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Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society





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The streaming instability is a fundamental process that can drive dust-gas dynamics and ultimately planetesimal formation in protoplanetary discs. As a linear instability, it has been shown that its growth with a distribution of dust sizes can be classified into two distinct regimes, fast-and slow-growth, depending on the dust-size distribution and the total dust-To-gas density ratio . Using numerical simulations of an unstratified disc, we bring three cases in different regimes into non-linear saturation. We find that the saturation states of the two fast-growth cases are similar to its single-species counterparts. The one with maximum dimensionless stopping time τs,max = 0.1 and = 2 drives turbulent vertical dust-gas vortices, while the other with τs,max = 2 and = 0.2 leads to radial traffic jams and filamentary structures of dust particles. The dust density distribution for the former is flat in low densities, while the one for the latter has a low-end cut-off. By contrast, the one slow-growth case results in a virtually quiescent state. Moreover, we find that in the fast-growth regime, significant dust segregation by size occurs, with large particles moving towards dense regions while small particles remain in the diffuse regions, and the mean radial drift of each dust species is appreciably altered from the (initial) drag-force equilibrium. The former effect may skew the spectral index derived from multiwavelength observations and change the initial size distribution of a pebble cloud for planetesimal formation. The latter along with turbulent diffusion may influence the radial transport and mixing of solid materials in young protoplanetary discs.


Hydrodynamics; Instabilities; Methods: Numerical; Planets and satellites: Formation; Protoplanetary discs; Turbulence


Navigation, Guidance, Control and Dynamics

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This article has been accepted for publication in Astronomy & Astrophysics ©: 2021 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


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