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Exoplanetary Systems Dynamics

Abstract : At least 20% of Main-Sequence stars are known to harbor debris disks analogs to the Kuiper Belt. These disks are proof that the accretion of solids has permitted the formation of at least km-sized bodies. It is thus not surprising that several of these disks are accompanied by planets, which may reveal themselves by setting their dynamical imprints on the spatial structure of debris disks. Therefore, the detection of an eccentric debris disk surrounding Zeta² Ret by the Herschel space telescope provides evidence for the presence of a massive perturber in this system.Zeta² Ret being a mature Gyr-old system, and in that sense, analogous to our own Solar System, it offers a different example of long-term dynamical evolution. This thesis includes a detailed modeling of the structure of the debris disk of Zeta² Ret, which leads to constraints on the mass and orbital characteristics of the putative perturber. This study also reveals that eccentric structures in debris disks can survive on Gyr timescales.Detailed modeling of the structure of debris disks can allow the posterior discovery of hidden planets as is the case for the Fomalhaut system. The eccentric shape of the debris disk observed around this star was first attributed to Fom b, a companion detected near the belt inner-edge, which revealed to be highly eccentric (e~0.6-0.9), and thus very unlikely shaping the belt. This hints at the presence of another massive body in this system, Fom c, which drives the debris disk shape. The resulting planetary system is highly unstable, which involves a recent scattering of Fom b on its current orbit, potentially with the yet undetected Fom c. This scenario is investigated in this thesis and its study reveals that by having resided in inner mean-motion resonance with a Neptune or Saturn-mass belt-shaping eccentric Fom c and therefore have suffered a gradual resonant eccentricity increase on timescales comparable to the age of the system (~440 Myr), Fom b could have been brought close enough to Fom c and suffered a recent scattering event, which, complemented by a secular evolution with Fom c, explains its current orbital configuration. This three-step scenario also implies that significant amounts of material may have been set on extremely eccentric orbits such as this of Fom b through this mechanism, which in return could feed in dust the inner parts of the system. Therefore, this mechanism may also explain the presence of inner dust belts in the Fomalhaut system, but also the discovery a significant population of very bright hot dust belts in systems older than 100 Myr.The planetary systems discovered so far exhibit a great variety of architectures, and our solar system is far from being a generic model. One of the main mechanism that determines a planetary system morphology is planetary migration. The presence of a stellar binary companion - which our solar system is deprived of - is expected to affect planetary migration conditions, and potentially lead to the formation of very different planetary systems. This phenomenon is obviously non-negligible since binary systems represent at least half of stellar systems. At late stages of planetary systems formation, planetary migration may occur as the result of interactions with remaining solid planetesimals and the impact of binarity on this planetesimal-driven migration is explored in this thesis. A stellar binary companion may in fact reverse the tendency for planets in single star systems to migrate inwards, and bring them closer to regions perturbed by the binary companion, where they could not have formed in situ. This may give an explanation for the presence of planets which present signs of outward migration towards a circumstellar companion in the Gamma Cephei and HD 196885 systems.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, September 20, 2016 - 2:07:09 PM
Last modification on : Monday, May 18, 2020 - 2:33:21 PM


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  • HAL Id : tel-01369030, version 1



Virginie Faramaz. Exoplanetary Systems Dynamics. Astrophysics [astro-ph]. Université de Grenoble, 2014. English. ⟨NNT : 2014GRENY045⟩. ⟨tel-01369030⟩



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