Dawes Review 7: The Tidal Downsizing Hypothesis of Planet Formation

2017-11-23T12:23:34Z (GMT) by Sergei Nayakshin
Tidal Downsizing scenario of planet formation builds on ideas proposed by Gerard Kuiper in 1951. Detailed simulations of self-gravitating discs, gas fragments, dust grain dynamics, and planet evolutionary calculations are summarised here and used to build a predictive population synthesis. A new interpretation of exoplanetary and debris disc data, the Solar System's origins, and the links between planets and brown dwarfs is offered. Tidal Downsizing predicts that presence of debris discs, sub-Neptune mass planets, planets more massive than ~ 5 Jupiter masses and brown dwarfs should not correlate strongly with the metallicity of the host. For gas giants of ~ Saturn to a few Jupiter mass, a strong host star metallicity correlation is predicted only inwards of a few AU from the host. Composition of massive cores is predicted to be dominated by rock rather than ices. Debris discs made by Tidal Downsizing have an innermost edge larger than about 1 au, have smaller total masses and are usually in a dynamically excited state. Planet formation in surprisingly young or very dynamic systems such as HL Tau and Kepler-444 may be a signature of Tidal Downsizing. Open questions and potential weaknesses of the hypothesis are pointed out.