Intense X-ray and ultraviolet stellar irradiation can heat and inflate the atmospheres of closely orbiting exoplanets, driving mass outflows that may be significant enough to evaporate a sizable fraction of the planet atmosphere over the system lifetime. The recent surge in the number of known exoplanets, together with the imminent deployment of new ground and space-based facilities for exoplanet discovery and characterization, requires a prompt and efficient assessment of the most promising targets for intensive spectroscopic follow-ups. For this purpose, we developed ATmospheric EScape (ATES), a new hydrodynamics code that is specifically designed to compute the temperature, density, velocity, and ionization fraction profiles of highly irradiated planetary atmospheres, along with the current, steady-state mass loss rate. ATES solves the one-dimensional Euler, mass, and energy conservation equations in radial coordinates through a finite-volume scheme. The hydrodynamics module is paired with a photoionization equilibrium solver that includes cooling via bremsstrahlung, recombination, and collisional excitation and ionization for the case of a primordial atmosphere entirely composed of atomic hydrogen and helium, whilst also accounting for advection of the different ion species. Compared against the results of 14 moderately to highly irradiated planets simulated with The PLUTO-CLOUDY Interface (TPCI), which couples two sophisticated and computationally expensive hydrodynamics and radiation codes of much broader astrophysical applicability, ATES yields remarkably good agreement at a significantly smaller fraction of the time. A convergence study shows that ATES recovers stable, steady-state hydrodynamic solutions for systems with log(-φp) 12.9 + 0.17 log FXUV, where φp and FXUV are the planet gravitational potential and stellar flux (in cgs units). Incidentally, atmospheres of systems above this threshold are generally thought to be undergoing Jeans escape. The code, which also features a user-friendly graphic interface, is available publicly as an online repository.

Irradiation-driven escape of primordial planetary atmospheres: I. The ATES photoionization hydrodynamics code

Haardt F.;Spinelli R.;
2021

Abstract

Intense X-ray and ultraviolet stellar irradiation can heat and inflate the atmospheres of closely orbiting exoplanets, driving mass outflows that may be significant enough to evaporate a sizable fraction of the planet atmosphere over the system lifetime. The recent surge in the number of known exoplanets, together with the imminent deployment of new ground and space-based facilities for exoplanet discovery and characterization, requires a prompt and efficient assessment of the most promising targets for intensive spectroscopic follow-ups. For this purpose, we developed ATmospheric EScape (ATES), a new hydrodynamics code that is specifically designed to compute the temperature, density, velocity, and ionization fraction profiles of highly irradiated planetary atmospheres, along with the current, steady-state mass loss rate. ATES solves the one-dimensional Euler, mass, and energy conservation equations in radial coordinates through a finite-volume scheme. The hydrodynamics module is paired with a photoionization equilibrium solver that includes cooling via bremsstrahlung, recombination, and collisional excitation and ionization for the case of a primordial atmosphere entirely composed of atomic hydrogen and helium, whilst also accounting for advection of the different ion species. Compared against the results of 14 moderately to highly irradiated planets simulated with The PLUTO-CLOUDY Interface (TPCI), which couples two sophisticated and computationally expensive hydrodynamics and radiation codes of much broader astrophysical applicability, ATES yields remarkably good agreement at a significantly smaller fraction of the time. A convergence study shows that ATES recovers stable, steady-state hydrodynamic solutions for systems with log(-φp) 12.9 + 0.17 log FXUV, where φp and FXUV are the planet gravitational potential and stellar flux (in cgs units). Incidentally, atmospheres of systems above this threshold are generally thought to be undergoing Jeans escape. The code, which also features a user-friendly graphic interface, is available publicly as an online repository.
Hydrodynamics; Methods: numerical; Planets and satellites: atmospheres; Planets and satellites: dynamical evolution and stability
Caldiroli, A.; Haardt, F.; Gallo, E.; Spinelli, R.; Malsky, I.; Rauscher, E.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11383/2126428
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