Giant planet evolution: the effect of convection and mixing

Allona Vazan, Ravit Helled, M. Podolak, A. Kovetz

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


We model the long-term evolution of giant planets
accounting for the change in the compositional
gradient with time. Core erosion is modeled by
convective-mixing using both the Ledoux and
Schwarzschild criteria for convection. We find that in
some cases compositional gradients prevent
convective mixing, and as a result, the assumption of
an adiabatic interior is no longer valid. In other cases,
mixing leads to layered-convection, which results in
a stair-like internal structure and a slower cooling [2].
In addition, the process of mixing (if it occurs)
enriches the gaseous envelope in heavy elements
from the core. These have a direct effect on the
planetary evolution, and therefore on the planetary
radius and luminosity. We suggest that the memory
of the primordial internal structure remains even after
billions of years.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
EventEuropean Planetary Science Congress 2014 - Cascais, Portugal
Duration: 7 Sep 2014 → …


ConferenceEuropean Planetary Science Congress 2014
Period7/09/14 → …
Internet address


Dive into the research topics of 'Giant planet evolution: the effect of convection and mixing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this