Wienkers, Aaron F., Cunningham, A. J., Klein, R. I., Marcus, P. S., & McKee, C. F.
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, ICRL
Publication year: 2013


Late protostellar accretion disks are often idealized as thin, Keplerian, and laminar in nature; however, many disk instabilities are not insensitive to the initial turbulence spec- trum. One such mode of turbulence driving in protostellar disks is by anisotropic core accretion. We build on the results of Gammie (2001), Rice et al. (2005), and Steiman- Cameron et al. (2013), now conducting global core collapse simulations with free ac- cretion. We investigate the effects of heavy anisotropic accretion on fragmentation and the proliferation of gravitational instabilities into a gravito-turbulent state. We use the adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) code, Orion, to perform high-resolution simulations of solar mass star-forming molecular cloud cores located in massive star-forming regions. We include self-gravity, use a baroclinic equation of state, and represent regions exceeding the maximum grid resolution with sink particles, accurately simulating Bondi accretion. The turbulence, fragmentation, and laminarization of the ensuing late protostellar and early protoplanetary disk is studied during periods of high mass-infall rates. We also outline the development of a global baroclinic cooling prescription for these core collapse simulations forming T Tauri protostellar systems. Our model self-consistently treats the viscously heated disk equilibrium temperature and cooling time using global disk proper- ties. These results will be used to initialize a culminating study of baroclinic instabilities in protoplanetary disks.



  • Accretion Disks
  • Solar System: Formation
  • Stars: Formation
  • Rotating Turbulence