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Astron. Astrophys. 361, 369-378 (2000)

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The Oort cloud as a remnant of the protosolar nebula

L. Nesluan

Astronomical Institute, Slovak Academy of Sciences, 05960 Tatranská Lomnica, Slovakia

Received 29 June 1999 / Accepted 14 July 2000


If comets are assumed to have been created in the cool, dense regions of interstellar clouds, then these macroscopic bodies have to take part in the collapse of a protostar cloud as bodies following the laws of mechanics, in contrast to the gas and microscopic dust, which follow the laws of hydrodynamics. Here we present evidence concerning the solar system comets: if the velocity distribution of comets before the collapse of protosolar cloud was similar to what it is now in the outer Oort cloud then the comets would have remained at large distances from the centre of the cloud. Hence, the comets in the solar Oort cloud may represent a remnant of the nebular stage of the solar system.

Key words: comets: general – solar system: formation – ISM: kinematics and dynamics

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000

Online publication: September 5, 2000