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Astron. Astrophys. 362, 968-972 (2000)

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Suppression of giant planet formation in stellar clusters

Ph.J. Armitage

Max-Planck-Institut für Astrophysik, Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 1, 85741 Garching, Germany (armitage@mpa-garching.mpg.de)

Received 29 June 2000 / Accepted 1 September 2000


Photoevaporation driven by the ultraviolet radiation from massive stars severely limits the lifetime of protoplanetary discs around stars formed within stellar clusters. I investigate the resulting influence of clustered environments on the probability of giant planet formation, and show that for clusters as rich, or richer than, Orion, the time available for planet formation is likely to be limited to the length of any delay between low mass and high mass star formation. Under popular models for the formation of massive planets, the fraction of stars with giant planets in rich clusters is expected to be substantially suppressed as compared to less clustered star formation environments.

Key words: accretion, accretion disks – solar system: formation – stars: formation – stars: planetary systems – Galaxy: globular clusters: general – Galaxy: open clusters and associations: general

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000

Online publication: October 30, 2000