to imply that dust in the protosolar disk has been filtered by planetesimals even smaller than 1 km (not included in this study) or that it has been assembled into planetesimals by other mechanisms (e.g., orderly growth, capture into vortexes). Further refinement of our work concerns, among other things: a quantitative description of the transition region between the hydro and settling regimes; an assessment of the role of disk turbulence for collisions, in particular in the hydro regime; and the coupling of our model to a planetesimal formation model.

A ring system detected around the Centaur (10199) Chariklo

Until now, rings have been detected in the Solar System exclusively around the four giant planets. Here we report the discovery of the first minor-body ring system around the Centaur object (10199) Chariklo, a body with equivalent radius 124$\pm$9 km. A multi-chord stellar occultation revealed the presence of two dense rings around Chariklo, with widths of about 7 km and 3 km, optical depths 0.4 and 0.06, and orbital radii 391 and 405 km, respectively. The present orientation of the ring is consistent with an edge-on geometry in 2008, thus providing a simple explanation for the dimming of Chariklo’s system between 1997 and 2008, and for the gradual disappearance of ice and other absorption features in its spectrum over the same period. This implies that the rings are partially composed of water ice. These rings may be the remnants of a debris disk, which were possibly confined by embedded kilometre-sized satellites.

Numerical Simulations of Collisional Disruption of Rotating Gravitational Aggregates: Dependence on Material Properties

Our knowledge of the strengths of small bodies in the Solar System is limited by our poor understanding of their internal structures, and this, in turn, clouds our understanding of the formation and evolution of these bodies. Observations of the rotational states of asteroids whose diameters are larger than a few hundreds of meters have revealed that they are dominated by gravity and that most are unlikely to be monoliths; however, there is a wide range of plausible internal structures. Numerical and analytical studies of shape and spin limits of gravitational aggregates and their collisional evolution show a strong dependence on shear strength. In order to study this effect, we carry out a systematic exploration of the dependence of collision outcomes on dissipation and friction parameters of the material components making up the bodies. We simulate the catastrophic disruption (leading to the largest remnant retaining 50% of the original mass) of km-size asteroids modeled as gravitational aggregates using pkdgrav, a cosmology N-body code adapted to collisional problems and recently enhanced with a new soft-sphere collision algorithm that includes more realistic contact forces. We find that for a range of three different materials, higher friction and dissipation values increase the catastrophic disruption threshold by about half a magnitude. Furthermore, we find that pre-impact rotation systematically increases mass loss on average, regardless of the target’s internal configuration. Our results have important implications for the efficiency of planet formation via planetesimal growth, and also more generally to estimate the impact energy threshold for catastrophic disruption, as this generally has only been evaluated for non-spinning bodies without detailed consideration of material properties.

The Grand Tack model: a critical review

The `Grand Tack’ model proposes that the inner Solar System was sculpted by the giant planets’ orbital migration in the gaseous protoplanetary disk. Jupiter first migrated inward then Jupiter and Saturn migrated back outward together. If Jupiter’s turnaround or "tack" point was at ~1.5 AU the inner disk of terrestrial building blocks would have been truncated at ~1 AU, naturally producing the terrestrial planets’ masses and spacing. During the gas giants’ migration the asteroid belt is severely depleted but repopulated by distinct planetesimal reservoirs that can be associated with the present-day S and C types. The giant planets’ orbits are consistent with the later evolution of the outer Solar System. Here we confront common criticisms of the Grand Tack model. We show that some uncertainties remain regarding the Tack mechanism itself; the most critical unknown is the timing and rate of gas accretion onto Saturn and Jupiter. Current isotopic and compositional measurements of Solar System bodies — including the D/H ratios of Saturn’s satellites — do not refute the model. We discuss how alternate models for the formation of the terrestrial planets each suffer from an internal inconsistency and/or place a strong and very specific requirement on the properties of the protoplanetary disk. We conclude that the Grand Tack model remains viable and consistent with our current understanding of planet formation. Nonetheless, we encourage additional tests of the Grand Tack as well as the construction of alternate models.

The Grand Tack model: a critical review [Replacement]

The `Grand Tack’ model proposes that the inner Solar System was sculpted by the giant planets’ orbital migration in the gaseous protoplanetary disk. Jupiter first migrated inward then Jupiter and Saturn migrated back outward together. If Jupiter’s turnaround or "tack" point was at ~1.5 AU the inner disk of terrestrial building blocks would have been truncated at ~1 AU, naturally producing the terrestrial planets’ masses and spacing. During the gas giants’ migration the asteroid belt is severely depleted but repopulated by distinct planetesimal reservoirs that can be associated with the present-day S and C types. The giant planets’ orbits are consistent with the later evolution of the outer Solar System. Here we confront common criticisms of the Grand Tack model. We show that some uncertainties remain regarding the Tack mechanism itself; the most critical unknown is the timing and rate of gas accretion onto Saturn and Jupiter. Current isotopic and compositional measurements of Solar System bodies — including the D/H ratios of Saturn’s satellites — do not refute the model. We discuss how alternate models for the formation of the terrestrial planets each suffer from an internal inconsistency and/or place a strong and very specific requirement on the properties of the protoplanetary disk. We conclude that the Grand Tack model remains viable and consistent with our current understanding of planet formation. Nonetheless, we encourage additional tests of the Grand Tack as well as the construction of alternate models.

Is Germanium (Ge, Z=32) A Neutron-Capture Element?

Historically,Ge has been considered to be a neutron-capture element. In this case, the r-process abundance of Ge is derived by subtracting the s-process abundance from the total abundance in the Solar system. However, the Ge abundance of the metal-poor star HD 108317 is lower than that of the scaled residual r-process abundance in the Solar system, about 1.2 dex. In this paper, based on a comparison of the Ge abundances of metal-poor stars and stellar yields, we find that the Ge abundances are not the result of the primary-like yields in massive stars and come mainly from the r-process. Based on the observed abundances of metal-poor stars, we derived the Ge abundances of the weak r-process and main r-process. The contributed percentage of the neutron-capture process to Ge in the Solar system is about 59 per cent, which means that the contributed percentage of the Ge residual abundance in the Solar system is about 41 per cent. We find that the Ge residual abundance is produced as secondary-like yields in massive stars. This implies that the element Ge in the Solar system is not produced solely by the neutron-capture process.

Binary Formation in Planetesimal Disks II. Planetesimals with Mass Spectrum

Many massive objects have been found in the outer region of the Solar system. How they were formed and evolved has not been well understood, although there have been intensive studies on accretion process of terrestrial planets. One of the mysteries is the existence of binary planetesimals with near-equal mass components and highly eccentric orbits. These binary planetesimals are quite different from the satellites observed in the asteroid belt region. The ratio of the Hill radius to the physical radius of the planetesimals is much larger for the outer region of the disk, compared to the inner region of the disk. The Hill radius increases with the semi major axis. Therefore, planetesimals in the outer region can form close and eccentric binaries, while those in the inner region would simply collide. In this paper, we carried out $N$-body simulations in different regions of the disk and studied if binaries form in the outer region of the disk. We found that large planetesimals tend to form binaries. A significant fraction of large planetesimals are components of the binaries. Planetesimals that become the components of binaries eventually collide with a third body, through three-body encounters. Thus, the existence of binaries can enhance the growth rate of planetesimals in the Trans-Neptunian Object (TNO) region.

Detecting solar chameleons through radiation pressure

Light scalar fields can drive the accelerated expansion of the universe. Hence, they are obvious dark energy candidates. To make such models compatible with tests of General Relativity in the solar system and "fifth force" searches on Earth, one needs to screen them. One possibility is the so-called "chameleon" mechanism, which renders an effective mass depending on the local matter density. If chameleon particles exist, they can be produced in the sun and detected on earth exploiting the equivalent of a radiation pressure. Since their effective mass scales with the local matter density, chameleons can be reflected by a dense medium if their effective mass becomes greater than their total energy. Thus, under appropriate conditions, a flux of solar chameleons may be sensed by detecting the total instantaneous momentum transferred to a suitable opto-mechanical force/pressure sensor. We calculate the solar chameleon spectrum and the reach in the chameleon parameter space of an experiment using the preliminary results from a force/pressure sensor, currently under development at INFN Trieste, to be mounted in the focal plane of one of the X-Ray telescopes of the CAST experiment at CERN. We show, that such an experiment signifies a pioneering effort probing uncharted chameleon parameter space.

How Rocky Are They? The Composition Distribution of Kepler's Sub-Neptune Planet Candidates within 0.15 AU

The Kepler Mission has found thousands of planetary candidates with radii between 1 and 4 R$_\oplus$. These planets have no analogues in our own Solar System, providing an unprecedented opportunity to understand the range and distribution of planetary compositions allowed by planet formation and evolution. A precise mass measurement is usually required to constrain the possible composition of an individual super-Earth-sized planet, but these measurements are difficult and expensive to make for the majority of Kepler planet candidates. Fortunately, adopting a statistical approach helps us to address this question without them. In particular, we apply hierarchical Bayesian modeling to a subsample of Kepler planet candidates that is complete for $P< 25$ days and $R_{pl}>1.2$ R$_\oplus$ and draw upon interior structure models which yield radii largely independent of mass by accounting for the thermal evolution of a gaseous envelope around a rocky core. Assuming the envelope is dominated by hydrogen and helium, we present the current-day composition distribution of the sub-Neptune-sized planet population and find that H+He envelopes are most likely to be $\sim 1\%$ of these planets’ total mass with an intrinsic scatter of $\pm 0.5$ dex. We address the gaseous/rocky transition and illustrate how our results do not result in a one-to-one relationship between mass and radius for this sub-Neptune population; accordingly, dynamical studies which wish to use Kepler data must adopt a probabilistic approach to accurately represent the range of possible masses at a given radius.

Pre-LHB Evolution of the Earth's Obliquity

The Earth’s obliquity is stabilized by the Moon, which facilitates a rapid precession of the Earth’s spin-axis, de-tuning the system away from resonance with orbital modulation. It is however, likely that the architecture of the Solar System underwent a dynamical instability-driven transformation, where the primordial configuration was more compact. Hence, the characteristic frequencies associated with orbital perturbations were likely faster in the past, potentially allowing for secular resonant encounters. In this work we examine if at any point in the Earth’s evolutionary history, the obliquity varied significantly. Our calculations suggest that even though the orbital perturbations were different, the system nevertheless avoided resonant encounters throughout its evolution. This indicates that the Earth obtained its current obliquity during the formation of the Moon.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Cross-Listing]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Replacement]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Cross-Listing]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Cross-Listing]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Replacement]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Replacement]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Disformal Theories of Gravity: From the Solar System to Cosmology [Replacement]

This paper is concerned with theories of gravity that contain a scalar coupled both conformally and disformally to matter through the metric. By systematically deriving the non-relativistic limit, it is shown that no new non-linear screening mechanisms are present beyond the Vainshtein mechanism and chameleon-like screening. If one includes the cosmological expansion of the universe, disformal effects that are usually taken to be absent can be present in the solar system. When the conformal factor is absent, fifth-forces can be screened on all scales when the cosmological field is slowly-rolling. We investigate the cosmology of these models and use local tests of gravity to place new constraints on the disformal coupling and find $\mathcal{M}>\mathcal{O}(\textrm{eV})$, which is not competitive with laboratory tests. Finally, we discuss the future prospects for testing these theories and the implications for other theories of modified gravity. In particular, the Vainshtein radius of solar system objects can be altered from the static prediction when cosmological time-derivatives are non-negligible.

Transient Heliosheath Modulation

Voyager 1 has explored the solar wind-interstellar medium interaction region between the terminal shock and heliopause following the intensity distribution of galactic cosmic ray protons above 200 MeV energy. Before this component reached the galactic level at 121.7 AU, 4 episodes of rapid intensity change occured similar to the Forbush Decreases found near the sun, rather than the expected result of models related to those describing Long Term Modulation in the inner solar system. Because the mean solar wind flow is both expected and observed to be perpendicular to the radial direction close to the heliopause, explanation is given in terms of transient radial flows related to possible heliopause boundary flapping. It is necessary that radial flows are at the sound speed found for conditions downstream of the teminal shock and that the relevant perpendicular cosmic ray diffusion is controlled by ‘slab’ field fluctuations accounting for 20 percent or less of the total power in field variance. However, additional radial drift motion related to possible north to south gradients in the magnetic field may allow the inclusion of some diffusion according to 2-D turbulence theory. The required field gradients may arise due to variation in the field carried by the solar plasma deflected away from the solar equatorial plane. Modulation amounting to a total 30 percent drop in galactic intensity requires explanation by a combination of several transient episodes.

Geology and Photometric Variation of Solar System Bodies with Minor Atmospheres: Implications for Solid Exoplanets

A reasonable basis for future astronomical investigations of exoplanets lies in our best knowledge of the planets and satellites in the Solar System. Solar System bodies exhibit a wide variety of surface environments, even including potential habitable conditions beyond Earth, and it is essential to know how they can be characterized from outside the Solar System. In this study, we provide an overview of geological features of major Solar System solid bodies with minor atmospheres (i.e., the Terrestrial Moon, Mercury, the Galilean moons, and Mars) that affect surface albedo at local to global scale, and we survey how they influence point-source photometry in UV, visible, and near IR (i.e., the reflection-dominant range). We simulate them based on recent mapping products and also compile observed light curves where available. We show a 5-50% peak-to-trough variation amplitude in one spin rotation associated with various geological processes including heterogeneous surface compositions due to igneous activities, interaction with surrounding energetic particles, and distribution of grained materials. Some indications of these processes are provided by the amplitude and wavelength dependence of variation in combinations of the time-averaged spectra. We also estimate the photometric precision needed to detect their spin rotation rates through periodogram analysis. Our survey illustrates realistic possibilities for inferring the detailed properties of solid exoplanets with future direct imaging observations.

EMMI - Electric Solar Wind Sail Facilitated Manned Mars Initiative

The novel propellantless electric solar wind sail (E-sail) concept promises efficient low thrust transportation in the solar system outside Earth’s magnetosphere. Combined with asteroid mining to provide water and synthetic cryogenic rocket fuel in orbits of Earth and Mars, possibilities for affordable continuous manned presence on Mars open up. Orbital fuel and water eliminate the exponential nature of the rocket equation and also enable reusable bidirectional Earth-Mars vehicles for continuous manned presence on Mars. Water can also be used as radiation shielding of the manned compartment, thus reducing the launch mass further. In addition, the presence of fuel in Mars orbit provides the option for an all-propulsive landing, thus potentially eliminating issues of heavy heat shields and augmenting the capability of pinpoint landing. With this E-sail enabled scheme, the recurrent cost of continuous bidirectional traffic between Earth and Mars might ultimately approach the recurrent cost of running the International Space Station, ISS.

Formation, Habitability, and Detection of Extrasolar Moons

The diversity and quantity of moons in the Solar System suggest a manifold population of natural satellites exist around extrasolar planets. Of peculiar interest from an astrobiological perspective, the number of sizable moons in the stellar habitable zones may outnumber planets in these circumstellar regions. With technological and theoretical methods now allowing for the detection of sub-Earth-sized extrasolar planets, the first detection of an extrasolar moon appears feasible. In this review, we summarize formation channels of massive exomoons that are potentially detectable with current or near-future instruments. We discuss the orbital effects that govern exomoon evolution, we present a framework to characterize an exomoon’s stellar plus planetary illumination as well as its tidal heating, and we address the techniques that have been proposed to search for exomoons. Most notably, we show that natural satellites in the range of 0.1 – 0.5 Earth mass (i) are potentially habitable, (ii) can form within the circumplanetary debris and gas disk or via capture from a binary, and (iii) are detectable with current technology.

Separating gas-giant and ice-giant planets by halting pebble accretion

In the Solar System giant planets come in two flavours: ‘gas giants’ (Jupiter and Saturn) with massive gas envelopes and ‘ice giants’ (Uranus and Neptune) with much thinner envelopes around their cores. It is poorly understood how these two classes of planets formed. High solid accretion rates, necessary to form the cores of giant planets within the life-time of protoplanetary discs, heat the envelope and prevent rapid gas contraction onto the core, unless accretion is halted. We find that, in fact, accretion of pebbles (~ cm-sized particles) is self-limiting: when a core becomes massive enough it carves a gap in the pebble disc. This halt in pebble accretion subsequently triggers the rapid collapse of the super-critical gas envelope. As opposed to gas giants, ice giants do not reach this threshold mass and can only bind low-mass envelopes that are highly enriched by water vapour from sublimated icy pebbles. This offers an explanation for the compositional difference between gas giants and ice giants in the Solar System. Furthermore, as opposed to planetesimal-driven accretion scenarios, our model allows core formation and envelope attraction within disc life-times, provided that solids in protoplanetary discs are predominantly in pebbles. Our results imply that the outer regions of planetary systems, where the mass required to halt pebble accretion is large, are dominated by ice giants and that gas-giant exoplanets in wide orbits are enriched by more than 50 Earth masses of solids.

Interpreting the extended emission around three nearby debris disc host stars

Cool debris discs are a relic of the planetesimal formation process around their host star, analogous to the solar system’s Edgeworth-Kuiper belt. As such, they can be used as a proxy to probe the origin and formation of planetary systems like our own. The Herschel Open Time Key Programmes "DUst around NEarby Stars" (DUNES) and "Disc Emission via a Bias-free Reconnaissance in the Infrared/Submillimetre" (DEBRIS) observed many nearby, sun-like stars at far-infrared wavelengths seeking to detect and characterize the emission from their circumstellar dust. Excess emission attributable to the presence of dust was identified from around $\sim$ 20% of stars. Herschel’s high angular resolution ($\sim$ 7" FWHM at 100 $\mu$m) provided the capacity for resolving debris belts around nearby stars with radial extents comparable to the solar system (50 to 100 au). As part of the DUNES and DEBRIS surveys, we obtained observations of three debris disc stars, HIP 22263 (HD 30495), HIP 62207 (HD 110897), and HIP 72848 (HD 131511), at far-infrared wavelengths with the Herschel PACS instrument. Combining these new images and photometry with ancilliary data from the literature, we undertook simultaneous multi-wavelength modelling of the discs’ radial profiles and spectral energy distributions using three different methodologies: single annulus, modified black body, and a radiative transfer code. We present the first far-infrared spatially resolved images of these discs and new single-component debris disc models. We characterize the capacity of the models to reproduce the disc parameters based on marginally resolved emission through analysis of two sets of simulated systems (based on the HIP 22263 and HIP 62207 data) with the noise levels typical of the Herschel images. We find that the input parameter values are recovered well at noise levels attained in the observations presented here.

Main-belt comets as tracers of ice in the inner Solar system

As a recently recognized class of objects exhibiting apparently cometary (sublimation-driven) activity yet orbiting completely within the main asteroid belt, main-belt comets (MBCs) have revealed the existence of present-day ice in small bodies in the inner solar system and offer an opportunity to better understand the thermal and compositional history of our solar system, and by extension, those of other planetary systems as well. Achieving these overall goals, however, will require meeting various intermediate research objectives, including discovering many more MBCs than the currently known seven objects in order to ascertain the population’s true abundance and distribution, confirming that water ice sublimation is in fact the driver of activity in these objects, and improving our understanding of the physical, dynamical, and thermal evolutionary processes that have acted on this population over the age of the solar system.

Selecting asteroids for a targeted spectroscopic survey

Asteroid spectroscopy reflects surface mineralogy. There are few thousand asteroids whose surfaces have been observed spectrally. Determining the surface properties of those objects is important for many practical and scientific applications, such as for example developing impact deflection strategies or studying history and evolution of the Solar System and planet formation. The aim of this study is to develop a pre-selection method that can be utilized in searching for asteroids of any taxonomic complex. The method could then be utilized im multiple applications such as searching for the missing V-types or looking for primitive asteroids. We used the Bayes Naive Classifier combined with observations obtained in the course of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer surveys as well as a database of asteroid phase curves for asteroids with known taxonomic type. Using the new classification method we have selected a number of possible V-type candidates. Some of the candidates were than spectrally observed at the Nordic Optical Telescope and South African Large Telescope. We have developed and tested the new pre-selection method. We found three asteroids in the mid/outer Main Belt that are likely of differentiated type. Near-Infrared are still required to confirm this discovery. Similarly to other studies we found that V-type candidates cluster around the Vesta family and are rare in the mid/oter Main Belt. The new method shows that even largely explored large databases combined together could still be further exploited in for example solving the missing dunite problem.

Cool Stars and Space Weather

Stellar flares, winds and coronal mass ejections form the space weather. They are signatures of the magnetic activity of cool stars and, since activity varies with age, mass and rotation, the space weather that extra-solar planets experience can be very different from the one encountered by the solar system planets. How do stellar activity and magnetism influence the space weather of exoplanets orbiting main-sequence stars? How do the environments surrounding exoplanets differ from those around the planets in our own solar system? How can the detailed knowledge acquired by the solar system community be applied in exoplanetary systems? How does space weather affect habitability? These were questions that were addressed in the splinter session "Cool stars and Space Weather", that took place on 9 Jun 2014, during the Cool Stars 18 meeting. In this paper, we present a summary of the contributions made to this session.

The role of impact and radiogenic heating in the early thermal evolution of Mars [Replacement]

The planetary differentiation models of Mars are proposed that take into account core-mantle and core-mantle-crust differentiation. The numerical simulations are presented for the early thermal evolution of Mars spanning up to the initial 25 million years (Ma) of the early solar system, probably for the first time, by taking into account the radiogenic heating due to the short-lived nuclides, 26Al and 60Fe. The influence of impact heating during the accretion of Mars is also incorporated in the simulations. The early accretion of Mars would necessitate a substantial role played by the short-lived nuclides in its heating. 26Al along with impact heating could have provided sufficient thermal energy to the entire body to substantially melt and trigger planetary scale differentiation. This is contrary to the thermal models based exclusively on the impact heating that could not produce widespread melting and planetary differentiation. The early onset of the accretion of Mars perhaps within the initial ~1.5 Ma in the early solar system could have resulted in substantial differentiation of Mars provide it accreted over the timescale of ~1 Ma. This seems to be consistent with the chronological records of the Martian meteorites.

The role of impact and radiogenic heating in the early thermal evolution of Mars

The planetary differentiation models of Mars are proposed that take into account core-mantle and core-mantle-crust differentiation. The numerical simulations are presented for the early thermal evolution of Mars spanning up to the initial 25 million years (Ma) of the early solar system, probably for the first time, by taking into account the radiogenic heating due to the short-lived nuclides, 26Al and 60Fe. The influence of impact heating during the accretion of Mars is also incorporated in the simulations. The early accretion of Mars would necessitate a substantial role played by the short-lived nuclides in its heating. 26Al along with impact heating could have provided sufficient thermal energy to the entire body to substantially melt and trigger planetary scale differentiation. This is contrary to the thermal models based exclusively on the impact heating that could not produce widespread melting and planetary differentiation. The early onset of the accretion of Mars perhaps within the initial ~1.5 Ma in the early solar system could have resulted in substantial differentiation of Mars provide it accreted over the timescale of ~1 Ma. This seems to be consistent with the chronological records of the Martian meteorites.

Solar system and small-field astrometry [Replacement]

Astrometric issues for solar system studies are discussed. An overview gives references and cover all aspects of the solar system where astrometry is important: orbits of planets, moons, asteroids and NEOs, masses of asteroids, occultations of asteroids and KBOs, and families of asteroids and KBOs. The roles of astrometry from the ground, from Gaia and from a Gaia successor are discussed, but NOT small-field astrometry FROM SPACE. It appears from work with CCD cameras at the 1.55 m astrometric reflector in Flagstaff that an accuracy of 1 mas is the best possible from the ground during one night observing when using ordinary telescopes, i.e. without wave-front correctors, and for field sizes larger than 2 arcmin. It has been seen that the same accuracies can be reached with the much larger 4-m class telescope on Hawaii although it is not specifically designed for astrometry.

Solar system and small-field astrometry

Astrometric issues for future solar system studies are discussed. An overview gives references and cover all aspects of the solar system where astrometry is important: orbits of planets, moons, asteroids and NEOs, masses of asteroids, occultations of asteroids and KBOs, and families of asteroids and KBOs. The roles of astrometry from the ground, from Gaia and from a Gaia successor are discussed. It appears from work with CCD cameras at the 1.55 m astrometric reflector in Flagstaff that an accuracy of 1 mas is the best possible from the ground during one night observing when using ordinary telescopes, i.e. without wave-front correctors, and for field sizes larger than 2 arcmin. It has been seen that the same accuracies can be reached with the much larger 4-m class telescope on Hawaii although it is not specifically designed for astrometry.

The Debris Disk of Solar Analogue $\tau$ Ceti: Herschel Observations and Dynamical Simulations of the Proposed Multiplanet System

$\tau$ Ceti is a nearby, mature G-type star very similar to our Sun, with a massive Kuiper Belt analogue (Greaves et al. 2004) and possible multiplanet system (Tuomi et al. 2013) that has been compared to our Solar System. We present Herschel Space Observatory images of the debris disk, finding the disk is resolved at 70 and 160 microns, and marginally resolved at 250 microns. The Herschel images and infrared photometry from the literature are best modelled using a wide dust annulus with an inner edge between 1-10 AU and an outer edge at ~55 AU, inclined from face-on by 35$\pm$10 degrees, and with no significant azimuthal structure. We model the proposed tightly-packed planetary system of five super-Earths and find that the innermost dynamically stable disk orbits are consistent with the inner edge found by the observations. The photometric modelling, however, cannot rule out a disk inner edge as close to the star as 1 AU, though larger distances produce a better fit to the data. Dynamical modelling shows that the 5 planet system is stable with the addition of a Neptune or smaller mass planet on an orbit outside 5 AU, where the Tuomi et al. analysis would not have detected a planet of this mass.

Solar System evolution from compositional mapping of the asteroid belt

Advances in the discovery and characterization of asteroids over the past decade have revealed an unanticipated underlying structure that points to a dramatic early history of the inner Solar System. The asteroids in the main asteroid belt have been discovered to be more compositionally diverse with size and distance from the Sun than had previously been known. This implies substantial mixing through processes such as planetary migration and the subsequent dynamical processes.

Lunar Exploration: Opening a Window into the History and Evolution of the Inner Solar System

The lunar geological record contains a rich archive of the history of the inner Solar System, including information relevant to understanding the origin and evolution of the Earth-Moon system, the geological evolution of rocky planets, and our local cosmic environment. This paper provides a brief review of lunar exploration to-date, and describes how future exploration initiatives will further advance our understanding of the origin and evolution of the Moon, the Earth-Moon system, and of the Solar System more generally. It is concluded that further advances will require the placing of new scientific instruments on, and the return of additional samples from, the lunar surface. Some of these scientific objectives can be achieved robotically, for example by in situ geochemical and geophysical measurements and through carefully targeted sample return missions. However, in the longer term, we argue that lunar science would greatly benefit from renewed human operations on the surface of the Moon, such as would be facilitated by implementing the recently proposed Global Exploration Roadmap.

Stellar origin of the 182Hf cosmochronometer and the presolar history of solar system matter

Among the short-lived radioactive nuclei inferred to be present in the early solar system via meteoritic analyses, there are several heavier than iron whose stellar origin has been poorly understood. In particular, the abundances inferred for 182Hf (half-life = 8.9 million years) and 129I (half-life = 15.7 million years) are in disagreement with each other if both nuclei are produced by the rapid neutron-capture process. Here, we demonstrate that contrary to previous assumption, the slow neutron-capture process in asymptotic giant branch stars produces 182Hf. This has allowed us to date the last rapid and slow neutron-capture events that contaminated the solar system material at roughly 100 million years and 30 million years, respectively, before the formation of the Sun.

Gravitational radiation from compact binaries in scalar-tensor gravity

General relativity (GR) has been extensively tested in the solar system and in binary pulsars, but never in the strong-field, dynamical regime. Soon, gravitational-wave (GW) detectors like Advanced LIGO and eLISA will be able to probe this regime by measuring GWs from inspiraling and merging compact binaries. One particularly interesting alternative to GR is scalar-tensor gravity. We present progress in the calculation of second post-Newtonian (2PN) gravitational waveforms for inspiraling compact binaries in a general class of scalar-tensor theories. The waveforms are constructed using a standard GR method known as "direct integration of the relaxed Einstein equations," appropriately adapted to the scalar-tensor case. We find that differences from general relativity can be characterized by a reasonably small number of parameters. Among the differences are new hereditary terms which depend on the past history of the source. In one special case, binary black hole systems, we find that the waveform is indistinguishable from that of general relativity. In another, mixed black hole-neutron star systems, all differences from GR can be characterized by only a single parameter.

Misaligned Protoplanetary Disks in a Young Binary System

Many extrasolar planets follow orbits that differ from the nearly coplanar and circular orbits found in our solar system; orbits may be eccentric or inclined with respect to the host star’s equator, and the population of giant planets orbiting close to their host stars suggests significant orbital migration. There is currently no consensus on what produces such orbits. Theoretical explanations often invoke interactions with a binary companion star on an orbit that is inclined relative to the planet’s orbital plane. Such mechanisms require significant mutual inclinations between planetary and binary star orbital planes. The protoplanetary disks in a few young binaries are misaligned, but these measurements are sensitive only to a small portion of the inner disk, and the three-dimensional misalignment of the bulk of the planet-forming disk mass has hitherto not been determined. Here we report that the protoplanetary disks in the young binary system HK Tau are misaligned by 60{\deg}-68{\deg}, so one or both disks are significantly inclined to the binary orbital plane. Our results demonstrate that the necessary conditions exist for misalignment-driven mechanisms to modify planetary orbits, and that these conditions are present at the time of planet formation, apparently due to the binary formation process.

Local gravitational physics of the Hubble expansion

We study physical consequences of the Hubble expansion of FLRW manifold on measurement of space, time and light propagation in the local inertial frame. We analyse the solar system radar ranging and Doppler tracking experiments, and time synchronization. FLRW manifold is covered by global coordinates (t,y^i), where t is the cosmic time coinciding with the proper time of the Hubble observers. We introduce local inertial coordinates x^a=(x^0,x^i) in the vicinity of a world line of a Hubble observer with the help of a special conformal transformation. The local inertial metric is Minkowski flat and is materialized by the congruence of time-like geodesics of static observers being at rest with respect to the local spatial coordinates x^i. We consider geodesic motion of test particles and notice that the local coordinate time x^0=x^0(t) taken as a parameter along the world line of particle, is a function of the Hubble’s observer time t. This function changes smoothly from x^0=t for a particle at rest (observer’s clock), to x^0=t+1/2 Ht^2 for photons, where H is the Hubble constant. Thus, motion of a test particle is non-uniform when its world line is parametrized by time t. NASA JPL Orbit Determination Program presumes that motion of light (after the Shapiro delay is excluded) is uniform with respect to the time t but it does not comply with the non-uniform motion of light on cosmological manifold. For this reason, the motion of light in the solar system analysed with the Orbit Determination Program appears as having a systematic blue shift of frequency, of radio waves circulating in the Earth-spacecraft radio link. The magnitude of the anomalous blue shift of frequency is proportional to the Hubble constant H that may open an access to the measurement of this fundamental cosmological parameter in the solar system radiowave experiments.

The odd couple: quasars and black holes

Quasars emit more energy than any other objects in the universe, yet are not much bigger than the solar system. We are almost certain that quasars are powered by giant black holes of up to $10^{10}$ times the mass of the Sun, and that black holes of between $10^6$ and $10^{10}$ solar masses—dead quasars—are present at the centers of most galaxies. Our own galaxy contains a black hole of $4.3\times10^6$ solar masses. The mass of the central black hole appears to be closely related to other properties of its host galaxy, such as the total mass in stars, but the origin of this relation and the role that black holes play in the formation of galaxies are still mysteries.

 

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