37th DPS Meeting, 4-9 September 2005
Session 56 TNOs and Centaurs
Poster, Thursday, September 8, 2005, 6:00-7:15pm, Music Recital Room

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[56.07] Evolution of the Oort Cloud under Galactic Perturbations

A. Higuchi (NAOJ/Kobe University), E. Kokubo (NAOJ), T. Mukai (Kobe University)

The Oort cloud is a spherical comet reservoir surrounding the solar system. There is general agreement that the Oort cloud comets are the residual planetesimals of planet formation. The standard scenario of the Oort cloud formation consists of two dynamical stages: (1) giant planets raise the aphelia of planetesimals to the outer region of the solar system and (2) the galactic tide, passing stars, and giant molecular clouds pull up their perihelia out of the planetary region and randomize their inclinations.

Here we show the orbital evolution of planetesimals due to the galactic tide. Planetesimals with large aphelion distances change their perihelion distances toward the outside of the planetary region by the galactic tide and become members of the Oort cloud. We consider only the vertical component of the galactic tide because it is dominant compared to other components. Then, under such an axi-symmetric assumption, some planetesimals may show the librations around \omega(argument of perihelion)=\pi/2 or 3\pi/2 (the Kozai mechanism). The alternate increases of eccentricity and inclination of the Kozai mechanism are effective to form the Oort cloud. Using the secular perturbation theory, we can understand the motion of the planetesimals analytically. We applied the Kozai mechanism to the galactic tide and found that the galactic tide raise perihelia and randomize inclinations of planetesimals with semimajor axes larger than ~103 AU in 5Gyr. We take into account time evolution of the local galactic density, which is thought to be denser in the early stage of the sun than the current one.

This work was supported by the 21st Century COE Program Origin and Evolution of Planetary Systems of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology, Japan, and JSPS Research Fellowship for Young Scientists.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #3
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.