Europlanet Science Congress 2021
Virtual meeting
13 – 24 September 2021
Europlanet Science Congress 2021
Virtual meeting
13 September – 24 September 2021
EPSC Abstracts
Vol. 15, EPSC2021-130, 2021
European Planetary Science Congress 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

System-level fractionation of carbon from disk and planetesimal processing 

Tim Lichtenberg1 and Sebastiaan Krijt2
Tim Lichtenberg and Sebastiaan Krijt
  • 1Atmospheric, Oceanic and Planetary Physics, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom (
  • 2School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Exeter, Exeter, United Kingdom (

Finding and characterizing extrasolar Earth analogs will rely on interpretation of the planetary system’s environmental context. The total budget and fractionation between C–H–O species sensitively affect the climatic and geodynamic state of terrestrial worlds, but their main delivery channels are poorly constrained. We connect numerical models of volatile chemistry and pebble coagulation in the circumstellar disk with the internal compositional evolution of planetesimals during the primary accretion phase. Our simulations demonstrate that disk chemistry and degassing from planetesimals operate on comparable timescales and can fractionate the relative abundances of major water and carbon carriers by orders of magnitude. As a result, individual planetary systems with significant planetesimal processing display increased correlation in the volatile budget of planetary building blocks relative to no internal heating. Planetesimal processing in a subset of systems increases the variance of volatile contents across planetary systems. Our simulations thus suggest that exoplanetary atmospheric compositions may provide constraints on when a specific planet formed.

How to cite: Lichtenberg, T. and Krijt, S.: System-level fractionation of carbon from disk and planetesimal processing , European Planetary Science Congress 2021, online, 13–24 Sep 2021, EPSC2021-130,, 2021.