Skip to main content

Nice Model

  • Reference work entry
  • 184 Accesses

Definition

The so-called Nice model is a model for the dynamical evolution of the outer Solar System. In this model, the giant planets underwent a dynamical instability several hundred million years after the planets formed, which played a major role in shaping the present-day Solar System. The Nice model can explain several observations in the Solar System, including the orbits of the giant planets, several small body populations (e.g., Jupiter’s Trojans), and the late heavy bombardment.

Overview

The Nice model makes the assumption that the giant planets formed in a more compact configuration than their current one, with Jupiter and Saturn closer than their 2:1 mean motion resonance. The model also assumes that exterior to Neptune there existed a massive primordial disk of small bodies (planetesimals), totaling perhaps 50 Earth masses. The long-term evolution is thought to have proceeded as follows. Over time, Neptune’s gravity perturbed the orbits of nearby planetesimals onto...

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

Chapter
USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-11274-4_1058
  • Chapter length: 2 pages
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
eBook
USD   849.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-642-11274-4
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout

References and Further Reading

  • Gomes R et al (2005) Origin of the cataclysmic Late Heavy Bombardment period of the terrestrial planets. Nature 435:459–461

    ADS  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Morbidelli A et al (2005) Chaotic capture of Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids in the early Solar System. Nature 435:466–469

    ADS  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Tsiganis K et al (2005) Origin of the orbital architecture of the giant planets of the Solar System. Nature 435:462–465

    ADS  CrossRef  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Sean N. Raymond .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2011 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

About this entry

Cite this entry

Raymond, S.N. (2011). Nice Model. In: , et al. Encyclopedia of Astrobiology. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-11274-4_1058

Download citation