We compare different examples of spherical accretion onto a gravitating mass. Limiting cases include the accretion of a collisionally dominated fluid and the accretion of collisionless particles. We derive expressions for the accretion rate and density profile for semicollisional accretion, which bridges the gap between these limiting cases. Particle crossing of the Hill sphere during the formation of the outer planets is likely to have taken place in the semicollisional regime.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank S. Shapiro for a helpful discussion. R. S. is an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow and a Packard Fellow. This research was supported in part by NASA grant NAG 5-12037
- Accretion, accretion disks
- Planets and satellites: formation