Polydisperse streaming instability  I. Tightly coupled particles and the terminal velocity approximation
Abstract
We introduce a polydisperse version of the streaming instability (SI), where the dust component is treated as a continuum of sizes. We show that its behaviour is remarkably different from the monodisperse SI. We focus on tightly coupled particles in the terminal velocity approximation and show that unstable modes that grow exponentially on a dynamical timescale exist. However, for dust to gas ratios much smaller than unity, they are confined to radial wavenumbers that are a factor $\sim 1/{\overline{\rm St}}$ larger than where the monodisperse SI growth rates peak. Here ${\overline{\rm St}}\ll 1$ is a suitable average Stokes number for the dust size distribution. For dust to gas ratios larger than unity, polydisperse modes that grow on a dynamical timescale are found as well, similar as for the monodisperse SI and at similarly large wavenumbers. At smaller wavenumbers, where the classical monodisperse SI shows secular growth, no growing polydisperse modes are found under the terminal velocity approximation. Outside the region of validity for the terminal velocity approximation, we have found unstable epicyclic modes that grow on ∼10^{4} dynamical timescales.
 Publication:

Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
 Pub Date:
 December 2020
 DOI:
 10.1093/mnras/staa3162
 arXiv:
 arXiv:2010.01145
 Bibcode:
 2020MNRAS.499.4223P
 Keywords:

 hydrodynamics;
 instabilities;
 planets and satellites: formation;
 protoplanetary discs;
 Astrophysics  Earth and Planetary Astrophysics;
 Physics  Fluid Dynamics
 EPrint:
 17 pages, 10 figures, 1 table. Submitted