On the Estimation of Circumbinary Orbital Properties
Abstract
We describe a fast, approximate method to characterize the orbits of satellites around a central binary in numerical simulations. A goal is to distinguish the free eccentricity—the random motion of a satellite relative to a dynamically cool orbit—from oscillatory modes driven by the central binary's timevarying gravitational potential. We assess the performance of the method using the Kepler16, Kepler47, and PlutoCharon systems. We then apply the method to a simulation of orbital damping in a circumbinary environment, resolving relative speeds between small bodies that are slow enough to promote mergers and growth. These results illustrate how dynamical cooling can set the stage for the formation of Tatooinelike planets around stellar binaries and the small moons around the PlutoCharon binary planet.
 Publication:

The Astronomical Journal
 Pub Date:
 January 2021
 DOI:
 10.3847/15383881/abcbfb
 arXiv:
 arXiv:2011.13376
 Bibcode:
 2021AJ....161...25B
 Keywords:

 Exoplanet dynamics;
 Exoplanet evolution;
 Pluto;
 Orbital elements;
 Orbital theory;
 Nbody simulations;
 Exoplanet formation;
 Satellite formation;
 490;
 491;
 1267;
 1177;
 1182;
 1083;
 492;
 1425;
 Astrophysics  Earth and Planetary Astrophysics;
 Astrophysics  Solar and Stellar Astrophysics
 EPrint:
 24 pages with 7 figures and 3 tables, AJ, in press