The migration of single hot Jupiters: Balance of evidence tips towards dynamical and tidal evolution
Husnoo, Mohammad N.
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
In this thesis, we revisit the seventeen year old question of how hot Jupiters got to their short period orbits, given that gas-giant planet building is supposed to take place beyond the ice-line at about 3 AU. Two major theories are generally used to explain this mystery. Firstly, exchange of energy and angular momentum between the newly-built planet and the progenitor dust and gas disk could result in planetary migration to a short period. This is generally believed to result in planets on circular orbits, with orbital angular momenta that are aligned with the host star spin. The competing theory which has gained more support in recent years, is that gravitational interactions leading to planet-planet scattering and/or Kozai interactions with massive and distant objects caused the planets to migrate violently (scattering) or slowly (Kozai) to short period, eccentric and misaligned orbits. These orbits are then expected to circularise and align under tidal interactions with the host star. In addition, the host star is expected to show evidence of spin-up if the tide on the star is strong enough. Our contribution to this field is to provide additional support for the scenario involving dynamical interaction and tidal damping. We present observational evidence in the form of 158 new radial velocity measurements for 12 planets and a reanalysis of existing radial velocity data and photometric constraints from the literature for a total of 64 planetary systems. We also critically consider a further 30 newly announced planets from the literature. We show that there is no evidence for a finite eccentricity in several cases that were previously claimed to be “exceptions” to the observed trend that close-in planets are on circular orbits and the generally accepted reason that they underwent strong tidal interactions. We also show that the dissipative effect of tides raised in the planet by the star and vice versa explain all the eccentricity and spin-orbit alignment measurements available for transiting planets. We find evidence for excess rotation of the star in 6 systems, showing that heavy and close-in objects can exert strong tidal effects on the star. Hot Jupiters on circular orbits clump on the mass-period relation, which thus appears to be related to the stopping mechanism of orbital migration for hot Jupiters.
MNRAS 414 (June 2011), pp. 1278–1284
MNRAS 422 (June 2012), pp. 3151–3177
MNRAS 413 (June 2011), pp. 2500–2508
PhD in Physics