Title: Sculpting the Kuiper Belt by a Stellar Encounter: Constraints from the Oort Cloud and Scattered Disk

Authors: Harold F. Levison, Alessandro Morbidelli, & Luke Dones

Status: To appear in Astronomical Journal

Abstract: We investigate the effect that a close stellar encounter would have on the growing scattered disk and Oort cloud. Such an encounter has been suggested as the cause of the Kuiper belt's outer edge (Melita et al. 2002). Thus, we restrict our study to encounters that could have caused such a structure. We find that we probably can rule out all such encounters that occurred either at or subsequently to 10 million years after the Oort cloud started to form. In our simulations, these encounters either produce an extended scattered disk that is too populous to be consistent with observations or produces an Oort cloud that is too anemic.

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