Non-Axisymmetric Shear Instabilities in Thick Accretion Disks
Recent results on the Papaloizou-Pringle non-axisymmetric instability in thick accretion disks is reviewed. Considerable work has been done on “slender” tori and annuli; these are systems whose radial widths are small compared to their mean radii. The linear instabilities in slender configurations fall into two classes, (i) the principal branch, and (ii) higher-order modes. The physical mechanism by which these modes become unstable has been identified. The idealized slender models have been extended in several ways; some work has been reported on (i) modes in wide tori/annuli, (ii) nonlinear development of unstable modes, (iii) role of accretion, (iv) effect of self-gravity, and (v) effect of entropy gradient. These studies have brought us closer to the point where we can tell whether or not the PP instability is important for thick disks in nature. This issue is expected to be resolved by three-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations.
KeywordsAccretion Disk Unstable Mode Global Mode Thick Disk Principal Mode
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