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Determining Dust Properties in Protoplanetary Disks: SED-derived Masses and Settling with ALMA

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jats:titleAbstract</jats:title> jats:pWe present spectral energy distribution (SED) modeling of 338 disks around T Tauri stars from 11 star-forming regions, ranging from ∼0.5 to 10 Myr old. The disk masses we infer from our SED models are typically greater than those reported from (sub)millimeter surveys by a factor of 1.5–5, with the discrepancy being generally higher for the more massive disks. Masses derived from (sub)millimeter fluxes rely on the assumption that the disks are optically thin at all millimeter wavelengths, which may cause the disk masses to be underestimated since the observed flux is not sensitive to the whole mass in the disk; SED models do not make this assumption and thus yield higher masses. Disks with more absorbing material should be optically thicker at a given wavelength, which could lead to a larger discrepancy for disks around massive stars when the disk temperature is scaled by the stellar luminosity. We also compare the disk masses and degree of dust settling across the different star-forming regions and find that disks in younger regions are more massive than disks in older regions, but with a similar degree of dust settling. Together, these results offer potential partial solutions to the “missing” mass problem: disks around T Tauri stars may indeed have enough material to form planetary systems, though previous studies have underestimated the mass by assuming the disks to be optically thin; these planetary systems may also form earlier than previously theorized since significant dust evolution (i.e., settling) is already apparent in young disks.</jats:p>



5109 Space Sciences, 51 Physical Sciences, 5101 Astronomical Sciences

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The Astrophysical Journal

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American Astronomical Society
NASA ∣ GSFC ∣ Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) (80NSSC20K0451)
National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) (SOSPA8-007)