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L. G. Book (University of Illinois at U-C), L. Hartmann (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory)
The preferential coupling of a magnetic field to ionized material implies a two-layered structure in protoplanetary accretion disks due to partial activation of the magnetorotational instability. This structure provides a disk instability that is capable of explaining the large fluctuations of brightness in FU Orionis objects, which are often thought to originate in a sudden increase of protostellar disk accretion. In the current work, we determine the importance of the active layer in these phenomena by analyzing the ability of an averaged one-layer model to reproduce outbursts with appropriate timescales and magnitudes. W use the results to determine constraints on protoplanetary disk structure.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.