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  1. Asteroids, Comets, Meteors 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muinonen, K.; Penttilä, A.; Granvik, M.; Virkki, A.; Fedorets, G.; Wilkman, O.; Kohout, T.

    2014-08-01

    Asteroids, Comets, Meteors focuses on the research of small Solar System bodies. Small bodies are the key to understanding the formation and evolution of the Solar System, carrying signals from pre-solar times. Understanding the evolution of the Solar System helps unveil the evolution of extrasolar planetary systems. Societally, small bodies will be important future resources of minerals. The near-Earth population of small bodies continues to pose an impact hazard, whether it be small pieces of falling meteorites or larger asteroids or cometary nuclei capable of causing global environmental effects. The conference series entitled ''Asteroids, Comets, Meteors'' constitutes the leading international series in the field of small Solar System bodies. The first three conferences took place in Uppsala, Sweden in 1983, 1985, and 1989. The conference is now returning to Nordic countries after a quarter of a century. After the Uppsala conferences, the conference has taken place in Flagstaff, Arizona, U.S.A. in 1991, Belgirate, Italy in 1993, Paris, France in 1996, Ithaca, New York, U.S.A. in 1999, in Berlin, Germany in 2002, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2005, in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A. in 2008, and in Niigata, Japan in 2012. ACM in Helsinki, Finland in 2014 will be the 12th conference in the series.

  2. Evolution of comets into asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weissman, P.R.; A'hearn, M.F.; Rickman, H.; Mcfadden, L.A.

    1989-01-01

    This paper presents observational evidence, together with recent theoretical developments, supporting the hypothesis that at least some asteroids might be extinct or dormant cometary nuclei. The observations include the discovery of a number of apparent asteroids in chaotic Jupiter-crossing orbits; the IRAS discovery of 1983 TB, an asteroid in the same orbit as the Geminid meteor shower; the apparent low activity levels determined for several short-period comet nuclei including Comet Halley; and observations of possible cometary activity in some earth-crossing asteroids. Theoretical developments include explorations of dynamical mechanisms capable of delivering main-belt asteroids into earth-crossing orbits, and an understanding of possible processes which may affect comets during their long residence in the Oort cloud and lead to the formation of nonvolatile crusts before and after they enter the planetary system. 143 refs

  3. Meteors, comets, and millennialism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeath, A.

    1999-12-01

    An overview of meteoric and cometary activity between circa 250 BC and circa 1600 AD is discussed with especial regard to the inclusion of meteoric imagery in Christian religious texts. Evidence is presented to suggest meteorite images played a leading role in the creation of millennial fears among adherents of the early medieval Church in Europe, which fears still persist into modern times, but which may have their origins in Mesopotamia circa 2200 BC. An extended discussion of meteoric imagery in Christian writings is also presented.

  4. Asteroids, meteorites, and comets

    CERN Document Server

    Elkins-Tanton, Linda T

    2010-01-01

    Asteroids, Comets, and Meteorites provides students, researchers, and general readers with the most up-to-date information on this fascinating field. From the days of the dinosaurs to our modern environment, this book explores all aspects of these cosmic invaders.

  5. Comet or Asteroid?

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-11-01

    When is a minor object in the solar system a comet? And when is it an asteroid? Until recently, there was little doubt. Any object that was found to display a tail or appeared diffuse was a comet of ice and dust grains, and any that didn't, was an asteroid of solid rock. Moreover, comets normally move in rather elongated orbits, while most asteroids follow near-circular orbits close to the main plane of the solar system in which the major planets move. However, astronomers have recently discovered some `intermediate' objects which seem to possess properties that are typical for both categories. For instance, a strange object (P/1996 N2 - Elst-Pizarro) was found last year at ESO ( ESO Press Photo 36/96 ) which showed a cometary tail, while moving in a typical asteroidal orbit. At about the same time, American scientists found another (1996 PW) that moved in a very elongated comet-type orbit but was completely devoid of a tail. Now, a group of European scientists, by means of observations carried out at the ESO La Silla observatory, have found yet another object that at first appeared to be one more comet/asteroid example. However, continued and more detailed observations aimed at revealing its true nature have shown that it is most probably a comet . Consequently, it has received the provisional cometary designation P/1997 T3 . The Uppsala-DLR Trojan Survey Some time ago, Claes-Ingvar Lagerkvist (Astronomical Observatory, Uppsala, Sweden), in collaboration with Gerhard Hahn, Stefano Mottola, Magnus Lundström and Uri Carsenty (DLR, Institute of Planetary Exploration, Berlin, Germany), started to study the distribution of asteroids near Jupiter. They were particularly interested in those that move in orbits similar to that of Jupiter and which are located `ahead' of Jupiter in the so-called `Jovian L4 Lagrangian point'. Together with those `behind' Jupiter, these asteroids have been given the names of Greek and Trojan Heroes who participated in the famous Trojan war

  6. Association between meteor showers and asteroids using multivariate criteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumitru, B. A.; Birlan, M.; Popescu, M.; Nedelcu, D. A.

    2017-10-01

    Context. Meteoroid streams are fragments of matter produced by comets or asteroids which intersects the orbit of Earth. Meteor showers are produced when Earth intersects these streams of matter. The discoveries of active asteroids and extinct comets open a new view of the relation between these objects as possible parent bodies at the origin of meteor showers. Aims: The aim of this work is to identify the asteroids that can produce or re-populate meteoroid streams by determining the similarity of their orbits and orbital evolution over 10 000 yr. Methods: The identification was carried out by evaluating several well known D-criteria metrics, the orbits being taken from the IAU Meteor Data Center database and from IAU Minor Planet Center. Finally, we analyzed the physical properties and the orbital stability (in the Lyapunov time sense) of the candidates as well as their possible relationship with meteorites. Results: 206 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) were associated as possible parent bodies with 28 meteor showers, according to at least two of the criterion used. 50 of them satisfied all the criteria. Notable finds are: binary asteroid 2000UG11 associated with Andromedids (AND), while the tumbling asteroid (4179)Toutatis could be associated with October Capricornids (OCC). Other possible good candidates are 2004TG10, 2008EY5, 2010CF55, 2010TU149 and 2014OY1. These objects have low albedo, therefore can be primitive objects. Asteroid 2007LW19 which is a fast rotator and most probably has monolithic structure and so its physical characteristic does not support the association found based on the dynamical criteria.

  7. Comet P/Machholtz and the Quadrantid meteor stream

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mcintosh, B.A.

    1990-01-01

    Attention is drawn to the suggestive similarities between the calculated perturbation behavior of Comet P/Machholtz 1986 VIII, on the one hand, and on the other those of the Quadrantid, Delta Aquarid, and Arietid meteor streams. There appears to be adequate evidence for the formation by the Comets P/Machholtz and 1491-I, together with the three meteor streams, of a related complex controlled by Jupiter's gravitational perturbations; there is no comparably compelling information, however, bearing on the questions of parent-offspring or sibling relationships among these comets and meteor streams. 13 refs

  8. On the formation of meteor showers of comet Halley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Babadzhanov, P.B.; Obrubov, J.V.; Pushkarev, A.N.; Hajduk, A.

    1987-01-01

    The orbits of test particles ejected from the nucleus of Halley comet at its perihelion passage in 1910 with different velocities are studied for the next three passages of the comet up to 2134 taking into consideration perturbations from all planets. Some characteristics of the stream formation are presented. The calculations show that the return of the comet to its perihelion cannot produce an immediate influence on the activity of its meteor showers. (author). 2 figs., 1 tab., 13 refs

  9. Direct Characterization of Comets and Asteroids via Cosmic Dust Analysis from the Deep Space Gateway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Fisher, K.

    2018-01-01

    The Deep Space Gateway (DSG) may provide a platform for direct sampling of a large number of comets and asteroids, through employment of an instrument for characterizing dust from these bodies. Every year, the Earth traverses through debris streams of dust and small particles from comets and asteroids in Earth-crossing orbits, generating short-lived outbursts of meteor activity commonly known as "meteor showers" (Figure 1). The material in each debris stream originates from a distinct parent body, many of which have been identified. By sampling this material, it is possible to quantitatively analyze the composition of a dozen or more comets and asteroids (See Figure 2, following page) without leaving cislunar space.

  10. The comet rendezvous asteroid flyby mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morrison, D.; Neugebauer, M.; Weissman, P.R.

    1989-01-01

    The Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby (CRAF) mission is designed to answer the many questions raised by the Halley missions by exploring a cometary nucleus in detail, following it around its orbit and studying its changing activity as it moves closer to and then away from the Sun. In addition, on its way to rendezvous with the comet, CRAF will fly by a large, primitive class main belt asteroid and will return valuable data for comparison with the comet results. The selected asteroid is 449 Hamburga with a diameter of 88 km and a surface composition of carbonaceous chondrite meteorites. The expected flyby date is January, 1998. The CRAF spacecraft will continue to make measurements in orbit around the cometary nucleus as they both move closer to the Sun, until the dust and gas hazard becomes unsafe. At that point the spacecraft will move in and out between 50 and 2,500 kilometers to study the inner coma and the cometary ionosphere, and to collect dust and gas samples for onboard analysis. Following perihelion, the spacecraft will make a 50,000 km excursion down the comet's tail, further investigating the solar wind interaction with the cometary atmosphere. The spacecraft will return to the vicinity of the nucleus about four months after perihelion to observe the changes that have taken place. If the spacecraft remains healthy and adequate fuel is still onboard, an extended mission to follow the comet nucleus out to aphelion is anticipated

  11. Collecting Comet Samples by ER-2 Aircraft: Cosmic Dust Collection During the Draconid Meteor Shower in October 2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bastien, Ron; Burkett, P. J.; Rodriquez, M.; Frank, D.; Gonzalez, C.; Robinson, G.-A.; Zolensky, M.; Brown, P.; Campbell-Brown, M.; Broce, S.; hide

    2014-01-01

    Many tons of dust grains, including samples of asteroids and comets, fall from space into the Earth's atmosphere each day. NASA periodically collects some of these particles from the Earth's stratosphere using sticky collectors mounted on NASA's high-flying aircraft. Sometimes, especially when the Earth experiences a known meteor shower, a special opportunity is presented to associate cosmic dust particles with a known source. NASA JSC's Cosmic Dust Collection Program has made special attempts to collect dust from particular meteor showers and asteroid families when flights can be planned well in advance. However, it has rarely been possible to make collections on very short notice. In 2012, the Draconid meteor shower presented that opportunity. The Draconid meteor shower, originating from Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, has produced both outbursts and storms several times during the last century, but the 2012 event was not predicted to be much of a show. Because of these predictions, the Cosmic Dust team had not targeted a stratospheric collection effort for the Draconids, despite the fact that they have one of the slowest atmospheric entry velocities (23 km/s) of any comet shower, and thus offer significant possibilities of successful dust capture. However, radar measurements obtained by the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar during the 2012 Draconids shower indicated a meteor storm did occur October 8 with a peak at 16:38 (+/-5 min) UTC for a total duration of approximately 2 hours.

  12. Political astronomy: Comet and meteor observations by Muslim historians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chander Kapoor, Ramesh

    2015-08-01

    Eclipses and unexpected phenomena like comets, meteors, novae and earthquakes were viewed among various cultures as violating the established order of the heavens. They were considered to be ill omens for kings and emperors and were routinely monitored. The present work looks into the texts of history and literature by Muslim historians and chroniclers in West Asia and India that carry stray references to such phenomena. The accounts often relate the apparitions to specific disastrous events or prognosticate revolts, deaths, epidemics, earthquakes all that that took place in later times. Obviously, the occurrences interested the astrologers more. Comet appearances would last for days and weeks but nearly all the writings lack sequential observations. Meteor showers are annual features but the Islamic calendar being lunar would not easily lead one to notice periodic nature of the incidents, let alone sensing a periodicity in comet appearances. These are non-astronomy texts with little scientific content but being from different ages permit us to see how the astronomical perceptions changed over the times. The recorded details and firm chronology, tested against modern back calculations, can provide valuable information on them, keeping in mind the text and the context in which the original reference was made. We also notice a qualitative change in the Indian writings of the 18th century and later where the authors begin to show up with influence of exposure to the European scientific progress.

  13. Origin Of The Near-earth Asteroid Phaethon And The Geminids Meteor Shower

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Leon, Julia; Campins, H.; Tsiganis, K.; Morbidelli, A.; Licandro, J.

    2010-10-01

    Asteroid (3200) Phaethon is a remarkable Near Earth Asteroid (NEA). It was the first asteroid associated with a meteor shower, namely the Geminid stream1. Phaethon's unusual orbit has a high inclination and a very low perihelion distance (0.14 AU). Its reflectance spectrum suggests a connection with primitive meteorites, best fitting with CI/CM carbonaceous chondrites2, aqueously altered and rich in hydrated silicates. However, its origin is not well determined. Recent studies suggest a connection with the population of main-belt comets3, classifying Phaethon as an activated asteroid. Here we show that the most likely source of Phaethon and the Geminids is the asteroid (2) Pallas, one of the largest asteroids in the main belt, which is surrounded by a collisional family, containing several Phaethon-sized objects. Pallas’ highly inclined orbit and surface composition, also primitive and with evidence of hydration4, support this connection. Our analysis reveals a striking similarity between Phaethon's visual spectrum and those of Pallas family members. Moreover, our numerical simulations show the existence of a robust dynamical pathway, connecting the orbital neighborhood of Pallas with that of Phaethon. In this respect, the Pallas family may constitute a source of primitive NEAs. (The author gratefully acknowledges support from the Spanish "Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación" projects AYA2005-07808-C03-02 and AYA2008-06202-C03-02.) References 1. Whipple, F. L. 1983, IAU Circular, 3881 2. Licandro, J., Campins, H., Mothe-Diniz, T., Pinilla-Alonso, N. & de Leon, J. 2007, Astron. Astrophys. 461, 751-757 3. Hsieh, H. H., & Jewitt, D. 2006, Science, 312, 561-563 4. Rivkin, A. S., Howell, E. S., Vilas, F. & Lebofsky, L. A. in Asteroids III (eds Bottke, W. F., Cellino, A., Paolicchi, P. & Binzel, R. P.) 235-253 (Univ. Arizona Press, 2002).

  14. Physical Mechanism of Comet (and Asteroid) Outbursts: The Movie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartmann, W. K.

    2015-07-01

    A film made during impact experiments at NASA Ames illustrates a mechanism in which regolith can become gas charged and then erupt to create outbursts as observed on comets (and "asteroids" such as 2060 Chiron).

  15. Delivery of organics to Mars through asteroid and comet impacts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frantseva, K.; Mueller, M.; van der Tak, F. F. S.; ten Kate, I. L.; Greenstreet, S.

    2017-01-01

    Preliminary results show that the asteroid-borne organic flux on Mars is comparable to the IPD rate; asteroids certainly cannot be neglected. Comets, on the other hand, contribute only 0.01% of the IDP-borne rate and can be neglected in the process of organic delivery to Mars.

  16. Comet nuclei and Trojan asteroids - A new link and a possible mechanism for comet splittings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hartmann, W.K.; Tholen, D.J.

    1990-01-01

    Relatively elongated shapes, implied by recent evidence of a greater incidence of high amplitude lightcurves for comet nuclei and Trojan asteroids than for similarly scaled main belt asteroids, are suggested to have evolved among comet nuclei and Trojans due to volatile loss. It is further suggested that such an evolutionary course may account for observed comet splitting; rotational splitting may specifically occur as a result of evolution in the direction of an elongated shape through sublimation. Supporting these hypotheses, the few m/sec separation velocities projected for rotationally splitting elongated nuclei are precisely in the observed range. 40 refs

  17. Guide to the universe asteroids, comets, and dwarf planets

    CERN Document Server

    Rivkin, Andrew

    2009-01-01

    This volume in the Greenwood Guides to the Universe series covers asteroids, comets, and dwarf planets-those small bodies that revolve the Sun-and provides readers with the most up-to-date understanding of the current state of scientific knowledge about them. Scientifically sound, but written with the student in mind, Asteroids, Comets, and Dwarf Planets is an excellent first step for researching the exciting scientific discoveries of the smallest celestial bodies in the solar system.||The book will introduce students to all of the areas of research surrounding the subject, answering many intr

  18. Linking main-belt comets to asteroid families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, B.; Hsieh, H. H.; Cellino, A.

    2012-09-01

    Here we present our results obtained by applying different methods in order to establish a firm link between the main-belt comets (MBCs) and colisionally-formed asteroid families (AFs), i.e, to possibly find additional line of evidence supporting the hypothesis that MBCs may be preferentially found among the members of young AFs.

  19. A test of the comet hypothesis of the Tunguska Meteor Fall - Nature of the meteor 'thermal' explosion paradox

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, V. C.

    1978-01-01

    The hypothesis that a comet was responsible for the Tunguska Meteor Fall is rejected because the hypothesis does not seem to account for the intense terminal spherical shock. A porous meteoroid model is proposed, and an analysis indicates that an entity of this type might produce an aerodynamic heat flux large enough to account for the terminal meteor explosion. It is suggested that the presence of olivine and of highly irregular macrostructure in meteors might indicate the presence of some porosity. For a highly porous meteoroid, it is postulated that during entry into the atmosphere the aerodynamic heat transfer at its external or pore walls would become so intensified as to cause either complete ablation with popping or a solid-liquid-vapor phase transition accompanied by an explosion.

  20. Asteroid-comet continuum objects in the solar system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Henry H

    2017-07-13

    In this review presented at the Royal Society meeting, 'Cometary science after Rosetta', I present an overview of studies of small solar system objects that exhibit properties of both asteroids and comets (with a focus on so-called active asteroids). Sometimes referred to as 'transition objects', these bodies are perhaps more appropriately described as 'continuum objects', to reflect the notion that rather than necessarily representing actual transitional evolutionary states between asteroids and comets, they simply belong to the general population of small solar system bodies that happen to exhibit a continuous range of observational, physical and dynamical properties. Continuum objects are intriguing because they possess many of the properties that make classical comets interesting to study (e.g. relatively primitive compositions, ejection of surface and subsurface material into space where it can be more easily studied, and orbital properties that allow us to sample material from distant parts of the solar system that would otherwise be inaccessible), while allowing us to study regions of the solar system that are not sampled by classical comets.This article is part of the themed issue 'Cometary science after Rosetta'. © 2017 The Author(s).

  1. Weird comets and asteroids the strange little worlds of the sun's family

    CERN Document Server

    Seargent, David A J

    2017-01-01

    This book concentrates on some of the odd aspects of comets and asteroids. Strange behavior of comets, such as outbursts and schisms, and how asteroids can temporally act as comets are discussed, together with the possible threat of Centaurs-class objects like the Taurid complex. Recent years have seen the distinction between comets and asteroids become less prominent. Comets in "asteroid" orbits and vice versa have become almost commonplace and a clearer view of the role of small bodies in the formation of the Solar System and their effect on Earth has become apparent. Seargent covers this development in detail by including new data and information from space probes. .

  2. Laboratory Studies of Cometary Materials - Continuity Between Asteroid and Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messenger, Scott; Walker, Robert M.

    2015-01-01

    Laboratory analysis of cometary samples have been enabled by collection of cometary dust in the stratosphere by high altitude aircraft and by the direct sampling of the comet Wild-2 coma by the NASA Stardust spacecraft. Cometary materials are composed of a complex assemblage of highly primitive, unprocessed interstellar and primordial solar system materials as well as a variety of high temperature phases that must have condensed in the inner regions of the protoplanetary disk. These findings support and contradict conclusions of comet properties based solely on astronomical observations. These sample return missions have instead shown that there is a continuity of properties between comets and asteroids, where both types of materials show evidence for primitive and processed materials. Furthermore, these findings underscore the importance and value of direct sample return. There will be great value in comparing the findings of the Stardust cometary coma sample return mission with those of future asteroid surface sample returns OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa II as well as future comet nucleus sample returns.

  3. Asteroid Family Associations of Main-Belt Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Henry H.; Novakovic, Bojan; Kim, Yoonyoung; Brasser, Ramon

    2016-10-01

    We present a population-level analysis of the asteroid family associations of known main-belt comets or main-belt comet candidates (which, to date, have largely just been analyzed on individual bases as they have been discovered). In addition to family associations that have already been reported in the literature, we have identified dynamical relationships between 324P/La Sagra and the Alauda family, P/2015 X6 (PANSTARRS) and the Aeolia family, and P/2016 G1 (PANSTARRS) and the Adeona family. We will discuss the overall implications of these family associations, particularly as they pertain to the hypothesis that members of primitive asteroid family members may be more susceptible to producing observable sublimation-driven dust emission activity, and thus becoming main-belt comets. We will also discuss the significance of other dynamical and physical properties of a family or sub-family as they relate to the likelihood of that family containing one or more currently active main-belt comets.

  4. Comets, Asteroids, Meteorites, and the Origin of the Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.

    2006-01-01

    During the past few decades, the delivery of water, organics, and prebiotic chemicals to the Biosphere of Earth during the Hadean (4.5-3.8 Ga) period of heavy bombardment by comets and asteroids has become more widely accepted. Comets are still largely regarded as frigid, pristine bodies of protosolar nebula material that are devoid of liquid water and therefore unsuitable for life. Complex organic compounds have been observed in comets and on the water-rich asteroid 1998 KY26 and near IR observations have indicated the presence of crystalline water ice and ammonia hydrate on the large Kuiper Belt object (50000) Quaoar that has resurfacing suggesting cryovolcanic outgassing. Spacecraft observations of the chemical compositions and characteristics of the nuclei of several comets (Halley, Borrelly, Wild 2, and Tempel 1) have shown that comets contain complex organic chemicals; that water is the predominant volatile; and that extremely high temperatures (approx. 350-400 K) can be reached on the surfae of the very black (albedo approx. 0.03) nuclei of comets when they approach the Sun. Impact craters and pinnacles observed on comet Wild 2 suggest a thick crust. Episodic outbursts and jets from the nuclei of several comets indicate that localized regimes of liquid water and water vapor can periodically exist beneath the comet crust. The Deep Impact mission found the temperature of the nucleus of comet Tempel 1 at 1.5 AU varied from a minimum of 280 plus or minus 8 K the 330K (57 C) on the sunlit side. In this paper it is argued that that pools and films of liquid water exist (within a wide range of temperatures) in cavities and voids just beneath the hot, black crust. The possibility of liquid water existing over a wide range of temperatures significantly enhances the possibility that comets might contain niches suitable for the growth of microbial communities and ecosystems. These regimes would be ideal for the growth of psychrophilic, mesophilic, and thermophilic

  5. Comets, Asteroids, and the Origin of the Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.

    2006-01-01

    During the past few decades, the role of comets in the delivery of water, organics, and prebiotic chemicals to the Biosphere of Earth during the Hadean (4.5-3.8 Ga) period of heavy bombardment has become more widely accepted. However comets are still largely regarded as frigid, pristine bodies of protosolar nebula material that are entirely devoid of liquid water and consequently unsuitable for life in any form. Complex organic compounds have been observed comets and on the water rich asteroid 1998 KY26, which has color and radar reflectivity similar to the carbonaceous meteorites. Near infrared observations have indicated the presence of crystalline water ice and ammonia hydrate on the large Kuiper Belt object (50000) Quaoar with resurfacing that may indicate cryovolcanic outgassing and the Cassini spacecraft has detected water-ice geysers on Saturn s moon Enceladus. Spacecraft observations of the chemical compositions and characteristics of the nuclei of several comets (Halley, Borrelly, Wild 2, and Tempel 1) have now firmly established that comets contain a suite of complex organic chemicals; water is the predominant volatile; and that extremely high temperatures (approx.350-400 K) can be reached on the surface of the very black (albedo-0.03) nuclei when the comets are with 1.5 AU from the Sun. Impact craters and pinnacles observed on comet Wild 2 suggest a thick crust and episodic outbursts and jets observed on the nuclei of several comets are interpreted as indications that localized regimes of liquid water and water vapor can periodically exist beneath the crust of some comets. The Deep Impact observations indicate that the temperature on the nucleus of of comet Tempel 1 at 1.5 AU varied from 330K on the sunlit side to a minimum of 280+/-8 K. It is interesting that even the coldest region of the comet surface was slightly above the ice/liquid water phase transition temperature. These results suggest that pools and films of liquid water can exist in a wide

  6. Comet/Asteroid Impacts and Human Society An Interdisciplinary Approach

    CERN Document Server

    Bobrowsky, Peter T

    2007-01-01

    In 1908 an atmospheric explosion in northern Siberia released energy equivalent to 15 Mton of TNT. Can a comparable or larger NEO affect us again? When the next NEO strikes Earth will it be large enough to destroy a city? Will the climate change significantly? Can archaeology and anthropology provide insights into the expected cultural responses with NEO interactions? Does society have a true grasp of the actual risks involved? Is the Great Depression a good model for the economic collapse that could follow a NEO catastrophe? This volume provides a necessary link between various disciplines and comet/asteroid impacts.

  7. Bangs and meteors from the quiet comet 15P/Finlay

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ye, Q.Z.; Brown, P. G.; Bell, Ch.; Gao, X.; Mašek, Martin; Hui, M.T.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 814, č. 1 (2015), s. 1-10, č. článku 79. ISSN 0004-637X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LG13007 EU Projects: European Commission(XE) 283783 - GLORIA Institutional support: RVO:68378271 Keywords : comet s * 15P/Finlay * meteorites * meteors * meteoroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics OBOR OECD: Astronomy (including astrophysics,space science) Impact factor: 5.909, year: 2015

  8. DYNAMICS OF DUST PARTICLES RELEASED FROM OORT CLOUD COMETS AND THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO RADAR METEORS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nesvorný, David; Vokrouhlický, David; Pokorný, Petr; Janches, Diego

    2011-01-01

    The Oort Cloud Comets (OCCs), exemplified by the Great Comet of 1997 (Hale-Bopp), are occasional visitors from the heatless periphery of the solar system. Previous works hypothesized that a great majority of OCCs must physically disrupt after one or two passages through the inner solar system, where strong thermal gradients can cause phase transitions or volatile pressure buildup. Here we study the fate of small debris particles produced by OCC disruptions to determine whether the imprints of a hypothetical population of OCC meteoroids can be found in the existing meteor radar data. We find that OCC particles with diameters D ∼ 1 mm have a very low Earth-impact probability. The intermediate particle sizes, D ∼ 100 μm, represent a sweet spot. About 1% of these particles orbitally evolve by Poynting-Robertson drag to reach orbits with semimajor axis a ∼ 1 AU. They are expected to produce meteors with radiants near the apex of Earth's orbital motion. We find that the model distributions of their impact speeds and orbits provide a good match to radar observations of apex meteors, except for the eccentricity distribution, which is more skewed toward e ∼ 1 in our model. Finally, we propose an explanation for the long-standing problem in meteor science related to the relative strength of apex and helion/antihelion sources. As we show in detail, the observed trend, with the apex meteors being more prominent in observations of highly sensitive radars, can be related to orbital dynamics of particles released on the long-period orbits.

  9. Interception of comets and asteroids on collision course with earth

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Solem, J.C.

    1992-03-01

    I derive expressions for the weight and range of applicability of interceptors capable of deflecting a comet or asteroid on collision course with Earth. The expressions use a fairly general relationship between the energy deposited and the mass of material blown off the astral assailant. To assess the probability that the astral assailant will fracture, I also calculate the fraction of the astral assailant`s mass that will be blown off. The interaction is calculated for both kinetic-energy deflection and nuclear-explosive deflection. In the nuclear-explosive case, I calculate the interceptor mass and cratering effect for detonations above the surface and below the surface as well as directly on the surface of the astral assailant. Because the wide range of densities and material properties that the astral assailant may possess, the principal value of this work is to show the relationships among the salient parameters of the problem.

  10. Dawn of small worlds dwarf planets, asteroids, comets

    CERN Document Server

    Moltenbrey, Michael

    2016-01-01

    This book gives a detailed introduction to the thousands and thousands of smaller bodies in the solar system. Written for interested laymen, amateur astronomers and students it describes the nature and origin of asteroids, dwarf planets and comets, and gives detailed information about their role in the solar system. The author nicely reviews the history of small-world-exploration and describes past, current and future space craft missions studying small worlds, and presents their results. Readers will learn that small solar system worlds have a dramatically different nature and appearance than the planets. Even though research activity on small worlds has increased in the recent past many of their properties are still in the dark and need further research.

  11. Comet and Asteroid Hazard to the Terrestrial Planets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ipatov, S. I.; Mather, J. C.; Oegerle, William (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We made computer simulations of orbital evolution for intervals of at least 5-10 Myr of N=2000 Jupiter-crossing objects (JCOs) with initial orbits close to those of real comets with period P less than 10 yr, 500 objects with orbits close to that of Comet 10P, and the asteroids initially located at the 3:1 and 5:2 resonances with Jupiter at initial eccentricity e(sub 0)=0.15 and initial inclination i(sub 0)=10(sup 0). The gravitational influence of all planets, except for Mercury and Pluto, was taken into account (without dissipative factors). We calculated the probabilities of collisions of bodies with the terrestrial planets, using orbital elements obtained with a step equal to 500 yr, and then summarized the results for all bodies, obtaining, the total probability Psigma of collisions with a planet and the total time interval Tsigma during which perihelion distance q of bodies was less than a semimajor axis of the planet. The values of p(sub r) =10(exp 6)Psigma/N and T(sub r)=T/1000 yr (where T=Tsigma/N) are presented in a table together with the ratio r of the total time interval when orbits were of Apollo type (at a greater than 1 AU, q less than 1.017 AU, e less than 0.999) to that of Amor type (1.017 less than q less than 1.33 AU), r(sub 2) is the same as r but for Apollo objects with e less than 0.9. For asteroids we present only results obtained by direct integration, as a symplectic method can give large errors for these resonances.

  12. Comets, Asteroids and Rubble Piles: not just debris

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harold, J. B.; Dusenbery, P.

    2010-12-01

    The National Center for Interactive Learning at the Space Science Institute (NCIL @ SSI) is developing a variety of asteroids related education activities as part of several E/PO projects, including Finding NEO (funded through NSF and NASA SMD); Great Balls of Fire! (funded through NSF); and a partnership with the WISE (Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer) mission. These activities range from a web site to traveling exhibits in three different sizes. The Killer Asteroids web site (www.killerasteroids.org) includes background information on comets and asteroids as well as a number of interactive activities and games. These include a game that compares the risk of death from an asteroid impact to other hazards; a game and video vignettes on the role of backyard astronomers in light curve research; a physics-based asteroid deflection game; and a Google Earth -based "drop a rock on your house" activity. In addition, the project is developing a small, portable exhibit suitable for use in libraries or visitors centers. Great Balls of Fire! includes two separate traveling exhibitions: a 3000 square foot exhibition for science centers, and a 500 square foot version for smaller venues. Both will begin national tours in the summer of 2011. The Great Balls of Fire! exhibit program includes a free Education Program for docents and educators, and an Outreach Program to amateur astronomers around the country through the Astronomical Society of the Pacific’s (ASP) Astronomy from the Ground Up program. The project will facilitate partnerships between host venues and local astronomy clubs that can interact with the public using a toolkit of activities developed by ASP. Great Balls of Fire! Represents a collaboration between scientists, educators, exhibit designers, graphic artists, evaluators, education researchers, and three teams of middle school students who acted as advisors. The project’s exhibit design firm is Jeff Kennedy Associates Inc. We will present a summary of the

  13. Elements of planetary protection against asteroid and comet hazard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steklov, A. F.; Vidmachenko, A. P.; Dashkiev, G. N.; Zhilyaev, B. E.

    2018-05-01

    The principles of protection against asteroid-comet hazard should constitute the main priority of the modern Proto-cosmic civilization on the planet Earth. Any impact of a fairly large asteroid or cometary nucleus with a size of 1 to 20 or more kilometers will lead to a global catastrophe and, perhaps, to the death of Mankind. Forces in order to withstand such a blow of the cosmic body during large space invasions, we do not have and, most likely, will not be for a long time . We need as soon as possible to create technical facilities and systems for long-term comfortable living of large colonies of people on the Moon, Mars, Venus and Mercury, having arranged there some elements of the biosphere. In these colonies people should live in extraterrestrial space settlements, and should periodically and constantly "outplay" scenarios of reliable and guaranteed re-population of the planet Earth by people. Such periodic "exercises" on the actual modeling of the return to the "post-catastrophic" Earth should ensure the survival of humanity even in the worst versions of the consequences of possible dangerous space invasions. That is, we should always be ready for the repopulation on the Earth by people and for the reconstruction of the basic elements of the man's biosphere.

  14. Direct Characterization of Comets and Asteroids via Cosmic Dust Analysis from the Deep Space Gateway

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fries, M.; Fisher, K.

    2018-02-01

    The Deep Space Gateway can allow direct analysis of dust from over a dozen comets, using an instrument similar to the successful Cassini Dust Analyzer (CDA). Long-term measurements are preferred. Compositions of over a dozen asteroids and comets can be obtained.

  15. Telescopic and meteor observation of `Oumuamua, the first known interstellar asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Quan-Zhi

    2018-04-01

    1I/2017 U1 ('Oumuamua), a recently discovered asteroid in a hyperbolic orbit, is the first macroscopic object of extrasolar origin identified in the solar system. I will present imaging and spectroscopic observations of 'Oumuamua as well as a search of meteor activity potentially linked to this object using the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar. We find that 'Oumuamua exhibits a moderate spectral gradient of 10%+-6% per 100 nm, a value lower than that of outer solar system bodies, indicative of a formation and/or previous residence in a warmer environment. Imaging observation and spectral line analysis show no evidence that 'Oumuamua is presently active. Negative meteor observation is as expected, since ejection driven by sublimation of commonly known cometary species such as CO requires an extreme ejection speed of ~40 m/s at ~100 au in order to reach the Earth. No obvious candidate stars are proposed as the point of origin for 'Oumuamua. Given a mean free path of ~109 ly in the solar neighborhood, 'Oumuamua has likely spent a very long time in interstellar space before encountering the solar system.

  16. Collisional Histories of Comets and Trojan Asteroids: Insights from Forsterite and Enstatite Impact Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederer. S. M.; Jensen, E. A.; Wooden, D. H.; Lindsay, S. S.; Smith, D. C.; Cintala, M. J.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Keller, L. P.

    2012-01-01

    Impacts into forsterite and orthoenstatite at speeds typically encountered by comets demonstrate that shock imparted by collisions is detectable in the infrared signatures of their dust. The spectral signatures can be traced to physical alterations in their crystalline structures, as observed in TEM imaging and modeled using a dipole approximation. These results yield tantalizing insights into the collisional history of our solar system, as well as the history of individual comets and Trojan asteroids.

  17. Spectral investigation of two asteroidal fireballs

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Borovička, Jiří

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 97, 3-4 (2006), s. 279-293 ISSN 0167-9295. [Asteroids, Comets, Meteors 2005. Búzios, 07.08.2005-12.08.2005] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/05/0543; GA ČR GA205/03/1404 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * meteors * spectroscopy Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.252, year: 2006

  18. Meteor activity from 2001XQ on 2-3 December 2016?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roggemans, Paul

    2016-04-01

    The minor shower 66 Draconid (541 SDD) which was discovered by the Croatian Meteor Network has a mean orbit based on 43 meteors, similar to the orbit of 2001 XD. The asteroid 2001 XD has an orbit typical for Jupiter family comets and therefore may be a dormant comet. The shower activity ranges from November 23 until December 21. All meteor observers are encouraged to pay attention to any possible meteors from this source, although no outburst or any anything spectacular has to be expected.

  19. Looking before we leap: an ongoing, quantative investigation of asteroid and comet impact hazard mitigation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Plesko, Catherine S [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Weaver, Robert P [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Bradley, Paul A [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Huebner, Walter F [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2010-01-01

    There are many outstanding questions about the correct response to an asteroid or comet impact threat on Earth. Nuclear munitions are currently thought to be the most efficient method of delivering an impact-preventing impulse to a potentially hazardous object (PHO). However, there are major uncertainties about the response of PHOs to a nuclear burst, and the most appropriate ways to use nuclear munitions for hazard mitigation.

  20. Electrostatic forces on grains near asteroids and comets

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hartzell Christine

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Dust on and near the surface of small planetary bodies (e.g. asteroids, the Moon, Mars’ moons is subject to gravity, cohesion and electrostatic forces. Due to the very low gravity on small bodies, the behavior of small dust grains is driven by non-gravitational forces. Recent work by Scheeres et al. has shown that cohesion, specifically van der Waals force, is significant for grains on asteroids. In addition to van der Waals cohesion, dust grains also experience electrostatic forces, arising from their interaction with each other (through tribocharging and the solar wind plasma (which produces both grain charging and an external electric field. Electrostatic forces influence both the interactions of grains on the surface of small bodies as well as the dynamics of grains in the plasma sheath above the surface. While tribocharging between identical dielectric grains remains poorly understood, we have recently expanded an existing charge transfer model to consider continuous size distributions of grains and are planning an experiment to test the charge predictions produced. Additionally, we will present predictions of the size of dust grains that are capable of detaching from the surface of small bodies.

  1. Internal gravity, self-energy, and disruption of comets and asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrovolskis, Anthony R.; Korycansky, D. G.

    2018-03-01

    The internal gravity and self-gravitational energy of a comet, asteroid, or small moon have applications to their geophysics, including their formation, evolution, cratering, and disruption, the stresses and strains inside such objects, sample return, eventual asteroid mining, and planetary defense strategies for potentially hazardous objects. This paper describes the relation of an object's self-energy to its collisional disruption energy, and shows how to determine an object's self-energy from its internal gravitational potential. Any solid object can be approximated to any desired accuracy by a polyhedron of sufficient complexity. An analytic formula is known for the gravitational potential of any homogeneous polyhedron, but it is widely believed that this formula applies only on the surface or outside of the object. Here we show instead that this formula applies equally well inside the object. We have used these formulae to develop a numerical code which evaluates the self-energy of any homogeneous polyhedron, along with the gravitational potential and attraction both inside and outside of the object, as well as the slope of its surface. Then we use our code to find the internal, external, and surface gravitational fields of the Platonic solids, asteroid (216) Kleopatra, and comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, as well as their surface slopes and their self-gravitational energies. We also present simple spherical, ellipsoidal, cuboidal, and duplex models of Kleopatra and comet 67P, and show how to generalize our methods to inhomogeneous objects and magnetic fields. At present, only the self-energies of spheres, ellipsoids, and cuboids (boxes) are known analytically (or semi-analytically). The Supplementary Material contours the central potential and self-energy of homogeneous ellipsoids and cuboids of all aspect ratios, and also analytically the self-gravitational energy of a "duplex" consisting of two coupled spheres. The duplex is a good model for "contact binary

  2. The impact imperative: Laser ablation for deflecting asteroids, meteoroids, and comets from impacting the earth

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Campbell, Jonathan W [Advanced Projects/FD02, National Space Science and Technology Center, NASA/MSFC, Huntsville, Alabama, 35812 (United States); Phipps, Claude [Photonics Associates 200A Ojo de la Vaca Road Santa Fe, NM 87505 (United States); Smalley, Larry [Department of Physics, University of Alabama, Huntsville (United States); Reilly, James [Northeast Science and Technology, East Sandwich, MA (United States); Boccio, Dona [Queensborough Community College of the City, University of New York, New York (United States)

    2003-05-14

    Impacting at hypervelocity, an asteroid struck the Earth approximately 65 million years ago in the Yucatan Peninsula area. This triggered the extinction of almost 70% of the species of life on Earth including the dinosaurs. Other impacts prior to this one have caused even greater extinctions. Preventing collisions with the Earth by hypervelocity asteroids, meteoroids, and comets is the most important immediate space challenge facing human civilization. This is the Impact Imperative. We now believe that while there are about 2000 earth orbit crossing rocks greater than 1 kilometer in diameter, there may be as many as 200,000 or more objects in the 100 m size range. Can anything be done about this fundamental existence question facing our civilization? The answer is a resounding yes{exclamation_point} By using an intelligent combination of Earth and space based sensors coupled with an infra-structure of high-energy laser stations and other secondary mitigation options, we can deflect inbound asteroids, meteoroids, and comets and prevent them from striking the Earth. This can be accomplished by irradiating the surface of an inbound rock with sufficiently intense pulses so that ablation occurs. This ablation acts as a small rocket incrementally changing the shape of the rock's orbit around the Sun. One-kilometer size rocks can be moved sufficiently in about a month while smaller rocks may be moved in a shorter time span.

  3. The impact imperative: Laser ablation for deflecting asteroids, meteoroids, and comets from impacting the earth

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campbell, Jonathan W.; Phipps, Claude; Smalley, Larry; Reilly, James; Boccio, Dona

    2003-01-01

    Impacting at hypervelocity, an asteroid struck the Earth approximately 65 million years ago in the Yucatan Peninsula area. This triggered the extinction of almost 70% of the species of life on Earth including the dinosaurs. Other impacts prior to this one have caused even greater extinctions. Preventing collisions with the Earth by hypervelocity asteroids, meteoroids, and comets is the most important immediate space challenge facing human civilization. This is the Impact Imperative. We now believe that while there are about 2000 earth orbit crossing rocks greater than 1 kilometer in diameter, there may be as many as 200,000 or more objects in the 100 m size range. Can anything be done about this fundamental existence question facing our civilization? The answer is a resounding yes! By using an intelligent combination of Earth and space based sensors coupled with an infra-structure of high-energy laser stations and other secondary mitigation options, we can deflect inbound asteroids, meteoroids, and comets and prevent them from striking the Earth. This can be accomplished by irradiating the surface of an inbound rock with sufficiently intense pulses so that ablation occurs. This ablation acts as a small rocket incrementally changing the shape of the rock's orbit around the Sun. One-kilometer size rocks can be moved sufficiently in about a month while smaller rocks may be moved in a shorter time span

  4. Search for Activity in Comet-Asteroid Transition Object 107P/Wilson-Harrington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khayat, Alain; Meech, K.; Pittichova, J.; Schorghofer, N.; Yang, B.; Sonnett, S.; Riesen, T.; Kleyna, J.; Kaluna, H.; Keane, J.

    2010-10-01

    Comet-asteroid transition object 107P/Wilson-Harrington was observed near its October 22, 2009 perihelion passage to search for activity. No activity was detected. Consequently, we place limits on possible dust production of 0.013 kg/s at 1.23 AU. Furthermore, the data was not sufficient to constrain a rotation period; however, it is clear that the rotation period is > 4hr. Our data is consistent with the observations of others (6.1 hr). Phase function fitting yielded a value of the phase coefficient beta= 0.0406 ± .0001 mag/deg, similar to C-type asteroids that have a linear phase curve at large phase angles. Thermal models for 107P/Wilson-Harrington show that the average loss rate of exposed crystalline ice at zero latitude is in the order of 0.3 meters/year. The derived high loss rate suggests that 107P/Wilson-Harrington is deprived of surface ice. Our observations and analysis confirm earlier findings that 107P/Wilson-Harrington is an example of the very few such objects discovered so far. Such study we made is a critical next step in understanding the life of dormant comets, and a window into the evolutionary end states of the lives of comets that become extinct. This work has been supported in part by AST-0807521 from the National Science Foundation.

  5. The Hawaii trails project: comet-hunting in the main asteroid belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, H. H.

    2009-10-01

    Context: The mysterious solar system object 133P/(7968) Elst-Pizarro is dynamically asteroidal, yet displays recurrent comet-like dust emission. Two scenarios were hypothesized to explain this unusual behavior: 1) 133P is a classical comet from the outer solar system that has evolved onto a main-belt orbit or 2) 133P is a dynamically ordinary main-belt asteroid on which subsurface ice has recently been exposed. If 1) is correct, the expected rarity of a dynamical transition onto an asteroidal orbit implies that 133P could be alone in the main belt. In contrast, if 2) is correct, other icy main-belt objects should exist and could also exhibit cometary activity. Aims: Believing 133P to be a dynamically ordinary, yet icy main-belt asteroid, I set out to test the primary prediction of the hypothesis: that 133P-like objects should be common and could be found by an appropriately designed observational survey. Methods: I conducted just such a survey - the Hawaii Trails Project - of selected main-belt asteroids in a search for objects displaying cometary activity. Optical observations were made of targets selected from among the Themis, Koronis, and Veritas asteroid families, the Karin asteroid cluster, and low-inclination, kilometer-scale outer-belt asteroids, using the Lulin 1.0 m, small and moderate aperture research telescope system (SMARTS) 1.0 m, University of Hawaii 2.2 m, southern astrophysical research (SOAR) 4.1 m, Gemini North 8.1 m, Subaru 8.2 m, and Keck I 10 m telescopes. Results: I made 657 observations of 599 asteroids, discovering one active object now known as 176P/LINEAR, leading to the identification of the new cometary class of main-belt comets (MBCs). These results suggest that there could be ~100 currently active MBCs among low-inclination, kilometer-scale outer-belt asteroids. Physically and statistically, MBC activity is consistent with initiation by meter-sized impactors. The estimated rate of impacts and sizes of resulting active sites, however

  6. DASTCOM5: A Portable and Current Database of Asteroid and Comet Orbit Solutions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giorgini, Jon D.; Chamberlin, Alan B.

    2014-11-01

    A portable direct-access database containing all NASA/JPL asteroid and comet orbit solutions, with the software to access it, is available for download (ftp://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/pub/xfr/dastcom5.zip; unzip -ao dastcom5.zip). DASTCOM5 contains the latest heliocentric IAU76/J2000 ecliptic osculating orbital elements for all known asteroids and comets as determined by a least-squares best-fit to ground-based optical, spacecraft, and radar astrometric measurements. Other physical, dynamical, and covariance parameters are included when known. A total of 142 parameters per object are supported within DASTCOM5. This information is suitable for initializing high-precision numerical integrations, assessing orbit geometry, computing trajectory uncertainties, visual magnitude, and summarizing physical characteristics of the body. The DASTCOM5 distribution is updated as often as hourly to include newly discovered objects or orbit solution updates. It includes an ASCII index of objects that supports look-ups based on name, current or past designation, SPK ID, MPC packed-designations, or record number. DASTCOM5 is the database used by the NASA/JPL Horizons ephemeris system. It is a subset exported from a larger MySQL-based relational Small-Body Database ("SBDB") maintained at JPL. The DASTCOM5 distribution is intended for programmers comfortable with UNIX/LINUX/MacOSX command-line usage who need to develop stand-alone applications. The goal of the implementation is to provide small, fast, portable, and flexibly programmatic access to JPL comet and asteroid orbit solutions. The supplied software library, examples, and application programs have been verified under gfortran, Lahey, Intel, and Sun 32/64-bit Linux/UNIX FORTRAN compilers. A command-line tool ("dxlook") is provided to enable database access from shell or script environments.

  7. Orbit Refinement of Asteroids and Comets Using a Robotic Telescope Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lantz Caughey, Austin; Brown, Johnny; Puckett, Andrew W.; Hoette, Vivian L.; Johnson, Michael; McCarty, Cameron B.; Whitmore, Kevin; UNC-Chapel Hill SKYNET Team

    2016-01-01

    We report on a multi-semester project to refine the orbits of asteroids and comets in our Solar System. One of the newest fields of research for undergraduate Astrophysics students at Columbus State University is that of asteroid astrometry. By measuring the positions of an asteroid in a set of images, we can reduce the overall uncertainty in the accepted orbital parameters of that object. These measurements, using our WestRock Observatory (WRO) and several other telescopes around the world, are being published through the Minor Planet Center (MPC) and benefit the global community.Three different methods are used to obtain these observations. First, we use our own 24-inch telescope at WRO, located in at CSU's Coca-Cola Space Science Center in downtown Columbus, Georgia . Second, we have access to data from the 20-inch telescope at Stone Edge Observatory in El Verano, California. Finally, we may request images remotely using Skynet, an online worldwide network of robotic telescopes. Our primary and long-time collaborator on Skynet has been the "41-inch" reflecting telescope at Yerkes Observatory in Williams Bay, Wisconsin. Thus far, we have used these various telescopes to refine the orbits of more than 15 asteroids and comets. We have also confirmed the resulting reduction in orbit-model uncertainties using Monte Carlo simulations and orbit visualizations, using Find_Orb and OrbitMaster software, respectively.Before any observatory site can be used for official orbit refinement projects, it must first become a trusted source of astrometry data for the MPC. We have therefore obtained Observatory Codes not only for our own WestRock Observatory (W22), but also for 3 Skynet telescopes that we may use in the future: Dark Sky Observatory in Boone, North Carolina (W38) Hume Observatory in Santa Rosa, California (U54) and Athabasca University Geophysical Observatory in Athabasca, Alberta, Canada (U96).

  8. Optical observations of the Phoenicid meteor shower in 2014 and activity of comet 289P/Blanpain in the early 20th century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Yasunori; Nakamura, Takuji; Uehara, Satoshi; Sagayama, Toru; Toda, Hiroyuki

    2017-08-01

    Optical observations of the Phoenicid meteor shower were made in North Carolina, USA, with seven video cameras and two digital cameras over a period of about 5 hr between 22:30 UT on 2014 December 1 and 04:00 UT on December 2. Activity of the Phoenicids was confirmed during this period, including the predicted maximum around 00 h UT on December 2. The activity level was not high, considering that 29 Phoenicid meteors and 109 non-Phoenicid meteors were detected. A gentle peak in the activity was recognized between 01:00 UT and 03:00 UT on December 2. The compact radiant of the Phoenicids agreed well with what was predicted. A comparison of the observed and predicted peak times, radiant position, bright meteors' dominance, and radiants' spread revealed that the observed meteors originated from the dust trails formed by comet 289P/Blanpain at the perihelion passage in the early 20th century. This indicates that the parent body of the Phoenicids, comet 289P/Blanpain, was still active as a comet in the early 20th century and provided meteoroids, although its activity level was significantly weaker than that at the beginning of the 19th century.

  9. Reconstructing the orbit of the Chelyabinsk meteor using satellite observations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Proud, Simon Richard

    2013-01-01

    The large number of objects in a range of orbits around the Sun means that some will inevitably intersect the Earth, becoming a meteor. These objects are commonly comet fragments or asteroids. To determine the type of a particular meteor requires knowledge of its trajectory and orbital path...... that is typically estimated by using ground-based observations such as images or radar measurements. A lack of data can, however, make this difficult and create large uncertainties in the reconstructed orbit. Here I show a new method for estimating a meteor's trajectory, and hence allowing computation of the orbit...

  10. Orbital motion in strongly perturbed environments applications to asteroid, comet and planetary satellite orbiters

    CERN Document Server

    Scheeres, Daniel J

    2012-01-01

    The proposed book will provide a detailed, technical introduction to the analysis of orbital motion in strongly perturbed environments, focusing on motion about small Solar System bodies, such as comets and asteroids. The author shows why such small bodies are of interest and why they can be used as a motivation for the general analysis of orbital mechanics. He shows how it is possible to model the small body environment, including specialised cases such as those of binary asteroids, comets and ‘rubble piles’, and how the fundamental equations of motion are derived. The properties of the various solutions to the equations of motion are described and the methods of analysis and their application are discussed. Both ballistic motion and powered motion on and about small bodies are considered and case studies for different small body missions are presented. The author concludes his comprehensive treatment with a discussion of the mechanics of multi-body small body systems and a review of advanced topics and ...

  11. Using Astrometrica to Teach an Introduction to Asteroid and Comet Astrometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durig, Douglas T.

    2007-05-01

    We have organized a Consortium for Astronomy Research and Teaching (CART) with several small colleges and universities from the Appalachian Colleges Association (ACA). In 2006 we received a small grant from the ACA Teaching and Learning Conference to develop laboratory exercises using the on-line telescopes of the Cordell-Lorenz Observatory of The University of the South in Sewanee, TN. We have completed and tested the first two, Asteroid Astrometry and Comet Astronomy and Angular Size. We are continuing to develop several more on the HR Diagram, Cataclysmic Variables and Short Period Variable Stars. We had unknown new asteroids in the field of view the first four times we performed the Asteroid Astrometry exercise but, unfortunately, none of the students recognized the new objects. However, they were more motivated to perform the exercise because of the opportunity to discover the new objects and they performed better on the review questions than students doing a comparable virtual exercise. Both of the astrometry exercises use the Astrometrica program developed by Herbert Raab and provide an introduction to the use and applications of this very functional shareware program. The program is available for free to educators.

  12. DIRBE Comet Trails

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arendt, Richard G.

    2015-01-01

    Re-examination of the COBE DIRBE data reveals the thermal emission of several comet dust trails.The dust trails of 1P/Halley, 169P/NEAT, and 3200 Phaethon have not been previously reported.The known trails of 2P/Encke, and 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 are also seen. The dust trails have 12 and 25 microns surface brightnesses of trails are very difficult to see in any single daily image of the sky, but are evident as rapidly moving linear features in movies of the DIRBE data. Some trails are clearest when crossing through the orbital plane of the parent comet, but others are best seen at high ecliptic latitudes as the Earth passes over or under the dust trail. All these comets have known associations with meteor showers. This re-examination also reveals one additional comet and 13 additional asteroids that had not previously been recognized in the DIRBE data.

  13. Protection of the human race against natural hazards (asteroids, comets, volcanoes, earthquakes)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Joseph V.

    1985-10-01

    Although we justifiably worry about the danger of nuclear war to civilization, and perhaps even to survival of the human race, we tend to consider natural hazards (e.g., comets, asteroids, volcanoes, earthquakes) as unavoidable acts of God. In any human lifetime, a truly catastrophic natural event is very unlikely, but ultimately one will occur. For the first time in human history we have sufficient technical skills to begin protection of Earth from some natural hazards. We could decide collectively throughout the world to reassign resources: in particular, reduction of nuclear and conventional weapons to a less dangerous level would allow concomitant increase of international programs for detection and prevention of natural hazards. Worldwide cooperation to mitigate natural hazards might help psychologically to lead us away from the divisive bickering that triggers wars. Future generations could hail us as pioneers of peace and safety rather than curse us as agents of death and destruction.

  14. Thermal infrared and optical photometry of Asteroidal Comet C/2002 CE10

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekiguchi, Tomohiko; Miyasaka, Seidai; Dermawan, Budi; Mueller, Thomas; Takato, Naruhisa; Watanabe, Junichi; Boehnhardt, Hermann

    2018-04-01

    C/2002 CE10 is an object in a retrograde elliptical orbit with Tisserand parameter - 0.853 indicating a likely origin in the Oort Cloud. It appears to be a rather inactive comet since no coma and only a very weak tail was detected during the past perihelion passage. We present multi-color optical photometry, lightcurve and thermal mid-IR observations of the asteroidal comet. With the photometric analysis in BVRI, the surface color is found to be redder than asteroids, corresponding to cometary nuclei and TNOs/Centaurs. The time-resolved differential photometry supports a rotation period of 8.19 ± 0.05 h. The effective diameter and the geometric albedo are 17.9 ± 0.9 km and 0.03 ± 0.01, respectively, indicating a very dark reflectance of the surface. The dark and redder surface color of C/2002 CE10 may be attribute to devolatilized material by surface aging suffered from the irradiation by cosmic rays or from impact by dust particles in the Oort Cloud. Alternatively, C/2002 CE10 was formed of very dark refractory material originally like a rocky planetesimal. In both cases, this object lacks ices (on the surface at least). The dynamical and known physical characteristics of C/2002 CE10 are best compatible with those of the Damocloids population in the Solar System, that appear to be exhaust cometary nucleus in Halley-type orbits. The study of physical properties of rocky Oort cloud objects may give us a key for the formation of the Oort cloud and the solar system.

  15. Collisional Histories of Comets and Trojan Asteroids: Diopside, Magnesite, and Fayalite Impact Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederer, S. M.; Jensen, E. A.; Wooden, D. H.; Lindsay, S. S.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Smith, D. C.; Keller, L. P.; Cintala, M. J.; Zolensky, M. E.

    2012-01-01

    Comets and asteroids have weathered dynamic histories, as evidenced by their rough surfaces. The Nice model describes a violent reshuffling of small bodies during the Late Heavy Bombardment, with collisions acting to grind these planetesimals away. This creates an additional source of impact material that can re-work the surfaces of the larger bodies over the lifetime of the solar system. Here, we investigate the possibility that signatures due to impacts (e.g. from micrometeoroids or meteoroids) could be detected in their spectra, and how that can be explained by the physical manifestation of shock in the crystalline structure of minerals. All impact experiments were conducted in the Johnson Space Center Experimental Impact Laboratory using the vertical gun. Impact speeds ranged from approx.2.0 km/s to approx.2.8 km/s. All experiments were conducted at room temperature. Minerals found in comets and asteroids were chosen as targets, including diopside (MgCaSi2O6, monoclinic pyroxene), magnesite (MgCO3, carbonate), and fayalite (FeSiO4, olivine). Impacted samples were analyzed using a Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrometer (FTIR) and a Transmission Electron Microscope (TEM). Absorbance features in the 8-13 m spectral region demonstrate relative amplitude changes as well as wavelength shifts. Corresponding TEM images exhibit planar shock dislocations in the crystalline structure, attributed to deformation at high strain and low temperatures. Elongating or shortening the axes of the crystalline structure of forsterite (Mg2SiO4, olivine) using a discrete dipole approximation model (Lindsay et al., submitted) yields changes in spectral features similar to those observed in our impacted laboratory minerals.

  16. On the cutting edge technology enabling the challenging missions to asteroids and comets, our primitive neighbors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawaguchi, J.

    2014-07-01

    The world's first sample-and-return mission from an object orbiting outside the sphere of influence of the Earth was successfully performed through Hayabusa in 2010, an engineering demonstration mission of JAXA. And it was followed by another technology demonstrator, Ikaros, the world's first solar-sail mission launched in 2010, the same year of the Hayabusa return. These two demonstrations represent the significance of the technology development that shall precede the real science missions that will follow. The space-exploration community focuses its attention on the use of asteroids and comets as one of the most immediate destinations. Humans will perform voyages to those objects sooner or later. And we will initiate a kind of research as scientific activity for those objects. The missions may include even sample-and-return missions to those bodies for assessing the chance of possible resource utilization in future. The first step for it is, needless to say, science. Combining the sample-and-return technology using the ultra-high-speed reentry for sample recovery with the new propulsion system using both electric and photon force will be the direct conclusion from Hayabusa and Ikaros. And key elements such as autonomy are also among the essential factors in making the sophisticated operation possible around asteroids and comets avoiding the communication difficulty. This presentation will comprehensively touch on what those technology skills are, and how they are applicable to the subsequent new missions, from the mission leader's point of view. They are probably real requisites for planning brand-new innovative challenges in the ACM community.

  17. Comet/Asteroid Protection System (CAPS): A Space-Based System Concept for Revolutionizing Earth Protection and Utilization of Near-Earth Objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazanek, Daniel D.; Roithmayr, Carlos M.; Antol, Jeffrey; Kay-Bunnell, Linda; Werner, Martin R.; Park, Sang-Young; Kumar, Renjith R.

    2002-01-01

    There exists an infrequent, but significant hazard to life and property due to impacting asteroids and comets. There is currently no specific search for long-period comets, smaller near-Earth asteroids, or smaller short-period comets. These objects represent a threat with potentially little or no warning time using conventional ground-based telescopes. These planetary bodies also represent a significant resource for commercial exploitation, long-term sustained space exploration, and scientific research. The Comet/Asteroid Protection System (CAPS) would expand the current detection effort to include long-period comets, as well as small asteroids and short-period comets capable of regional destruction. A space-based detection system, despite being more costly and complex than Earth-based initiatives, is the most promising way of expanding the range of detectable objects, and surveying the entire celestial sky on a regular basis. CAPS is a future spacebased system concept that provides permanent, continuous asteroid and comet monitoring, and rapid, controlled modification of the orbital trajectories of selected bodies. CAPS would provide an orbit modification system capable of diverting kilometer class objects, and modifying the orbits of smaller asteroids for impact defense and resource utilization. This paper provides a summary of CAPS and discusses several key areas and technologies that are being investigated.

  18. DUST FROM COMET 209P/LINEAR DURING ITS 2014 RETURN: PARENT BODY OF A NEW METEOR SHOWER, THE MAY CAMELOPARDALIDS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ishiguro, Masateru [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Seoul National University, Gwanak, Seoul 151-742 (Korea, Republic of); Kuroda, Daisuke [Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Asakuchi, Okayama 719-0232 (Japan); Hanayama, Hidekazu [Ishigakijima Astronomical Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Ishigaki, Okinawa 907-0024 (Japan); Takahashi, Jun; Takagi, Yuhei; Morihana, Kumiko; Honda, Satoshi; Arai, Akira [Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory, Center for Astronomy, University of Hyogo, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5313 (Japan); Hasegawa, Sunao; Sarugaku, Yuki [Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS), Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5210 (Japan); Watanabe, Makoto; Imai, Masataka; Goda, Shuhei [Department of Cosmosciences, Graduate School of Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 060-0810 (Japan); Akitaya, Hiroshi [Hiroshima Astrophysical Science Center, Hiroshima University, Higashihiroshima, Hiroshima 739-8526 (Japan); Sekiguchi, Kazuhiro [National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, National Institute of Natural Sciences, Mitaka, Tokyo 181-8588 (Japan); Oasa, Yumiko [Faculty of Education, Saitama University, Sakura, Saitama 338-8570 (Japan); Saito, Yoshihiko [Department of Physics, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 152-8551 (Japan); Morokuma, Tomoki [Institute of Astronomy, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo, Mitaka, Tokyo 181-0015 (Japan); Murata, Katsuhiro [Department of Astrophysics, Nagoya University, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8602 (Japan); Nogami, Daisaku [Department of Astronomy, Graduate School of Science, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8502 (Japan); and others

    2015-01-10

    We report a new observation of the Jupiter family comet 209P/LINEAR during its 2014 return. The comet is recognized as a dust source of a new meteor shower, the May Camelopardalids. 209P/LINEAR was apparently inactive at a heliocentric distance r{sub h} = 1.6 AU and showed weak activity at r{sub h} ≤ 1.4 AU. We found an active region of <0.001% of the entire nuclear surface during the comet's dormant phase. An edge-on image suggests that particles up to 1 cm in size (with an uncertainty of factor 3-5) were ejected following a differential power-law size distribution with index q = –3.25 ± 0.10. We derived a mass-loss rate of 2-10 kg s{sup –1} during the active phase and a total mass of ≈5 × 10{sup 7} kg during the 2014 return. The ejection terminal velocity of millimeter- to centimeter-sized particles was 1-4 m s{sup –1}, which is comparable to the escape velocity from the nucleus (1.4 m s{sup –1}). These results imply that such large meteoric particles marginally escaped from the highly dormant comet nucleus via the gas drag force only within a few months of the perihelion passage.

  19. Hartley and Itokawa: small comet and asteroid with similar morphologies and structures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kochemasov, G. G.

    2011-10-01

    at the convex bulge, from the antipodean side (Fig. 5). The smaller rocky asteroid Itokawa (0.5 km long, Fig. 2) is surprisingly similar in shape and structure to the icy core of Hart ley. It is also bent and rich in cross-cutting lineations o 4 direct ions marked by small holes-craters. But here they are ext inct and lack of gas -dust jets. One sees a transition from a volat ile rich comet core to an ext inct mostly rocky mass - asteroid. In both cases (comet core and as teroid) in the middle develops a smooth "wais t". The bulged convex and antipodal concave segments -hemispheres in rotating bodies require somewhat different densities of composing them masses to equilibrate angular momentum of two halves (compare with the Ea rth's hemis pheres : the eas tern continental "granitic" and wes tern Pacific "bas altic"). The near-IR images of two asteroids (Fig.6-7) confirm this. The concave and convex s ides are co mpos itionally d ifferent. In the Eros ' cas e the concave s ide is rich er in pyroxene, thus denser.

  20. FAST RADIO BURSTS: COLLISIONS BETWEEN NEUTRON STARS AND ASTEROIDS/COMETS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geng, J. J.; Huang, Y. F., E-mail: hyf@nju.edu.cn [School of Astronomy and Space Science, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210046 (China)

    2015-08-10

    Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are newly discovered radio transient sources. Their high dispersion measures indicate an extragalactic origin. However, due to the lack of observational data in other wavelengths, their progenitors still remain unclear. Here we suggest that the collisions between neutron stars (NSs) and asteroids/comets are promising mechanisms for FRBs. During the impact process, a hot plasma fireball forms after the material of the small body penetrates into the NS surface. The ionized matter inside the fireball then expands along the magnetic field lines. Coherent radiation from the thin shell at the top of the fireball will account for the observed FRBs. Our scenario can reasonably explain the main features of FRBs, such as their durations, luminosities, and the event rate. We argue that for a single NS, FRBs are not likely to happen repeatedly in a forseeable timespan since such impacts are of low probability. We predict that faint remnant X-ray emissions should be associated with FRBs, but it may be too faint to be detected by detectors at work.

  1. Planning ahead for asteroid and comet hazard mitigation, phase 1: parameter space exploration and scenario modeling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Plesko, Catherine S [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Clement, R Ryan [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Weaver, Robert P [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Bradley, Paul A [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Huebner, Walter F [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    The mitigation of impact hazards resulting from Earth-approaching asteroids and comets has received much attention in the popular press. However, many questions remain about the near-term and long-term, feasibility and appropriate application of all proposed methods. Recent and ongoing ground- and space-based observations of small solar-system body composition and dynamics have revolutionized our understanding of these bodies (e.g., Ryan (2000), Fujiwara et al. (2006), and Jedicke et al. (2006)). Ongoing increases in computing power and algorithm sophistication make it possible to calculate the response of these inhomogeneous objects to proposed mitigation techniques. Here we present the first phase of a comprehensive hazard mitigation planning effort undertaken by Southwest Research Institute and Los Alamos National Laboratory. We begin by reviewing the parameter space of the object's physical and chemical composition and trajectory. We then use the radiation hydrocode RAGE (Gittings et al. 2008), Monte Carlo N-Particle (MCNP) radiation transport (see Clement et al., this conference), and N-body dynamics codes to explore the effects these variations in object properties have on the coupling of energy into the object from a variety of mitigation techniques, including deflection and disruption by nuclear and conventional munitions, and a kinetic impactor.

  2. FAST RADIO BURSTS: COLLISIONS BETWEEN NEUTRON STARS AND ASTEROIDS/COMETS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geng, J. J.; Huang, Y. F.

    2015-01-01

    Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are newly discovered radio transient sources. Their high dispersion measures indicate an extragalactic origin. However, due to the lack of observational data in other wavelengths, their progenitors still remain unclear. Here we suggest that the collisions between neutron stars (NSs) and asteroids/comets are promising mechanisms for FRBs. During the impact process, a hot plasma fireball forms after the material of the small body penetrates into the NS surface. The ionized matter inside the fireball then expands along the magnetic field lines. Coherent radiation from the thin shell at the top of the fireball will account for the observed FRBs. Our scenario can reasonably explain the main features of FRBs, such as their durations, luminosities, and the event rate. We argue that for a single NS, FRBs are not likely to happen repeatedly in a forseeable timespan since such impacts are of low probability. We predict that faint remnant X-ray emissions should be associated with FRBs, but it may be too faint to be detected by detectors at work

  3. Small Bodies, Big Concepts: Engaging Teachers and Their Students in Visual Analysis of Comets and Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobb, W. H.; Buxner, S.; Lebofsky, L. A.; Ristvey, J.; Weeks, S.; Zolensky, M.

    2011-12-01

    Small Bodies, Big Concepts is a multi-disciplinary, professional development project that engages 5th - 8th grade teachers in high end planetary science using a research-based pedagogical framework, Designing Effective Science Instruction (DESI). In addition to developing sound background knowledge with a focus on visual analysis, teachers' awareness of the process of learning new content is heightened, and they use that experience to deepen their science teaching practice. Culling from NASA E/PO educational materials, activities are sequenced to enhance conceptual understanding of big ideas in space science: what do we know, how do we know it, why do we care? Helping teachers develop a picture of the history and evolution of our understanding of the solar system, and honing in on the place of comets and asteroids in helping us answer old questions and discover new ones, teachers see the power and excitement underlying planetary science as human endeavor. Research indicates that science inquiry is powerful in the classroom and mission scientists are real-life models of science inquiry in action. Using guest scientist facilitators from the Planetary Science Institute, NASA Johnson Space Center, Lockheed Martin, and NASA E/PO professionals from McREL and NASA AESP, teachers practice framing scientific questions, using current visual data, and adapting NASA E/PO activities related to current exploration of asteroids and comets in our Solar System. Cross-curricular elements included examining research-based strategies for enhancing English language learners' ability to engage in higher order questions and a professional astronomy artist's insight into how visual analysis requires not just our eyes engaged, but our brains: comparing, synthesizing, questioning, evaluating, and wondering. This summer we pilot tested the SBBC curriculum with thirteen 5th- 10th grade teachers modeling a variety of instructional approaches over eight days. Each teacher developed lesson plans

  4. Comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hughes, D.W.

    1982-01-01

    Comets are objects of considerable fascination and this paper reviews the present knowledge of the physical structure of the cometary nucleus, coma and tail, the orbits of comets in the Solar System, the proposed mechanisms of cometary origin, the decay processes suffered by comets, and the ways in which they can be observed from Earth and by spacecraft. (author)

  5. Observation of freakish-asteroid-discovered-resembles support my idea that many dark comets were arrested and lurked in the solar system after every impaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Dayong

    2014-03-01

    New observations show that some asteroids are looked like comets. http://www.astrowatch.net/2013/11/freakish-asteroid-discovered-resembles.html, http://www.astrowatch.net/2013/11/astronomers-puzzle-over-newfound.html. It supports my idea that ``many dark comets with very special tilted orbits were arrested and lurked in the solar system'' - ``Sun's companion-dark hole seasonal took its dark comets belt and much dark matter to impact near our earth. And some of them probability hit on our earth. So this model kept and triggered periodic mass extinctions on our earth every 25 to 27 million years. After every impaction, many dark comets with very special tilted orbits were arrested and lurked in the solar system. Because some of them picked up many solar matter, so it looked like the asteroids. When the dark hole-Tyche goes near the solar system again, they will impact near planets.'' The idea maybe explains why do the asteroid looks like the comet? Where are the asteroids come from? What relationship do they have with the impactions and extinctions? http://meetings.aps.org/link/BAPS.2011.CAL.C1.7, http://meetings.aps.org/Meeting/CAL12/Event/181168, http://meetings.aps.org/link/BAPS.2013.MAR.H1.267. During 2009 to 2010, I had presented there are many dark comets like dark Asteroids near the orbit of Jupiter in ASP Meetings. In 2010, NASA's WISE found them. http://meetings.aps.org/link/BAPS.2011.APR.K1.17, http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/WISE/news/wise20100122.html Avoid Earth Extinction Associ.

  6. The Near-Earth Space Surveillance (NESS) Mission: Discovery, Tracking, and Characterization of Asteroids, Comets, and Artificial Satellites with a Microsatellite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hildebrand, A. R.; Carroll, K. A.; Balam, D. D.; Cardinal, R. D.; Matthews, J. M.; Kuschnig, R.; Walker, G. A. H.; Brown, P. G.; Tedesco, E. F.; Worden, S. P.

    2001-01-01

    The Near-Earth Space Surveillance (NESS) Mission, a microsatellite dedicated to observing near-Earth (NEO) and interior-to-the-Earth (IEO)asteroids and comets plus artificial satellites, is currently being studied under contract to the Canadian Space Agency. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  7. Asteroids IV

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Patrick; DeMeo, Francesca E.; Bottke, William F.

    . Asteroids, like planets, are driven by a great variety of both dynamical and physical mechanisms. In fact, images sent back by space missions show a collection of small worlds whose characteristics seem designed to overthrow our preconceived notions. Given their wide range of sizes and surface compositions, it is clear that many formed in very different places and at different times within the solar nebula. These characteristics make them an exciting challenge for researchers who crave complex problems. The return of samples from these bodies may ultimately be needed to provide us with solutions. In the book Asteroids IV, the editors and authors have taken major strides in the long journey toward a much deeper understanding of our fascinating planetary ancestors. This book reviews major advances in 43 chapters that have been written and reviewed by a team of more than 200 international authorities in asteroids. It is aimed to be as comprehensive as possible while also remaining accessible to students and researchers who are interested in learning about these small but nonetheless important worlds. We hope this volume will serve as a leading reference on the topic of asteroids for the decade to come. We are deeply indebted to the many authors and referees for their tremendous efforts in helping us create Asteroids IV. We also thank the members of the Asteroids IV scientific organizing committee for helping us shape the structure and content of the book. The conference associated with the book, "Asteroids Comets Meteors 2014" held June 30-July 4, 2014, in Helsinki, Finland, did an outstanding job of demonstrating how much progress we have made in the field over the last decade. We are extremely grateful to our host Karri Muinonnen and his team. The editors are also grateful to the Asteroids IV production staff, namely Renée Dotson and her colleagues at the Lunar and Planetary Institute, for their efforts, their invaluable assistance, and their enthusiasm; they made life as

  8. Touchless Despinning of Asteroids and Comets via Neutral Beam Emitting Spacecraft

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This project seeks to design, build, and test a device that is capable of despinning an asteroid without the need for affixing the spacecraft to the surface. This...

  9. Amino Acids in Asteroids and Comets: Implications for the Origin of Life on Earth and Possibly Elsewhere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    Meteorites provide a record of the chemical processes that occurred in the early solar system before life began on Earth. The delivery of organic matter by asteroids, comets, and their fragments to the Earth and other planetary bodies in our solar system could have been an important source of the prebiotic organic inventory needed for the emergence of life. Amino acids are essential components of proteins and enzymes in life on Earth and these prebiotic organic compounds have been detected in a wide variety of carbon-rich meteorites, the majority of which have been determined to be extraterrestrial in origin. In addition, many amino acids are structurally chiral (they possess handedness) and with a few very rare exceptions, only left handed (L) amino acids are found in biology, while all known abiotic syntheses of amino acids result in equal mixtures of left and right handed (LD) amino acids. The discovery of a significant left handed amino acid imbalance of up to 20% in several different carbonaceous meteorites, could point toward a possible prebiotic contribution to the origin of biological homochirality by the exogenous delivery of extraterrestrial organic material to the early Earth. In this talk, I will focus on recent state-of-the-art measurements of the distribution, chirality, and isotopic composition of amino acids in meteorites and cometary samples carried out at the Goddard Astrobiology Analytical Laboratory. Results from the analyses of a variety of Antarctic meteorites, samples from comet Wild 2 returned by the STARDUST mission, and meteorite fragments of asteroid 2008 TC3 called Almahata Sitta recovered from northern Sudan will be discussed

  10. DRBE comet trails

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arendt, Richard G.

    2014-01-01

    Re-examination of the Cosmic Background Explorer Diffuse Infrared Background Experiment (DIRBE) data reveals the thermal emission of several comet dust trails. The dust trails of 1P/Halley, 169P/NEAT, and 3200 Phaethon have not been previously reported. The known trails of 2P/Encke and 73P/Schwassmann–Wachmann 3 are also seen. The dust trails have 12 and 25 μm surface brightnesses of <0.1 and <0.15 MJy sr −1 , respectively, which is <1% of the zodiacal light intensity. The trails are very difficult to see in any single daily image of the sky, but are evident as rapidly moving linear features in movies of the DIRBE data. Some trails are clearest when crossing through the orbital plane of the parent comet, but others are best seen at high ecliptic latitudes as the Earth passes over or under the dust trail. All these comets have known associations with meteor showers. This re-examination also reveals 1 additional comet and 13 additional asteroids that had not previously been recognized in the DIRBE data.

  11. DRBE comet trails

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arendt, Richard G., E-mail: Richard.G.Arendt@nasa.gov [CREST/UMBC, Code 665, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States)

    2014-12-01

    Re-examination of the Cosmic Background Explorer Diffuse Infrared Background Experiment (DIRBE) data reveals the thermal emission of several comet dust trails. The dust trails of 1P/Halley, 169P/NEAT, and 3200 Phaethon have not been previously reported. The known trails of 2P/Encke and 73P/Schwassmann–Wachmann 3 are also seen. The dust trails have 12 and 25 μm surface brightnesses of <0.1 and <0.15 MJy sr{sup −1}, respectively, which is <1% of the zodiacal light intensity. The trails are very difficult to see in any single daily image of the sky, but are evident as rapidly moving linear features in movies of the DIRBE data. Some trails are clearest when crossing through the orbital plane of the parent comet, but others are best seen at high ecliptic latitudes as the Earth passes over or under the dust trail. All these comets have known associations with meteor showers. This re-examination also reveals 1 additional comet and 13 additional asteroids that had not previously been recognized in the DIRBE data.

  12. Asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bell, J.F.; Gaffey, M.J.

    1989-01-01

    During the past 15 yr much progress has been made in the study of the asteroids with optical, infrared, and radar telescopes. Simultaneously a vast body of petrologic, chemical and isotopic data has been acquired for meteorites, which are actual samples of asteroids. This work has demonstrated that asteroids vary widely in composition and thermal history in a systematic but complex way with orbital position and size. The authors report that it appears that these variations can be explained to first order by a simple model invoking three principal mechanisms: condensation of various known and unknown classes of chondritic material at radial locations in the nebula controlled by the temperature and composition; intense metamorphic heating after accretion which declined rapidly with both increasing solar distance and smaller planetesimal size, producing complete differentiation in some inner belt objects, incomplete differentiation in many more, and extensive metamorphism and aqueous alteration in middle-belt objects; and complex collisional fragmentation often controlled by internal strength gradients due to irregular distribution of metal

  13. Implications of theories of asteroid and comet impact for policy options for management of spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive wastes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trask, Newell J.

    1994-01-01

    Concern with the threat posed by terrestrial asteroid and comet impacts has heightened as the catastrophic consequences of such events have become better appreciated. Although the probabilities of such impacts are very small, a reasonable question for debate is whether such phenomena should be taken into account in deciding policy for the management of spent fuel and high-level radioactive waste. The rate at which asteroid or comet impacts would affect areas of surface storage of radioactive waste is about the same as the estimated rate at which volcanic activity would affect the Yucca Mountain area. The Underground Retrievable Storage (URS) concept could satisfactorily reduce the risk from cosmic impact with its associated uncertainties in addition to providing other benefits described by previous authors.

  14. Implications of theories of asteroid and comet impact for policy options for management of spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive wastes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trask, N.J.

    1994-01-01

    Concern with the threat posed by terrestrial asteroid and comet impacts has heightened as the catastrophic consequences of such events have become better appreciated. Although the probabilities of such impacts are very small, a reasonable question for debate is whether such phenomena should be taken into account in deciding policy for the management of spent fuel and high-level radioactive waste. The rate at which asteroid or comet impacts would affect areas of surface storage of radioactive waste is about the same as the estimated rate at which volcanic activity would affect the Yucca Mountain area. The Underground Retrievable Storage (URS) concept could satisfactorily reduce the risk from cosmic impact with its associated uncertainties in addition to providing other benefits described by previous authors

  15. Meteors, meteorites and cosmic dust

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lebedinets, V.N.

    1987-01-01

    The problem of meteorite origin and meteorite composition is discussed. Nowadays, most scientists suppose that the giant Oort cloud consisting of ice comet nuclei is the sourse of the meteor matter. A principle unity of the matter of meteorites falling to the Earth and cosmic dust is noted as well as that of meteorite bodies evaporating in the atmosphere and bearing meteors and bodies

  16. Meteor Beliefs Project: Meteors in the Maori astronomical traditions of New Zealand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britton, Tui R.; Hamacher, Duane W.

    2014-02-01

    We review the literature for perceptions of meteors in the Maori culture of Aotearoa or New Zealand. We examine representations of meteors in religion, story, and ceremony. We find that meteors are sometimes personified as gods or children, or are seen as omens of death and destruction. The stories we found highlight the broad perception of meteors found throughout the Maori culture, and note that some early scholars conflated the terms comet and meteor.

  17. The Composition of the Y2K Meteor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coulson, S. G.

    During the Leonid meteor shower of November 1999 a very bright meteor train, subsequently called the Y2K meteor, was observed. Analysis of the trajectory of the meteor suggests that it was composed of two distinct materials. The bulk of the meteor was composed of a comet-like material, while a much smaller fraction was of a denser carbonaceous material. A simple model is used to analytically determine the mass of the meteor fragments.

  18. Deposition of steeply infalling debris - pebbles, boulders, snowballs, asteroids, comets - around stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, J. C.; Veras, D.; Gänsicke, B. T.

    2017-09-01

    When Comet Lovejoy plunged into the Sun, and survived, questions arose about the physics of infall of small bodies. [1,2] has already described this infall in detail. However, a more general analysis for any type of star has been missing. [3] generalized previous studies, with specific applications to white dwarfs. High-metallicity pollution is common in white dwarf stars hosting remnant planetary systems. However, they rarely have detectable debris accretion discs, possibly because much of the influx is fast steeply infalling debris in star-grazing orbits, producing a more tenuous signature than a slowly accreting disc. Processes governing such deposition between the Roche radius and photosphere have so far received little attention and we model them here analytically by extending recent work on sun-grazing comets to white dwarf systems. We find that the evolution of cm-to-km size infallers most strongly depends on two combinations of parameters, which effectively measure sublimation rate and binding strength. We then provide an algorithm to determine the fate of infallers for any white dwarf, and apply the algorithm to four limiting combinations of hot versus cool (young/old) white dwarfs with snowy (weak, volatile) versus rocky (strong, refractory) infallers. We find: (i) Total sublimation above the photosphere befalls all small infallers across the entire white dwarf temperature range, the threshold size rising with it and 100× larger for rock than snow. (ii) All very large objects fragment tidally regardless of temperature: for rock, a0 ≽ 105 cm; for snow, a0 ≽ 103 - 3 × 104 cm across all white dwarf cooling ages. (iii) A considerable range of infaller sizes avoids fragmentation and total sublimation, yielding impacts or grazes with cold white dwarfs. This range rapidly narrows with increasing temperature, especially for snowy bodies. Finally, we briefly discuss how the various forms of deposited debris may finally reach the photosphere surface itself.

  19. Dynamical Model for the Zodiacal Cloud and Sporadic Meteors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesvorný, David; Janches, Diego; Vokrouhlický, David; Pokorný, Petr; Bottke, William F.; Jenniskens, Peter

    2011-12-01

    The solar system is dusty, and would become dustier over time as asteroids collide and comets disintegrate, except that small debris particles in interplanetary space do not last long. They can be ejected from the solar system by Jupiter, thermally destroyed near the Sun, or physically disrupted by collisions. Also, some are swept by the Earth (and other planets), producing meteors. Here we develop a dynamical model for the solar system meteoroids and use it to explain meteor radar observations. We find that the Jupiter Family Comets (JFCs) are the main source of the prominent concentrations of meteors arriving at the Earth from the helion and antihelion directions. To match the radiant and orbit distributions, as measured by the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar (CMOR) and Advanced Meteor Orbit Radar (AMOR), our model implies that comets, and JFCs in particular, must frequently disintegrate when reaching orbits with low perihelion distance. Also, the collisional lifetimes of millimeter particles may be longer (gsim 105 yr at 1 AU) than postulated in the standard collisional models (~104 yr at 1 AU), perhaps because these chondrule-sized meteoroids are stronger than thought before. Using observations of the Infrared Astronomical Satellite to calibrate the model, we find that the total cross section and mass of small meteoroids in the inner solar system are (1.7-3.5) × 1011 km2 and ~4 × 1019 g, respectively, in a good agreement with previous studies. The mass input required to keep the zodiacal cloud in a steady state is estimated to be ~104-105 kg s-1. The input is up to ~10 times larger than found previously, mainly because particles released closer to the Sun have shorter collisional lifetimes and need to be supplied at a faster rate. The total mass accreted by the Earth in particles between diameters D = 5 μm and 1 cm is found to be ~15,000 tons yr-1 (factor of two uncertainty), which is a large share of the accretion flux measured by the Long Term Duration

  20. DYNAMICAL MODEL FOR THE ZODIACAL CLOUD AND SPORADIC METEORS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nesvorný, David; Vokrouhlický, David; Pokorný, Petr; Bottke, William F.; Janches, Diego; Jenniskens, Peter

    2011-01-01

    The solar system is dusty, and would become dustier over time as asteroids collide and comets disintegrate, except that small debris particles in interplanetary space do not last long. They can be ejected from the solar system by Jupiter, thermally destroyed near the Sun, or physically disrupted by collisions. Also, some are swept by the Earth (and other planets), producing meteors. Here we develop a dynamical model for the solar system meteoroids and use it to explain meteor radar observations. We find that the Jupiter Family Comets (JFCs) are the main source of the prominent concentrations of meteors arriving at the Earth from the helion and antihelion directions. To match the radiant and orbit distributions, as measured by the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar (CMOR) and Advanced Meteor Orbit Radar (AMOR), our model implies that comets, and JFCs in particular, must frequently disintegrate when reaching orbits with low perihelion distance. Also, the collisional lifetimes of millimeter particles may be longer (∼> 10 5 yr at 1 AU) than postulated in the standard collisional models (∼10 4 yr at 1 AU), perhaps because these chondrule-sized meteoroids are stronger than thought before. Using observations of the Infrared Astronomical Satellite to calibrate the model, we find that the total cross section and mass of small meteoroids in the inner solar system are (1.7-3.5) × 10 11 km 2 and ∼4 × 10 19 g, respectively, in a good agreement with previous studies. The mass input required to keep the zodiacal cloud in a steady state is estimated to be ∼10 4 -10 5 kg s –1 . The input is up to ∼10 times larger than found previously, mainly because particles released closer to the Sun have shorter collisional lifetimes and need to be supplied at a faster rate. The total mass accreted by the Earth in particles between diameters D = 5 μm and 1 cm is found to be ∼15,000 tons yr –1 (factor of two uncertainty), which is a large share of the accretion flux measured by the

  1. Introduction to the Asteroids II data base

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tedesco, E.F.

    1989-01-01

    The Asteroids II data base presented is a compilation of asteroid data. Included are asteroid names and discovery circumstances, proper elements and family identifications, asteroid lightcurve parameters, asteroid pole determinations, taxonomic classes, absolute magnitudes and slope parameters, UBV color indices, and albedos and diameters from the IRAS Asteroid and Comet Survey

  2. Investigating the Effects of Temperature on the Signatures of Shocks Propagated Through Impacts into Minerals Found in Comets and Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederer, Susan M.; Jensen, E. A.; Fane, M.; Smith, D. C.; Holmes, J.; Keller, L. P.; Lindsay, S. S.; Wooden, D. H.; Cintala, M. J.; Zolensky, M. E.

    2015-01-01

    Comets and asteroids are subjected to extremely cold conditions throughout their lifetimes. During their sojourns in the solar system, they are subjected to collisions at speeds that are easily capable of generating shock waves in their constituent materials. In addition to ices, more common silicate minerals such as olivines and pyroxenes are important components of these objects. The collision-induced shocks could affect the spectral signatures of those mineral components, which could in turn be detected telescopically. We have embarked on a project to determine how impact-generated shock might affect the reflectance spectra and structures of select silicates as both impact speed and target temperature are varied systematically. While the effects of impact speed (in the form of shock stress) on numerous materials have been and continue to be studied, the role of target temperature has received comparatively little attention, presumably because of the operational difficulties it can introduce to experimentation. Our experiments were performed with the vertical gun in the Experimental Impact Laboratory of the Johnson Space Center. A liquid-nitrogen system was plumbed to permit cooling of the target container and its contents under vacuum to temperatures as low as -100 C (173 K). Temperatures were monitored by thermocouples mounted on the outside of the target container. Because those sensors were not in contact with the target material at impact, the measured temperatures are treated as lower limits for the actual values. Peridot (Mg-rich olivine) and enstatite (Mg-rich orthopyroxene) were used as targets, which involved the impact of alumina (Al2O3) spheres at speeds of 2.0 - 2.7 km s(exp -1) and temperatures covering 25 C to -100 C (298 K to 173 K). We have begun collecting and analyzing data in the near to mid-IR with a Fourier-transform infrared spectrometer, and preliminary analyses show that notable differences in absorption-band strength and position occur

  3. Asteroids II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Binzel, R.P.; Gehrels, T.; Matthews, M.S.

    1989-01-01

    This book presents an introduction to asteroids. A description of exploration techniques, details on their physical properties, discussions of their origin and evolution, an examination of their interrelations with meteorites and comets followed by an attempt at a big picture framework are given

  4. Astrometric observations of comets and asteroids and subsequent orbital investigations. Semiannual progress report No. 30, 1 May-31 October 1988

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mccroskey, R.E.; Marsden, B.G.

    1988-11-01

    The 155-cm reflector was used for observations of comets and minor planets on 28 nights during April-October. Twenty-two of the observations refer to comets, 62 to numbered minor planets (numbered, that is, by the end of the semester: only nine of them refer to minor planets already numbered at the time of the last report), and the remainer to unnumbered minor planets. Observations were made of four new comets discovered during the semester and a fifth discovered in January. Observations of Wilson (19861), P/Tempel 2 and two other returning short-period comets are also continuing. Among the odd numbered minor planets observed were the earth-approaching objects (1685) Toro and (1980) Tezcatlipoca. The Earth approacher 1980 PA was numbered (3908)

  5. Asteroid results from the IRAS survey

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Veeder, G.J.; Tedesco, E.F.; Matson, D.L.

    1989-01-01

    This paper reports that the IRAS Asteroid and Comet Survey yield a data base of infrared flux densities for 1811 individual asteroids. Albedos and diameters for these have been derived via a standard thermal model. IRAS sampled a large number of small asteroids and detected many dark asteroids in the outer belt. High-albedo asteroids remain rare. Observations of the brighter asteroids at multiple wavelengths shows the expected range of color temperatures through the main belt

  6. Lorentz-Shaped Comet Dust Trail Cross Section from New Hybrid Visual and Video Meteor Counting Technique - Implications for Future Leonid Storm Encounters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenniskens, Peter; Crawford, Chris; Butow, Steven J.; Nugent, David; Koop, Mike; Holman, David; Houston, Jane; Jobse, Klaas; Kronk, Gary

    2000-01-01

    A new hybrid technique of visual and video meteor observations was developed to provide high precision near real-time flux measurements for satellite operators from airborne platforms. A total of 33,000 Leonids. recorded on video during the 1999 Leonid storm, were watched by a team of visual observers using a video head display and an automatic counting tool. The counts reveal that the activity profile of the Leonid storm is a Lorentz profile. By assuming a radial profile for the dust trail that is also a Lorentzian, we make predictions for future encounters. If that assumption is correct, we passed 0.0003 AU deeper into the 1899 trailet than expected during the storm of 1999 and future encounters with the 1866 trailet will be less intense than. predicted elsewhere.

  7. DYNAMICAL MODEL FOR THE ZODIACAL CLOUD AND SPORADIC METEORS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nesvorny, David; Vokrouhlicky, David; Pokorny, Petr; Bottke, William F. [Department of Space Studies, Southwest Research Institute, 1050 Walnut St., Suite 300, Boulder, CO 80302 (United States); Janches, Diego [Space Weather Laboratory, Code 674, GSFC/NASA, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States); Jenniskens, Peter [Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute, 515 N. Whisman Road, Mountain View, CA 94043 (United States)

    2011-12-20

    The solar system is dusty, and would become dustier over time as asteroids collide and comets disintegrate, except that small debris particles in interplanetary space do not last long. They can be ejected from the solar system by Jupiter, thermally destroyed near the Sun, or physically disrupted by collisions. Also, some are swept by the Earth (and other planets), producing meteors. Here we develop a dynamical model for the solar system meteoroids and use it to explain meteor radar observations. We find that the Jupiter Family Comets (JFCs) are the main source of the prominent concentrations of meteors arriving at the Earth from the helion and antihelion directions. To match the radiant and orbit distributions, as measured by the Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar (CMOR) and Advanced Meteor Orbit Radar (AMOR), our model implies that comets, and JFCs in particular, must frequently disintegrate when reaching orbits with low perihelion distance. Also, the collisional lifetimes of millimeter particles may be longer ({approx}> 10{sup 5} yr at 1 AU) than postulated in the standard collisional models ({approx}10{sup 4} yr at 1 AU), perhaps because these chondrule-sized meteoroids are stronger than thought before. Using observations of the Infrared Astronomical Satellite to calibrate the model, we find that the total cross section and mass of small meteoroids in the inner solar system are (1.7-3.5) Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 11} km{sup 2} and {approx}4 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 19} g, respectively, in a good agreement with previous studies. The mass input required to keep the zodiacal cloud in a steady state is estimated to be {approx}10{sup 4}-10{sup 5} kg s{sup -1}. The input is up to {approx}10 times larger than found previously, mainly because particles released closer to the Sun have shorter collisional lifetimes and need to be supplied at a faster rate. The total mass accreted by the Earth in particles between diameters D = 5 {mu}m and 1 cm is found to be {approx}15

  8. Finding Long Lost Lexell's Comet: The Fate of the First Discovered Near-Earth Object

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Quan-Zhi; Wiegert, Paul A.; Hui, Man-To

    2018-04-01

    Jupiter-family Comet D/1770 L1 (Lexell) was the first discovered Near-Earth Object (NEO) and passed the Earth on 1770 July 1 at a recorded distance of 0.015 au. The comet was subsequently lost due to unfavorable observing circumstances during its next apparition followed by a close encounter with Jupiter in 1779. Since then, the fate of D/Lexell has attracted interest from the scientific community, and now we revisit this long-standing question. We investigate the dynamical evolution of D/Lexell based on a set of orbits recalculated using the observations made by Charles Messier, the comet’s discoverer, and find that there is a 98% chance that D/Lexell remains in the solar system by the year of 2000. This finding remains valid even if a moderate non-gravitational effect is imposed. Messier’s observations also suggest that the comet is one of the largest known near-Earth comets, with a nucleus of ≳10 km in diameter. This implies that the comet should have been detected by contemporary NEO surveys regardless of its activity level if it has remained in the inner solar system. We identify asteroid 2010 JL33 as a possible descendant of D/Lexell, with a 0.8% probability of chance alignment, but a direct orbital linkage of the two bodies has not been successfully accomplished. We also use the recalculated orbit to investigate the meteors potentially originating from D/Lexell. While no associated meteors have been unambiguously detected, we show that meteor observations can be used to better constrain the orbit of D/Lexell despite the comet being long lost.

  9. Chemodynamical deuterium fractionation in the early solar nebula: The origin of water on earth and in asteroids and comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Albertsson, T.; Semenov, D.; Henning, Th.

    2014-01-01

    Formation and evolution of water in the solar system and the origin of water on Earth constitute one of the most interesting questions in astronomy. The prevailing hypothesis for the origin of water on Earth is by delivery through water-rich small solar system bodies. In this paper, the isotopic and chemical evolution of water during the early history of the solar nebula, before the onset of planetesimal formation, is studied. A gas-grain chemical model that includes multiply deuterated species and nuclear spin-states is combined with a steady-state solar nebula model. To calculate initial abundances, we simulated 1 Myr of evolution of a cold and dark TMC-1-like prestellar core. Two time-dependent chemical models of the solar nebula are calculated over 1 Myr: (1) a laminar model and (2) a model with two-dimensional (2D) turbulent mixing. We find that the radial outward increase of the H 2 O D/H ratio is shallower in the chemodynamical nebular model than in the laminar model. This is related to more efficient defractionation of HDO via rapid gas-phase processes because the 2D mixing model allows the water ice to be transported either inward and thermally evaporated or upward and photodesorbed. The laminar model shows the Earth water D/H ratio at r ≲ 2.5 AU, whereas for the 2D chemodynamical model this zone is larger, r ≲ 9 AU. Similarly, the water D/H ratios representative of the Oort-family comets, ∼2.5-10 × 10 –4 , are achieved within ∼2-6 AU and ∼2-20 AU in the laminar and the 2D model, respectively. We find that with regards to the water isotopic composition and the origin of the comets, the mixing model seems to be favored over the laminar model.

  10. Chemodynamical deuterium fractionation in the early solar nebula: The origin of water on earth and in asteroids and comets

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Albertsson, T.; Semenov, D.; Henning, Th., E-mail: albertsson@mpia.de [Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Königstuhl 17, D-69117 Heidelberg (Germany)

    2014-03-20

    Formation and evolution of water in the solar system and the origin of water on Earth constitute one of the most interesting questions in astronomy. The prevailing hypothesis for the origin of water on Earth is by delivery through water-rich small solar system bodies. In this paper, the isotopic and chemical evolution of water during the early history of the solar nebula, before the onset of planetesimal formation, is studied. A gas-grain chemical model that includes multiply deuterated species and nuclear spin-states is combined with a steady-state solar nebula model. To calculate initial abundances, we simulated 1 Myr of evolution of a cold and dark TMC-1-like prestellar core. Two time-dependent chemical models of the solar nebula are calculated over 1 Myr: (1) a laminar model and (2) a model with two-dimensional (2D) turbulent mixing. We find that the radial outward increase of the H{sub 2}O D/H ratio is shallower in the chemodynamical nebular model than in the laminar model. This is related to more efficient defractionation of HDO via rapid gas-phase processes because the 2D mixing model allows the water ice to be transported either inward and thermally evaporated or upward and photodesorbed. The laminar model shows the Earth water D/H ratio at r ≲ 2.5 AU, whereas for the 2D chemodynamical model this zone is larger, r ≲ 9 AU. Similarly, the water D/H ratios representative of the Oort-family comets, ∼2.5-10 × 10{sup –4}, are achieved within ∼2-6 AU and ∼2-20 AU in the laminar and the 2D model, respectively. We find that with regards to the water isotopic composition and the origin of the comets, the mixing model seems to be favored over the laminar model.

  11. Expected Increase of Activity of Eta Aquariids Meteor Shower

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulikova, N. V.; Chepurova, V. M.

    2018-04-01

    Analysis of the results of modeling disintegration of Comet 1P/Halley after its flare in 1991 has allowed us to predict an increase of the activity of the associated Eta Aquariids meteor shower in April-May 2018.

  12. The Zodiacal Cloud Model applied to the Martian atmosphere. Diurnal variations in meteoric ion layers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrillo-Sánchez, J. D.; Plane, J. M. C.; Withers, P.; Fallows, K.; Nesvorny, D.; Pokorný, P.

    2016-12-01

    Sporadic metal layers have been detected in the Martian atmosphere by radio occultation measurements using the Mars Express Orbiter and Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft. More recently, metallic ion layers produced by the meteor storm event following the close encounter between Comet Siding Spring (C/2013 A1) and Mars were identified by the Imaging UltraViolet Spectrograph (IUVS) and the Neutral Gas and Ion Mass Spectrometer (NGIMS) on the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft. Work is now in progress to detect the background metal layers produced by the influx of sporadic meteors. In this study we predict the likely appearance of these layers. The Zodiacal Dust Cloud (ZDC) model for particle populations released by asteroids (AST), and dust grains from Jupiter Family Comets (JFCs) and Halley-Type Comets (HTCs) has been combined with a Monte Carlo sampling method and the Chemical ABlation MODel (CABMOD) to predict the ablation rates of Na, K, Fe, Si, Mg, Ca and Al above 40 km altitude in the Martian atmosphere. CABMOD considers the standard treatment of meteor physics, including the balance of frictional heating by radiative losses and the absorption of heat energy through temperature increases, melting phase transitions and vaporization, as well as sputtering by inelastic collisions with the air molecules. The vertical injection profiles are input into the Leeds 1-D Mars atmospheric model which includes photo-ionization, and gas-phase ion-molecule and neutral chemistry, in order to explore the evolution of the resulting metallic ions and atoms. We conclude that the dominant contributor in the Martian's atmosphere is the JFCs over other sources. Finally, we explore the changes of the neutral and ionized Na, Mg and Fe layers over a diurnal cycle.

  13. Postencounter view of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mendis, D.A.

    1988-01-01

    Ground-based and space observations of Comet Halley during its 1986 perihelion passage are reviewed, with an emphasis on their implications for theoretical models. Consideration is given to the shape, surface morphology, and composition of the comet nucleus; the shape, dynamics, and composition of the dust tail; neutral and ionic gas species in the head and plasma tail; and the comet/solar-wind interaction. Extensive diagrams, graphs, and sample images are provided, and the potential value of the new kinds of data to be obtained with the NASA Comet-Rendezvous/Asteroid-Flyby spacecraft is discussed. 139 references

  14. Halley's Comet: A Bibliography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freitag, Ruth S., Comp.

    Included in this bibliography are over 3,200 references to publications on Halley's Comet, its history, orbital motion, and physical characteristics, meteor streams associated with it, preparations for space missions to study it in 1986, and popular reaction to its appearances. Also cited are a few papers that, although they devote little…

  15. Meteor trajectory estimation from radio meteor observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kákona, J.

    2016-01-01

    Radio meteor observation techniques are generally accepted as meteor counting methods useful mainly for meteor flux detection. Due to the technical progress in radio engineering and electronics a construction of a radio meteor detection network with software defined receivers has become possible. These receivers could be precisely time synchronized and could obtain data which provide us with more information than just the meteor count. We present a technique which is able to compute a meteor trajectory from the data recorded by multiple radio stations.

  16. Meteorites, Bolides and Comets: A Tale of Inconsistency

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jakes, P.; Padevet, V.

    1992-07-01

    Inhomogeneity of cometary nuclei has been established through the observed disruptions of comets [1] and through the determination of dust particle composition during the encounter of the Vega and Giotto satellites with comet Halley [2,3,4]. The raisin bread model of cometary nuclei [5,6] assumes the presence of solid (rock) and dust particle material set in the volatile rich, ice- cemented material. Rock material may contribute to the formation of dust particles. Gombosi and Houpis [5] argued that only the composition of dust particles derived from the icy, volatile component of the comet were analyzed and implied thus that the third cometary component present (raisins/rocks) has not been examined. The compositions of the cometary (Halley) dust and the interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) are "chondritic" (Blanford et al., 1988). It is difficult, therefore to estimate the proportion of cometary to asteroid-derived dust in near Earth space, e.g., among the IDPs [7] unless other criteria are available. Bolide multistation photographic tracking allows the determination of the orbital preencounter parameters of solid bodies (0.01-100,000 kg in mass) with the Earth, and allows us to classify them according to their ablation coefficient (tau), penetration depth into the atmosphere (PE), theoretical densities (sigma), and terminal velocities (V(sub)E). Four groups are recognized (Table 1). Three of the type I bolides were recovered as ordinary chondrites (Pribram, Lost City, and Innisfree). Ceplecha [8] has shown that 38% of bolides (fireballs) come from cometary orbits (11% from highly eccentric orbits typical of new comets), but most of the bolides (62%) originate at asteroidal orbits. Seven of the 14 known meteoric showers could be attributed to known comets: N,S Taurids to 1970 P/Encke, Lyrids to 1861 I Thatcher-Beaker, Perseids to 1862 III Swift-Tuttle- Simons, Orionids to 1835 III P/Halley, Draconids to 1946 V P/Giacobini-Zinner, Leonids to 1966 I Tempel

  17. Meteor Beliefs Project: ``Year of Meteors''

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeath, Alastair; Drobnock, George J.; Gheorghe, Andrei Dorian

    2011-10-01

    We present a discussion linking ideas from a modern music album by Laura Veirs back to a turbulent time in American history 150 years ago, which inspired poet Walt Whitman to compose his poem "Year of Meteors", and the meteor beliefs of the period around 1859-1860, when collection of facts was giving way to analyses and theoretical explanations in meteor science.

  18. An overview of the asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Binzel, R.P.

    1989-01-01

    An introduction and overview of the field of asteroid science is presented, highlighting the accomplishments of the 1980s. The development and application of many observational techniques and data from the Infrared Astronomical Satellite have greatly increased our knowledge of asteroid physical properties. New scenarios for understanding the chemical diversity and dynamical structure of asteroids have emerged. New insights have been gained toward understanding their origin and interrelations with meteorites and comets. Suggestions and speculations are offered on future research directions

  19. Physics of comets

    CERN Document Server

    Krishna Swamy, K S

    2010-01-01

    This revised edition places a unique emphasis on all the new results from ground-based, satellites and space missions - detection of molecule H2 and prompt emission lines of OH for the first time; discovery of X-rays in comets; observed diversity in chemical composition among comets; the puzzle of the constancy of spin temperature; the well-established mineralogy of cometary dust; extensive theoretical modeling carried out for understanding the observed effects; and, the similarity in the mineralogy of dust in circumstellar shell of stars, comets, meteorites, asteroids and IDPs, thus indicatin

  20. Thermal alteration in carbonaceous chondrites and implications for sublimation in rock comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Springmann, Alessondra; Lauretta, Dante S.; Steckloff, Jordan K.

    2015-11-01

    Rock comets are small solar system bodies in Sun-skirting orbits (perihelion q CO2, etc.). B-class asteroid (3200) Phaethon, considered to be the parent body of the Geminid meteor shower, is the only rock comet currently known to periodically eject dust and form a coma. Thermal fracturing or thermal decomposition of surface materials may be driving Phaethon’s cometary activity (Li & Jewitt, 2013). Phaethon-like asteroids have dynamically unstable orbits, and their perihelia can change rapidly over their ~10 Myr lifetimes (de León et al., 2010), raising the possibility that other asteroids may have been rock comets in the past. Here, we propose using spectroscopic observations of mercury (Hg) as a tracer of an asteroid’s thermal metamorphic history, and therefore as a constraint on its minimum achieved perihelion distance.B-class asteroids such as Phaethon have an initial composition similar to aqueously altered primitive meteorites such as CI- or CM-type meteorites (Clark et al., 2010). Laboratory heating experiments of ~mm sized samples of carbonaceous chondrite meteorites from 300K to 1200K at a rate of 15K/minute show mobilization and volatilization of various labile elements at temperatures that could be reached by Mercury-crossing asteroids. Samples became rapidly depleted in labile elements and, in particular, lost ~75% of their Hg content when heated from ~500-700 K, which corresponds to heliocentric distances of ~0.15-0.3 au, consistent with our thermal models. Mercury has strong emission lines in the UV (~ 185 nm) and thus its presence (or absence) relative to carbonaceous chondrite abundances would indicate if these bodies had perihelia in their dynamical histories inside of 0.15 AU, and therefore may have previously been Phaethon-like rock comets. Future space telescopes or balloon-borne observing platforms equipped with a UV spectrometer could potentially detect the presence or absence of strong ultraviolet mercury lines on rock comets or rock

  1. Distant asteroids and Chiron

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    French, L.M.; Vilas, F.; Hartmann, W.K.; Tholen, D.J.

    1989-01-01

    Knowledge of the physical properties of distant asteroids (a>3.3 AU) has grown dramatically over the past five years, due to systematic compositional and lightcurve studies. Most of these objects have red, dark surfaces, and their spectra show a reddening in spectral slope with heliocentric distance implying a change in surface composition. Trojans for which near-opposition phase curve information is available appear to show little or no opposition effect, unlike any dark solar system objects. The lightcurve amplitudes of Trojan and Hilda asteroids imply significantly more elongated shapes for these groups than for main-belt asteroids of comparable size. These recent observations are reviewed in the context of their implications for the formation and subsequent evolution of the distant asteroids, and their interrelations with the main belt, Chiron and comets

  2. Origin of meteor swarms of the Arietid and Geminid types

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lebedinets, V.N.

    1985-01-01

    The author proposes a physical mechanism for the formation of meteor swarms on orbits of small size and very small perihelion distance, similar to the orbits of Arietid and Geminid meteor swarms, which are rarely encountered among the larger bodies of the solar system, and he justifies the mechanism mathematically. He shows that comets can transfer to such orbits from orbits of large size during evaporation of their ice nuclei under the action of reactive drag

  3. Comets and their composition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spinrad, H.

    1987-01-01

    Recent theoretical and observational studies of comets are reviewed, with an emphasis on in situ data from spacecraft encounters with P/Giacobini-Zinner (September 1985) and P/Halley (March 1986). Topics addressed include clues on the origin and permanence of the Oort cometary cloud, observations of cometary nuclei far from the sun, the Halley nucleus, compositional and physical data from comae studies, and the parent molecules in comet ices. Also discussed are quantitative analyses of coma production; special features in the tail of P/Giacobini-Zinner; and proposals for (1) observations to detect distant giant comets, (2) high-resolution spectroscopic studies of comae, and (3) additional spacecraft missions such as the NASA Comet Rendezvous and Asteroid Flyby. 121 references

  4. Meteor Beliefs Project: Shakespeare revisited and the Elizabethan stage's `blazing star'

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gheorghe, Andrei Dorian; McBeath, Alastair

    2007-06-01

    Some fresh Shakespearean citations of meteors, further to those given previously in the Project, are presented, along with a discussion of the Elizabethan stage's use of the `blazing star', with especial reference to the great comet of 1577.

  5. Meteor observation by the Kyoto meteor radar

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kato, S.; Tsuda, T.

    1987-01-01

    The Kyoto Meteor Radar is a monostatic coherent pulsed Doppler radar operating on the frequency of 31.57 MH. The system is computer controlled and uses radio interferometry for echo height determination. The antenna, an improvement, can be directed either to the north or the east. The system has been continuously collecting data on winds at meteor heights by radar observation. The meteor echo rate was also measured, the echo rate distribution with height and the daily variation in height integrated echo rate are discussed. Investigations of atmospheric tides are being pursued by cooperative observations. A novel approach to the study of gravity waves was attempted using the meteor radar which is able to detect the horizontal propagation of the waves by observing the changing phase through the region illuminated by the radar

  6. Incoming asteroid! what could we do about it?

    CERN Document Server

    Lunan, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    Lately there have been more and more news stories on objects from space – such as asteroids, comets, and meteors – whizzing past Earth. One even exploded in the atmosphere over a Russian city in 2012, causing real damage and injuries. Impacts are not uncommon in our Solar System, even on Earth, and people are beginning to realize that we must prepare for such an event here on Earth.   What if we knew there was going to be an impact in 10 years’ time? What could we do? It’s not so far in the future that we can ignore the threat, and not so soon that nothing could be done. The author and his colleagues set out to explore how they could turn aside a rock asteroid, one kilometer in diameter, within this 10-year timescale.   Having set themselves this challenge, they identified the steps that might be taken, using technologies that are currently under development or proposed. They considered an unmanned mission, a follow-up manned mission, and a range of final options, along with ways to reduce the worst...

  7. Periodic Comet Machholz and its idiosyncrasies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sekanina, Z.

    1990-01-01

    The dynamics and physical characteristics of Comet P/Machholz are analyzed. The discovery of the comet (Machholz, 1986) is discussed, including the observational conditions and the theory that the comet is inactive over extensive periods of time. Consideration is given to observations of the two tails of Comet P/Machholz (Emerson, 1986), the brightness variations and light curve of the comet, and nuclear photometry of the comet (Green, 1987). It is suggested that the increase in activity beginning one day after perihelion was triggered by a discrete source within 15 deg of the rotation pole that became sunlit after perihelion. Also, the possibility that Comet P/Machholz is associated with a meteor stream is examined. 45 refs

  8. 3D Imaging Cubesat Lidar for Asteroid and Planetary Sciences, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA is actively pursuing guidance and control light detection and ranging (lidar) systems for upcoming exploration missions including asteroid, comet, planet, and...

  9. 2015 Barcelona Asteroid Day

    CERN Document Server

    Gritsevich, Maria; Palme, Herbert

    2017-01-01

    This volume is a compilation of the research presented at the International Asteroid Day workshop which was celebrated at Barcelona on June 30th, 2015. The proceedings discuss the beginning of a new era in the study and exploration of the solar system’s minor bodies. International Asteroid Day commemorates the Tunguska event of June 30th, 1908. The workshop’s goal was to promote the importance of dealing proactively with impact hazards from space. Multidisciplinary experts contributed to this discussion by describing the nature of comets and asteroids along with their offspring, meteoroids. New missions to return material samples of asteroids back to Earth such as Osiris-REx and Hayabusa 2, as well as projects like AIM and DART which will test impact deflection techniques for Potentially Hazardous Asteroids encounters were also covered. The proceedings include both an outreach level to popularize impact hazards and a scientific character which covers the latest knowledge on these topics, as well as offeri...

  10. Asteroid Composite Tape

    Science.gov (United States)

    1998-07-01

    This is a composite tape showing 10 short segments primarily about asteroids. The segments have short introductory slides, which include brief descriptions about the shots. The segments are: (1) Radar movie of asteroid 1620 Geographos; (2) Animation of the trajectories of Toutatis and Earth (3) Animation of a landing on Toutatis; (4) Simulated encounter of an asteroid with Earth, includes a simulated impact trajectory; (5) An animated overview of the Manrover vehicle; (6) The Near Earth Asteroid Tracking project, includes a photograph of USAF Station in Hawaii, and animation of Earth approaching 4179 Toutatis and the asteroid Gaspara; (7) live video of the anchor tests of the Champoleon anchoring apparatus; (8) a second live video of the Champoleon anchor tests showing anchoring spikes, and collision rings; (9) An animated segment with narration about the Stardust mission with sound, which describes the mission to fly close to a comet, and capture cometary material for return to Earth; (10) live video of the drop test of a Stardust replica from a hot air balloon; this includes sound but is not narrated.

  11. Survival of Glycolaldehyde and Production of Sugar Compounds via Comet Impact Delivery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zellner, N.; McCaffrey, V.; Crake, C.; Butler, J.; Robbins, J.; Fodor, A.

    2017-12-01

    Impact experiments using glycolaldehyde (GLA), a two-carbon sugar precursor that has been detected in regions of the interstellar medium and on comets, have been conducted at the Experimental Impact Laboratory at NASA's Johnson Space Center. Samples of GLA and GLA mixed with montmorillonite clays were subjected to the pressure conditions that are found during impact delivery of biomolecules by comets, asteroids, or meteors; pressures ranged from 4.5 GPa to 25 GPa. Results show that large amounts of GLA survived the impacts and moderate amounts of threose, erythrose, and glycolic acid were produced in these impacts. Total amounts are dependent on impact pressure. Ethylene glycol, a reduced variant of GLA that has also been detected in the interstellar medium and on comets, was also produced. The results of these experimental impacts provide evidence that large amounts of GLA, EG, and other biomolecules were available on habitable moons or planets, especially during the era of late heavy bombardment ( 4.2 to 3.7 billion years ago) when life may have been developing on Earth. The presence and availability of these biomolecules, under appropriate conditions, may be important for understanding the origin of life as we know it. Glycolaldehyde in particular, may be an important molecule in the production of ribose, the five-carbon sugar in RNA.

  12. Meteor researches at KHNURE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolomiyets, Svitlana V.; Voloshchuk, Yuri I.; Kashcheyev, Boris L.; Slipchenko, Nikolay I.

    2005-01-01

    The Scientific Educational Center of Radioengineering of the Kharkiv National University of Radioelectronics (KHNURE: ) is one of the oldest radar meteor centers which was founded by B. L. Kashcheyev in 1958. The first automatic meteor radar system in Ukraine “MARS” is connected with our University. There are long-term observational series of meteor rates and orbital data in the Center. Fields of the KHNURE researches are: a structure of meteor showers a determination of meteoroid orbits an influx of cosmic rubbish in the Earth atmosphere search of parental bodies of meteoroids a statistic analysis of measurement results of radiometeors an estimation of errors of meteor radar measurements a search for real hyperbolic orbits and interstellar meteoroids. KHNURE disposes a unique electronic orbital catalogue. This catalogue contains the primary information velocities radiants and orbits of nearly 250000 radiometeoroids with masses from 0.001 to 0.000001 g. The “MARS” registered these data during observations of 1972 1978. From these data 5160 meteor streams are singled out. New classification of streams is made in view of their structure. The study of meteor stream orbits from the KHNURE data bank allow to predict orbits of a big number of undiscovered “dangerous” NEOs.

  13. Meteoroid Streams from Sunskirter Comet Breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenniskens, P. M.

    2012-12-01

    In its first year of operations, the CAMS project (Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance) has measured 47,000 meteoroid orbits at Earth, including some that pass the Sun as close as 0.008 AU. The population density increases significantly above perihelion distance q = 0.037 AU. Meteoroid streams are known with q about 0.1 AU. The Sun has a profound effect on comets that pass at 0.04-0.16 AU distance, called the sunskirter comets. SOHO and STEREO see families of small comets called the Marsden and Kracht groups. Sunlight is efficiently scattered by small 10-m sized fragments, making those fragments visible even when far from Earth. These comet groups are associated with meteor showers on Earth, in particular the Daytime Arietids and Delta Aquariids. All are related to 96P/Machholz, a highly inclined short-period (5.2 year) Jupiter family comet that comes to within 0.12 AU from the Sun, the smallest perihelion distance known among numbered comets. The proximity of the Sun speeds up the disintegration process, providing us a unique window on this important decay mechanism of Jupiter family comets and creating meteoroid streams. These are not the only sunskirting comets, however. In this presentation, we will present CAMS observations of the complete low-q meteoroid population at Earth and review their association with known parent bodies.

  14. Observing comets

    CERN Document Server

    James, Nick

    2003-01-01

    Since comet Shoemaker-Levy collided with the planet Jupiter with stupendous force in 1994 there has been an upsurge of amateur interest in comets Most comets are first discovered by amateur astronomers because there are so many amateurs looking for them, and techniques and instruments have improved dramatically in the past few years After a short but detailed introduction to the comets themselves Nick James and Gerald North describe comet hunting, photographing and imaging comets, and digital image processing The use of computers for orbital calculations and even helping to discover new comets is given a full chapter, as are advanced techniques including comet photometry and spectroscopy This comprehensive book has an accompanying CD-ROM and is at once a "primer" for comet hunters and a reference text for more advanced amateur astronomers

  15. Asteroid team

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matson, D.L.

    1988-01-01

    The purpose of this task is to support asteroid research and the operation of an Asteroid Team within the Earth and Space Sciences Division at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The Asteroid Team carries out original research on asteroids in order to discover, better characterize and define asteroid properties. This information is needed for the planning and design of NASA asteroid flyby and rendezvous missions. The asteroid Team also provides scientific and technical advice to NASA and JPL on asteroid related programs. Work on asteroid classification continued and the discovery of two Earth-approaching M asteroids was published. In the asteroid photometry program researchers obtained N or Q photometry for more than 50 asteroids, including the two M-earth-crossers. Compositional analysis of infrared spectra (0.8 to 2.6 micrometer) of asteroids is continuing. Over the next year the work on asteroid classification and composition will continue with the analysis of the 60 reduced infrared spectra which we now have at hand. The radiometry program will continue with the reduction of the N and Q bandpass data for the 57 asteroids in order to obtain albedos and diameters. This year the emphasis will shift to IRAS follow-up observations; which includes objects not observed by IRAS and objects with poor or peculiar IRAS data. As in previous year, we plan to give top priority to any opportunities for observing near-Earth asteroids and the support (through radiometric lightcurve observations from the IRTF) of any stellar occultations by asteroids for which occultation observation expeditions are fielded. Support of preparing of IRAS data for publication and of D. Matson for his participation in the NASA Planetary Astronomy Management and Operations Working Group will continue

  16. Asteroid team

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matson, D. L.

    1988-01-01

    The purpose of this task is to support asteroid research and the operation of an Asteroid Team within the Earth and Space Sciences Division at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The Asteroid Team carries out original research on asteroids in order to discover, better characterize and define asteroid properties. This information is needed for the planning and design of NASA asteroid flyby and rendezvous missions. The asteroid Team also provides scientific and technical advice to NASA and JPL on asteroid related programs. Work on asteroid classification continued and the discovery of two Earth-approaching M asteroids was published. In the asteroid photometry program researchers obtained N or Q photometry for more than 50 asteroids, including the two M-earth-crossers. Compositional analysis of infrared spectra (0.8 to 2.6 micrometer) of asteroids is continuing. Over the next year the work on asteroid classification and composition will continue with the analysis of the 60 reduced infrared spectra which we now have at hand. The radiometry program will continue with the reduction of the N and Q bandpass data for the 57 asteroids in order to obtain albedos and diameters. This year the emphasis will shift to IRAS follow-up observations; which includes objects not observed by IRAS and objects with poor or peculiar IRAS data. As in previous year, we plan to give top priority to any opportunities for observing near-Earth asteroids and the support (through radiometric lightcurve observations from the IRTF) of any stellar occultations by asteroids for which occultation observation expeditions are fielded. Support of preparing of IRAS data for publication and of D. Matson for his participation in the NASA Planetary Astronomy Management and Operations Working Group will continue.

  17. Radar observations of asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ostro, S.J.

    1989-01-01

    This paper describes echoes from 33 main-belt asteroids (MBAs) and 19 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) have provided a wealth of new information about these objects such as sizes, shapes, spin vectors, and such surface characteristics as decimeter-scale morphology, topographic relief, regolith porosity and metal concentrations. On average, small NEAs are much rougher at decimeter scales than MBAs, comets or terrestrial planets. Some of the largest MBAs (e.g., 1 Ceres and 2 Pallas ) are smoother than the moon at decimeter scales but much rougher than the Moon at some much larger scale. There is at least a five-fold variation in the radar albedos of MBAs, implying substantial variations in the surface porosities or metal concentrations of these objects. The highest MBA albedo estimate, for 16 Psyche, is consistent with a metal concentration near unity and lunar porosities

  18. Mine Planning for Asteroid Orebodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gertsch, L. S.; Gertsch, R. E.

    2000-01-01

    Given that an asteroid (or comet) has been determined to contain sufficient material of value to be potentially economic to exploit, a mining method must be selected and implemented. This paper discusses the engineering necessary to bring a mine online, and the opportunities and challenges inherent in asteroid mineral prospects. The very important step of orebody characterization is discussed elsewhere. The mining methods discussed here are based on enclosing the asteroid within a bag in some fashion, whether completely or partially. In general, asteroid mining methods based on bags will consist of the following steps. Not all will be required in every case, nor necessarily in this particular sequence. Some steps will be performed simultaneously. Their purpose is to extract the valuable material from the body of the asteroid in the most efficient, cost-effective manner possible. In approximate order of initiation, if not of conclusion, the steps are: 1. Tether anchoring to the asteroid. 2. Asteroid motion control. 3. Body/fragment restraint system placement. 4. Operations platform construction. 5. Bag construction. 6. Auxiliary and support equipment placement. 7. Mining operations. 8. Processing operations. 9. Product transport to markets.

  19. ``Hiss, clicks and pops'' - The enigmatic sounds of meteors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finnegan, J. A.

    2015-04-01

    The improbability of sounds heard simultaneously with meteors allows the phenomenon to remain on the margins of scientific interest and research. This is unjustified, since these audibly perceived electric field effects indicate complex, inconsistent and still unresolved electric-magnetic coupling and charge dynamics; interacting between the meteor; the ionosphere and mesosphere; stratosphere; troposphere and the surface of the earth. This paper reviews meteor acoustic effects, presents illustrating reports and hypotheses and includes a summary of similar and additional phenomena observed during the 2013 February 15 asteroid fragment disintegration above the Russian district of Chelyabinsk. An augmenting theory involving near ground, non uniform electric field production of Ozone, as a stimulated geo-physical phenomenon to explain some hissing `meteor sounds' is suggested in section 2.2. Unlike previous theories, electric-magnetic field fluctuation rates are not required to occur in the audio frequency range for this process to acoustically emit hissing and intermittent impulsive sounds; removing the requirements of direct conversion, passive human transduction or excited, localised acoustic `emitters'. Links to the Armagh Observatory All-sky meteor cameras, electrophonic meteor research and full construction plans for an extremely low frequency (ELF) receiver are also included.

  20. Detection of the Phoenicids meteor shower in 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Mikiya; Watanabe, Jun-ichi; Tsuchiya, Chie; Moorhead, Althea V.; Moser, Danielle E.; Brown, Peter G.; Cooke, William J.

    2017-09-01

    An appearance of the Phoenicids meteor shower was predicted in 2014 by using a dust trail simulation of an outburst of 1956. We detected Phoenicids meteors on December 2 through multiple observation methods. The NASA All Sky Fireball Network and the Southern Ontario Meteor Network detected five meteors of Phoenicids via video observation. The Canadian Meteor Orbit Radar (CMOR) found fourteen candidate meteors, eight of which were confirmed as Phoenicids. The observed radiant point is consistent with that of our model predictions. In addition to the above observations, a visual observation was carried out by the Japanese team near the Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos (ORM) of Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias (IAC) in La Palma Island. The obtained zenithal hourly rate (ZHR) was 16.4±4.9. The maximum ZHR was roughly estimated to be between 20 and 30, which indicates that the cometary activity of parent object 289P/Blanpain in the early 20th century was only about one fifth or one eighth as high as its activity in the late 18th and early 19th century. Accordingly, it seems to be the case that 289P/Blanpain is gradually transforming from a comet to a dormant object.

  1. Spectral properties of near-Earth asteroids on cometary orbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popescu, M.; Vaduvescu, O.; de Leon, J.; Boaca, I. L.; Gherase, R. M.; Nedelcu, D. A.; INT students, I. N. G.

    2017-09-01

    We studied the spectral distributions of near-Earth asteroids on cometary orbits (NEACOs) in order to identify potential dormant or extinct comets among these objects. We present the spectral observations for 19 NEACOs obtained with Isaac Newton Telescope and Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF). Although initially classified as asteroid, one of our targets - 2007 VA85 was confirmed to be active comet 333P/LINEAR on its 2016 appearance. We found that the NEACOs population is a mixing of different compositional classes.

  2. Origin of Short-Perihelion Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guliyev, A. S.

    2011-01-01

    New regularities for short-perihelion comets are found. Distant nodes of cometary orbits of Kreutz family are concentrated in a plane with ascending node 76 and inclination 267 at the distance from 2 up to 3 a.u. and in a very narrow interval of longitudes. There is a correlation dependence between q and cos I concerning the found plane (coefficient of correlation 0.41). Similar results are received regarding to cometary families of Meyer, Kracht and Marsden. Distant nodes of these comets are concentrated close three planes (their parameters are discussed in the article) and at distances 1.4; 0.5; 6 a.u. accordingly. It is concluded that these comet groups were formed as a result of collision of parent bodies with meteoric streams. One more group, consisting of 7 comets is identified. 5 comet pairs are selected among sungrazers.

  3. New meteor showers – yes or not?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koukal, Jakub

    2018-01-01

    The development of meteor astronomy associated with the development of CCD technology is reflected in a huge increase in databases of meteor orbits. It has never been possible before in the history of meteor astronomy to examine properties of meteors or meteor showers. Existing methods for detecting new meteor showers seem to be inadequate in these circumstances. The spontaneous discovery of new meteor showers leads to ambiguous specifications of new meteor showers. There is a duplication of already discovered meteor showers and a division of existing meteor showers based on their own criteria. The analysis in this article considers some new meteor showers in the IAU MDC database.

  4. Atmospheric trajectories and light curves of shower meteors

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Koten, Pavel; Borovička, Jiří; Spurný, Pavel; Betlem, H.; Evans, S.

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 428, č. 2 (2004), s. 683-690 ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP205/02/P038; GA ČR GA205/02/0982; GA ČR GA205/03/1404 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : meteors * meteoroids * general-comets Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.694, year: 2004

  5. Photometry of faint asteroids and satellites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Degewij, J.

    1978-01-01

    The smaller asteroids, having diameters of about 1 km, appear to rotate faster than do the larger asteroids (approximately 200 km diameter). Most of the bodies may be nearly spherical, probably due to a collisional erosion process in the Main Belt of asteroids. The distributions of diameter versus number were studied for low albedo (C, for carbonaceous) and high albedo (S, for silicaceous) type asteroids in the main belt, down to diameters of 25 km. Among the smaller bodies the S type asteroids are relatively more abundant, probably due to greater crushing strength for S type asteroids. This indicates that both optical types have also different properties in the interior of the body. Areas with slightly different reflectivity over the surface of an asteroid were detected; the rotational light variation of asteroid 4 (Vesta) was found to be caused by spots on its surface. Colorimetry and infrared radiometry of some Hilda asteroids, Trojans and the fainter satellites of Jupiter and Saturn, all having diameters between 100 and 200 km, show that a mixture of types exist. If some asteroids are nearly expended nuclei of comets that lost most of their volatile gaseous material, then their cometary activity is expected to be extinct or at least weak. (Auth.)

  6. Earth-approaching asteroids: Populations, origin, and compositional types

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoemaker, E. M.; Helin, E. F.

    1978-01-01

    Origin, physical properties, and discovery history of smaller asteroids are reviewed. They appear to link the main belt objects, namely the comets and meteorites. Physical observations suggest that a wide variety of compositional types are represented among the near-earth asteroids; the apparent rarity of carbonaceous objects is stated.

  7. The "silent world" of Comet 15P/Finlay

    CERN Document Server

    Beech, M; Jones, J

    1999-01-01

    Comet 15P/Finlay is unusual in that, contrary to ab initio expectations, it demonstrates no apparent linkage to any known meteor shower. Using data contained within the Electronic Atlas of Dynamical Evolutions of Short-Period Comets, the authors evaluate theoretical shower radiants for Comet 15P/Finlay, but find no evidence to link it to any meteoric anomalies in recorded antiquity. This result, however, must be tempered by the fact that any Comet 15P/Finlay- derived meteoroids will have a low, 16 km s/sup -1/, encounter velocity with Earth's atmosphere. Typically, therefore, one would expect mostly faint meteors to be produced during an encounter with a Comet 15P/Finlay-derived meteoroid stream. they have conducted a D- criterion survey of meteoroid orbits derived from three southern hemisphere meteor radar surveys conducted during the 1960s, and again they find no evidence for any Comet 15P/Finlay-related activity. Numerical calculations following the orbital evolution of hypothetical meteoroids ejected fro...

  8. Photoacoustic Sounds from Meteors.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Spalding, Richard E. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Tencer, John [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Sweatt, William C. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Hogan, Roy E. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Boslough, Mark B. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Spurny, Pavel [Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (ASCR), Prague (Czech Republic)

    2015-03-01

    High-speed photometric observations of meteor fireballs have shown that they often produce high-amplitude light oscillations with frequency components in the kHz range, and in some cases exhibit strong millisecond flares. We built a light source with similar characteristics and illuminated various materials in the laboratory, generating audible sounds. Models suggest that light oscillations and pulses can radiatively heat dielectric materials, which in turn conductively heats the surrounding air on millisecond timescales. The sound waves can be heard if the illuminated material is sufficiently close to the observer’s ears. The mechanism described herein may explain many reports of meteors that appear to be audible while they are concurrently visible in the sky and too far away for sound to have propagated to the observer. This photoacoustic (PA) explanation provides an alternative to electrophonic (EP) sounds hypothesized to arise from electromagnetic coupling of plasma oscillation in the meteor wake to natural antennas in the vicinity of an observer.

  9. The EISCAT meteor code

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Wannberg

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available The EISCAT UHF system has the unique capability to determine meteor vector velocities from the head echo Doppler shifts measured at the three sites. Since even meteors spending a very short time in the common volume produce analysable events, the technique lends itself ideally to mapping the orbits of meteors arriving from arbitrary directions over most of the upper hemisphere. A radar mode optimised for this application was developed in 2001/2002. A specially selected low-sidelobe 32-bit pseudo-random binary sequence is used to binary phase shift key (BPSK the transmitted carrier. The baud-length is 2.4 μs and the receiver bandwidth is 1.6 MHz to accommodate both the resulting modulation bandwidth and the target Doppler shift. Sampling is at 0.6 μs, corresponding to 90-m range resolution. Target range and Doppler velocity are extracted from the raw data in a multi-step matched-filter procedure. For strong (SNR>5 events the Doppler velocity standard deviation is 100–150 m/s. The effective range resolution is about 30 m, allowing very accurate time-of-flight velocity estimates. On average, Doppler and time-of-flight (TOF velocities agree to within about one part in 103. Two or more targets simultaneously present in the beam can be resolved down to a range separation <300 m as long as their Doppler shifts differ by more than a few km/s.

  10. Asteroid taxonomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tholen, D.J.

    1989-01-01

    The spectral reflectivity of asteroid surfaces over the wavelength range of 0.3 to 1.1 μm can be used to classify these objects onto several broad groups with similar spectral characteristics. The three most recently developed taxonomies group the asteroids into 9, 11 or 14 different classes, depending on the technique used to perform the analysis. The distribution of the taxonomic classes shows that darker and redder objects become more dominant at larger heliocentric distances, while the rare asteroid types are found more frequently among the small objects of the planet-crossing population

  11. Comments on comet shapes and aggregation processes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hartmann, W.K.

    1989-01-01

    An important question for a comet mission is whether comet nuclei preserve information clarifying aggregation processes of planetary matter. New observational evidence shows that Trojan asteroids, as a group, display a higher fraction of highly-elongated objects than the belt. More recently evidence has accumulated that comet nuclei, as a group, also display highly-elongated shapes at macro-scale. This evidence comes from the several comets whose nuclear lightcurves or shapes have been well studied. Trojans and comet nuclei share other properties. Both groups have extremely low albedos and reddish-to neutral-black colors typical of asteroids of spectral class D, P, and C. Both groups may have had relatively low collision frequencies. An important problem to resolve with spacecraft imaging is whether these elongated shapes are primordial, or due to evolution of the objects. Two hypotheses that might be tested by a combination of global-scale and close-up imaging from various directions are: (1) The irregular shapes are primordial and related to the fact that these bodies have had lower collision frequencies than belt asteroids; or (2) The irregular shapes may be due to volatile loss

  12. Meteors in Australian Aboriginal Dreamings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamacher, Duane W.; Norris, Ray P.

    2010-06-01

    We present a comprehensive analysis of Australian Aboriginal accounts of meteors. The data used were taken from anthropological and ethnographic literature describing oral traditions, ceremonies, and Dreamings of 97 Aboriginal groups representing all states of modern Australia. This revealed common themes in the way meteors were viewed between Aboriginal groups, focusing on supernatural events, death, omens, and war. The presence of such themes around Australia was probably due to the unpredictable nature of meteors in an otherwise well-ordered cosmos.

  13. Atmospheric deceleration and light curves of Draconid meteors and implications for the structure of cometary dust

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Borovička, Jiří; Spurný, Pavel; Koten, Pavel

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 473, č. 2 (2007), s. 661-672 ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/05/0543; GA AV ČR KJB300030502 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : meteor * meteoroid * comet Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2007

  14. The EISCAT meteor code

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Wannberg

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available The EISCAT UHF system has the unique capability to determine meteor vector velocities from the head echo Doppler shifts measured at the three sites. Since even meteors spending a very short time in the common volume produce analysable events, the technique lends itself ideally to mapping the orbits of meteors arriving from arbitrary directions over most of the upper hemisphere.

    A radar mode optimised for this application was developed in 2001/2002. A specially selected low-sidelobe 32-bit pseudo-random binary sequence is used to binary phase shift key (BPSK the transmitted carrier. The baud-length is 2.4 μs and the receiver bandwidth is 1.6 MHz to accommodate both the resulting modulation bandwidth and the target Doppler shift. Sampling is at 0.6 μs, corresponding to 90-m range resolution. Target range and Doppler velocity are extracted from the raw data in a multi-step matched-filter procedure. For strong (SNR>5 events the Doppler velocity standard deviation is 100–150 m/s. The effective range resolution is about 30 m, allowing very accurate time-of-flight velocity estimates. On average, Doppler and time-of-flight (TOF velocities agree to within about one part in 103. Two or more targets simultaneously present in the beam can be resolved down to a range separation <300 m as long as their Doppler shifts differ by more than a few km/s.

  15. International Halley watch amateur observers' manual for scientific comet studies. Part 1: Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edberg, S. J.

    1983-01-01

    The International Halley Watch is described as well as comets and observing techniques. Information on periodic Comet Halley's apparition for its 1986 perihelion passage is provided. Instructions are given for observation projects valuable to the International Halley Watch in six areas of study: (1) visual observations; (2) photography; (3) astrometry; (4) spectroscopic observations; (5) photoelectric photometry; and (6) meteor observations.

  16. Meteor Beliefs Project: Meteoric references in Ovid's Metamorphoses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gheorghe, A. D.; McBeath, A.

    2003-10-01

    Three sections of Ovid's Metamorphoses are examined, providing further information on meteoric beliefs in ancient Roman times. These include meteoric imagery among the portents associated with the death of Julius Caesar, which we mentioned previously from the works of William Shakespeare (McBeath and Gheorghe, 2003b).

  17. Asteroid families, dynamics and astrometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Williams, J.G.; Gibson, J.

    1987-01-01

    The proper elements and family assignments for the 1227 Palomar-Leiden Survey asteroids of high quality were tabulated. In addition to the large table, there are also auxiliary tables of Mars crossers and commensurate objects, histograms of the proper element distributions, and a discussion. Probably the most important part of the discussion describes the Mars crossing boundary, how the closest distances of approach to Mars and Jupiter are calculated, and why the observed population of Mars crossers should bombard that planet episodically rather than uniformly. Analytical work was done to derive velocity distributions of family forming events from proper element distributions subject to assumptions which may be appropriate for cratering events. Software was developed for a microcomputer to permit plotting of the proper elements. Three orthogonal views are generated and stereo pairs can be printed when desired. This program was created for the study of asteroid families. The astrometry task is directed toward measuring and reducing positions on faint comets and the minor planets with less common orbits. The observational material is CCD frames taken with the Palomar 1.5 m telescope. Positions of 10 comets and 16 different asteroids were published on the Minor Planet Circulars

  18. Asteroid Satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merline, W. J.

    2001-11-01

    Discovery and study of small satellites of asteroids or double asteroids can yield valuable information about the intrinsic properties of asteroids themselves and about their history and evolution. Determination of the orbits of these moons can provide precise masses of the primaries, and hence reliable estimates of the fundamental property of bulk density. This reveals much about the composition and structure of the primary and will allow us to make comparisons between, for example, asteroid taxonomic type and our inventory of meteorites. The nature and prevalence of these systems will also give clues as to the collisional environment in which they formed, and have further implications for the role of collisions in shaping our solar system. A decade ago, binary asteroids were more of a theoretical curiosity. In 1993, the Galileo spacecraft allowed the first undeniable detection of an asteroid moon, with the discovery of Dactyl, a small moon of Ida. Since that time, and particularly in the last year, the number of known binaries has risen dramatically. Previously odd-shaped and lobate near-Earth asteroids, observed by radar, have given way to signatures indicating, almost certainly, that at least four NEAs are binary systems. The tell-tale lightcurves of several other NEAs reveal a high likelihood of being double. Indications are that among the NEAs, there may be a binary frequency of several tens of percent. Among the main-belt asteroids, we now know of 6 confirmed binary systems, although their overall frequency is likely to be low, perhaps a few percent. The detections have largely come about because of significant advances in adaptive optics systems on large telescopes, which can now reduce the blurring of the Earth's atmosphere to compete with the spatial resolution of space-based imaging (which itself, via HST, is now contributing valuable observations). Most of these binary systems have similarities, but there are important exceptions. Searches among other

  19. Low-Gravity Centrifuge Facilities for Asteroid Lander and Material Processing and Manufacturing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asphaug, E.; Thangavelautham, J.; Schwartz, S.

    2018-02-01

    We are developing space centrifuge research facilities for attaining low-gravity to micro-gravity geological environmental conditions representative of the environment on the surfaces of asteroids and comets.

  20. Extra Low-Gear: A Micro-Gravity Laboratory to Simulate Asteroid Surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheeres, D. J.; Sánchez, P.; Dissly, R. W.; Asphaug, E. I.; Housen, K. R.; Swift, M. R.; Yano, H.; Roark, S. E.; Soto, J. C.

    2009-03-01

    The conceptual design and application of a low-speed centrifuge for carrying out milli to micro-G gravity experiments to simulate the granular nature of the surface and interiors of asteroids and comets is described.

  1. Tumbling asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Harris, A. W.; Scheirich, Peter; Kušnirák, Peter; Kotková, Lenka; Hergenrother, C.; Mottola, S.; Hicks, M. D.; Masi, G.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Shevchenko, V. G.; Nolan, M. C.; Howell, E. S.; Kaasalainen, M.; Galád, Adrián; Brown, P.; DeGraff, D. R.; Lambert, J.V.; Cooney, W.R.; Foglia, S.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 1, č. 173 (2005), s. 108-131 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003204 Keywords : near-Earth objects * fast-rotating asteroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.244, year: 2005

  2. Dust bands in the asteroid belt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sykes, M.V.; Greenberg, R.; Dermott, S.F.; Nicholson, P.D.; Burns, J.A.

    1989-01-01

    This paper describes the original IRAS observations leading to the discovery of the three dust bands in the asteroid belt and the analysis of data. Special attention is given to an analytical model of the dust band torus and to theories concerning the origin of the dust bands, with special attention given to the collisional equilibrium (asteroid family), the nonequilibrium (random collision), and the comet hypotheses of dust-band origin. It is noted that neither the equilibrium nor nonequilibrium models, as currently formulated, present a complete picture of the IRAS dust-band observations. 32 refs

  3. COMET concept

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alsmeyer, H.; Tromm, W.

    1995-01-01

    Studies of the COMET core catcher concept developed for a future PWR have been continued. The concept is based on the spreading of a core melt on a sacrificial layer and its erosion, until a subsequent addition of water from below causes a fragmentation of the melt. A porous solidification of the melt would then admit a complete flooding within a short period. (orig.)

  4. Meteor showers an annotated catalog

    CERN Document Server

    Kronk, Gary W

    2014-01-01

    Meteor showers are among the most spectacular celestial events that may be observed by the naked eye, and have been the object of fascination throughout human history. In “Meteor Showers: An Annotated Catalog,” the interested observer can access detailed research on over 100 annual and periodic meteor streams in order to capitalize on these majestic spectacles. Each meteor shower entry includes details of their discovery, important observations and orbits, and gives a full picture of duration, location in the sky, and expected hourly rates. Armed with a fuller understanding, the amateur observer can better view and appreciate the shower of their choice. The original book, published in 1988, has been updated with over 25 years of research in this new and improved edition. Almost every meteor shower study is expanded, with some original minor showers being dropped while new ones are added. The book also includes breakthroughs in the study of meteor showers, such as accurate predictions of outbursts as well ...

  5. COMET concept; COMET-Konzept

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alsmeyer, H.; Tromm, W.

    1995-08-01

    Studies of the COMET core catcher concept developed for a future PWR have been continued. The concept is based on the spreading of a core melt on a sacrificial layer and its erosion, until a subsequent addition of water from below causes a fragmentation of the melt. A porous solidification of the melt would then admit a complete flooding within a short period. (orig.)

  6. Colour, albedo and nucleus size of Halley's comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cruikshank, D. P.; Tholen, D. J.; Hartmann, W. K.

    1985-01-01

    Photometry of Halley's comet in the B, J, V, and K broadband filters during a time when the coma was very weak and presumed to contribute negligibly to the broadband photometry is reported. The V-J and J-K colors suggest that the color of the nucleus of Halley's comet is similar to that of the D-type asteroids, which in turn suggests that the surface of the nucleus has an albedo less than 0.1.

  7. ISO's analysis of Comet Hale-Bopp

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-03-01

    of the comet's dust and vapour, and also rates of escape of vapour, which will help in assessing the loss of material from Comet Hale-Bopp during this visit to the Sun's vicinity. "Watch out for some fascinating news," says Thijs de Graauw of Groningen University, who is in charge of the SWS instrument used in this study. "What excites me is the opportunity we shall have to compare dusty Comet Hale-Bopp, seen in the Solar System, with dusty objects far away among the stars which seem to be made of similar materials. Infrared astronomy has a special ability to unify cosmic chemistry at all scales from little dust grains in the Earth's vicinity to vast and distant galaxies." The dust itself interests the infrared astronomers, not least because their view of the Universe at large is spoiled to some extent by dust left behind by comets. Together with fine debris from asteroids, the comet dust makes a bright infrared band around the sky, which corresponds with the zodiacal light sometimes seen by eye, slanting above the horizon at twilight. ISO's predecessor, the US-Dutch-UK infrared astronomical satellite IRAS, found trails of comet dust much longer and more persistent than the familiar comet tails. ISO has seen a trail from Comet Kopff. By detecting dust grains that are typically much larger than those seen by visible light, ISO scientists hope to learn more about the dust's long-term behaviour in the Solar System. A series of images of Comet Hale-Bopp, obtained by the camera ISOCAM in October 1996, is the subject of continuing analysis. Leading this work in progress is Philippe Lamy of Marseille, France. "We hope to unveil the nucleus of the comet," Professor Lamy explains. "In principle, the Hubble Space Telescope can see finer details by visible light, but the contrast of the nucleus against the bright surrounding coma is superior at infrared wavelengths. This is because the thermal emission from the nucleus is very large and can be detected thanks to the high

  8. Comet formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blum, J.

    2014-07-01

    There has been vast progress in our understanding of planetesimal formation over the past decades, owing to a number of laboratory experiments as well as to refined models of dust and ice agglomeration in protoplanetary disks. Coagulation rapidly forms cm-sized ''pebbles'' by direct sticking in collisions at low velocities (Güttler et al. 2010; Zsom et al. 2010). For the further growth, two model approaches are currently being discussed: (1) Local concentration of pebbles in nebular instabilities until gravitational instability occurs (Johansen et al. 2007). (2) A competition between fragmentation and mass transfer in collisions among the dusty bodies, in which a few ''lucky winners'' make it to planetesimal sizes (Windmark et al. 2012a,b; Garaud et al. 2013). Predictions of the physical properties of the resulting bodies in both models allow a distinction of the two formation scenarios of planetesimals. In particular, the tensile strength (i.e, the inner cohesion) of the planetesimals differ widely between the two models (Skorov & Blum 2012; Blum et al. 2014). While model (1) predicts tensile strengths on the order of ˜ 1 Pa, model (2) results in rather compactified dusty bodies with tensile strengths in the kPa regime. If comets are km-sized survivors of the planetesimal-formation era, they should in principle hold the secret of their formation process. Water ice is the prime volatile responsible for the activity of comets. Thermophysical models of the heat and mass transport close to the comet-nucleus surface predict water-ice sublimation temperatures that relate to maximum sublimation pressures well below the kPa regime predicted for formation scenario (2). Model (1), however, is in agreement with the observed dust and gas activity of comets. Thus, a formation scenario for cometesimals involving gravitational instability is favored (Blum et al. 2014).

  9. Orbits of the Asteroids Discovered at the Molėtai Observatory in 2000–2004

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Černis K.

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents statistics of the asteroids observed and discovered at the Molėtai Observatory, Lithuania in 2000–2004 within the project for astrometric observations of the near-Earth objects (NEOs, the main belt asteroids and comets. CCD observations of asteroids were obtained with the 35/51 cm Maksutov-type meniscus telescope and the 1.65 m Ritchey-Chretien reflector. In the Minor Planet Circulars and the Minor Planet Electronic Circulars (2000–2004 we published 6629 astrometric positions of 1114 asteroids. Among them 78 were newly discovered asteroids at Molėtai, a few NEOs were found by our team independently. For the 67 asteroids discovered at Molėtai the precise orbits were calculated. Because of small number of observations, a few asteroids have low-precision orbits and some asteroids have been lost. For seven objects we present their ephemerides for 2015.

  10. Search for OH(A–X) and detection of N2+(B–X) in ultraviolet meteor spectrum

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Abe, S.; Ebizuka, N.; Yano, H.; Watanabe, J.; Borovička, Jiří

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 39, č. 4 (2007), s. 538-543 ISSN 0273-1177 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : astrobiology * comets * meteors Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.774, year: 2007

  11. Galileo Photometry of Asteroid 951 Gaspra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helfenstein, P.; Veverka, J.; Thomas, P.C.; Simonelli, D.P.; Lee, P.; Klaasen, K.; Johnson, T.V.; Breneman, H.; Head, J.W.; Murchie, S.; Fanale, F.; Robinson, M.; Clark, B.; Granahan, J.; Garbeil, H.; McEwen, A.S.; Kirk, R.L.; Davies, M.; Neukum, G.; Mottola, S.; Wagner, R.; Belton, M.; Chapman, C.; Pilcher, C.

    1994-01-01

    Galileo images of Gaspra make it possible for the first time to determine a main-belt asteroid's photometric properties accurately by providing surface-resolved coverage over a wide range of incidence and emission angles and by extending the phase angle coverage to phases not observable from Earth. We combine Earth-based telescopic photometry over phase angles 2?? ??? ?? ??? 25?? with Galileo whole-disk and disk-resolved data at 33?? ??? ?? ??? 51?? to derive average global photometric properties in terms of Hapke's photometric model. The microscopic texture and particle phase-function behavior of Gaspra's surface are remarkably like those of other airless rocky bodies such as the Moon. The macroscopic surface roughness parameter, ??̄ = 29??, is slightly larger than that reported for typical lunar materials. The particle single scattering albedo, ??́0 = 0.36 ?? 0.07, is significantly larger than for lunar materials, and the opposition surge amplitude, B0 = 1.63 ?? 0.07, is correspondingly smaller. We determine a visual geometric albedo pv = 0.22 ?? 0.06 for Gaspra, in close agreement with pv = 0.22 ?? 0.03 estimated from Earth-based observations. Gaspra's phase integral is 0.47, and the bolometric Bond albedo is estimated to be 0.12 ?? 0.03. An albedo map derived by correcting Galileo images with our average global photometric function reveals subdued albedo contrasts of ??10% or less over Gaspra's northern hemisphere. Several independent classification algorithms confirm the subtle spectral heterogeneity reported earlier (S. Mottola, M. DiMartino, M. Gonano-Beurer, H. Hoffman, and G. Neukum, 1993, Asteroids, Comets, Meteors, pp. 421-424; M. J. S. Belton et al., 1992, Science 257, 1647-1652). Whole-disk colors (0.41 ??? ?? ??? 0.99 ??m) vary systematically with longitude by about ??5%, but color differences as large as 30% occur locally. Colors vary continuously between end-member materials whose areal distribution correlates with regional topography. Infrared

  12. Spiral arms, comets and terrestrial catastrophism

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clube, S.V.M.; Napier, W.M.

    1982-01-01

    A review is presented of an hypothesis of terrestrial catastrophism in which comets grow in molecular clouds and are captured by the Sun as it passes through the spiral arms of the Galaxy. Assuming that comets are a major supplier of the Earth-crossing (Appollo) asteroid population, the latter fluctuates correspondingly and leads to episodes of terrestrial bombardment. Changes in the rotational momentum of core and mantle, generated by impacts, lead to episodes of magnetic field reversal and tectonic activity, while surface phenomena lead to ice-ages and mass extinctions. An episodic geophysical history with an interstellar connection is thus implied. If comets in spiral arms are necessary intermediaries in the process of star formation, the theory also has implications relating to early solar system history and galactic chemistry. These aspects are briefly discussed with special reference to the nature of spiral arms. (author)

  13. SAFARI: Searching Asteroids For Activity Revealing Indicators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Anthony; Chandler, Colin Orion; Mommert, Michael; Sheppard, Scott; Trujillo, Chadwick A.

    2018-06-01

    We present results on one of the deepest and widest systematic searches for active asteroids, objects in the main-belt which behave dynamically like asteroids but display comet-like comae. This activity comes from a variety of sources, such as the sublimation of ices or rotational breakup, the former of which offers an opportunity to study a family of protoplanetary ices different than those seen in comets and Kuiper Belt objects. Indications of activity may be detected through visual or spectroscopic evidence of gas or dust emissions. However, these objects are still poorly understood, with only about 25 identified to date. We looked for activity indicators with a pipeline that examined ~35,000 deep images taken with the Dark Energy Camera (DECam) mounted on the 4-meter Blanco telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Our pipeline was configured to perform astrometry on DECam images and produce thumbnail images of known asteroids in the field to be examined by eye for signs of activity. We detected three previously identified active asteroids, one of which has shown repeated signs of activity in these data. Our proof of concept demonstrates 1) our novel informatics approach can locate active asteroids 2) DECam data are well suited to search for active asteroids. We will discuss the design structure of our pipeline, adjustments that had to be made for the specific dataset to improve performance, and the the significance of detecting activity in the main-belt. The authors acknowledge funding for this project through NSF grant number AST-1461200.

  14. Physical processes affecting the motion of small bodies in the solar system and their application to the evolution of meteor streams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Williams, I.P.

    1983-01-01

    In addition to planetary perturbations, the small particles which make up a meteor stream are subject to outward radiation pressure and the Poynting-Robertson effect. New particles can also be generated in a stream through being released from the nucleus of a comet. The author summarises the main physical effects, discusses models for meteor stream evolution and gives a brief account of the observational data available. (Auth.)

  15. Meteor Crater, AZ

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    The Barringer Meteorite Crater (also known as 'Meteor Crater') is a gigantic hole in the middle of the arid sandstone of the Arizona desert. A rim of smashed and jumbled boulders, some of them the size of small houses, rises 50 m above the level of the surrounding plain. The crater itself is nearly a 1500 m wide, and 180 m deep. When Europeans first discovered the crater, the plain around it was covered with chunks of meteoritic iron - over 30 tons of it, scattered over an area 12 to 15 km in diameter. Scientists now believe that the crater was created approximately 50,000 years ago. The meteorite which made it was composed almost entirely of nickel-iron, suggesting that it may have originated in the interior of a small planet. It was 50 m across, weighed roughly 300,000 tons, and was traveling at a speed of 65,000 km per hour. This ASTER 3-D perspective view was created by draping an ASTER bands 3-2-1image over a digital elevation model from the US Geological Survey National Elevation Dataset.This image was acquired on May 17, 2001 by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next 6 years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18,1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products. Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, is the U.S. Science team leader; Bjorn Eng of JPL is the project manager. ASTER is the only high resolution imaging sensor on Terra. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, along

  16. Catalogue of representative meteor spectra

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vojáček, Vlastimil; Borovička, Jiří; Koten, Pavel; Spurný, Pavel; Štork, Rostislav

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 580, August (2015), A67/1-A67/31 ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP209/11/1382 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteorites * meteors * meteoroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.378, year: 2014

  17. Comet and meteorite traditions of Aboriginal Australians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamacher, Duane W.

    2014-06-01

    This research contributes to the disciplines of cultural astronomy (the academic study of how past and present cultures understand and utilise celestial objects and phenomena) and geomythology (the study of geological events and the formation of geological features described in oral traditions). Of the hundreds of distinct Aboriginal cultures of Australia, many have oral traditions rich in descriptions and explanations of comets, meteors, meteorites, airbursts, impact events, and impact craters. These views generally attribute these phenomena to spirits, death, and bad omens. There are also many traditions that describe the formation of meteorite craters as well as impact events that are not known to Western science.

  18. Migration of Interplanetary Dust and Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ipatov, S. I.; Mather, J. C.

    Our studies of migration of interplanetary dust and comets were based on the results of integration of the orbital evolution of 15,000 dust particles and 30,000 Jupiter-family comets (JFCs) [1-3]. For asteroidal and cometary particles, the values of the ratio β between the radiation pressure force and the gravitational force varied from 1000 and 1 microns. The probability of a collision of a dust particle started from an asteroid or JFC with the Earth during a lifetime of the particle was maximum at diameter d ˜100 microns. For particles started from asteroids and comet 10P, this maximum probability was ˜0.01. Different studies of migration of dust particles and small bodies testify that the fraction of cometary dust particles of the overall dust population inside Saturn's orbit is considerable and can be dominant: (1) Cometary dust particles produced both inside and outside Jupiter's orbit are needed to explain the observed constant number density of dust particles at 3-18 AU. The number density of migrating trans-Neptunian particles near Jupiter's orbit is smaller by a factor of several than that beyond Saturn's orbit. Only a small fraction of asteroidal particles can get outside Jupiter's orbit. (2) Some (less than 0.1%) JFCs can reach typical near-Earth object orbits and remain there for millions of years. Dynamical lifetimes of most of the former JFCs that have typical near-Earth object orbits are about 106 -109 yr, so during most of these times they were extinct comets. Such former comets could disintegrate and produce a lot of mini-comets and dust. (3) Comparison of the velocities of zodiacal dust particles (velocities of MgI line) based on the distributions of particles over their orbital elements obtained in our runs [3-4] with the velocities obtained at the WHAM observations shows that only asteroidal dust particles cannot explain these observations, and particles produced by comets, including high-eccentricity comets, are needed for such explanation

  19. International cooperation and amateur meteor work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roggemans, P.

    Today, the existing framework for international cooperation among amateur meteor workers offers numerous advantages. However, this is a rather recent situation. Meteor astronomy, although popular among amateurs, was the very last topic within astronomy to benefit from a truly international approach. Anyone attempting long term studies of, for instance, meteor stream structures will be confronted with the systematic lack of usable observations due to the absence of any standards in observing, recording and reporting, any archiving or publishing policy. Visual meteor observations represent the overall majority of amateur efforts, while photographic and radio observing were developed only in recent decades as technological specialties of rather few meteor observing teams.

  20. Meteors Without Borders: a global campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heenatigala, T.

    2012-01-01

    "Meteors Without Borders" is a global project, organized by Astronomers Without Borders and launched during the Global Astronomy Month in 2010 for the Lyrid meteor shower. The project focused on encouraging amateur astronomy groups to hold public outreach events for major meteor showers, conduct meteor-related classroom activities, photography, poetry and art work. It also uses social-media platforms to connect groups around the world to share their observations and photography, live during the events. At the International Meteor Conference 2011, the progress of the project was presented along with an extended invitation for collaborations for further improvements of the project.

  1. Assessing the physical nature of near-Earth asteroids through their dynamical histories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Julio A.; Sosa, Andrea; Gallardo, Tabaré; Gutiérrez, Jorge N.

    2014-08-01

    We analyze a sample of 139 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs), defined as those that reach perihelion distances q4.8 au), having Tisserand parameters 2family comets (JFCs) in near-Earth orbits, i.e. with q4.8 au of cometary origin, but it could be even lower if the NEAs in unstable orbits listed before turn out to be bona fide asteroids from the main belt. This study strengthens the idea that NEAs and comets essentially are two distinct populations, and that periods of dormancy in comets must be rare. Most likely, active comets in near-Earth orbits go through a continuous erosion process in successive perihelion passages until disintegration into meteoritic dust and fragments of different sizes. In this scenario, 289P/Blanpain might be a near-devolatized fragment from a by now disintegrated parent comet.

  2. Determination of the Meteor Limiting Magnitude

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kingery, A.; Blaauw, R.; Cooke, W. J.

    2016-01-01

    The limiting meteor magnitude of a meteor camera system will depend on the camera hardware and software, sky conditions, and the location of the meteor radiant. Some of these factors are constants for a given meteor camera system, but many change between meteor shower or sporadic source and on both long and short timescales. Since the limiting meteor magnitude ultimately gets used to calculate the limiting meteor mass for a given data set, it is important to have an understanding of these factors and to monitor how they change throughout the night, as a 0.5 magnitude uncertainty in limiting magnitude translates to a uncertainty in limiting mass by a factor of two.

  3. A Spitzer Search for Activity in Dormant Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mommert, Michael; Trilling, David; Hora, Joseph; Smith, Howard

    2018-05-01

    Dormant comets are inactive cometary nuclei hiding in the asteroid populations. Due to their cometary origin, it is possible that volatiles are still retained in their interiors. This hypothesis is supported by the case of near-Earth asteroid Don Quixote, which had been known as an asteroid for 30 yr before activity was discovered in this team's prior Spitzer observations. Interestingly, Don Quixote showed outgassing of CO or CO2, but no dust activity. This significant observation was repeated in 2017 with the same result, suggesting that Don Quixote is continuously outgassing - and still an active comet. Don Quixote's case suggests that other dormant comets might be outgassing with low dust production rates, concealing their activity to optical surveys. The implication of this scenario is that the volatile inventory of the asteroid populations might be significantly larger than currently assumed. We propose 48.8 hr of deep IRAC observations of eight dormant comets in search of faint activity in them. For each target, we will (1) measure (or provide upper limits on) gas and dust production rates from our IRAC CH1 and CH2 observations, (2) derive the diameters and albedos of five of our targets using asteroid thermal modeling, (3) measure the near-infrared spectral slope between CH1 and CH2 for three of our targets, and (4) obtain lightcurve observations of the nuclei of all of our targets. Our observations, which are combined with ground-based observations as part of a NASA-funded program, will provide important constraints on the volatile content of the asteroid population, as well as the origin, evolution, and physical properties of cometary nuclei.

  4. Classification of IRAS asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tedesco, E.F.; Matson, D.L.; Veeder, G.J.

    1989-01-01

    Albedos and spectral reflectances are essential for classifying asteroids. For example, classes E, M and P are indistinguishable without albedo data. Colorometric data are available for about 1000 asteroids but, prior to IRAS, albedo data was available for only about 200. IRAS broke this bottleneck by providing albedo data on nearly 2000 asteroids. Hence, excepting absolute magnitudes, the albedo and size are now the most common asteroid physical parameters known. In this chapter the authors present the results of analyses of IRAS-derived asteroid albedos, discuss their application to asteroid classification, and mention several studies which might be done to exploit further this data set

  5. DISINTEGRATING ASTEROID P/2013 R3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jewitt, David; Li, Jing [Department of Earth, Planetary and Space Sciences, UCLA, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States); Agarwal, Jessica [Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Max-Planck-Str. 2, D-37191 Katlenburg-Lindau (Germany); Weaver, Harold [The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, 11100 Johns Hopkins Road, Laurel, MD 20723 (United States); Mutchler, Max [Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States); Larson, Stephen, E-mail: jewitt@ucla.edu [Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, 1629 E. University Boulevard, Tucson, AZ 85721-0092 (United States)

    2014-03-20

    Splitting of the nuclei of comets into multiple components has been frequently observed but, to date, no main-belt asteroid has been observed to break up. Using the Hubble Space Telescope, we find that main-belt asteroid P/2013 R3 consists of 10 or more distinct components, the largest up to 200 m in radius (assumed geometric albedo of 0.05) each of which produces a coma and comet-like dust tail. A diffuse debris cloud with total mass ∼2 × 10{sup 8} kg further envelopes the entire system. The velocity dispersion among the components, ΔV ∼ 0.2-0.5 m s{sup –1}, is comparable to the gravitational escape speeds of the largest members, while their extrapolated plane-of-sky motions suggest a break up between 2013 February and September. The broadband optical colors are those of a C-type asteroid. We find no spectral evidence for gaseous emission, placing model-dependent upper limits to the water production rate ≤1 kg s{sup –1}. Breakup may be due to a rotationally induced structural failure of the precursor body.

  6. On the existence of a comet belt beyond Neptune

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernandez, J.A.

    1980-01-01

    The possible existence of a comet belt in connection with the origin of the short-period comets is analysed. It is noted that the current theory - that these comets originate as near-parabolic comets captured by Jupiter and the other giant planets - implies an excessive wastage of comets lost in hyperbolic orbits, which is avoided in the present model. The following picture is predicted. Solid conglomerates up to approximately 10 18 g were formed by gravitational instabilities in the belt region (about 35 to 50 AU). A further fragmentation-accretion process led to a power-law mass distribution similar to that observed in the asteroids. Since then, close encounters between members of the belt have provoked the diffusion of some of them with the effect that they have become subject to the strong perturbations of Neptune. Of these a small number pass from one planet to the next inside and end as short-period comets. By means of a Monte Carlo method, the influence of close encounters between belt comets is then studied in relation to the diffusion of their orbits. It is concluded that if such a belt contains members with masses equal to or greater than that of Ceres, the orbital diffusion could proceed fast enough to maintain the number of observed short-period comets in a steady state. (author)

  7. The January 7, 2015, superbolide over Romania and structural diversity of meter-sized asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Borovička, Jiří; Spurný, Pavel; Grigore, V.I.; Svoreň, J.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 143, SI (2017), s. 147-158 ISSN 0032-0633 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA16-00761S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteor * meteoroid * asteroid Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics OBOR OECD: Astronomy (including astrophysics,space science) Impact factor: 1.892, year: 2016

  8. A Method for Calculating the Mean Orbits of Meteor Streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voloshchuk, Yu. I.; Kashcheev, B. L.

    An examination of the published catalogs of orbits of meteor streams and of a large number of works devoted to the selection of streams, their analysis and interpretation, showed that elements of stream orbits are calculated, as a rule, as arithmetical (sometimes, weighed) sample means. On the basis of these means, a search for parent bodies, a study of the evolution of swarms generating these streams, an analysis of one-dimensional and multidimensional distributions of these elements, etc., are performed. We show that systematic errors in the estimates of elements of the mean orbits are present in each of the catalogs. These errors are caused by the formal averaging of orbital elements over the sample, while ignoring the fact that they represent not only correlated, but dependent quantities, with nonlinear, in most cases, interrelations between them. Numerous examples are given of such inaccuracies, in particular, the cases where the "mean orbit of the stream" recorded by ground-based techniques does not cross the Earth's orbit. We suggest the computation algorithm, in which the averaging over the sample is carried out at the initial stage of the calculation of the mean orbit, and only for the variables required for subsequent calculations. After this, the known astrometric formulas are used to sequentially calculate all other parameters of the stream, considered now as a standard orbit. Variance analysis is used to estimate the errors in orbital elements of the streams, in the case that their orbits are obtained by averaging the orbital elements of meteoroids forming the stream, without taking into account their interdependence. The results obtained in this analysis indicate the behavior of systematic errors in the elements of orbits of meteor streams. As an example, the effect of the incorrect computation method on the distribution of elements of the stream orbits close to the orbits of asteroids of the Apollo, Aten, and Amor groups (AAA asteroids) is examined.

  9. Remote comets and related bodies - VJHK colorimetry and surface materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartmann, W. K.; Cruikshank, D. P.; Degewij, J.

    1982-01-01

    VJHK colors for a number of asteroids and eight comets at various solar distances and levels of activity were obtained, and the observations are interpreted in terms of a two-component mixing model in which outer solar system interplanetary bodies are viewed as mixtures of ice and dark carbonaceous-type (RD and C) dirt. It is inferred that the observed comets have comae, and perhaps surfaces, of dirty ice or ice dirt grains colored by an RD-dirt component. This inference is supported by systematics of an 'alpha index' based on VJHK colors and empirically correlated with albedo and ice/dirt ratio. Among comets the alpha index correlates with solar distance in a way that suggests comets emit dirty ice grains which are stable at large solar distance but from which the ice component sublimes and leaves dirt grains at small solar distance.

  10. Asteroid/meteorite streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drummond, J.

    The independent discovery of the same three streams (named alpha, beta, and gamma) among 139 Earth approaching asteroids and among 89 meteorite producing fireballs presents the possibility of matching specific meteorites to specific asteroids, or at least to asteroids in the same stream and, therefore, presumably of the same composition. Although perhaps of limited practical value, the three meteorites with known orbits are all ordinary chondrites. To identify, in general, the taxonomic type of the parent asteroid, however, would be of great scientific interest since these most abundant meteorite types cannot be unambiguously spectrally matched to an asteroid type. The H5 Pribram meteorite and asteroid 4486 (unclassified) are not part of a stream, but travel in fairly similar orbits. The LL5 Innisfree meteorite is orbitally similar to asteroid 1989DA (unclassified), and both are members of a fourth stream (delta) defined by five meteorite-dropping fireballs and this one asteroid. The H5 Lost City meteorite is orbitally similar to 1980AA (S type), which is a member of stream gamma defined by four asteroids and four fireballs. Another asteroid in this stream is classified as an S type, another is QU, and the fourth is unclassified. This stream suggests that ordinary chondrites should be associated with S (and/or Q) asteroids. Two of the known four V type asteroids belong to another stream, beta, defined by five asteroids and four meteorite-dropping (but unrecovered) fireballs, making it the most probable source of the eucrites. The final stream, alpha, defined by five asteroids and three fireballs is of unknown composition since no meteorites have been recovered and only one asteroid has an ambiguous classification of QRS. If this stream, or any other as yet undiscovered ones, were found to be composed of a more practical material (e.g., water or metalrich), then recovery of the associated meteorites would provide an opportunity for in-hand analysis of a potential

  11. New radio meteor detecting and logging software

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufmann, Wolfgang

    2017-08-01

    A new piece of software ``Meteor Logger'' for the radio observation of meteors is described. It analyses an incoming audio stream in the frequency domain to detect a radio meteor signal on the basis of its signature, instead of applying an amplitude threshold. For that reason the distribution of the three frequencies with the highest spectral power are considered over the time (3f method). An auto notch algorithm is developed to prevent the radio meteor signal detection from being jammed by a present interference line. The results of an exemplary logging session are discussed.

  12. Craters on comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, J.; Oklay, N.; Marchi, S.; Höfner, S.; Sierks, H.

    2014-07-01

    This paper reviews the observations of crater-like features on cometary nuclei. ''Pits'' have been observed on almost all cometary nuclei but their origin is not fully understood [1,2,3,4]. It is currently assumed that they are created mainly by the cometary activity with a pocket of volatiles erupting under a dust crust, leaving a hole behind. There are, however, other features which cannot be explained in this way and are interpreted alternatively as remnants of impact craters. This work focusses on the second type of pit features: impact craters. We present an in-depth review of what has been observed previously and conclude that two main types of crater morphologies can be observed: ''pit-halo'' and ''sharp pit''. We extend this review by a series of analysis of impact craters on cometary nuclei through different approaches [5]: (1) Probability of impact: We discuss the chances that a Jupiter Family Comet like 9P/Tempel 1 or the target of Rosetta 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko can experience an impact, taking into account the most recent work on the size distribution of small objects in the asteroid Main Belt [6]. (2) Crater morphology from scaling laws: We present the status of scaling laws for impact craters on cometary nuclei [7] and discuss their strengths and limitations when modeling what happens when a rocky projectile hits a very porous material. (3) Numerical experiments: We extend the work on scaling laws by a series of hydrocode impact simulations, using the iSALE shock physics code [8,9,10] for varying surface porosity and impactor velocity (see Figure). (4) Surface processes and evolution: We discuss finally the fate of the projectile and the effects of the impact-induced surface compaction on the activity of the nucleus. To summarize, we find that comets do undergo impacts although the rapid evolution of the surface erases most of the features and make craters difficult to detect. In the case of a collision between a rocky body and a highly porous

  13. Trojan Asteroid Lightcurves: Probing Internal Structure and the Origins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, E. L.

    2017-12-01

    Studies of the small bodies of the solar system reveal important clues about the condensation and formation of planetesimal bodies, and ultimately planets in planetary systems. Dynamics of small bodies have been utilized to model giant planet migration within our solar system, colors have been used to explore compositional gradients within the protoplanetary disk, & studies of the size-frequency distribution of main belt asteroids may reveal compositional dependences on planetesimal strength limiting models of planetary growth from collisional aggregration. Studies of the optical lightcurves of asteroids also yield important information on shape and potential binarity of asteroidal bodies. The K2 mission has allowed for the unprecedented collection of Trojan asteroid lightcurves on a 30 minute cadence for baselines of 10 days, in both the L4 and L5 Trojan clouds. Preliminary results from the K2 mission suggest that Trojan asteroids have bulk densities of 1 g/cc and a binary fraction ≤ 33 percent (Ryan et al., 2017, Astronomical Journal, 153, 116), however Trojan lightcurve data is actively being collected via the continued K2 mission. We will present updated results of bulk density and binary fraction of the Trojan asteroids and compare these results to other small body populations, including Hilda asteroids, transNeptunian objects and comet nuclei to test dynamical models of the origins of these populations.

  14. Disintegration of comet nuclei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ksanfomality, Leonid V.

    2012-02-01

    The breaking up of comets into separate pieces, each with its own tail, was seen many times by astronomers of the past. The phenomenon was in sharp contrast to the idea of the eternal and unchangeable celestial firmament and was commonly believed to be an omen of impending disaster, especially for comets with tails stretching across half the sky. It is only now that we have efficient enough space exploration tools to see comet nuclei and even - in the particular case of small comet Hartley-2 in 2010 - to watch their disintegration stage. There are also other suspected candidates for disintegration in the vast family of comet nuclei and other Solar System bodies.

  15. Physics of comets

    CERN Document Server

    Krishna Swamy, K S

    1997-01-01

    The study of Comet Halley in 1986 was a tremendous success for cometary science. In March of that year, six spacecrafts passed through Comet Halley as close as 600 km from the nucleus and made the in situ measurements of various kinds. These space missions to Comet Halley and that of the ICE spacecraft to Comet Giacobini-Zinner combined with studies, both ground-based and above the atmosphere, have increased our knowledge of cometary science in a dramatic way.This new edition of Physics of Comets incorporates these new and exciting findings. The emphasis of the book is on the physical processe

  16. Photochemistry of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huebner, W.F.

    1985-01-01

    The classification of comets, chemically rich mixtures of volatile materials and refractory grains, is described. The developments of coma and tails, and the composition and structure of coma, plasma tails, dust, and nucleus are examined. The differences between comets and planetary atmospheres are investigated. Three hypotheses on the origin of comets are proposed; one states that comets formed in the region of the giant planets, the second theory has the development of comets occuring in the outer parts of the solar nebula, and the third states that comets formed in a companion fragment of the nebula. The use of radar, photometric, spectral, and laboratory measurements for modeling comets is discussed. The physics and main photolytic and chemical reaction processes of a collision-dominated coma are analyzed; the influence of the solar wind on the coma is studied. A comparison of the model with observed data is presented; good correlation of data is observed. The features of Halley's Comet and other comets with distinctive characteristics are examined. Future comet exploration missions and the need to improve comet models are discussed. 31 references

  17. Visually observing comets

    CERN Document Server

    Seargent, David A J

    2017-01-01

    In these days of computers and CCD cameras, visual comet observers can still contribute scientifically useful data with the help of this handy reference for use in the field. Comets are one of the principal areas for productive pro-amateur collaboration in astronomy, but finding comets requires a different approach than the observing of more predictable targets. Principally directed toward amateur astronomers who prefer visual observing or who are interested in discovering a new comet or visually monitoring the behavior of known comets, it includes all the advice needed to thrive as a comet observer. After presenting a brief overview of the nature of comets and how we came to the modern understanding of comets, this book details the various types of observations that can usefully be carried out at the eyepiece of a telescope. Subjects range from how to search for new comets to visually estimating the brightness of comets and the length and orientation of tails, in addition to what to look for in comet heads a...

  18. Isotopic meteoric line for Colombia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodriguez N, Cesar O

    2004-01-01

    Isotope analyses from representative rainfall samples taken from different areas in Colombia were processed to yield the meteoric line. Stable isotope composition in precipitation reflects the effects of temperature, altitude and of the continental site, being affected by different sources of atmospheric humidity over the Colombian territory. There is a seasonal variation in isotopic composition of precipitation with grater σ deviation during the rainy season and lower values in the dry season. In coastal areas the variation is smaller and is more pronounced than at continental stations. Correlation between altitude and isotope content led to equations, which indicate, on a regional level, a change in isotopic composition with altitude, of about 0.5 σ units per 200 m, for O 18 and 4 σ units per 200 m for H 2 . Such equations may be used to identify the original altitude of precipitation water, in hydrological surface and groundwater studies. Meteoric line and the concepts derived from the resulting equations presented in this paper may be applied to the interpretation of isotope analysis in future hydrological studies, particularly in areas without available data

  19. Mission to the comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hughes, D.

    1980-01-01

    The plans of space agencies in the United States and Europe for an exploratory comet mission including a one year rendezvous with comet Temple-2 and a fast fly-by of comet Halley are discussed. The mission provides an opportunity to make comparative measurements on the two different types of comets and also satisfies the three major scientific objectives of cometary missions namely: (1) To determine the chemical nature and the physical structure of cometary nuclei, and the changes that occur with time and orbital position. (2) To study the chemical and physical nature of the atmospheres and ionospheres of comets, the processes that occur in them, and their development with time and orbital position. (3) To determine the nature of the tails of comets and the processes by which they are formed, and to characterise the interaction of comets with solar wind. (UK)

  20. Radar meteors range distribution model. I. Theory

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pecinová, Drahomíra; Pecina, Petr

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 37, č. 2 (2007), s. 83-106 ISSN 1335-1842 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/03/1405 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : physics of meteors * radar meteors * range distribution Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  1. Global variation of meteor trail plasma turbulence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. P. Dyrud

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available We present the first global simulations on the occurrence of meteor trail plasma irregularities. These results seek to answer the following questions: when a meteoroid disintegrates in the atmosphere, will the resulting trail become plasma turbulent? What are the factors influencing the development of turbulence? and how do these trails vary on a global scale? Understanding meteor trail plasma turbulence is important because turbulent meteor trails are visible as non-specular trails to coherent radars. Turbulence also influences the evolution of specular radar meteor trails; this fact is important for the inference of mesospheric temperatures from the trail diffusion rates, and their usage for meteor burst communication. We provide evidence of the significant effect that neutral atmospheric winds and ionospheric plasma density have on the variability of meteor trail evolution and on the observation of non-specular meteor trails. We demonstrate that trails are far less likely to become and remain turbulent in daylight, explaining several observational trends for non-specular and specular meteor trails.

  2. Radar meteor rates and solar activity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prikryl, P.

    1983-01-01

    The short-term variation of diurnal radar meteor rates with solar activity represented by solar microwave flux Fsub(10.7), and sunspots relative number Rsub(z), is investigated. Applying the superposed-epoch analysis to the observational material of radar meteor rates from Christchurch (1960-61 and 1963-65), a decrease in the recorded radar rates is found during days of enhanced solar activity. No effect of geomagnetic activity similar to the one reported for the Swedish and Canadian radar meteor data was found by the author in the Christchurch data. A possible explanation of the absence of the geomagnetic effect on radar meteor rates from New Zealand due to a lower echo ceiling height of the Christchurch radar is suggested. The variation of the atmospheric parameters as a possible cause of the observed variation in radar meteor rates is also discussed. (author)

  3. Seismic efficiency of meteor airbursts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svetsov, V. V.; Artemieva, N. A.; Shuvalov, V. V.

    2017-08-01

    We present the results of numerical simulation for impacts of relatively small asteroids and ice bodies of 30-100 m in size, decelerated in the atmosphere and exploding before they reach the surface, but still producing seismic effects due to the impact wave reaching the surface. The calculated magnitudes fall within the range of 4 to 6, and average seismic efficiency of these events is 2.5 × 10-5. The results obtained allow the seismic hazard from impacts of cosmic bodies to be estimated.

  4. Effect of yield curves and porous crush on hydrocode simulations of asteroid airburst

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, D. K.; Mathias, D. L.

    2017-03-01

    Simulations of asteroid airburst are being conducted to obtain best estimates of damage areas and assess sensitivity to variables for asteroid characterization and mitigation efforts. The simulations presented here employed the ALE3D hydrocode to examine the breakup and energy deposition of asteroids entering the Earth's atmosphere, using the Chelyabinsk meteor as a test case. This paper examines the effect of increasingly complex material models on the energy deposition profile. Modeling the meteor as a rock having a single strength can reproduce airburst altitude and energy deposition reasonably well but is not representative of real rock masses (large bodies of material). Accounting for a yield curve that includes different tensile, shear, and compressive strengths shows that shear strength determines the burst altitude. Including yield curves and compaction of porous spaces in the material changes the detailed mechanics of the breakup but only has a limited effect on the burst altitude and energy deposition. Strong asteroids fail and create peak energy deposition close to the altitude at which ram dynamic pressure equals the material strength. Weak asteroids, even though they structurally fail at high altitude, require the increased pressure at lower altitude to disrupt and disperse the rubble. As a result, a wide range of weaker asteroid strengths produce peak energy deposition at a similar altitude.

  5. Comet Giacobini-Zinner - a normal comet?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cochran, A.L.; Barker, E.S.

    1987-01-01

    Observations of Comet Giacobini-Zinner were obtained during its 1985 apparition using an IDS spectrograph at McDonald Observatory. Column densities and production rates were computed. The production rates were compared to observations of other normal comets. Giacobini-Zinner is shown to be depleted in C2 and C3 relative to CN. These production rates are down by a factor of 5. 12 references

  6. Do asteroids have satellites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weidenschilling, S.J.; Paolicchi, P.; Zappala, V.

    1989-01-01

    A substantial body of indirect evidence suggests that some asteroids have satelities, although none has been detected unambiguously. Collisions between asteroids provide physically plausible mechanisms for the production of binaries, but these operate with low probability; only a small minority of asteroids are likely to have satellites. The abundance of binary asteroids can constrain the collisional history of the entire belt population. The allowed angular momentum of binaries and their rate of tidal evolution limit separations to no more than a few tens of the primary's radii. Their expected properties are consistent with failure to detect them by current imaging techniques

  7. A photometric search for activity among asteroids and Centaurs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sosa Oyarzabal, A.; Mammana, L.; Fernández, J. A.

    2014-07-01

    We present the first results of a long-term observational campaign focused on the detection of activity in selected asteroids and centaurs. Our observational targets are near-Earth asteroids in cometary orbits (cf. [2]), the so called ''main-belt comets'' or ''active asteroids'' (well-known objects as well as potential candidates), and bright centaurs with good orbits, all close to their perihelion passages. In those objects with a former detection of activity, our aim is to contribute to a better physical knowledge of them, and determine, for instance, if the observed activity is transient or permanent. To achieve our goals, we analyzed CCD-filtered images of each observable target acquired with the 2.15-m telescope ''Jorge Sahade'' at CASLEO (San Juan, Argentina), during two runs of three consecutive nights each (during August 2013 and January 2014, respectively). Our study will be completed by future runs with the same instrumentation already assigned to our campaign. As preliminary results, we observed activity in the main-belt comets P/2013 P5 (PANSTARRS) and 133P/(7968) Elst-Pizarro. We also observed the main-belt comet (596) Scheila, which showed an unequivocally stellar appearance. We observed the main-belt comet candidate (3646) Aduatiques (cf. [1]), and noticed in this object a curious feature whose connection to some kind of activity is not well determined yet. We also observed the near-Earth asteroid in cometary orbit 2006 XL_5 (cf. [3]), and the centaurs (281371) 2008 FC_{76}, (332685) 2009 HH_{36}), (382004) 2010 RM_{64}, 2010 XZ_{78}, and 2011 UR_{402}. We have not detected activity in these objects, but an improved analysis is still in progress. %Corresponding author: Andrea Sosa (asosa@fisica.edu.uy)

  8. Update on an Interstellar Asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2018-01-01

    Whats the news coming from the research world on the interstellar asteroid visitor, asteroid 1I/Oumuamua? Read on for an update from a few of the latest studies.What is Oumuamua?In lateOctober2017, the discovery of minor planet 1I/Oumuamua was announced. This body which researchers first labeled asa comet and later revised to an asteroid had just zipped around the Sun and was already in the process of speeding away whenwe trained our telescopes on it. Its trajectory, however, marked it as being a visitor from outside our solar system: the first knownvisitorof its kind.Since Oumuamuasdiscovery, scientists have been gathering as many observations of this bodyas possible before it vanishes into the distance. Simultaneously, theorists have leapt at the opportunity to explain its presence and the implications its passage has on our understanding of our surroundings. Here we present just a few of the latest studies that have been published on this first detected interstellar asteroid including several timelystudies published in our new journal, Research Notes of the AAS.The galactic velocity of Oumuamua does not coincide with any of the nearest stars to us. [Mamajek 2018]Where Did Oumuamua Come From?Are we sure Oumuamua didnt originate in our solar system andget scattered into a weird orbit? Jason Wright (The Pennsylvania State University) demonstrates via a series of calculations that no known solar system body could have scattered Oumuamua onto its current orbit nor could any stillunknown object bound to our solar system.Eric Mamajek (Caltech and University of Rochester) showsthat thekinematics of Oumuamua areconsistent with what we might expect of interstellar field objects, though he argues that its kinematics suggest its unlikely to have originated from many of the neareststellar systems.What AreOumuamuas Properties?Oumuamuas light curve. [Bannister et al. 2017]A team of University of Maryland scientists led by Matthew Knight captured a light curve of Oumuamua using

  9. Mystery of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whipple, F.L.

    1985-01-01

    An account is given of the growth of human understanding of comets with emphasis initially placed on theories developed before the twentieth century and subsequently on information regarding the nature of comets, their origin and possible relation to life on earth. Special consideration is given to a description of how the author arrived at his own model of the origin and nature of comets, the dirty snowball theory. The significance of comets (i.e. the hazards they may represent) is assessed and space missions to Halley's comet together with the first landing on a comet (tentatively planned for 1995) are described. It is noted that this growth of cometary understanding is presented as an integral part of the growth of science and technology. 14 references

  10. Ammonia abundances in comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyckoff, S.; Tegler, S.; Engel, L.

    The emission band strengths of the NH2 bands of Comets Halley, Hartley-Good, Thiele, and Borrelly were measured to determine the NH2 column densities for the comets. Production rates obtained using the Haser and vectorial models are in agreement within the observational errors, suggesting that a simple two-step decay model may be used to approximate the NH2 distribution in a comet's coma. Ammonia-to-water abundance ratios from 0.01 to 0.4 percent were found for the four comets. The ratio in Comet Halley is found to be Q(NH3)/Q(H2O) = 0.002 + or - 0.001. No significant difference in the ammonia abundance was found before or after perihelion in Comet Halley.

  11. Organic chemistry of cosmic dusts for understanding an intra-relationship between meteorites and comets: Toward a new frontier of astromaterial science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yabuta, Hikaru

    2012-07-01

    Organic matter in primitive solar system small bodies, such as meteorites, asteroids, and comets, provides us significant information on the origin and evolution of the early solar system. The achievements of the Stardust comet sample return mission [1] have enabled the comparable small body organic chemistry between comet 81P/Wild 2 and chondritic meteorites [2, 3]. The study of organic matter in interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) will play an important role for our further understanding of an intra-relationship among meteorites and comets, as some IDPs are of cometary origin. Historically, a number of isotopic and molecular compositions of organic matter in IDPs collected in stratosphere have been studied [4-7]. Recent new insights in the study of IDP organics is that, Ultracarbonaceous Antarctic micrometeorites (UCAMMs), unique extraterrestrial materials that represent large sizes of high carbon contents, have been first discovered by [8]. The mineralogical and isotopic investigations of UCAMMs by [9] have revealed the association of extreme deuterium-rich organic matter with both crystalline and amorphous silicates, which appears to be compatible to cometary origin. Yabuta et al. (2012) [10] has identified a highly nitrogen-rich but isotopically normal organic material from a UCAMM by X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) spectroscopy using a scanning transmission X-ray microscope (STXM). Such N-rich compositions have not been generally observed from chondritic organics and stratosphere IDPs, and are rather similar to those observed from several particles of Comet 81P/Wild 2. Aiming to investigate the intact compositions of organic matter in IDPs which those collected from stratosphere and Antarctica might have lost, the Japanese Astrobiology working group, Tanpopo, will be planning to collect the IDPs on the International Space Station from 2013. The mission has great advantages that collection of the pristine IDPs without atmospheric entry heating

  12. The Source of Solar Energy, ca. 1840-1910: From Meteoric Hypothesis to Radioactive Speculations

    OpenAIRE

    Kragh, Helge

    2016-01-01

    Why does the Sun shine? Today we know the answer to the question and we also know that earlier answers were quite wrong. The problem of the source of solar energy became an important part of physics and astronomy only with the emergence of the law of energy conservation in the 1840s. The first theory of solar heat based on the new law, due to J. R. Mayer, assumed the heat to be the result of meteors or asteroids falling into the Sun. A different and more successful version of gravitation-to-h...

  13. Probing the use of spectroscopy to determine the meteoritic analogues of meteors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drouard, A.; Vernazza, P.; Loehle, S.; Gattacceca, J.; Vaubaillon, J.; Zanda, B.; Birlan, M.; Bouley, S.; Colas, F.; Eberhart, M.; Hermann, T.; Jorda, L.; Marmo, C.; Meindl, A.; Oefele, R.; Zamkotsian, F.; Zander, F.

    2018-05-01

    Context. Determining the source regions of meteorites is one of the major goals of current research in planetary science. Whereas asteroid observations are currently unable to pinpoint the source regions of most meteorite classes, observations of meteors with camera networks and the subsequent recovery of the meteorite may help make progress on this question. The main caveat of such an approach, however, is that the recovery rate of meteorite falls is low (100) within a reasonable time frame (10-20 years), the optimal solution may be the spatial extension of existing fireball observation networks. The movie associated to this article is available at http://www.aanda.org

  14. Network of Nano-Landers for In-Situ Characterization of Asteroid Impact Studies

    OpenAIRE

    Kalita, Himangshu; Asphaug, Erik; Schwartz, Stephen; Thangavelautham, Jekanthan

    2017-01-01

    Exploration of asteroids and comets can give insight into the origins of the solar system and can be instrumental in planetary defence and in-situ resource utilization (ISRU). Asteroids, due to their low gravity are a challenging target for surface exploration. Current missions envision performing touch-and-go operations over an asteroid surface. In this work, we analyse the feasibility of sending scores of nano-landers, each 1 kg in mass and volume of 1U, or 1000 cm3. These landers would hop...

  15. PHYS: Division of Physical Chemistry 258 - Properties and Origins of Cometary and Asteroidal Organic Matter Delivered to the Early Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messenger, Scott; Nguyen, Ann

    2017-01-01

    Comets and asteroids may have contributed much of the Earth's water and organic matter. The Earth accretes approximately 4x10(exp 7) Kg of dust and meteorites from these sources every year. The least altered meteorites contain complex assemblages of organic compounds and abundant hydrated minerals. These carbonaceous chondrite meteorites probably derive from asteroids that underwent hydrothermal processing within the first few million years after their accretion. Meteorite organics show isotopic and chemical signatures of low-T ion-molecule and grain-surface chemistry and photolysis of icy grains that occurred in cold molecular clouds and the outer protoplanetary disk. These signatures have been overprinted by aqueously mediated chemistry in asteroid parent bodies, forming amino acids and other prebiotic molecules. Comets are much richer in organic matter but it is less well characterized. Comet dust collected in the stratosphere shows larger H and N isotopic anomalies than most meteorites, suggesting better preservation of primordial organics. Rosetta studies of comet 67P coma dust find complex organic matter that may be related to the macromolecular material that dominates the organic inventory of primitive meteorites. The exogenous organic material accreting on Earth throughout its history is made up of thousands of molecular species formed in diverse processes ranging from circumstellar outflows to chemistry at near absolute zero in dark cloud cores and the formative environment within minor planets. NASA and JAXA are currently flying sample return missions to primitive, potentially organic-rich asteroids. The OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa2 missions will map their target asteroids, Bennu and Ryugu, in detail and return regolith samples to Earth. Laboratory analyses of these pristine asteroid samples will provide unprecedented views of asteroidal organic matter relatively free of terrestrial contamination within well determined geological context. Studies of

  16. Asteroids mass determination

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoffmann, M.

    1989-01-01

    Basic methods for asteroid mass determinations and their errors are discussed. New results and some current developments in the astrometric method are reviewed. New methods and techniques, such as electronic imaging, radar ranging and space probes are becoming important for asteroid mass determinations. Mass and density estimations on rotational properties and possible satelites are also discussed

  17. Comet 169P/NEAT(=2002EX12): More Dead Than Alive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasuga, T.; Balam, D. D.; Wiegert, P. A.

    2011-10-01

    The Jupiter family comet 169P/NEAT (previously known as asteroid 2002 EX12) has a dynamical association with the ?-Capriconid meteoroid stream. In this paper, we present photometric observations of comet 169P/NEAT to further investigate the physical characters of its disintegration state related to the stream. The comet shows a point-like surface brightness profile limiting contamination due to coma emission at ˜ 4% at most, indicating no evidence of outgassing. An upper limit on the fraction of the surface that could be sublimating water ice of disintegration of the parent at every return.

  18. An Investigation of the Fine Spatial Structure of Meteor Streams Using the Relational Database ``Meteor''

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karpov, A. V.; Yumagulov, E. Z.

    2003-05-01

    We have restored and ordered the archive of meteor observations carried out with a meteor radar complex ``KGU-M5'' since 1986. A relational database has been formed under the control of the Database Management System (DBMS) Oracle 8. We also improved and tested a statistical method for studying the fine spatial structure of meteor streams with allowance for the specific features of application of the DBMS. Statistical analysis of the results of observations made it possible to obtain information about the substance distribution in the Quadrantid, Geminid, and Perseid meteor streams.

  19. The KUT meteor radar: An educational low cost meteor observation system by radio forward scattering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madkour, W.; Yamamoto, M.

    2016-01-01

    The Kochi University of Technology (KUT) meteor radar is an educational low cost observation system built at Kochi, Japan by successive graduate students since 2004. The system takes advantage of the continuous VHF- band beacon signal emitted from Fukui National College of Technology (FNCT) for scientific usage all over Japan by receiving the forward scattered signals. The system uses the classical forward scattering setup similar to the setup described by the international meteor organization (IMO), gradually developed from the most basic single antenna setup to the multi-site meteor path determination setup. The primary objective is to automate the observation of the meteor parameters continuously to provide amounts of data sufficient for statistical analysis. The developed software system automates the observation of the astronomical meteor parameters such as meteor direction, velocity and trajectory. Also, automated counting of meteor echoes and their durations are used to observe mesospheric ozone concentration by analyzing the duration distribution of different meteor showers. The meteor parameters observed and the methodology used for each are briefly summarized.

  20. Mesospheric temperature estimation from meteor decay times of weak and strong meteor trails

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jeong-Han; Kim, Yong Ha; Jee, Geonhwa; Lee, Changsup

    2012-11-01

    Neutral temperatures near the mesopause region were estimated from the decay times of the meteor echoes observed by a VHF meteor radar during a period covering 2007 to 2009 at King Sejong Station (62.22°S, 58.78°W), Antarctica. While some previous studies have used all meteor echoes to determine the slope from a height profile of log inverse decay times for temperature estimation, we have divided meteor echoes into weak and strong groups of underdense meteor trails, depending on the strength of estimated relative electron line densities within meteor trails. We found that the slopes from the strong group are inappropriate for temperature estimation because the decay times of strong meteors are considerably scattered, whereas the slopes from the weak group clearly define the variation of decay times with height. We thus utilize the slopes only from the weak group in the altitude region between 86 km and 96 km to estimate mesospheric temperatures. The meteor estimated temperatures show a typical seasonal variation near the mesopause region and the monthly mean temperatures are in good agreement with SABER temperatures within a mean difference of 4.8 K throughout the year. The meteor temperatures, representing typically the region around the altitude of 91 km, are lower on average by 2.1 K than simultaneously measured SATI OH(6-2) rotational temperatures during winter (March-October).

  1. Comparison with Russian analyses of meteor impact

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Canavan, G.H.

    1997-06-01

    The inversion model for meteor impacts is used to discuss Russian analyses and compare principal results. For common input parameters, the models produce consistent estimates of impactor parameters. Directions for future research are discussed and prioritized.

  2. The Chelyabinsk superbolide: a fragment of asteroid 2011 EO40?

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Fuente Marcos, C.; de la Fuente Marcos, R.

    2013-11-01

    Bright fireballs or bolides are caused by meteoroids entering the Earth's atmosphere at high speed. Some have a cometary origin, a few may have originated within the Venus-Earth-Mars region as a result of massive impacts in the remote past but a relevant fraction is likely the result of the break-up of asteroids. Disrupted asteroids produce clusters of fragments or asteroid families and meteoroid streams. Linking a bolide to a certain asteroid family may help to understand its origin and pre-impact dynamical evolution. On 2013 February 15, a superbolide was observed in the skies near Chelyabinsk, Russia. Such a meteor could be the result of the decay of an asteroid and here we explore this possibility applying a multistep approach. First, we use available data and Monte Carlo optimization (validated using 2008 TC3 as template) to obtain a robust solution for the pre-impact orbit of the Chelyabinsk impactor (a = 1.62 au, e = 0.53, i = 3.82°, Ω = 326.41° and ω = 109.44°). Then, we use this most probable orbit and numerical analysis to single out candidates for membership in, what we call, the Chelyabinsk asteroid family. Finally, we perform N-body simulations to either confirm or reject any dynamical connection between candidates and impactor. We find reliable statistical evidence on the existence of the Chelyabinsk cluster. It appears to include multiple small asteroids and two relatively large members: 2007 BD7 and 2011 EO40. The most probable parent body for the Chelyabinsk superbolide is 2011 EO40. The orbits of these objects are quite perturbed as they experience close encounters not only with the Earth-Moon system but also with Venus, Mars and Ceres. Under such conditions, the cluster cannot be older than about 20-40 kyr.

  3. Problems in the design of multifunction meteor-radar networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nechitailenko, V. A.; Voloshchuk, Iu. I.

    The design of meteor-radar networks is examined in connection with the need to conduct experiments on a mass scale in meteor geophysics and astronomy. Attention is given to network architecture features and procedures of communication-path selection in the organization of information transfer, with allowance for the features of the meteor communication link. The meteor link is considered as the main means to ensure traffic in the meteor-radar network.

  4. Optical observation of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tanabe, Hiroyoshi

    1974-01-01

    The observation of comets is proposed to study the state of interplanetary space. The behavior of the tails of comets shows the state of solar wind. On July 4, 1964, large bending was seen in the tail of the Tomita-Gerber-Handa comet. Then, on July 7, 1964, geomagnetic disturbance was observed. Disturbance in the tail of Kohoutek comet was seen on Jan. 19, 1974, and Ksub(p)--5 on the ground on Jan. 25. The effort for the quantitative measurement of the parameters of solar wind has been continued in various countries. Recently, the large scale observation of the Kohoutek comet was carried out in the world. Preliminary report is presented in this paper. Waving in the type 1 tail of the comet was seen, and this phenomenon may show some instability due to the interaction between the tail and the solar wind. Periodic variation of the direction of the tail has been reported. The present result also confirmed this report. In case of small comets, flare-up occurs and original luminous intensity is regained after several days. Measurement of the spectrum at the time of flare-up may show information concerning temporary variation of the state of interplanetary space. For the tracking of time variation of comets, cooperation of a number of stations at different positions is required. (Kato, T.)

  5. METEOR v1.0 - User's Guide

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palomo, E.

    1994-01-01

    This script is a User's Guide for the software package METEOR for statistical analysis of meteorological data series. The original version of METEOR have been developed by Ph.D. Elena Palomo, CIEMAT-IER, GIMASE. It is built by linking programs and routines written in FORTRAN 77 and it adds the graphical capabilities of GNUPLOT. The shape of this toolbox was designed following the criteria of modularity, flexibility and agility criteria. All the input, output and analysis options are structured in three main menus: i) the first is aimed to evaluate the quality of the data set; ii) the second is aimed for pre-processing of the data; and iii) the third is aimed towards the statistical analyses and for creating the graphical outputs. Actually the information about METEOR is constituted by three documents written in spanish: 1) METEOR v1.0: User's guide; 2) METEOR v1.0: A usage example; 3) METEOR v1.0: Design and structure of the software package. (Author)

  6. Comet thermal modeling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weissman, P.R.; Kieffer, H.H.

    1987-01-01

    The past year was one of tremendous activity because of the appearance of Halley's Comet. Observations of the comet were collected from a number of sources and compared with the detailed predictions of the comet thermal modeling program. Spacecraft observations of key physical parameters for cometary nucleus were incorporated into the thermal model and new cases run. These results have led to a much better understanding of physical processes on the nucleus and have pointed the way for further improvements to the modeling program. A model for the large-scale structure of cometary nuclei was proposed in which comets were envisioned as loosely bound agglomerations of smaller icy planetesimals, essentially a rubble pile of primordial dirty snowballs. In addition, a study of the physical history of comets was begun, concentrating on processes during formation and in the Oort cloud which would alter the volatile and nonvolatile materials in cometary nuclei from their pristine state before formation

  7. Disintegration of comet nuclei

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ksanfomality, Leonid V

    2012-01-01

    The breaking up of comets into separate pieces, each with its own tail, was seen many times by astronomers of the past. The phenomenon was in sharp contrast to the idea of the eternal and unchangeable celestial firmament and was commonly believed to be an omen of impending disaster, especially for comets with tails stretching across half the sky. It is only now that we have efficient enough space exploration tools to see comet nuclei and even - in the particular case of small comet Hartley-2 in 2010 - to watch their disintegration stage. There are also other suspected candidates for disintegration in the vast family of comet nuclei and other Solar System bodies. (physics of our days)

  8. Main Belt Comet P/2006 VW139: A Fragment from a Recent Collision?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, B.; Hsieh, H. H.; Cellino, A.

    2012-05-01

    We applied different methods to examine a possibility that main belt comet P/2006VW139, recently discovered by the Pan-STARRS 1, belongs to a small group of 24 asteroids. Results show strong evidence that P/2006VW139 really belongs to this group.

  9. Cratering statistics on asteroids: Methods and perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, C.

    2014-07-01

    certain assumptions about issues that should be left as open questions (e.g., the shapes of impactor SFDs are assumed to be identical throughout the solar system and throughout all epochs, the decay rate of the impactor flux in the asteroid belt is assumed to be the same as in the Earth-Moon system, and all kinks in SFDs are interpreted as ''resurfacings'' rather than due to layering of targets or due to other kinds of crater creation and degradation processes). In fact, we know that there are different mixes of comets and asteroids in different parts of the solar system, that size distributions differ in different parts of the asteroid belt, that SFDs of asteroid families evolve, that kinks in SFDs can be produced by layering (e.g., on the Moon), and that small-scale crater populations on asteroids like Itokawa and Eros are dramatically affected by processes of lesser importance to large-scale cratering (e.g., because of bouldery substrates, seismic shaking, etc.). Identification of homogeneous geological units for crater counting is particularly critical. Crater ejecta blankets, which are useful units on planetary-scale bodies, become problematic on smaller bodies where ejecta travel farther and are even ejected at greater than escape velocity resulting in thin, patchy ejecta blankets inappropriate for displaying a useful post-deposition crater population. As we anticipate studying still more cratered small-body surfaces from future spacecraft and even radar imaging of asteroids, comet nuclei, and small satellites, non-specialists and crater-counters alike should be suspicious of crater SFDs obtained through production-line application of black-box routines like Craterstats. Crater SFDs can still be a very useful tool, so long as there is rigorous, statistically robust, open-minded interpretation that takes account of the real unknowns concerning geological and interplanetary contexts.

  10. Spacecraft exploration of asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Veverka, J.; Langevin, Y.; Farquhar, R.; Fulchignoni, M.

    1989-01-01

    After two decades of spacecraft exploration, we still await the first direct investigation of an asteroid. This paper describes how a growing international interest in the solar system's more primitive bodies should remedy this. Plans are under way in Europe for a dedicated asteroid mission (Vesta) which will include multiple flybys with in situ penetrator studies. Possible targets include 4 Vesta, 8 Flora and 46 Hestia; launch its scheduled for 1994 or 1996. In the United States, NASA plans include flybys of asteroids en route to outer solar system targets

  11. Asteroid clusters similar to asteroid pairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pravec, P.; Fatka, P.; Vokrouhlický, D.; Scheeres, D. J.; Kušnirák, P.; Hornoch, K.; Galád, A.; Vraštil, J.; Pray, D. P.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Gaftonyuk, N. M.; Inasaridze, R. Ya.; Ayvazian, V. R.; Kvaratskhelia, O. I.; Zhuzhunadze, V. T.; Husárik, M.; Cooney, W. R.; Gross, J.; Terrell, D.; Világi, J.; Kornoš, L.; Gajdoš, Š.; Burkhonov, O.; Ehgamberdiev, Sh. A.; Donchev, Z.; Borisov, G.; Bonev, T.; Rumyantsev, V. V.; Molotov, I. E.

    2018-04-01

    We studied the membership, size ratio and rotational properties of 13 asteroid clusters consisting of between 3 and 19 known members that are on similar heliocentric orbits. By backward integrations of their orbits, we confirmed their cluster membership and estimated times elapsed since separation of the secondaries (the smaller cluster members) from the primary (i.e., cluster age) that are between 105 and a few 106 years. We ran photometric observations for all the cluster primaries and a sample of secondaries and we derived their accurate absolute magnitudes and rotation periods. We found that 11 of the 13 clusters follow the same trend of primary rotation period vs mass ratio as asteroid pairs that was revealed by Pravec et al. (2010). We generalized the model of the post-fission system for asteroid pairs by Pravec et al. (2010) to a system of N components formed by rotational fission and we found excellent agreement between the data for the 11 asteroid clusters and the prediction from the theory of their formation by rotational fission. The two exceptions are the high-mass ratio (q > 0.7) clusters of (18777) Hobson and (22280) Mandragora for which a different formation mechanism is needed. Two candidate mechanisms for formation of more than one secondary by rotational fission were published: the secondary fission process proposed by Jacobson and Scheeres (2011) and a cratering collision event onto a nearly critically rotating primary proposed by Vokrouhlický et al. (2017). It will have to be revealed from future studies which of the clusters were formed by one or the other process. To that point, we found certain further interesting properties and features of the asteroid clusters that place constraints on the theories of their formation, among them the most intriguing being the possibility of a cascade disruption for some of the clusters.

  12. Composition of faint comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brown, L.W.

    1986-01-01

    The study uses an emission line, differential imaging camera built by the Science Operations Branch. This instrument allows photometric data to be obtained over a large area of a comet in a large number of resolution elements. The detector is a 100x100 Reticon array which with interchangeable optics can give resolutions from 2'' to 30'' over a field of 1' to 15'. The camera through its controlling computer can simultaneously take images in on-line and continuum filters and through computer subtraction and calibration present a photometric image of the comet produced by only the emission of the molecule under study. Initial work has shown two significant problems. First the auxiliary equipment of the telescope has not allowed the unambiguous location of faint comets so that systematic observations could be made, and secondly initial data has not shown much molecular emission from the faint comets which were located. Work last year on a software and hardware display system and this year on additional guide motors on the 36-inch telescope has allowed the differential camera to act as its own finder and guide scope. Comet IRAS was observed in C2 and CO+, as well as an occultation by the comet of SAO029103. The perodic comet Giacobini-Zinner was also observed in C2

  13. Realm of the comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weissman, P.R.

    1987-01-01

    Studies of Jovian perturbations of the orbits of long-period comets led to the concept of the Oort cloud of 180 billion comets at 50,000-150,000 AU from the sun. Several comets are induced to move toward the sun every million years by the passage of a star at a distance of a few light years. The location of the cloud has since been revised to 20,000-100,000 AU, and comets are now accepted as remnant material fron the proto-solar system epoch. The galactic disk and random, close-passing stars may also cause rare, large perturbations in the orbits of the cloud comets, sending large numbers of comets through the inner solar system. The resulting cometary storm is a candidate cause for the wholesale extinction of dinosaurs in the Cretaceous-Terniary transition due to large number of planetesimals, or one large comet, striking the earth, in a short period of time. The IRAS instruments have detected similar clouds of material around other stars

  14. Origin and development of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kresak, L.

    1989-01-01

    The comets are the most primitive and probably also the oldest members of the solar system. Comet cores are brittle bodies of an irregular shape and of a size of 1 to 10 km whose main component is ice. Around 130 comets move along short-period paths whose aphelia are concentrated in the area of Jupiter. They are in the last stage of development. About 20 comets have periods of 20 to 200 years and feature higher motion stability. Roughly 180 comets have elliptical orbits of a period exceeding 200 years, 200 comets have parabolic and 120 comets have hyperbolic orbits. The most distant comets form the Oort cloud around the solar system consisting of about one billion comets. Comets originated roughly 4.6 thousand million years ago together with planets, probably inside the Oort cloud. (M.D.). 11 figs

  15. Comets in UV

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shustov, B.; Sachkov, M.; Gómez de Castro, A. I.; Vallejo, J. C.; Kanev, E.; Dorofeeva, V.

    2018-04-01

    Comets are important "eyewitnesses" of Solar System formation and evolution. Important tests to determine the chemical composition and to study the physical processes in cometary nuclei and coma need data in the UV range of the electromagnetic spectrum. Comprehensive and complete studies require additional ground-based observations and in situ experiments. We briefly review observations of comets in the ultraviolet (UV) and discuss the prospects of UV observations of comets and exocomets with space-borne instruments. A special reference is made to the World Space Observatory-Ultraviolet (WSO-UV) project.

  16. Asteroid taxonomic classifications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tholen, D.J.

    1989-01-01

    This paper reports on three taxonomic classification schemes developed and applied to the body of available color and albedo data. Asteroid taxonomic classifications according to two of these schemes are reproduced

  17. Asteroid rotation. IV

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harris, A.W.; Young, J.W.

    1983-01-01

    The results from the year 1979 of an ongoing program of asteroid photometry at Table Mountain Observatory are presented. The results for 53 asteroids are summarized in a table, showing the number, name, opposition date, taxonomic class, diameter, absolute magnitude, mean absolute magnitude at zero phase angle and values of the absolute magnitude and linear phase coefficient derived from it, the rotation period in hours, peak-to-peak amplitude of variation, difference between mean and maximum brightness, and reliability index. Another table presents data on aspect and comparison stars, including brightness and distance data. Reliable rotation periods are reported for 22 asteroids for which no previous values are known. For seven asteroids, periods are reported which are revisions of previously reported values

  18. 24-COLOR ASTEROID SURVEY

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This dataset is comprised of asteroid flux data measured in 26 filters using the McCord dual beam photometer, and covering the range 0.32 - 1.08 microns for 285...

  19. Near Earth Asteroid Scout

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Near-Earth Asteroid Scout, or NEA Scout, is a 6U CubeSat developed jointly between NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. NASA...

  20. 52-COLOR ASTEROID SURVEY

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains 52-color IR data of asteroids, taken using a double circularly variable filter. The short wavelength portion of the CVF covered the octave...

  1. A retrograde co-orbital asteroid of Jupiter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiegert, Paul; Connors, Martin; Veillet, Christian

    2017-03-29

    Recent theoretical work in celestial mechanics has revealed that an asteroid may orbit stably in the same region as a planet, despite revolving around the Sun in the sense opposite to that of the planet itself. Asteroid 2015 BZ 509 was discovered in 2015, but with too much uncertainty in its measured orbit to establish whether it was such a retrograde co-orbital body. Here we report observations and analysis that demonstrates that asteroid 2015 BZ 509 is indeed a retrograde co-orbital asteroid of the planet Jupiter. We find that 2015 BZ 509 has long-term stability, having been in its current, resonant state for around a million years. This is long enough to preclude precise calculation of the time or mechanism of its injection to its present state, but it may be a Halley-family comet that entered the resonance through an interaction with Saturn. Retrograde co-orbital asteroids of Jupiter and other planets may be more common than previously expected.

  2. PRODUCTION OF NEAR-EARTH ASTEROIDS ON RETROGRADE ORBITS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greenstreet, S.; Gladman, B.; Ngo, H.; Granvik, M.; Larson, S.

    2012-01-01

    While computing an improved near-Earth object (NEO) steady-state orbital distribution model, we discovered in the numerical integrations the unexpected production of retrograde orbits for asteroids that had originally exited from the accepted main-belt source regions. Our model indicates that ∼0.1% (a factor of two uncertainty) of the steady-state NEO population (perihelion q < 1.3 AU) is on retrograde orbits. These rare outcomes typically happen when asteroid orbits flip to a retrograde configuration while in the 3:1 mean-motion resonance with Jupiter and then live for ∼0.001 to 100 Myr. The model predicts, given the estimated near-Earth asteroid (NEA) population, that a few retrograde 0.1-1 km NEAs should exist. Currently, there are two known MPC NEOs with asteroidal designations on retrograde orbits which we therefore claim could be escaped asteroids instead of devolatilized comets. This retrograde NEA population may also answer a long-standing question in the meteoritical literature regarding the origin of high-strength, high-velocity meteoroids on retrograde orbits.

  3. What's Causing the Activity on Comet 67P?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-09-01

    self-heating between parts of the surface in contact.Plot of the modeled temperature of two typical surfaces on the comet: one from the neck region (solid line) and one from the head region (dashed line). Unlike the head, the neck displays drastic drops in temperature as a result of shadowing. [Al-Lagoa et al. 2015]Using this model, the authors find that the temperatures behaved as they predicted: the shadows falling on the comets neck causes this region to experience very rapid temperature changes relative to the rest of the body. The authors also found a definite correlation between the regions of most rapid temperature variations and the regions of the comet that show signs of activity in Rosetta images. This provides strong evidence that thermal cracking is indeed taking place in the shadowed regions of the neck, gradually eroding away the surface.Should this model prove correct, its a step toward understanding the evolution of comets like 67P. In addition, the results from this study imply that thermal cracking might happen faster than previously estimated in shadowed regions of other atmosphereless bodies, both near Earth and in the asteroid belt.CitationV. Al-Lagoa et al 2015 ApJ 810 L22. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/810/2/L22

  4. Asteroids@Home

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durech, Josef; Hanus, J.; Vanco, R.

    2012-10-01

    We present a new project called Asteroids@home (http://asteroidsathome.net/boinc). It is a volunteer-computing project that uses an open-source BOINC (Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing) software to distribute tasks to volunteers, who provide their computing resources. The project was created at the Astronomical Institute, Charles University in Prague, in cooperation with the Czech National Team. The scientific aim of the project is to solve a time-consuming inverse problem of shape reconstruction of asteroids from sparse-in-time photometry. The time-demanding nature of the problem comes from the fact that with sparse-in-time photometry the rotation period of an asteroid is not apriori known and a huge parameter space must be densely scanned for the best solution. The nature of the problem makes it an ideal task to be solved by distributed computing - the period parameter space can be divided into small bins that can be scanned separately and then joined together to give the globally best solution. In the framework of the the project, we process asteroid photometric data from surveys together with asteroid lightcurves and we derive asteroid shapes and spin states. The algorithm is based on the lightcurve inversion method developed by Kaasalainen et al. (Icarus 153, 37, 2001). The enormous potential of distributed computing will enable us to effectively process also the data from future surveys (Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, Gaia mission, etc.). We also plan to process data of a synthetic asteroid population to reveal biases of the method. In our presentation, we will describe the project, show the first results (new models of asteroids), and discuss the possibilities of its further development. This work has been supported by the grant GACR P209/10/0537 of the Czech Science Foundation and by the Research Program MSM0021620860 of the Ministry of Education of the Czech Republic.

  5. A spectral analysis of ablating meteors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloxam, K.; Campbell-Brown, M.

    2017-09-01

    Meteor ablation features in the spectral lines occurring at 394, 436, 520, and 589 nm were observed using a four-camera spectral system between September and December 2015. In conjunction with this multi-camera system the Canadian Automated Meteor Observatory was used to observe the orbital parameters and fragmentation of these meteors. In total, 95 light curves with complete data in the 520 and 589 nm filters were analyzed; some also had partial or complete data in the 394 nm filter, but no usable data was collected with the 436 nm filter. Of the 95 events, 70 exhibited some degree of differential ablation, and in all except 3 of these 70 events the 589 nm filter started or ended sooner compared with the 520 nm filter, indicating early ablation at the 589 nm wavelength. In the majority of cases the meteor showed evidence of fragmentation regardless of the type of ablation (differential or uniform). A surprising result was the lack of correlation found concerning the KB parameter, linked to meteoroid strength, and differential ablation. In addition, 22 shower-associated meteors were observed; Geminids showed mainly slight differential ablation, while Taurids were more likely to ablate uniformly.

  6. Mineralogy of Interplanetary Dust Particles from the Comet Giacobini-Zinner Dust Stream Collections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Messenger, S.; Westphal, A. J.; Palma, R. L.

    2015-01-01

    The Draconoid meteor shower, originating from comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner, is a low-velocity Earth-crossing dust stream that had a peak anticipated flux on Oct. 8, 2012. In response to this prediction, NASA performed dedicated stratospheric dust collections to target interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) from this comet stream on Oct 15-17, 2012 [3]. Twelve dust particles from this targeted collection were allocated to our coordinated analysis team for studies of noble gas (Univ. Minnesota, Minnesota State Univ.), SXRF and Fe-XANES (SSL Berkeley) and mineralogy/isotopes (JSC). Here we report a mineralogical study of 3 IDPs from the Draconoid collection..

  7. Asteroid rotation rates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Binzel, R.P.; Farinella, P.

    1989-01-01

    Within the last decade the data base of asteroid rotation parameters (rotation rates and lightcurve amplitudes) has become sufficiently large to identify some definite rends and properties which can help us to interpret asteroid collisional evolution. Many significant correlations are found between rotation parameters and diameter, with distinct changes occurring near 125 km. The size range, which is also the diameter above which self-gravity may become important, perhaps represents a division between surviving primordial asteroids and collisional fragments. A Maxwellian is able to fit the observed rotation rate distributions of asteroids with D>125 km, implying that their rotation rates may be determined by collisional evolution. Asteroids with D<125 km show an excess of slow rotators and their non-Maxwellian distributions suggests that their rotation rates are more strongly influenced by other processes, such as the distribution resulting from their formation in catastrophic disruption events. Other correlations observed in the data set include different mean rotation rates for C, S and M type asteroids implying that their surface spectra are indicative of bulk properties

  8. Meteor Crater (Barringer Meteorite Crater), Arizona: Summary of Impact Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roddy, D. J.; Shoemaker, E. M.

    1995-09-01

    -field rock and meteorite ejecta parameters, 13) Inferred and estimated cloud-rise and fall-out conditions, 14) Late-stage meteorite falls after impact, 15) Estimated damage effect ranges, 16) Erosion of crater and ejecta blanket, 17) New topographic and digital maps of crater and ejecta blanket, 18) Other. (Suggestions are welcome) This compilation will contain expanded discussions of new data as well as revised interpretations of existing information. For example in Item 1, we suggest the impacting body most likely formed during a collision in the main asteroid belt that fragmented the iron-nickel core of an asteroid some 0.5 billion years ago. The fragments remained in space until about 50,000+/-3000 yrs ago, when they were captured by the Earth's gravitational field. In Item 3, the trajectory of the impacting body is interpreted by EMS as traveling north-northwest at a relatively low impact angle. The presence of both shocked meteorite fragments and melt spherules indicate the meteorite had a velocity in the range of about 13 to 20 km/s, probably in the lower part of this range [4]. In Item 4, the coherent meteorite diameter is estimated to have been 45 to 50 m with a mass of 300,000 to 400,000 tons, i.e., large enough to experience less than 1% in both mass ablation and velocity deceleration. During this time, minor flake-off of the meteorite's exterior produced a limited number of smaller fragments that followed the main mass to the impact site but at greatly reduced velocities. In Item 6, we estimate the kinetic energy of impact to be in the range of 20 to 40 Mt depending on the energy coupling functions used and corrections for angle of oblique impact. At impact, terrain conditions were about as we see them today, a gently rolling plain with outcrops of Moenkopi and a meter or so of soil cover. In Item 18, EMS estimates production of a Meteor Crater-size event should occur on the continents about every 50,000 years; interestingly, this is the age of Meteor Crater

  9. A Survey of Rotation Lightcurves of Small Jovian Trojan Asteroids in the L4 Cloud

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Linda M.; Stephens, Robert; Warner, Brian; James, David; Rohl, Derrick; Connour, Kyle

    2017-10-01

    Jovian Trojan asteroids are of interest both as objects in their own right and as possible relics of Solar System formation. Several lines of evidence support a common origin for, and possible hereditary link between, Jovian Trojan asteroids and cometary nuclei. Asteroid lightcurves give information about processes that have affected a group of asteroids including their density. Due to their distance and low albedos, few comet-sized Trojans have been studied. We have been carrying out a survey of Trojan lightcurve properties comparing small Trojan asteroids with comets (French et al 2015). We present new lightcurve information for 39 Trojans less than about 35 km in diameter. We report our latest results and compare them with results from the sparsely-sampled lightcurves from the Palomar Transient Factory (Waszazak et al., Chang et al. 2015). The minimum densities for objects with complete lightcurves are estimated and are found to becomparable to those measured for cometary nuclei. A significant fraction (~40%) of thisobserved small Trojan population rotates slowly (P > 24 hours), with measured periods as over 500 hours (Waszczak et al 2015). The excess of slow rotators may be due to the YORP effect. Results of the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test suggest that the distribution of Trojan rotation rates is dissimilar to those of Main Belt Asteroids of the same size.

  10. Comet prospects for 2004

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shanklin, J. D.

    2003-12-01

    2004 sees the return of 18 periodic comets. None are particularly bright and the best are likely to be 78P/Gehrels and 88P/Howell. Three new long period comets are likely to put on a good show: 2001 Q4 (NEAT) reaches perihelion in May, when it could make at least 3rd magnitude. Northern hemisphere observers will first pick it up just after perihelion as it rapidly moves north. 2002 T7 (LINEAR) could also reach 3rd magnitude at closest approach in May, however northern hemisphere observers will have lost it as a binocular object in mid-March. Observers at far southern latitudes may be able to see these two naked eye comets at the same time. 2003 K4 (LINEAR) could reach 6th magnitude as it brightens on its way to perihelion. Several other long period comets discovered in previous years are also still visible.

  11. Meteor head echoes - observations and models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Pellinen-Wannberg

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Meteor head echoes - instantaneous echoes moving with the velocities of the meteors - have been recorded since 1947. Despite many attempts, this phenomenon did not receive a comprehensive theory for over 4 decades. The High Power and Large Aperture (HPLA features, combined with present signal processing and data storage capabilities of incoherent scatter radars, may give an explanation for the old riddle. The meteoroid passage through the radar beam can be followed with simultaneous spatial-time resolution of about 100m-ms class. The current views of the meteor head echo process will be presented and discussed. These will be related to various EISCAT observations, such as dual-frequency target sizes, altitude distributions and vector velocities.

  12. Advances in Meteoroid and Meteor Science

    CERN Document Server

    Trigo-Rodríguez, J. M; Llorca, J; Janches, D

    2008-01-01

    This volume is a compilation of articles that summarize the most recent results in meteor, meteoroid and related fields presented at the Meteoroids 2007 conference held at the impressive CosmoCaixa Science Museum in Barcelona, Spain. The conference took place between the 11th and the 15th of June and was organized by the Institute of Space Sciences (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, CSIC) and the Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya (IEEC). Researchers in meteor science and supporting fields representing more than 20 countries participated at this international conference. The papers contained in this volume underwent the rigorous refereeing process, and they are good examples of the continuous progress being made in this research field. Technological advances in meteor and metoroid detection, the ever-increasing sophistication of computer modeling, and the proliferation of autonomous monitoring stations continue to create new niches for exciting research on meteoroids and their parent bo...

  13. Physical processes in comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Newburn, R.L. Jr.

    1988-01-01

    When this program began in 1975 only limited photometry had been carried out on comets at any wavelength. Program goals were to observe many comets, including faint periodic comets, at a range of heliocentric distances in order to begin to understand the range of behavior among comets and in a given comet during its approach and departure from the sun. Then a study of the continuum of scattered light from dust was added. More recently the value of joint team observations in visible and infrared light has been recognized and utilized as often as possible. All 1978 to 1982 data was reanalyzed and 1983 to 1986 data analyzed in the framwork of the post-Halley paradigm, covering 25 comets in all. Four observing runs (June, July, Sept., and Jan.) with Hanner produced excellent results on Wilson, Bradfield, P/Klemola, and P/Borrelly and lesser data on other objects, including the last reported IR photometry of P/Halley. The Wilson and Halley data have been reduced

  14. The First Year of Croatian Meteor Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andreic, Zeljko; Segon, Damir

    2010-08-01

    The idea and a short history of Croatian Meteor Network (CMN) is described. Based on use of cheap surveillance cameras, standard PC-TV cards and old PCs, the Network allows schools, amateur societies and individuals to participate in photographic meteor patrol program. The network has a strong educational component and many cameras are located at or around teaching facilities. Data obtained by these cameras are collected and processed by the scientific team of the network. Currently 14 cameras are operable, covering a large part of the croatian sky, data gathering is fully functional, and data reduction software is in testing phase.

  15. Modern Meteor Science An Interdisciplinary View

    CERN Document Server

    Hawkes, Robert; Brown, Peter

    2005-01-01

    This volume represents a blend of leading edge research and authoritative reviews in meteor science. It provides a comprehensive view of meteoroid research including the dynamics, sources and distribution of these bodies, and their chemistry and physical processes in the interplanetary medium and the Earth’s atmosphere. Techniques for investigation of meteor phenomena in the book include conventional and large aperture radar systems, spacecraft detection, optical systems, spectral measurements, and laboratory based interplanetary dust particle studies. The book will be of interest to researchers and students in astronomy, astrophysics, cosmochemistry, space engineering and space science. Cover photograph was taken by Masayuki Toda.

  16. Small Jovian Trojan Asteroids: An Excess of Slow Rotators

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Linda M.

    2016-01-01

    Several lines of evidence support a common origin for, and possible hereditary link between, cometary nuclei and jovian Trojan asteroids. Due to their distance and low albedos, few comet-sized Trojans have been studied. We discuss the rotation properties of Jovian Trojan asteroids less than 30 km in diameter. Approximately half of the objects discussed here were studied using densely sampled lightcurves (French et al. 2015a, b); Stephens et al. 2015), and the other half were sparse lightcurves obtained by the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF; Waszcazk et al. 2015). A significant fraction (~40%) of the objects in the ground-based sample rotate slowly (P > 24h), with measured periods as long as 375 h (Warner and Stephens 2011). The PTF data show a similar excess of slow rotators. Only 5 objects in the combined data set have rotation periods of less than six hours. Three of these fast rotators were contained in the data set of French et al. these three had a geometric mean rotation period of 5.29 hours. A prolate spheroid held together by gravity rotating with this period would have a critical density of 0.43 gm/cm3, a density similar to that of comets (Lamy et al. 2004). Harris et al. (2012) and Warner et al. (2011) have explored the possible effects on asteroid rotational statistics with the results from wide-field surveys. We will examine Trojan rotation statistics with and without the results from the PTF.

  17. Comet LINEAR C/1999 S4 - an absolutely well-behaved comet before breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peschke, S. B.; Lisse, C. M.; Fernandez, Y. R.; Ressler, M.; Stickel, M.; Kaminski, C.; Golish, B.

    2000-10-01

    We present results from infrared imaging of comet LINEAR C/1999 S4 on June 17 - 19, 2000 (pre-breakup), using the near-IR camera NSFCAM and the mid-IR camera MIRLIN at the 3m NASA/IRTF. Images and multi-wavelength spectroscopy were obtained in the zJHK'L'MNQ bands, and were used to create a 1.0 - 25 μ m SED of the comet's dust and nucleus. The coma's contribution at each wavelength was modeled using spatial fitting (Fernandez 1999, PhD thesis; Lisse et al. 1999, Icarus 140, 189). The resulting comatic and nuclear SEDs were then modeled using modified Mie theory (Lisse et al. 1998, ApJ 496, 971) and the standard nuclear thermal models (Lebofsky and Spencer 1989, Asteroids II, 128), respectively. We report the resulting dust PSD, mass loss rate, and albedo, as well as the nuclear radius, and we compare these results to those obtained by others from optical data both before and after the comet's breakup in late July 2000.

  18. Dust Production of Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner Using Broadband Photometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaauw, R. C.; Suggs, R. M.; Cooke, W.

    2012-01-01

    Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner is a Jupiter family comet, approximately 2 km in diameter, and is established to be the parent of the Draconids, a meteor shower known to outburst. In 1933 and 1946 up to 10,000 meteors per hour were reported for the Draconids, and 2011 saw a minor Draconid outburst. Meteor stream modeling/forecasting being a primary focus for the NASA Meteoroid Environment Office, it was decided to monitor 21P for three purposes: firstly to find the apparent and absolute magnitude with respect to heliocentric distance; second to calculate Af , a quantity that describes the dust production rate and is used in models to predict the activity of the Draconids; and thirdly to detect possible increases in cometary activity, which could correspond to future Draconid meteor outbursts. A similar study was done for 21P during its 2004-2006 close approach to the Sun in which apparent and absolute magnitudes were found with various heliocentric distances, as well as the dust production. At 2.32 AU from the Sun, 21P possessed an apparent magnitude of 17.05 and Af of 83 cm, and an apparent magnitude of 15.91 and Af of 130.66 cm at 1.76 AU from the sun.

  19. Comets in Australian Aboriginal Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamacher, Duane W.; Norris, Ray P.

    2011-03-01

    We present 25 accounts of comets from 40 Australian Aboriginal communities, citing both supernatural perceptions of comets and historical accounts of historically bright comets. Historical and ethnographic descriptions include the Great Comets of 1843, 1861, 1901, 1910, and 1927. We describe the perceptions of comets in Aboriginal societies and show that they are typically associated with fear, death, omens, malevolent spirits, and evil magic, consistent with many cultures around the world. We also provide a list of words for comets in 16 different Aboriginal languages.

  20. Asteroids - NeoWs API

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NeoWs (Near Earth Object Web Service) is a RESTful web service for near earth Asteroid information. With NeoWs a user can: search for Asteroids based on their...

  1. Asteroids astronomical and geological bodies

    CERN Document Server

    Burbine, Thomas H

    2016-01-01

    Asteroid science is a fundamental topic in planetary science and is key to furthering our understanding of planetary formation and the evolution of the Solar System. Ground-based observations and missions have provided a wealth of new data in recent years, and forthcoming missions promise further exciting results. This accessible book presents a comprehensive introduction to asteroid science, summarising the astronomical and geological characteristics of asteroids. The interdisciplinary nature of asteroid science is reflected in the broad range of topics covered, including asteroid and meteorite classification, chemical and physical properties of asteroids, observational techniques, cratering, and the discovery of asteroids and how they are named. Other chapters discuss past, present and future space missions and the threat that these bodies pose for Earth. Based on an upper-level course on asteroids and meteorites taught by the author, this book is ideal for students, researchers and professional scientists ...

  2. The California All-sky Meteor Surveillance (CAMS) System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gural, P. S.

    2011-01-01

    A unique next generation multi-camera, multi-site video meteor system is being developed and deployed in California to provide high accuracy orbits of simultaneously captured meteors. Included herein is a description of the goals, concept of operations, hardware, and software development progress. An appendix contains a meteor camera performance trade study made for video systems circa 2010.

  3. All-sky Meteor Orbit System AMOS and preliminary analysis of three unusual meteor showers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tóth, J.; Kornoš, L.; Zigo, P.; Gajdoš, Š.; Kalmančok, D.; Világi, J.; Šimon, J.; Vereš, P.; Šilha, J.; Buček, M.; Galád, Adrián; Rusňák, P.; Hrábek, P.; Ďuriš, F.; Rudawska, R.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 118, December (2015), s. 102-106 ISSN 0032-0633 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteor * meteorite * meteoroid streams Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 1.942, year: 2015

  4. CONTENUTO DI URANIO E TORIO NELLE METEORITI

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. SANTANGELO

    1955-06-01

    Full Text Available Molti ricercatori in questi ultimi anni si sono interessati al problema
    della composizione delle meteoriti; dai risultati sperimentali si
    è cercato trarre elementi circa la genesi di questi materiali, questione
    ancora aperta, ed avere informazioni sui processi chimici e termodinamici
    cui le meteoriti furono soggette prima della loro caduta sulla
    terra.
    Uno degli aspetti del problema è quello dell'abbondanza percentuale
    degli elementi chimici e della loro composizione isotopica nella
    materia meteorica dei diversi tipi : ciò perché esso è connesso con
    quello piii generale dell'origine e distribuzione degli elementi nel cosmo
    e nella terra, nonché con quello dell'età delle meteoriti (l .
    In un recente lavoro Urey e collaboratori (-, esaminando un gran
    numero di analisi chimiche effettuate su questi materiali, sono pervenuti
    alla formulazione di alcuni criteri di classificazione in base alla
    percentuale dei componenti più abbondanti ed alla presenza o meno
    di disomogeneità strutturali nella massa fondamentale. Fra gli elementi
    meno abbondanti presentano particolare interesse quelli delle due famiglie
    radioattive naturali Torio e Uranio; le loro concentrazioni sono
    state determinate per alcune meteoriti siliciche (stonv ineteorites e
    per qualcuna ferrica (iron meteorites

  5. The stability of some asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vicente, R.O.

    1983-01-01

    The utilization of two different stability criteria, namely, Hill's modified stability criterium and the method of surface of section, has been employed for asteroid orbits. The idea is to compute different criteria of stability for the same asteroids in order to compare the results and see the practical interest of the computations for researches about evolutionary trends of individual asteroids, groups and families of asteroids. (Auth.)

  6. Comet 169P/NEAT(=2002 EX12): The Parent Body of the α-Capricornid Meteoroid Stream

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasuga, Toshihiro; Balam, David D.; Wiegert, Paul A.

    2010-12-01

    The Jupiter-family comet 169P/NEAT (previously known as asteroid 2002 EX12) has a dynamical association with the α-Capricornid meteoroid stream. In this paper, we present photometric observations of comet 169P/NEAT to further investigate the physical characters of its disintegration state related to the stream. The comet shows a point-like surface brightness profile limiting contamination due to coma emission to ~4% at most, indicating no evidence of outgassing. An upper limit on the fraction of the surface that could be sublimating water ice of disintegration of the parent at every return.

  7. Geography of the asteroid belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zellner, B. H.

    1978-01-01

    The CSM classification serves as the starting point on the geography of the asteroid belt. Raw data on asteroid types are corrected for observational biases (against dark objects, for instance) to derive the distribution of types throughout the belt. Recent work on family members indicates that dynamical families have a true physical relationship, presumably indicating common origin in the breakup of a parent asteroid.

  8. Genetic Algorithm-Based Optimization to Match Asteroid Energy Deposition Curves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarano, Ana; Mathias, Donovan; Wheeler, Lorien; Close, Sigrid

    2018-01-01

    An asteroid entering Earth's atmosphere deposits energy along its path due to thermal ablation and dissipative forces that can be measured by ground-based and spaceborne instruments. Inference of pre-entry asteroid properties and characterization of the atmospheric breakup is facilitated by using an analytic fragment-cloud model (FCM) in conjunction with a Genetic Algorithm (GA). This optimization technique is used to inversely solve for the asteroid's entry properties, such as diameter, density, strength, velocity, entry angle, and strength scaling, from simulations using FCM. The previous parameters' fitness evaluation involves minimizing error to ascertain the best match between the physics-based calculated energy deposition and the observed meteors. This steady-state GA provided sets of solutions agreeing with literature, such as the meteor from Chelyabinsk, Russia in 2013 and Tagish Lake, Canada in 2000, which were used as case studies in order to validate the optimization routine. The assisted exploration and exploitation of this multi-dimensional search space enables inference and uncertainty analysis that can inform studies of near-Earth asteroids and consequently improve risk assessment.

  9. Jupiter Laser Facility - COMET Laser

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — COMET has 4 beam configurations with uncompressed pulse lengths from 500 ps to 6 ns, compressed pulses to 0.5 ps, and beam energies up to 20 J. COMET can fire every...

  10. The Halley comet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Encrenaz, T.; Festou, M.

    1985-01-01

    The conspicuous part of a comet, made of tenuous gas and dusts, represents only a tiny part of its mass. The main information is hidden in the central part: a solid nucleus, ice and rock blocks with a radius less than 10 km, completely invisible from the Earth. The knowledge of the nucleus structure and its composition could give the key of the planet creation mechanisms. That is a reason why it has been decided to send an automatic device to penetrate the Halley comet atmosphere and that two Soviet probes, Vega 1 and 2, one European probe Giotto, and two Japanese, Planet-A and MS-TS, will explore in-situ in March 1986, for the first time, a comet at atmosphere [fr

  11. Astrobiology of Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.; Wickramasinghe, Nalin C.; Wallis, Max K.; Sheldon, Robert B.

    2004-01-01

    We review the current state of knowledge concerning microbial extremophiles and comets and the potential significance of comets to Astrobiology. We model the thermal history of a cometary body, regarded as an assemblage of boulders, dust, ices and organics, as it approaches a perihelion distance of - IAU. The transfer of incident energy from sunlight into the interior leads to the melting of near surface ices, some under stable porous crust, providing possible habitats for a wide range of microorganisms. We provide data concerning new evidence for indigenous microfossils in CI meteorites, which may be the remains of extinct cometary cores. We discuss the dominant microbial communities of polar sea-ice, Antarctic ice sheet, and cryoconite environments as possible analogs for microbial ecosystems that may grow in sub-crustal pools or in ice/water films in comets.

  12. Comet: Multifunction VOEvent broker

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swinbank, John

    2014-04-01

    Comet is a Python implementation of the VOEvent Transport Protocol (VTP). VOEvent is the IVOA system for describing transient celestial events. Details of transients detected by many projects, including Fermi, Swift, and the Catalina Sky Survey, are currently made available as VOEvents, which is also the standard alert format by future facilities such as LSST and SKA. The core of Comet is a multifunction VOEvent broker, capable of receiving events either by subscribing to one or more remote brokers or by direct connection from authors; it can then both process those events locally and forward them to its own subscribers. In addition, Comet provides a tool for publishing VOEvents to the global VOEvent backbone.

  13. Thermal evolution of Comet P/Tempel 1 - Representing the group of targets for the CRAF and CNSR missions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bar-nun, A.; Heifet, E.; Prialnik, D.

    1989-01-01

    A numerical definition of the thermal evolution of spherically symmetric models of the nucleus in the orbit of Comet P/Tempel-1 is presently used to ascertain the properties of the outer layers of comets under consideration for the future Comet Rendezvous and Asteroid Flyby and the Comet Nucleus Sample Return missions. Evolutionary sequences are computed for different values of density, dust/ice mass ratio, and the dust fraction not lost with ice sublimation. It is found that inner and outer surface temperatures of the dust mantle are comparatively insensitive to parameter changes, and that the total thickness of the crystalline ice layer between the dust mantle and the amorphous ice core will make it difficult for the comet-mission probes to sample pristine ice. 23 refs

  14. ESA Unveils Its New Comet Chaser.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-07-01

    October 2007 before heading away from the Sun towards Comet Wirtanen. As it bounces around the Solar System, Rosetta will also make two excursions into the main asteroid belt, where it will obtain the first close-up images and information on two contrasting objects, 4979 Otawara and 140 Siwa. Scientists believe Otawara is less than 20 km across, whereas Siwa is probably 110 km in diameter, much larger than any asteroid which has so far been visited by spacecraft. Rosetta will fly to within 1,000 km of Otawara in July 2006, followed by a similar rendezvous with Siwa two years later. However, the most difficult phase of the mission will be the final rendezvous with the fast-moving comet (the foreseen date for the rendezvous manoeuvre is 27 November 2011, close approach is set for 20 May 2012 and orbit insertion around the nucleus is set for 28 May 2012). Thus, after a 5.3 billion km space odyssey, Rosetta will make first contact with Wirtanen about 675 million km from the Sun. At this distance, sunlight is 20 times weaker than on Earth, and the comet's nucleus will still be frozen and inactive. Once the navigation team are able to determine the comet's exact location from images returned by the spacecraft camera, a series of braking manoeuvres will allow Rosetta to match speed and direction with its target. After about seven months of edging closer, Rosetta will eventually close to within 2 km of Wirtanen's frozen nucleus. From its close orbit above the tiny nucleus, Rosetta will be able to send back the most detailed images and information ever obtained of a comet. When a suitable landing site has been chosen, about a month after global mapping starts, the orbiter will release a 100 kg lander onto the comet's solid surface. Touchdown must be quite slow - less than one metre per second - to allow for the almost negligible gravitational pull of the tiny nucleus. In order to ensure that the lander does not bounce and disappear into space, an anchoring harpoon will be fired

  15. Nature and origin of comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fernandez, J.A.; Jockers, K.

    1983-01-01

    The review examines basic history and morphology, motion, dynamic evolution, physical properties of neutral gaseous matter, vaporization of gases and outflow from the nucleus, chemistry of the coma gases, the comet nucleus, dust particles, solar wind-comet interactions and tail formation and the origin of comets. (U.K.)

  16. Comets - cosmic 'snowballs'

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Luest, R.

    1979-01-01

    Non-periodic comets come from regions at the limit of our solar system and have conserved their original structure and composition since they have originated from a pre-solar nebuly together with the sun and the planets about 4.5 x 10 9 years ago. They are icy bodies of kilometer size whose structure and chemical composition is of great interest also with respect to the origin of the solar system. It is hoped to send a space craft to comet Halley in 1986 to get more detailed informations. (orig.) [de

  17. The trajectory, structure and origin of the Chelyabinsk asteroidal impactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borovička, Jiří; Spurný, Pavel; Brown, Peter; Wiegert, Paul; Kalenda, Pavel; Clark, David; Shrbený, Lukáš

    2013-11-01

    Earth is continuously colliding with fragments of asteroids and comets of various sizes. The largest encounter in historical times occurred over the Tunguska river in Siberia in 1908, producing an airburst of energy equivalent to 5-15 megatons of trinitrotoluene (1 kiloton of trinitrotoluene represents an energy of 4.185 × 1012 joules). Until recently, the next most energetic airburst events occurred over Indonesia in 2009 and near the Marshall Islands in 1994, both with energies of several tens of kilotons. Here we report an analysis of selected video records of the Chelyabinsk superbolide of 15 February 2013, with energy equivalent to 500 kilotons of trinitrotoluene, and details of its atmospheric passage. We found that its orbit was similar to the orbit of the two-kilometre-diameter asteroid 86039 (1999 NC43), to a degree of statistical significance sufficient to suggest that the two were once part of the same object. The bulk strength--the ability to resist breakage--of the Chelyabinsk asteroid, of about one megapascal, was similar to that of smaller meteoroids and corresponds to a heavily fractured single stone. The asteroid broke into small pieces between the altitudes of 45 and 30 kilometres, preventing more-serious damage on the ground. The total mass of surviving fragments larger than 100 grams was lower than expected.

  18. LISA and asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vinet, Jean-Yves

    2006-01-01

    LISA is a joint ESA-NASA mission aiming for cosmic gravitational wave detection and analysis. We address here the question of a special kind of signal caused by asteroid encounters. We present a short theory of the detection of such signals

  19. Solar influence on meteor rates and atmospheric density variations at meteor heights

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ellyett, C.

    1977-01-01

    A full analysis of radar-determined meteor rates from New Zealand, involving 3,085,574 meteors recorded over a total of 3 1/2 years, and 12,391,976 meteors recorded by the National Research Council of Canada in 8 1/2 years confirms an inverse relationship between meteor rates and solar activity as measured by sunspot numbers. The relationship, significant at the 1% level, appears in the Canadian annual average when the abnormal 1963 increase is removed, in monthly and 1/3-monthly results for the total Canadian period, and in monthly intervals for 1 year of the New Zealand data. This proven relationship of meteor rates with the solar cycle calls for a significant density gradient change over the solar cycle in the 70- to-120-km height range. Although some definite negative results have been reported, no unambiguous positive results are yet available supporting such a density gradient change. It is possible that density variations due to annual, semiannual, diurnal, and latitudinal changes obscure any 11-year density gradient change occurring at these heights. It is uncertain whether the 1963 increase represents density gradient changes in the meteor ablation region regularly brought about 1-2 years before each sunspot minimum or is a special event due to volcanic dust. The following additional facts have emerged from the present analysis. (1) Within a 1-year period the seasonal rate change of astronomical origin overrides any density gradient change in controlling the meteor rates in one of the two hemispheres. (2) The earth's daily rotation alters rates in phase with probable diurnal density gradient changes. (3) An effect due to D region absorption has been observed in the Canadian data

  20. Interferometric Meteor Head Echo Observations using the Southern Argentina Agile Meteor Radar (SAAMER)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janches, D.; Hocking, W.; Pifko, S.; Hormaechea, J. L.; Fritts, D. C.; Brunini, C; Michell, R.; Samara, M.

    2013-01-01

    A radar meteor echo is the radar scattering signature from the free-electrons in a plasma trail generated by entry of extraterrestrial particles into the atmosphere. Three categories of scattering mechanisms exist: specular, nonspecular trails, and head-echoes. Generally, there are two types of radars utilized to detect meteors. Traditional VHF meteor radars (often called all-sky1radars) primarily detect the specular reflection of meteor trails traveling perpendicular to the line of sight of the scattering trail, while High Power and Large Aperture (HPLA) radars efficiently detect meteor head-echoes and, in some cases, non-specular trails. The fact that head-echo measurements can be performed only with HPLA radars limits these studies in several ways. HPLA radars are very sensitive instruments constraining the studies to the lower masses, and these observations cannot be performed continuously because they take place at national observatories with limited allocated observing time. These drawbacks can be addressed by developing head echo observing techniques with modified all-sky meteor radars. In addition, the fact that the simultaneous detection of all different scattering mechanisms can be made with the same instrument, rather than requiring assorted different classes of radars, can help clarify observed differences between the different methodologies. In this study, we demonstrate that such concurrent observations are now possible, enabled by the enhanced design of the Southern Argentina Agile Meteor Radar (SAAMER) deployed at the Estacion Astronomica Rio Grande (EARG) in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. The results presented here are derived from observations performed over a period of 12 days in August 2011, and include meteoroid dynamical parameter distributions, radiants and estimated masses. Overall, the SAAMER's head echo detections appear to be produced by larger particles than those which have been studied thus far using this technique.

  1. Asteroid Kinetic Impactor Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesley, Steven

    2015-08-01

    Asteroid impact missions can be carried out as a relatively low-cost add-ons to most asteroid rendezvous missions and such impact experiments have tremendous potential, both scientifically and in the arena of planetary defense.The science returns from an impactor demonstration begin with the documentation of the global effects of the impact, such as changes in orbit and rotation state, the creation and dissipation of an ejecta plume and debris disk, and morphological changes across the body due to the transmission of seismic waves, which might induce landslides and toppling of boulders, etc. At a local level, an inspection of the impact crater and ejecta blanket reveals critical material strength information, as well as spectral differences between the surface and subsurface material.From the planetary defense perspective, an impact demonstration will prove humankind’s capacity to alter the orbit of a potentially threatening asteroid. This technological leap comes in two parts. First, terminal guidance systems that can deliver an impactor with small errors relative to the ~100-200 meter size of a likely impactor have yet to be demonstrated in a deep space environment. Second, the response of an asteroid to such an impact is only understood theoretically due to the potentially significant dependence on the momentum carried by escaping ejecta, which would tend to enhance the deflection by tens of percent and perhaps as much as a factor of a few. A lack of validated understanding of momentum enhancement is a significant obstacle in properly sizing a real-world impactor deflection mission.This presentation will describe the drivers for asteroid impact demonstrations and cover the range of such concepts, starting with ESA’s pioneering Don Quijote mission concept and leading to a brief description of concepts under study at the present time, including the OSIRIS-REx/ISIS, BASiX/KIX and AIM/DART (AIDA) concepts.

  2. Comet radar explorer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farnham, Tony; Asphaug, Erik; Barucci, Antonella; Belton, Mike; Bockelee-Morvan, Dominique; Brownlee, Donald; Capria, Maria Teresa; Carter, Lynn; Chesley, Steve; Farnham, Tony; Gaskell, Robert; Gim, Young; Heggy, Essam; Herique, Alain; Klaasen, Ken; Kofman, Wlodek; Kreslavsky, Misha; Lisse, Casey; Orosei, Roberto; Plaut, Jeff; Scheeres, Dan

    The Comet Radar Explorer (CORE) is designed to perform a comprehensive and detailed exploration of the interior, surface, and inner coma structures of a scientifically impor-tant Jupiter family comet. These structures will be used to investigate the origins of cometary nuclei, their physical and geological evolution, and the mechanisms driving their spectacular activity. CORE is a high heritage spacecraft, injected by solar electric propulsion into orbit around a comet. It is capable of coherent deep radar imaging at decameter wavelengths, high resolution stereo color imaging, and near-IR imaging spectroscopy. Its primary objective is to obtain a high-resolution map of the interior structure of a comet nucleus at a resolution of ¿100 elements across the diameter. This structure shall be related to the surface geology and morphology, and to the structural details of the coma proximal to the nucleus. This is an ideal complement to the science from recent comet missions, providing insight into how comets work. Knowing the structure of the interior of a comet-what's inside-and how cometary activity works, is required before we can understand the requirements for a cryogenic sample return mission. But more than that, CORE is fundamental to understanding the origin of comets and their evolution in time. The mission is made feasible at low cost by the use of now-standard MARSIS-SHARAD reflec-tion radar imaging hardware and data processing, together with proven flight heritage of solar electric propulsion. Radar flight heritage has been demonstrated by the MARSIS radar on Mars Express (Picardi et al., Science 2005; Plaut et al., Science 2007), the SHARAD radar onboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (Seu et al., JGR 2007), and the LRS radar onboard Kaguya (Ono et al, EPS 2007). These instruments have discovered detailed subsurface structure to depths of several kilometers in a variety of terrains on Mars and the Moon. A reflection radar deployed in orbit about a comet

  3. Comets in Indian Scriptures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Das Gupta, P.

    2016-01-01

    The Indo-Aryans of ancient India observed stars and constellations for ascertaining auspicious times in order to conduct sacrificial rites ordained by the Vedas. Naturally, they would have sighted comets and referred to them in the Vedic texts. In Rigveda (circa 1700-1500 BC) and Atharvaveda (circa 1150 BC), there are references to dhumaketus and ketus, which stand for comets in Sanskrit. Rigveda speaks of a fig tree whose aerial roots spread out in the sky (Parpola 2010). Had this imagery been inspired by the resemblance of a comet's tail with long and linear roots of a banyan tree (ficus benghalensis)? Varahamihira (AD 550) and Ballal Sena (circa AD 1100-1200) described a large number of comets recorded by ancient seers, such as Parashara, Vriddha Garga, Narada, and Garga, to name a few. In this article, we propose that an episode in Mahabharata in which a radiant king, Nahusha, who rules the heavens and later turns into a serpent after he kicked the seer Agastya (also the star Canopus), is a mythological retelling of a cometary event.

  4. Comet 2001 Q2

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Kušnirák, Peter; Bouma, R. J.; Raymundo, P. M.

    č. 7687 (2001), s. 1 ISSN 0081-0304 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/99/0255 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : comet s * astrometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  5. Death of a comet

    CERN Multimedia

    Hawkes, N

    2000-01-01

    The comet Linear dissolved as it made its closest approach to the sun on July 25th. The first stages of its breakup had been witnessed by the Hubble telescope when it threw off a piece of its crust (3 paragraphs).

  6. Meteor detection on ST (MST) radars

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Avery, S.K.

    1987-01-01

    The ability to detect radar echoes from backscatter due to turbulent irregularities of the radio refractive index in the clear atmosphere has lead to an increasing number of established mesosphere - stratosphere - troposphere (MST or ST) radars. Humidity and temperature variations are responsible for the echo in the troposphere and stratosphere and turbulence acting on electron density gradients provides the echo in the mesosphere. The MST radar and its smaller version, the ST radar, are pulsed Doppler radars operating in the VHF - UHF frequency range. These echoes can be used to determine upper atmosphere winds at little extra cost to the ST radar configuration. In addition, the meteor echoes can supplement mesospheric data from an MST radar. The detection techniques required on the ST radar for delineating meteor echo returns are described

  7. Disappearance and disintegration of comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekanina, Z.

    1984-01-01

    The present investigation has the objective to provide a summary of the existing evidence on the disappearance of comets and to draw conclusions regarding the physical processes involved in the disappearance. Information concerning the classification of evidence and the causes of apparent disappearance of comets is presented in a table. Attention is given to the dissipating comets, the headless sungrazing comet 1887 I, and the physical behavior of the dissipating comets and the related phenomena. It is found that all comets confined to the planetary region of the solar system decay on astronomically short time scales. However, only some of them appear to perish catastrophically. Some of the observed phenomena could be successfully interpreted. But little insight has been obtained into the character of the processes which the dissipating comets experience.

  8. Ammonia abundances in four comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wickoff, S.; Tegler, S.C.; Engel, L.

    1991-01-01

    NH2 emission band strengths were measured in four comets and the NH2 column densities were determined in order to measure the ammonia content of the comets. The mean ammonia/water abundance ratio derived for the four comets is found to be 0.13 + or - 0.06 percent, with no significant variation among the comets. The uniformity of this abundance attests to a remarkable degree of chemical homogeneity over large scales in the comet-forming region of the primordial solar nebula, and contrasts with the CO abundance variations found previously in comets. The N2 and NH3 abundances indicate a condensation temperature in the range 20-160 K, consistent with virtually all comet formation hypotheses. 64 refs

  9. Cometography a catalog of comets

    CERN Document Server

    Kronk, Gary W; Seargent, David A J

    2017-01-01

    Cometography is a multi-volume catalog of every comet observed from ancient times up to the 1990s, when the internet took off as a medium of scientific record. It uses the most reliable orbits known to determine the distances from the Earth and Sun at the time of discovery and last observation, as well as the largest and smallest angular distance to the Sun, most northerly and southerly declination, closest distance to the Earth, and other details, to enable the reader to understand each comet's physical appearance. Volume 6, the final volume in the catalog, covers the observations and pertinent calculations for every comet seen between 1983 and 1993. The comets are listed in chronological order, with complete references to publications relating to each comet and physical descriptions of each comet's development throughout its apparition. Cometography is the definitive reference on comets through the ages, for astronomers and historians of science.

  10. Meteors, space aliens, and other exotic encounters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tom. Hofacker

    1998-01-01

    Exotics have had a big impact on our environment. If you do not think so, just look at how many people believe that humans would not exist on this planet were it not for exotics. This belief centers on two main theories: (1) that humans could not have evolved were it not for a huge meteor from outer space striking the earth resulting in extinction of the dinasours, the...

  11. A Global Atmospheric Model of Meteoric Iron

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Wuhu; Marsh, Daniel R.; Chipperfield, Martyn P.; Janches, Diego; Hoffner, Josef; Yi, Fan; Plane, John M. C.

    2013-01-01

    The first global model of meteoric iron in the atmosphere (WACCM-Fe) has been developed by combining three components: the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM), a description of the neutral and ion-molecule chemistry of iron in the mesosphere and lower thermosphere (MLT), and a treatment of the injection of meteoric constituents into the atmosphere. The iron chemistry treats seven neutral and four ionized iron containing species with 30 neutral and ion-molecule reactions. The meteoric input function (MIF), which describes the injection of Fe as a function of height, latitude, and day, is precalculated from an astronomical model coupled to a chemical meteoric ablation model (CABMOD). This newly developed WACCM-Fe model has been evaluated against a number of available ground-based lidar observations and performs well in simulating the mesospheric atomic Fe layer. The model reproduces the strong positive correlation of temperature and Fe density around the Fe layer peak and the large anticorrelation around 100 km. The diurnal tide has a significant effect in the middle of the layer, and the model also captures well the observed seasonal variations. However, the model overestimates the peak Fe+ concentration compared with the limited rocket-borne mass spectrometer data available, although good agreement on the ion layer underside can be obtained by adjusting the rate coefficients for dissociative recombination of Fe-molecular ions with electrons. Sensitivity experiments with the same chemistry in a 1-D model are used to highlight significant remaining uncertainties in reaction rate coefficients, and to explore the dependence of the total Fe abundance on the MIF and rate of vertical transport.

  12. Definitions of terms in meteor astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koschny, Detlef; Borovicka, Jiri

    2017-10-01

    Over the last year, the IAU commission F1 (Meteors, Meteorites and Interplanetary Dust) has discussed and agreed a new definition of terminology related to our field of interest. It is available online at this link: https://www.iau.org/static/science/scientific_bodies/commissions/f1/meteordefinitions_approved.pdf. For your convenience it is reproduced here. Please keep these definitions in mind in any future communications about our topic.

  13. ASTROMETRIC MASSES OF 26 ASTEROIDS AND OBSERVATIONS ON ASTEROID POROSITY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baer, James; Chesley, Steven R.; Matson, Robert D.

    2011-01-01

    As an application of our recent observational error model, we present the astrometric masses of 26 main-belt asteroids. We also present an integrated ephemeris of 300 large asteroids, which was used in the mass determination algorithm to model significant perturbations from the rest of the main belt. After combining our mass estimates with those of other authors, we study the bulk porosities of over 50 main-belt asteroids and observe that asteroids as large as 300 km in diameter may be loose aggregates. This finding may place specific constraints on models of main-belt collisional evolution. Additionally, we observe that C-group asteroids tend to have significantly higher macroporosity than S-group asteroids.

  14. From interstellar dust to comets - A unification of observational constraints

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Greenberg, J.M.; Hage, J.I.

    1990-01-01

    The interstellar dust model of comets is numerically worked out to satisfy simultaneously several basic constraints provided by observations of Comet Halley, and to derive the porosity of coma dust. The observational constraints are (1) the strengths of the 3.4 and 9.7 micron emission bands, (2) the shape of the 9.7 micron band, (3) the amount of silicates relative to organic materials, and (4) the mass distribution of the dust. The method used involves precise calculations of temperatures and the emission characteristics of porous aggregates of interstellar dust as a function of their mass, porosity, and distance to the sun and the wavelength. The results indicate that coma dust has a porosity in the range 0.93-0.975, i.e., a packing factor of 0.07 or less, consistent with independent observations of comet densities of 0.6 to 0.26 g/cu cm and meteor densities of less than 0.2 g/cu cm. 63 refs

  15. Asteroid Origins Satellite (AOSAT) I: An On-orbit Centrifuge Science Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lightholder, Jack; Thoesen, Andrew; Adamson, Eric; Jakubowski, Jeremy; Nallapu, Ravi; Smallwood, Sarah; Raura, Laksh; Klesh, Andrew; Asphaug, Erik; Thangavelautham, Jekan

    2017-04-01

    Exploration of asteroids, comets and small moons (small bodies) can answer fundamental questions relating to the formation of the solar system, the availability of resources, and the nature of impact hazards. Near-earth asteroids and the small moons of Mars are potential targets of human exploration. But as illustrated by recent missions, small body surface exploration remains challenging, expensive, and fraught with risk. Despite their small size, they are among the most extreme planetary environments, with low and irregular gravity, loosely bound regolith, extreme temperature variation, and the presence of electrically charged dust. Here we describe the Asteroid Origins Satellite (AOSAT-I), an on-orbit, 3U CubeSat centrifuge using a sandwich-sized bed of crushed meteorite fragments to replicate asteroid surface conditions. Demonstration of this CubeSat will provide a low-cost pathway to physical asteroid model validation, shed light on the origin and geophysics of asteroids, and constrain the design of future landers, rovers, resource extractors, and human missions. AOSAT-I will conduct scientific experiments within its payload chamber while operating in two distinct modes: (1) as a nonrotating microgravity laboratory to investigate primary accretion, and (2) as a rotating centrifuge producing artificial milligravity to simulate surface conditions on asteroids, comets and small moons. AOSAT-I takes advantage of low-cost, off-the-shelf components, modular design, and the rapid assembly and instrumentation of the CubeSat standard, to answer fundamental questions in planetary science and reduce cost and risk of future exploration.

  16. Rosetta/VIRTIS-M spectral data: Comet 67P/CG compared to other primitive small bodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Sanctis, M. C.; Capaccioni, F.; Filacchione, G.; Erard, S.; Tosi, F.; Ciarniello, M.; Raponi, A.; Piccioni, G.; Leyrat, C.; Bockelée-Morvan, D.; Drossart, P.; Fornasier, S.

    2014-12-01

    VIRTIS-M, the Visible InfraRed Thermal Imaging Spectrometer, onboard the Rosetta Mission orbiter (Coradini et al., 2007) acquired data of the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in the 0.25-5.1 µm spectral range. The initial data, obtained during the first mission phases to the comet, allow us to derive albedo and global spectral properties of the comet nucleus as well as spectra of different areas on the nucleus. The characterization of cometary nuclei surfaces and their comparison with those of related populations such as extinct comet candidates, Centaurs, near-Earth asteroids (NEAs), trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs), and primitive asteroids is critical to understanding the origin and evolution of small solar system bodies. The acquired VIRTIS data are used to compare the global spectral properties of comet 67P/CG to published spectra of other cometary nuclei observed from ground or visited by space mission. Moreover, the spectra of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko are also compared to those of primitive asteroids and centaurs. The comparison can give us clues on the possible common formation and evolutionary environment for primitive asteroids, centaurs and Jupiter-family comets. Authors acknowledge the funding from Italian and French Space Agencies. References: Coradini, A., Capaccioni, F., Drossart, P., Arnold, G., Ammannito, E., Angrilli, F., Barucci, A., Bellucci, G., Benkhoff, J., Bianchini, G., Bibring, J. P., Blecka, M., Bockelee-Morvan, D., Capria, M. T., Carlson, R., Carsenty, U., Cerroni, P., Colangeli, L., Combes, M., Combi, M., Crovisier, J., De Sanctis, M. C., Encrenaz, E. T., Erard, S., Federico, C., Filacchione, G., Fink, U., Fonti, S., Formisano, V., Ip, W. H., Jaumann, R., Kuehrt, E., Langevin, Y., Magni, G., McCord, T., Mennella, V., Mottola, S., Neukum, G., Palumbo, P., Piccioni, G., Rauer, H., Saggin, B., Schmitt, B., Tiphene, D., Tozzi, G., Space Science Reviews, Volume 128, Issue 1-4, 529-559, 2007.

  17. Earth's Trojan asteroid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Connors, Martin; Wiegert, Paul; Veillet, Christian

    2011-07-27

    It was realized in 1772 that small bodies can stably share the same orbit as a planet if they remain near 'triangular points' 60° ahead of or behind it in the orbit. Such 'Trojan asteroids' have been found co-orbiting with Jupiter, Mars and Neptune. They have not hitherto been found associated with Earth, where the viewing geometry poses difficulties for their detection, although other kinds of co-orbital asteroid (horseshoe orbiters and quasi-satellites) have been observed. Here we report an archival search of infrared data for possible Earth Trojans, producing the candidate 2010 TK(7). We subsequently made optical observations which established that 2010 TK(7) is a Trojan companion of Earth, librating around the leading Lagrange triangular point, L(4). Its orbit is stable over at least ten thousand years.

  18. Comparison of the Oxidation State of Fe in Comet 81P/Wild 2 and Chondritic-Porous Interplanetary Dust Particles

    OpenAIRE

    Ogliore, R. C.; Butterworth, A. L.; Fakra, S. C.; Gainsforth, Z.; Marcus, M. A.; Westphal, A. J.

    2010-01-01

    The fragile structure of chondritic-porous interplanetary dust particles (CP- IDPs) and their minimal parent-body alteration have led researchers to believe these particles originate in comets rather than asteroids where aqueous and thermal alteration have occurred. The solar elemental abundances and atmospheric entry speed of CP-IDPs also suggest a cometary origin. With the return of the Stardust samples from Jupiter-family comet 81P/Wild 2, this hypothesis can be tested. We have measured th...

  19. 67P, Singing Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smirnova, Ekaterina

    2017-04-01

    I would like to propose to present a short science-art-music collaboration film called "67P, Singing Comet" (5:27 min). If time of the session will allow, prior to the film I would like to make a slide show introduction to this project, highlighting the inspiration - the mission Rosetta by the European Space Agency (ESA) - and the artistic collaboration that took place in creating this piece. Inspired by the ESA Rosetta mission to the comet 67P, Ekaterina Smirnova (artist and project director, New York), Lee Mottram (clarinetist, Wales), Takuto Fukuda (composer, Japan) and Brian Hekker (video editor, New York) collaborated to create a unique atmospheric piece. Water and the origins of life throughout the Universe (specifically the Earth) is an element of the mission and the focus of Ekaterina's artistic vision. Ekaterina literally and figuratively paints a sensory assemblage using a combination of synthetic and natural elements to shape this artistic creation. To paint her watercolor works she is using a replica of the water found on the comet and implementing her own heartbeat into the music to create a recognizable inward sound of life. The Electro-Acoustic composition by Takuto Fukuda features an electronically manipulated performance by clarinetist Lee Mottram. The piece ceremoniously begins with reverberant bursts of low-register atonal bells transporting the listener to their ethereal inner origins of body and mind. The imagination takes the experience to an unknown destination as it gains speed gliding through the visual and audible textures of space and time. The comet's water similarly reacts with an ebb and flow thawing ice to potentially give life a chance as it is thrust along an orbit around the Sun. Near then far from the heat the comet forms frozen particles from vapors as it reaches it's furthest stretches creating an aerodynamic tail of icicles that slowly dissipate in a cycle that repeats itself until the comet's ultimate collision with an

  20. Comet 81P/Wild 2 under a microscope

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brownlee, D; Tsou, P; Aleon, J; Alexander, C; Araki, T; Bajt, S; Baratta, G A; Bastien, R; Bland, P; Bleuet, P; Borg, J; Bradley, J P; Brearley, A; Brenker, F; Brennan, S; Bridges, J C; Browning, N; Brucato, J R; Bullock, E; Burchell, M J; Busemann, H; Butterworth, A; Chaussidon, M; Cheuvront, A; Chi, M; Cintala, M J; Clark, B C; Clemett, S J; Cody, G; Colangeli, L; Cooper, G; Cordier, P; Daghlian, C; Dai, Z R; D' Hendecourt, L; Djouadi, Z; Dominguez, G; Duxbury, T; Dworkin, J P; Ebel, D; Economou, T E; Fairey, S J; Fallon, S; Ferrini, G; Ferroir, T; Fleckenstein, H; Floss, C; Flynn, G; Franchi, I A; Fries, M; Gainsforth, Z; Gallien, J; Genge, M; Gilles, M K; Gillet, P; Gilmour, J; Glavin, D P; Gounelle, M; Grady, M M; Graham, G A; Grant, P G; Green, S F; Grossemy, F; Grossman, L; Grossman, J; Guan, Y; Hagiya, K; Harvey, R; Heck, P; Herzog, G F; Hoppe, P; Horz, F; Huth, J; Hutcheon, I D; Ishii, H; Ito, M; Jacob, D; Jacobsen, C; Jacobsen, S; Joswiak, D; Kearsley, A T; Keller, L; Khodja, H; Kilcoyne, A D; Kissel, J; Krot, A; Langenhorst, F; Lanzirotti, A; Le, L; Leshin, L; Leitner, J; Lemelle, L; Leroux, H; Liu, M; Luening, K; Lyon, I; MacPherson, G; Marcus, M A; Marhas, K; Matrajt, G; Meibom, A; Mennella, V; Messenger, K; Mikouchi, T; Mostefaoui, S; Nakamura, T; Nakano, T; Newville, M; Nittler, L R; Ohnishi, I; Ohsumi, K; Okudaira, K; Papanastassiou, D A; Palma, R; Palumbo, M E; Pepin, R O; Perkins, D; Perronnet, M; Pianetta, P; Rao, W; Rietmeijer, F; Robert, F; Rost, D; Rotundi, A; Ryan, R; Sandford, S A; Schwandt, C S; See, T H; Schlutter, D; Sheffield-Parker, J; Simionovici, A; Simon, S; Sitnitsky, I; Snead, C J; Spencer, M K; Stadermann, F J; Steele, A; Stephan, T; Stroud, R; Susini, J; Sutton, S R; Taheri, M; Taylor, S; Teslich, N; Tomeoka, K; Tomioka, N; Toppani, A; Trigo-Rodriguez, J M; Troadec, D; Tsuchiyama, A; Tuzolino, A J; Tyliszczak, T; Uesugi, K; Velbel, M; Vellenga, J; Vicenzi, E; Vincze, L; Warren, J; Weber, I; Weisberg, M; Westphal, A J; Wirick, S; Wooden, D; Wopenka, B; Wozniakiewicz, P; Wright, I; Yabuta, K; Yano, H; Young, E D; Zare, R N; Zega, T

    2006-10-12

    The Stardust spacecraft collected thousands of particles from comet 81P/Wild 2 and returned them to Earth for laboratory study. The preliminary examination of these samples shows that the nonvolatile portion of the comet is an unequilibrated assortment of materials that have both presolar and solar system origin. The comet contains an abundance of silicate grains that are much larger than predictions of interstellar grain models, and many of these are high-temperature minerals that appear to have formed in the inner regions of the solar nebula. Their presence in a comet proves that the formation of the solar system included mixing on the grandest scales. Stardust was the first mission to return solid samples from a specific astronomical body other than the Moon. The mission, part of the NASA Discovery program, retrieved samples from a comet that is believed to have formed at the outer fringe of the solar nebula, just beyond the most distant planet. The samples, isolated from the planetary region of the solar system for billions of years, provide new insight into the formation of the solar system. The samples provide unprecedented opportunities both to corroborate astronomical (remote sensing) and sample analysis information (ground truth) on a known primitive solar system body and to compare preserved building blocks from the edge of the planetary system with sample-derived and astronomical data for asteroids, small bodies that formed more than an order of magnitude closer to the Sun. The asteroids, parents of most meteorites, formed by accretion of solids in warmer, denser, more collisionally evolved inner regions of the solar nebula where violent nebular events were capable of flash-melting millimeter-sized rocks, whereas comets formed in the coldest, least dense region. The samples collected by Stardust are the first primitive materials from a known body, and as such they provide contextual insight for all primitive meteoritic samples. About 200 investigators

  1. Silicates in Alien Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    This plot of data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescopes shows that asteroid dust around a dead 'white dwarf' star contains silicates a common mineral on Earth. The data were taken primarily by Spitzer's infrared spectrograph, an instrument that breaks light apart into its basic constituents. The yellow dots show averaged data from the spectrograph, while the orange triangles show older data from Spitzer's infrared array camera. The white dwarf is called GD 40.

  2. Speckle interferometry of asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drummond, J.

    1988-01-01

    By studying the image two-dimensional power spectra or autocorrelations projected by an asteroid as it rotates, it is possible to locate its rotational pole and derive its three axes dimensions through speckle interferometry under certain assumptions of uniform, geometric scattering, and triaxial ellipsoid shape. However, in cases where images can be reconstructed, the need for making the assumptions is obviated. Furthermore, the ultimate goal for speckle interferometry of image reconstruction will lead to mapping albedo features (if they exist) as impact areas or geological units. The first glimpses of the surface of an asteroid were obtained from images of 4 Vesta reconstructed from speckle interferometric observations. These images reveal that Vesta is quite Moon-like in having large hemispheric-scale albedo features. All of its lightcurves can be produced from a simple model developed from the images. Although undoubtedly more intricate than the model, Vesta's lightcurves can be matched by a model with three dark and four bright spots. The dark areas so dominate one hemisphere that a lightcurve minimum occurs when the maximum cross-section area is visible. The triaxial ellipsoid shape derived for Vesta is not consistent with the notion that the asteroid has an equilibrium shape in spite of its having apparently been differentiated

  3. Positions of minor planets and Comet Panther (1980 u) obtained at the Chorzow Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wlodarczyk, I.

    Photographic observations of 17 asteroids and Comet Panther were made between 1977 and 1982 with a 200/1000 mm photographic camera coupled to a 300/4500 mm refractor. The Turner method with the complete second-order polynomial was used to reduce the 16 x 16 cm ORWO ZU-2 plates that were obtained. The tabulated information for each asteroid and the comet include the number of the observation, the time of the observation in Universal Time, the topocentric position of the object referred to the mean epoch 1950.0, the dispersion in right ascension and declination, the duration of the exposure in minutes, and the symbol of the observer. Ten observers participated in the program.

  4. Numerical simulations of comets - predictions for Comet Giacobini-Zinner

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fedder, J.A.; Lyon, J.G.; Giuliani, J.L. Jr.

    1986-01-01

    Simulations of Comet Giacobini-Zinner's interaction with solar wind are described and results are presented. The simulations are carried out via the numerical solution of the ideal MHD equations as an initial value problem in a uniform solar wind. The calculations are performed on a Cartesian mesh centered at the comet. Results reveal that the first significant modifications of the solar wind along the ISEE/ICE trajectory will occur 100,000 km from the solar wind comet axis. 6 references

  5. CINE: Comet INfrared Excitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Val-Borro, Miguel; Cordiner, Martin A.; Milam, Stefanie N.; Charnley, Steven B.

    2017-08-01

    CINE calculates infrared pumping efficiencies that can be applied to the most common molecules found in cometary comae such as water, hydrogen cyanide or methanol. One of the main mechanisms for molecular excitation in comets is the fluorescence by the solar radiation followed by radiative decay to the ground vibrational state. This command-line tool calculates the effective pumping rates for rotational levels in the ground vibrational state scaled by the heliocentric distance of the comet. Fluorescence coefficients are useful for modeling rotational emission lines observed in cometary spectra at sub-millimeter wavelengths. Combined with computational methods to solve the radiative transfer equations based, e.g., on the Monte Carlo algorithm, this model can retrieve production rates and rotational temperatures from the observed emission spectrum.

  6. The first retrograde Trojan asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiegert, Paul; Connors, Martin; Veillet, Christian

    2018-04-01

    There are about six thousand asteroids which share Jupiter's orbit around the Sun. Called the 'Trojan asteroids', they co-exist easily with this giant planet because they travel in the same direction as it ('direct' or 'prograde' motion), and remain roughly 60 degrees ahead of or behind it in its orbit. Newly discovered asteroid 2015 BZ509 is on a retrograde orbit, but is nonetheless in a state dynamically analogous to that of the prograde Trojans. The discovery circumstances and the nature of the motion of this curious asteroid -the first of its kind- will be outlined.

  7. Comets and their origin the tools to decipher a comet

    CERN Document Server

    Meierhenrich, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Divided into two parts, the first four chapters of Comets and their Origin refer to comets and their formation in general, describing cometary missions, comet remote observations, astrochemistry, artificial comets, and the chirality phenomenon.The second part covers the cometary Rosetta mission, its launch, journey, scientific objectives, and instrumentations, as well as the landing scenario on a cometary nucleus. Along the way, the author presents general questions concerning the origin of terrestrial water and the molecular beginnings of lifeon Earth, as well as how the instruments used on

  8. Encounter with comet Halley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sagdeev, R.Z.

    1989-01-01

    This paper reports on an international armada of six spacecraft which encountered the comet Halley and performed in-situ measurements. These encounters led to the discovery of a number of cometary plasma physics phenomena. Another important result was that a value for the average density of the cometary nucleus could be estimated, which is found to be compatible with snow ball models for the nucleus

  9. A Global Model of Meteoric Sodium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, Daniel R.; Janches, Diego; Feng, Wuhu; Plane, John M. C.

    2013-01-01

    A global model of sodium in the mesosphere and lower thermosphere has been developed within the framework of the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM). The standard fully interactive WACCM chemistry module has been augmented with a chemistry scheme that includes nine neutral and ionized sodium species. Meteoric ablation provides the source of sodium in the model and is represented as a combination of a meteoroid input function (MIF) and a parameterized ablation model. The MIF provides the seasonally and latitudinally varying meteoric flux which is modeled taking into consideration the astronomical origins of sporadic meteors and considers variations in particle entry angle, velocity, mass, and the differential ablation of the chemical constituents. WACCM simulations show large variations in the sodium constituents over time scales from days to months. Seasonality of sodium constituents is strongly affected by variations in the MIF and transport via the mean meridional wind. In particular, the summer to winter hemisphere flow leads to the highest sodium species concentrations and loss rates occurring over the winter pole. In the Northern Hemisphere, this winter maximum can be dramatically affected by stratospheric sudden warmings. Simulations of the January 2009 major warming event show that it caused a short-term decrease in the sodium column over the polar cap that was followed by a factor of 3 increase in the following weeks. Overall, the modeled distribution of atomic sodium in WACCM agrees well with both ground-based and satellite observations. Given the strong sensitivity of the sodium layer to dynamical motions, reproducing its variability provides a stringent test of global models and should help to constrain key atmospheric variables in this poorly sampled region of the atmosphere.

  10. Meteor Beliefs Project: some meteoric imagery in the works of William Shakespeare

    Science.gov (United States)

    McBeath, A.; Gheorghe, A. D.

    2003-08-01

    Passages from three of William Shakespeare's plays are presented, illustrating some of the beliefs in meteors in 16th-17th century England. They also reflect earlier beliefs and information which it is known Shakespeare drew on in constructing his works.

  11. Meteor Beliefs Project: Meteoric imagery associated with the death of John Brown in 1859

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drobnock, G. J.; McBeath, A.; Gheorghe, A. D.

    2009-12-01

    An examination is made of metaphorical meteor imagery used in conjunction with the death of American anti-slavery activist John Brown, who was executed in December 1859. Such imagery continues to be used in this regard into the 21st century.

  12. Dust Production of Comet 21P/Giacobini Zinner Using Broadband Photometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaauw, Rhiannon; Suggs, Robert M.; Cooke, William

    2012-01-01

    Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner is a Jupiter family comet that was discovered in December of 1900 by the French astronomer Michel Giacobini, and rediscovered two orbits later by German astronomer Ernst Zinner in 1913. 21P is approximately 2 km in diameter, and is the parent of the Draconids, a meteor shower known to undergo dramatic outbursts. In 1933 and 1946, up to 10,000 meteors per hour were reported for the Draconids; and 2011 saw a minor Draconid outburst. As meteor stream modeling/ forecasting is a primary focus for the NASA Meteoroid Environment Office, it was decided to monitor 21P for three purposes: firstly to find the apparent and absolute magnitude with respect to heliocentric distance; second to calculate Af(rho), a quantity that describes the dust production rate and is used in models to predict the activity of the Draconids; thirdly to detect possible increases in cometary activity, which could correspond to future Draconid meteor outbursts. Giacobini-Zinner is unique in several ways. It was the first comet to have measurements made in situ. Comet 21P was visited by ICE (International Cometary Explorer) in 1985 to study the interaction of the cometary atmosphere with the flowing solar-wind plasma. It is a carbon-depleted comet, and most studies show that it peaks in gas and dust production pre-perihelion, specifically in two very studied passages; 1985 and 1998. A prior study was conducted by Pittichova et al (2008) for 21P during its 2004-2006 close approach to the Sun. Apparent and absolute magnitudes were measured at various heliocentric distances as well as the dust production. At 2.32 AU from the Sun, 21P exhibited an apparent magnitude of 17.05 and Af of 83 cm, and an apparent magnitude of 15.91/Af(rho) of 130.66 cm at 1.76 AU. Another such study performed by Lara et al.on 21P s 1998 apparition found values of Af(rho) of 1010 cm when 1.05 AU from the Sun, two weeks before perihelion, and 669 cm at perihelion, when 1.03 AU from the Sun

  13. The METEOR/TRANSURANUS fuel performance code

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Struzik, C.; Guerin, Y.

    1996-01-01

    The first calculations for the FUMEX exercise were performed using version 1.1 of the METEOR/TRANSURANUS code. Since then, important improvements have been implemented on several models. In its present state, the code describes fuel rod behaviour in standard PWR conditions. Its validity extends to UO 2 and MOX fuels clad in Zircaloy-4. Power transient calculations for UO 2 and Gd doped fuel calculations are possible, but further developments are in progress, and the applications will be fully qualified in version 2.0. A considerable effort is made to replace semi-empirical models with models that have a sounder physical basis. (authors). 14 refs

  14. AIDA: Asteroid Impact & Deflection Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, A. F.; Galvez, A.; Carnelli, I.; Michel, P.; Rivkin, A.; Reed, C.

    2012-12-01

    To protect the Earth from a hazardous asteroid impact, various mitigation methods have been proposed, including deflection of the asteroid by a spacecraft impact. AIDA, consisting of two mission elements, the Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) and the Asteroid Impact Monitoring (AIM) mission, is a demonstration of asteroid deflection. To date, there has been no such demonstration, and there is major uncertainty in the result of a spacecraft impact onto an asteroid, that is, the amount of deflection produced by a given momentum input from the impact. This uncertainty is in part due to unknown physical properties of the asteroid surface, such as porosity and strength, and in part due to poorly understood impact physics such that the momentum carried off by ejecta is highly uncertain. A first mission to demonstrate asteroid deflection would not only be a major step towards gaining the capability to mitigate an asteroid hazard, but in addition it would return unique information on an asteroid's strength, other surface properties, and internal structure. This information return would be highly relevant to future human exploration of asteroids. We report initial results of the AIDA joint mission concept study undertaken by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory and ESA with support from NASA centers including Goddard, Johnson and Jet Propulsion Laboratory. For AIDA, the DART spacecraft impactor study is coordinated with an ESA study of the AIM mission, which would rendezvous with the same asteroid to measure effects of the impact. Unlike the previous Don Quijote mission study performed by ESA in 2005-2007, DART envisions an impactor spacecraft to intercept the secondary member of a binary near-Earth asteroid. DART includes ground-based observations to measure the deflection independently of the rendezvous spacecraft observations from AIM, which also measures deflection and provides detailed characterization of the target asteroid. The joint mission AIDA

  15. Singing comet changes its song

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volwerk, M.; Goetz, C.; Delva, M.; Richter, I.; Tsurutani, B. T.; Eriksson, A.; Odelstad, E.; Meier, P.; Nilsson, H.; Glassmeier, K.-H.

    2017-09-01

    The singing comet was discovered at the beginning of the Rosetta mission around comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Large amplitude compressional waves with frequencies between 10 and 100 mHz were observed. When the comet became more active this signal was no longer measured. During the so-called tail excursion, late in the mission after perihelion, with again a less active comet, the singing was observed again and interestingly, going from 26 March to 27 March 2016 the character of the singing changed.

  16. Origin of the asteroid belt

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wetherill, G.W.

    1989-01-01

    Earlier work and concepts relevant to the origin of the asteroid belt are reviewed and considered in the context of the more general question of solar system origin. Several aspects of asteroidal origin by accumulation of smaller bodies have been addressed by new dynamic studies. Numerical and analytical solutions of the dynamical theory of planetesimal accumulation are characterized by a bifurcation into runaway and nonrunaway solutions. The differences in time scales resulting from runaway and nonrunaway growth can be more important than conventional time scale differences determined by heliocentric distances. This introduces new possibilities, e.g., planetary accumulation may be more rapid at the distance of Jupiter than in the asteroid belt, thus permitting Jupiter to control asteroidal growth. Although alternatives must be seriously considered, the most promising approach to asteroidal origin is one in which the initial surface density of the solar nebula varied smoothly between the terrestrial and giant-planet region. In the absence of external perturbations, it is found that runaway growth of excessively large asteroids would then occur on <1 Myr, but fairly modest external perturbations by Jupiter, Saturn or other perturbers, resulting in eccentricities ∼0.01 may quench runaways, truncate asteroidal growth at their present size, and then initiate the necessary loss of asteroidal material by mutual fragmentation

  17. TRIGGERING SUBLIMATION-DRIVEN ACTIVITY OF MAIN BELT COMETS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Haghighipour, N. [Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii-Manoa, Honolulu, HI 96825 (United States); Maindl, T. I.; Dvorak, R. [Department of Astrophysics, University of Vienna, Türkenschanzstrasse 17, A-1180 Vienna (Austria); Schäfer, C. [Institut für Astronomie und Astrophysik, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 10, D-72076 Tübingen (Germany); Speith, R., E-mail: nader@ifa.hawaii.edu [Physikalisches Institut, Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Auf der Morgenstelle 14, D-72076 Tübingen (Germany)

    2016-10-10

    It has been suggested that the comet-like activity of main belt comets (MBCs) is due to the sublimation of sub-surface water–ice that has been exposed as a result of their surfaces being impacted by meter-sized bodies. We have examined the viability of this scenario by simulating impacts between meter-sized and kilometer-sized objects using a smooth particle hydrodynamics approach. Simulations have been carried out for different values of the impact velocity and impact angle, as well as different target material and water-mass fractions. Results indicate that for the range of impact velocities corresponding to those in the asteroid belt, the depth of an impact crater is slightly larger than 10 m, suggesting that if the activation of MBCs is due to the sublimation of sub-surface water–ice, this ice has to exist no deeper than a few meters from the surface. Results also show that ice exposure occurs in the bottom and on the interior surface of impact craters, as well as on the surface of the target where some of the ejected icy inclusions are re-accreted. While our results demonstrate that the impact scenario is indeed a viable mechanism to expose ice and trigger the activity of MBCs, they also indicate that the activity of the current MBCs is likely due to ice sublimation from multiple impact sites and/or the water contents of these objects (and other asteroids in the outer asteroid belt) is larger than the 5% that is traditionally considered in models of terrestrial planet formation, providing more ice for sublimation. We present the details of our simulations and discuss their results and implications.

  18. NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year Three: Asteroid Diameters and Albedos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Kramer, E. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, MS 183-301, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Nugent, C.; Cutri, R. M. [California Institute of Technology, Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, 1200 California Boulevard, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Wright, E. L. [University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095 (United States); Bauer, J. M. [University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742 (United States); Grav, T.; Sonnett, S., E-mail: Joseph.Masiero@jpl.nasa.gov [Planetary Science Institute, 1700 E Fort Lowell Road #106, Tucson, AZ 85719 (United States)

    2017-10-01

    The Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) reactivation mission has completed its third year of surveying the sky in the thermal infrared for near-Earth asteroids and comets. NEOWISE collects simultaneous observations at 3.4 and 4.6  μ m of solar system objects passing through its field of regard. These data allow for the determination of total thermal emission from bodies in the inner solar system, and thus the sizes of these objects. In this paper, we present thermal model fits of asteroid diameters for 170 NEOs and 6110 Main Belt asteroids (MBAs) detected during the third year of the survey, as well as the associated optical geometric albedos. We compare our results with previous thermal model results from NEOWISE for overlapping sample sets, as well as diameters determined through other independent methods, and find that our diameter measurements for NEOs agree to within 26% (1 σ ) of previously measured values. Diameters for the MBAs are within 17% (1 σ ). This brings the total number of unique near-Earth objects characterized by the NEOWISE survey to 541, surpassing the number observed during the fully cryogenic mission in 2010.

  19. NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year Three: Asteroid Diameters and Albedos

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Kramer, E.; Nugent, C.; Cutri, R. M.; Wright, E. L.; Bauer, J. M.; Grav, T.; Sonnett, S.

    2017-01-01

    The Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) reactivation mission has completed its third year of surveying the sky in the thermal infrared for near-Earth asteroids and comets. NEOWISE collects simultaneous observations at 3.4 and 4.6  μ m of solar system objects passing through its field of regard. These data allow for the determination of total thermal emission from bodies in the inner solar system, and thus the sizes of these objects. In this paper, we present thermal model fits of asteroid diameters for 170 NEOs and 6110 Main Belt asteroids (MBAs) detected during the third year of the survey, as well as the associated optical geometric albedos. We compare our results with previous thermal model results from NEOWISE for overlapping sample sets, as well as diameters determined through other independent methods, and find that our diameter measurements for NEOs agree to within 26% (1 σ ) of previously measured values. Diameters for the MBAs are within 17% (1 σ ). This brings the total number of unique near-Earth objects characterized by the NEOWISE survey to 541, surpassing the number observed during the fully cryogenic mission in 2010.

  20. Asteroid electrostatic instrumentation and modelling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aplin, K L; Bowles, N E; Urbak, E [Department of Physics, University of Oxford, Denys Wilkinson Building, Keble Road, Oxford OX1 3RH (United Kingdom); Keane, D; Sawyer, E C, E-mail: k.aplin1@physics.ox.ac.uk [RAL Space, R25, Harwell Oxford, Didcot OX11 0QX (United Kingdom)

    2011-06-23

    Asteroid surface material is expected to become photoelectrically charged, and is likely to be transported through electrostatic levitation. Understanding any movement of the surface material is relevant to proposed space missions to return samples to Earth for detailed isotopic analysis. Motivated by preparations for the Marco Polo sample return mission, we present electrostatic modelling for a real asteroid, Itokawa, for which detailed shape information is available, and verify that charging effects are likely to be significant at the terminator and at the edges of shadow regions for the Marco Polo baseline asteroid, 1999JU3. We also describe the Asteroid Charge Experiment electric field instrumentation intended for Marco Polo. Finally, we find that the differing asteroid and spacecraft potentials on landing could perturb sample collection for the short landing time of 20min that is currently planned.

  1. The search for main-belt comets: The Pan-STARRS1 perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, H.; Denneau, L.; Wainscoat, R.; Jedicke, R.; Schorghofer, N.; Micheli, M.; Veres, P.; Kleyna, J.; Bolin, B.

    2014-07-01

    In recent years, an increasing number of objects have been discovered in the main asteroid belt that exhibit comet-like activity. Some instances of activity are believed to result from sublimation of volatile sub-surface ice, and the objects exhibiting this type of activity have come to be known as main-belt comets (MBCs; Hsieh & Jewitt 2006). For most MBCs, the presence of gas is only inferred from visible dust emission, although water vapor outgassing has recently been directly detected from (1) Ceres (Kuppers et al. 2014), indicating that water sublimation on MBCs could also be possible. In other instances, comet-like dust emission has been found to result from impacts onto otherwise inert objects, rotational disruption, or a combination of effects (cf., Jewitt 2012). In these cases, the objects can be referred to as disrupted asteroids. Collectively, MBCs and disrupted asteroids are known as active asteroids. MBCs have attracted interest in astrobiology due to theoretical studies indicating that material from the asteroid belt region could have been a significant primordial source of the water and other volatiles on the Earth. Icy asteroids also contain some of the least altered material from the inner protosolar disk still in existence today, presenting us with opportunities to learn about the earliest stages of our solar system's formation. The added bonus of the MBCs' relatively close proximity in the asteroid belt means that in situ spacecraft studies are entirely feasible using present-day technology. Pan-STARRS1 (PS1) is a wide-field synoptic survey telescope located on Halekala in Hawaii. It employs a 3.2×3.2 deg 1.4 gigapixel camera and uses an SDSS-like filter system. As of 2014 March 31, the Pan-STARRS1 survey has discovered three MBCs --- P/2006 VW139, P/2012 T1 (PANSTARRS), and P/2013 R3 (Catalina-PANSTARRS) --- as well as one disrupted asteroid (P/2013 P5 (PANSTARRS)), two active Centaurs, 33 Jupiter-family comets, and 17 long-period comets. For

  2. Radar meteors range distribution model. IV. Ionization coefficient

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pecinová, Drahomíra; Pecina, Petr

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 38, č. 1 (2008), s. 12-20 ISSN 1335-1842 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/03/1405 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : physics of meteors * radar meteors * range distribution Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  3. Meteoric Impact and Ion Density Calculation in the Nighttime ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Bhavin

    2013-11-08

    Nov 8, 2013 ... Pandya, B. M., and S. A. Haider (2012), Meteor impact perturbation in the lower ionosphere of Mars: MGS observations,. Planet. Space Sci., 63, 105-109, doi: 10.1016/j.pss.2011.09.013. Page 6. Pandya, B. M., and S. A. Haider (2012), Meteor impact perturbation in the lower ionosphere of Mars: MGS ...

  4. Goals, technique and equipment of meteor study in Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kartashova, A.; Bagrov, A. V.; Bolgova, G. T.; Kruchkov, S. V.; Leonov, V. A.; Mazurov, V. A.

    2013-09-01

    Institute of Astronomy RAS is one of the science institutes in the Russian Federation providing systematic optical meteor observations and supervises several meteor groups in our country. The main tasks of our investigations are dedicated to study meteoroid nature as well as meteoroid streams and meteoroid population in the Solar System. In the XXI century we in Russia carry out the reconstruction of our meteor astronomy due to possibilities of new meteor observation equipment (more powerful than were used before as visual and photographic methods) had made possible to select more interesting goals. First of our task is investigation of meteoroid streams crossing the Earth's orbit, and character of meteoroid distributions along of them. The multi stations meteor monitoring from located in the both hemispheres of the Earth can help in this study. According to the analysis of the evolution of meteor orbits, the compact and long lived meteoroid streams consist mainly from large particles. The observation equipment (cheap TV-cameras) with low limiting magnitude we use for gathering observational data. On the other hand, the observations of weak meteors are needed for new meteor shower indication (or confirmation of known meteor shower). The more effective way to do it is comparison of individual meteor orbits parameters (then calculation of radiants of meteor showers). The observations of space debris (as the meteors with low velocity - less 11.2 km/s) can be taking up within this task. The combination of high sensitive TV-cameras WATEC and super-fast lenses COMPUTAR are widely used for meteor TV-monitoring. The TVsystems for round-year meteor observations are fixed and are permanently oriented to the zenith area (the patrol camera - PatrolCa). The mobile TV-cameras (MobileCa) are used for double station observations (if it is possible) and located not far from main cameras PatrolCa (20-30 km). The mobile TVcameras observe 90% of main PatrolCa cameras FOV at altitudes

  5. Technical manual for COMET

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Song, Jin Ho; Kwon, Young Min; Kim, Taek Mo; Lee, Sang Jong; Jeong, Hae Yong

    1996-07-01

    The purpose of this report is to provide a description for a COMET computer code which is to be used in the analysis of mass and energy releases during post-blowdown phase of LOCA. The mass and energy data re to be used as input data for the containment functional design. This report contains a brief description of analytical models and guidelines for the usage of the computer code. This computer code is to be used for both cold leg and hot leg break analyses. A verification analyses are performed for Ulchin 3 and 4 cold and hot leg break. 11 figs (Author)

  6. On the origin of comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mendis, A.; Alfven, H.

    1976-01-01

    Physico-chemical processes leading to the dynamic formation and physical evolution of comets are reviewed in relationship to the various theories that propose solar origins, protoplanetary origins, planetary origins and interstellar origins. Evidence points to the origins of comets by the growth and agglomeration of small particles from gas and dust at very low temperatures at undetermined regions in space.

  7. Inside look at Halley's comet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Beatty, J.K.

    1986-01-01

    The 1985-1986 emergence of Halley's comet, the first since the advent of the space age, was explored by a variety of spacecraft. The Vega 1, launched by the USSR together with the Eastern-block alliance, passed 5523 miles from the comet's nucleus at 7:20:06 Universal time. It indicated that the comet was about 300 miles closer to the sun than had been predicted. The Japanese spacecraft, Suisei, was created to map the distribution of neutral hydrogen atoms outside Halley's visible coma. Its pictures indicated that the comet's output of water varied between 25 and 60 tons per second. Five days after the Vega 2's passage through the comet, the Giotto (sponsored by the European Space Agency) probe appeared. Giotto's close approach took place 3.1 minutes after midnight UT on March 14th; the craft had passed 376 miles from its target. Giotto's data indicated that the nucleus was bigger than expected, and that the comet was composed primarily of water, CO2 and N2. The Vegas and Giotto found that as the solar wind approaches Halley, it slows gradually and the solar magnetic lines embedded in the wind begin to pile up. Pick-up ions, from the comet's halo of neutral hydrogen, were found in this solar wind. Sensors on the Vega spacecraft found a variety of plasma waves propagating inside the bow wave. In order to synthesize all the results, a conference on the exploration of Halley's comet will be held this October

  8. Molecular ions in comet tails

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wyckoff, S.; Wehinger, P.A.

    1976-01-01

    Band intensities of the molecular ions CH + , CO + , N 2 + , and H 2 O + have been determined on an absolute scale from tail spectra of comet Kohoutek (1973f) and comet Bradfield (1974b). Photoionization and photodissociation rates have been computed for CH, CO, and N 2 . Also emission rate excitation g-factors for (1) photoionization plus excitation and (2) resonance fluorescence have been computed for the observed ions. It is shown that resonance fluorescence is the dominant excitation mechanism for observed comet tail ions at rapprox. =1 AU. Band system luminosities and molecular ion abundances within a projected nuclear distance rho 4 km have been determined for CH + , CO + , N 2 + , and H 2 O + in comet Kohoutek, and for H 2 O + in comet Bradfield. Estimates are also given for column densities of all observed ions at rhoapprox. =10 4 km on the tailward side of the coma. The observed H 2 O + column densities were found to be roughly the same in comet Kohoutek and comet Bradfield et equal heliocentric distances, while CO + was found to be approximately 100 times more abundant than H 2 O + , N 2 + , and CH + at rhoapprox. =10 4 km in comet Kohoutek. Finally, the relative abundances of the observed ions and of the presumed parent neutral species are briefly discussed

  9. Detecting active comets with SDSS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Solontoi, Michael; Ivezic, Zeljko; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; West, Andrew A.; /MIT, MKI; Claire, Mark; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Juric, Mario; /Princeton U. Observ.; Becker, Andrew; Jones, Lynne; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Hall, Patrick B.; /York U., Canada; Kent, Steve; /Fermilab; Lupton, Robert H.; /Princeton U. Observ.; Quinn, Tom; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept. /Princeton U. Observ.

    2010-12-01

    Using a sample of serendipitously discovered active comets in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), we develop well-controlled selection criteria for greatly increasing the efficiency of comet identification in the SDSS catalogs. After follow-up visual inspection of images to reject remaining false positives, the total sample of SDSS comets presented here contains 19 objects, roughly one comet per 10 million other SDSS objects. The good understanding of selection effects allows a study of the population statistics, and we estimate the apparent magnitude distribution to r {approx} 18, the ecliptic latitude distribution, and the comet distribution in SDSS color space. The most surprising results are the extremely narrow range of colors for comets in our sample (e.g. root-mean-square scatter of only {approx}0.06 mag for the g-r color), and the similarity of comet colors to those of jovian Trojans. We discuss the relevance of our results for upcoming deep multi-epoch optical surveys such as the Dark Energy Survey, Pan-STARRS, and the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), and estimate that LSST may produce a sample of about 10,000 comets over its 10-year lifetime.

  10. Processing method and results of meteor shower radar observations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Belkovich, O.I.; Suleimanov, N.I.; Tokhtasjev, V.S.

    1987-01-01

    Studies of meteor showers permit the solving of some principal problems of meteor astronomy: to obtain the structure of a stream in cross section and along its orbits; to retrace the evolution of particle orbits of the stream taking into account gravitational and nongravitational forces and to discover the orbital elements of its parent body; to find out the total mass of solid particles ejected from the parent body taking into account physical and chemical evolution of meteor bodies; and to use meteor streams as natural probes for investigation of the average characteristics of the meteor complex in the solar system. A simple and effective method of determining the flux density and mass exponent parameter was worked out. This method and its results are discussed

  11. First results on video meteors from Crete, Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maravelias, G.

    2012-01-01

    This work presents the first systematic video meteor observations from a, forthcoming permanent, station in Crete, Greece, operating as the first official node within the International Meteor Organization's Video Network. It consists of a Watec 902 H2 Ultimate camera equipped with a Panasonic WV-LA1208 (focal length 12mm, f/0.8) lens running MetRec. The system operated for 42 nights during 2011 (August 19-December 30, 2011) recording 1905 meteors. It is significantly more performant than a previous system used by the author during the Perseids 2010 (DMK camera 21AF04.AS by The Imaging Source, CCTV lens of focal length 2.8 mm, UFO Capture v2.22), which operated for 17 nights (August 4-22, 2010) recording 32 meteors. Differences - according to the author's experience - between the two softwares (MetRec, UFO Capture) are discussed along with a small guide to video meteor hardware.

  12. A Concept for Providing Warning of Chelyabinsk-like Meteors, including those approaching from the Sun

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunham, D. W.; Reitsema, H.; Lu, E.; Arentz, R.; Linfield, R.; Chapman, C. R.; Farquhar, R. W.; Furfaro, R.; Eismont, N. A.; Ledkov, A.; Chumachenko, E.

    2013-12-01

    's), including those in orbits mostly inside the Earth's orbit that are hard to find with Earth-based telescopes, from a Venus-like orbit. Few modifications would be needed to the 50cm aperture passively-cooled infrared-observing Sentinel Space Telescope to operate in a SE-L1 orbit, 0.01 AU from Earth towards the Sun, to find most asteroids larger than about 5 meters that approach the Earth from the solar direction. Many objects in the 25-50m range will not be found by current NEO surveys, while they would nearly always be seen by this possible mission. A dense metallic NEO as small as 5m across can rain destruction over an area of 1 or 2 square kilometers, as the Sikhote-Alin meteor showed in 1947 Other concepts are either ineffective at providing warning of asteroids approaching from the Sun, or are more expensive, involving three or more spacecraft. We should give better warning for future 'Bolts out of the blue'.

  13. Comet Halley and interstellar chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Snyder, L.E.

    1989-01-01

    How complex is the chemistry of the interstellar medium? How far does it evolve and how has it interacted with the chemistry of the solar system? Are the galactic chemical processes destroyed, preserved, or even enhanced in comets? Are biogenic molecules formed in space and have the formation mechanisms interacted in any way with prebiotic organic chemical processes on the early earth? Radio molecular studies of comets are important for probing deep into the coma and nuclear region and thus may help answer these questions. Comets are believed to be pristine samples of the debris left from the formation of the solar system and may have been the carrier between interstellar and terrestrial prebiotic chemistries. Recent observations of Comet Halley and subsequent comets have given the author an excellent opportunity to study the relationship between interstellar molecular chemistry and cometary chemistry

  14. Rosetta - a comet ride to solve planetary mysteries

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-01-01

    be kept in hibernation during most of its 8-year trek towards Wirtanen. What makes Rosetta's cruise so long? To reach Comet Wirtanen, the spacecraft needs to go out in deep space as far from the Sun as Jupiter is. No launcher could possibly get Rosetta there directly. ESA's spacecraft will gather speed from gravitational ‘kicks’ provided by three planetary fly-bys: one of Mars in 2005 and two of Earth in 2005 and 2007. During the trip, Rosetta will also visit two asteroids, Otawara (in 2006) and Siwa (in 2008). During these encounters, scientists will switch on Rosetta's instruments for calibration and scientific studies. Long trips in deep space include many hazards, such as extreme changes in temperature. Rosetta will leave the benign environment of near-Earth space to the dark, frigid regions beyond the asteroid belt. To manage these thermal loads, experts have done very tough pre-launch tests to study Rosetta's endurance. For example, they have heated its external surfaces to more than 150°C, then quickly cooled it to -180°C in the next test. The spacecraft will be fully reactivated prior to the comet rendezvous manoeuvre in 2011. Then, Rosetta will orbit the comet - an object only 1.2 km wide - while it cruises through the inner Solar System at 135 000 kilometres per hour. At that time of the rendezvous - around 675 million km from the Sun - Wirtanen will hardly show any surface activity. It means that the carachteristic coma (the comet’s ‘atmosphere’) and the tail will not be formed yet, because of the large distance from the Sun. The comet's tail is in fact made of dust grains and frozen gases from the comet's surface that vapourise because of the Sun's heat. During 6-month, Rosetta will extensively map the comet surface, prior to selecting a landing site. In July 2012, the lander will self-eject from the spacecraft from a height of just one kilometre. Touchdown will take place at walking speed - less than 1 metre per second. Immediately after

  15. Compositional studies of primitive asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vilas, F.

    1988-01-01

    The composition of primitive asteroids and their relationship to satellites in the solar system will be studied by analyzing existing narrowband charge coupled device (CCD) reflectance spectra, acquiring additional spectra of asteroids and small satellites in the 0.5 to 1.0 micrometer spectral range, and exploring possibilities for obtaining compositional information in the blue-UV spectral region. Comparison with laboratory spectra of terrestrial chlorites and serpentines (phyllosilicates) and the clay minerals found in carbonaceous chondrite meteorites will continue. During 1987, narrowband CCD reflectance spectra of 17 additional asteroids were acquired. These spectra and spectra of 34 other asteroids have been used primarily for two studies: weak absorption features similar to those due to Fe2(+) and Fe2(+) - Fe3(+) transitions in iron oxides f ound in terrestrial chlorites and serpentines and carbonaceous chondrites have been identified in some primitive asteroid spectra. There is a first indication that asteroids grouped by heliocentric distance show similar weak absorption features. Nonparametric statistics are being applied to test the hypothesis of discrete remnants of a gradation in composition of outer-belt asteroids

  16. Giant comets and mass extinctions of life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Napier, W. M.

    2015-03-01

    I find evidence for clustering in age of well-dated impact craters over the last 500 Myr. At least nine impact episodes are identified, with durations whose upper limits are set by the dating accuracy of the craters. Their amplitudes and frequency are inconsistent with an origin in asteroid breakups or Oort cloud disturbances, but are consistent with the arrival and disintegration in near-Earth orbits of rare, giant comets, mainly in transit from the Centaur population into the Jupiter family and Encke regions. About 1 in 10 Centaurs in Chiron-like orbits enter Earth-crossing epochs, usually repeatedly, each such epoch being generally of a few thousand years' duration. On time-scales of geological interest, debris from their breakup may increase the mass of the near-Earth interplanetary environment by two or three orders of magnitude, yielding repeated episodes of bombardment and stratospheric dusting. I find a strong correlation between these bombardment episodes and major biostratigraphic and geological boundaries, and propose that episodes of extinction are most effectively driven by prolonged encounters with meteoroid streams during bombardment episodes. Possible mechanisms are discussed.

  17. Crowdsourcing, the great meteor storm of 1833, and the founding of meteor science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Littmann, Mark; Suomela, Todd

    2014-06-01

    Yale science professor Denison Olmsted used crowdsourcing to gather observations from across the United States of the unexpected deluge of meteors on 13 November 1833--more than 72,000/h. He used these observations (and newspaper accounts and correspondence from scientists) to make a commendably accurate interpretation of the meteor storm, overturning 2100 years of erroneous teachings about shooting stars and establishing meteor science as a new branch of astronomy. Olmsted's success was substantially based on his use of newspapers and their practice of news pooling to solicit observations from throughout the country by lay and expert observers professionally unaffiliated with Yale College and him. In today's parlance, Olmsted was a remarkably successful early practitioner of scientific crowdsourcing, also known as citizen science. He may have been the first to use mass media for crowdsourcing in science. He pioneered many of the citizen-science crowdsourcing practices that are still in use today: an open call for citizen participation, a clearly defined task, a large geographical distribution for gathering data and a rapid response to opportunistic events. Olmsted's achievement is not just that he used crowdsourcing in 1833 but that crowdsourcing helped him to advance science significantly. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. METEOR v1.0 - A usage example

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palomo, E.

    1994-01-01

    This script describes a detailed example of the use of the software package METEOR for statistical analysis of meteorological data series. A real spanish meteorological data set is chosen to show the capabilities of METEOR. Output files and resultant plots provided of their interpretations are compiled in three appendixes. The original version of METEOR have been developed by Ph. D.Elena Palomo, CIEMAT-IER, GIASE. It is built by linking programs and routines written in FORTRAN 77 and it adds the graphical capabilities of GNUPLOT. The shape of this toolbox was designed following the criteria of modularity, flexibility and agility criteria. All the input, output and analysis options are structured in three main menus: i) the first is aimed to evaluate the quality of the data set; ii) the second is aimed for pre-processing of the data; and iii) the third is aimed towards the statistical analyses and for creating the graphical outputs. Actually the information about METEOR is constituted by three documents written is spanish: 1) METEOR v1.0: User's guide; 2) METEOR v1.0: A usage example; 3) METEOR v1 .0: Design and structure of the software package. (Author)

  19. Deep Interior: The first comprehensive geophysical investigation of an asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asphaug, E.; Belton, M.; Klaasen, K.; McFadden, L.; Ostro, S.; Safaeinili, A.; Scheeres, D.; Sunshine, J.; Yeomans, D.

    Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) come closer to Earth than any other celestial body, and their compositions are represented on Earth by thousands of well-studied meteorites. Yet we understand neither their origin, evolution, nor their geophysical behavior. These secrets are locked up in their unexplored interiors. Goal 1 of the NASA Strategic Plan emphasizes the requirement to catalogue and understand NEOs down to 1 km diameter. Goal 4 urges us to understand natural processes at work in the low gravity environment. Goal 5 expresses the need to explore the solar system and to learn how planets originated and evolved. In response to the NASA Strategic Plan we are proposing a NASA Discovery mission whose primary science objective is to greatly advance the realization of these Goals by conducting the first investigation of the global geophysics of an asteroid. Radio reflection data from 5 km orbit about a 1 km NEO will provide a tomographic 3D image of electromagnetic properties. Mechanical properties will be examined in the simplest possible way, using explosions to initiate seismic cratering events and to expose diverse interior units for spectroscopic analysis. Deep Interior is the lowest-risk, lowest cost path towards attaining the required characterization of NEOs. It breaks new ground for future missions to asteroids and comets and facilitates the design of reliable NEO technologies. Our science goals are as follows, and the techniques (radio science, imaging, IR spectroscopy, active surface science) will be described at this meeting: Asteroid Interiors. Radio, gravity, and seismology experiments give a complete first picture of an asteroid's deep interior, resolving inclusions, voids and unit boundaries at ˜ 30 m scales, and determining global and regional mechanical properties. Surface Geophysics. Blast experiments explore the structure and mechanics of the upper meters, demonstrate microgravity cratering, trigger natural geomorphic events, and expose subsurface

  20. EPOXI at comet Hartley 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    A'Hearn, Michael F; Belton, Michael J S; Delamere, W Alan; Feaga, Lori M; Hampton, Donald; Kissel, Jochen; Klaasen, Kenneth P; McFadden, Lucy A; Meech, Karen J; Melosh, H Jay; Schultz, Peter H; Sunshine, Jessica M; Thomas, Peter C; Veverka, Joseph; Wellnitz, Dennis D; Yeomans, Donald K; Besse, Sebastien; Bodewits, Dennis; Bowling, Timothy J; Carcich, Brian T; Collins, Steven M; Farnham, Tony L; Groussin, Olivier; Hermalyn, Brendan; Kelley, Michael S; Kelley, Michael S; Li, Jian-Yang; Lindler, Don J; Lisse, Carey M; McLaughlin, Stephanie A; Merlin, Frédéric; Protopapa, Silvia; Richardson, James E; Williams, Jade L

    2011-06-17

    Understanding how comets work--what drives their activity--is crucial to the use of comets in studying the early solar system. EPOXI (Extrasolar Planet Observation and Deep Impact Extended Investigation) flew past comet 103P/Hartley 2, one with an unusually small but very active nucleus, taking both images and spectra. Unlike large, relatively inactive nuclei, this nucleus is outgassing primarily because of CO(2), which drags chunks of ice out of the nucleus. It also shows substantial differences in the relative abundance of volatiles from various parts of the nucleus.

  1. Comets in the space age

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Whipple, F.L.

    1989-01-01

    The historical development of the study of the nature of comets and their origin is discussed, emphasizing the use of aerospace technology in cometary science. The use of satellites to study the Comet Kohoutek 1973 XII, advances between Kohoutek and P/Halley, and studies of P/Halley during its 1986 return are examined. Consideration is given to data from ground, air, and space sensors, and from the Giotto and Vega spacecraft missions. Also, the physical structure of the nucleus of Comet Halley is described. 136 refs

  2. Asteroid named after CAS scientist

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    @@ An asteroid has been named after CAS astronomy historian XI Zezong with the approval of the International Minor Planet Nomenclature Committee (IMPNC), announced China's National Astronomical Observatories at CAS (NAOC) on 17 August.

  3. Spectral properties of binary asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pajuelo, Myriam; Birlan, Mirel; Carry, Benoît; DeMeo, Francesca E.; Binzel, Richard P.; Berthier, Jérôme

    2018-04-01

    We present the first attempt to characterize the distribution of taxonomic class among the population of binary asteroids (15% of all small asteroids). For that, an analysis of 0.8-2.5{μ m} near-infrared spectra obtained with the SpeX instrument on the NASA/IRTF is presented. Taxonomic class and meteorite analog is determined for each target, increasing the sample of binary asteroids with known taxonomy by 21%. Most binary systems are bound in the S-, X-, and C- classes, followed by Q and V-types. The rate of binary systems in each taxonomic class agrees within uncertainty with the background population of small near-Earth objects and inner main belt asteroids, but for the C-types which are under-represented among binaries.

  4. Predictions of asteroid hazard to the Earth for the 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrov, Nikita; Sokolov, Leonid; Polyakhova, Elena; Oskina, Kristina

    2018-05-01

    Early detection and investigation of possible collisions and close approaches of asteroids with the Earth are necessary to exept the asteroid-comet hazard. The difficulty of prediction of close approaches and collisions associated with resonant returns after encounters with the Earth due to loss of precision in these encounters. The main research object is asteroid Apophis (99942), for which we found many possible orbits of impacts associated with resonant returns. It is shown that the early orbit change of Apophis allows to avoid main impacts, associated with resonant returns. Such a change of the orbit, in principle, is feasible. We also study the possible impacts with the Ground asteroid 2015 RN35. We present 21 possible collisions in this century, including 7 collisions with large gaps presented in NASA website. The results of observations by the telescope ZA-320M at Pulkovo Obser-vatory of the three near-Earth asteroids, namely, 7822, 20826, 68216, two of which 7822 and 68216 are potentially hazardous, are presented.

  5. Comets, impacts, and atmospheres

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owen, Tobias; Bar-Nun, Akiva

    Studies of element abundances and values of D/H in the atmospheres of the giant planets and Titan have emphasized the important role of icy planetesimals in the formation of these bodies. In these atmospheres, C/H and D/H increase as the relative masses of the 'cores' of the planets increase. N/H appears to deviate from this trend in an interesting way. In the inner solar system, the traditional approach of using carbonaceous chondrites as the source of planetary volatiles is in serious trouble because of the depletion of xenon and the unusual pattern of xenon isotopes found in the atmospheres of Earth and Mars, and because of the solar-type abundance ratios of argon, krypton and xenon and the large amounts of neon and argon on Venus. Recent studies of elemental abundances in comets, especially P/Halley, coupled with laboratory studies of the trapping of gas in ice formed at low temperatures by A. Bar-Nun et al. provide a consistent interpretation of all of these results. This interpretation emphasizes the fundamental importance of icy planetesimals (comets) and the randomness of early impacts in the formation of planetary systems. Cometary delivery by itself will not explain the noble gas abundances on the inner planets. There is good evidence for at least one additional source, which presumably consists of the rocky material making up the bulk of the planets. The existence of this rocky reservoir is manifested in the nucleogenic isotopes and in the neon which is found in all these atmospheres and is also present in the Earth's mantle. This neon may well be a relic of the planets' earliest, accretional atmospheres.

  6. METEOR v1.0 - A usage example; METEOR v1.0 - Un ejemplo de uso

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palomo, E.

    1994-07-01

    This script describes a detailed example of the use of the software package METEOR for statistical analysis of meteorological data series. A real spanish meteorological data set is chosen to show the capabilities of METEOR. Output files and resultant plots provided of their interpretations are compiled in three appendixes. The original version of METEOR have been developed by Ph. D.Elena Palomo, CIEMAT-IER, GIASE. It is built by linking programs and routines written in FORTRAN 77 and it adds the graphical capabilities of GNUPLOT. The shape of this toolbox was designed following the criteria of modularity, flexibility and agility criteria. All the input, output and analysis options are structured in three main menus: i) the first is aimed to evaluate the quality of the data set; ii) the second is aimed for pre-processing of the data; and iii) the third is aimed towards the statistical analyses and for creating the graphical outputs. Actually the information about METEOR is constituted by three documents written is spanish: 1) METEOR v1.0: User's guide; 2) METEOR v1.0: A usage example; 3) METEOR v1 .0: Design and structure of the software package. (Author)

  7. Special issue on asteroids - Introduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novaković, Bojan; Hsieh, Henry H.; Gronchi, Giovanni F.

    2018-04-01

    The articles in this special issue are devoted to asteroids, small solar system bodies that primarily populate a region between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, known as the asteroid belt, but can also be found throughout the Solar System. Asteroids are considered to be a key to understanding the formation and evolution of our planetary system. Their properties allow us to test current theoretical models and develop new theoretical concepts pertaining to evolutionary processes in the Solar System. There have been major advances in asteroid science in the last decade, and that trend continues. Eighteen papers accepted for this special issue cover a wide range of asteroid-related subjects, pushing the boundaries of our understanding of these intriguing objects even further. Here we provide the reader with a brief overview of these thrilling papers, with an invitation for interested scientists to read each work in detail for a better understanding of these recent cutting edge results. As many topics in asteroid science remain open challenges, we hope that this special issue will be an important reference point for future research on this compelling topic.

  8. Asteroids: up close and personal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chapman, Clark R. [Southwest Research Institute (United States)

    2001-06-01

    Think of our solar system. The Sun, the Moon and the nine planets come to mind first, followed by the moons of other planets and other small bodies like asteroids. In 1991, almost 30 years after planetary exploration began, an asteroid was visited by a passing spacecraft for the first time. Nearly another decade elapsed before the first dedicated asteroid mission went into orbit around Eros, a city-sized object some 34 km long. And earlier this year, the NEAR, Shoemaker spacecraft daringly descended to the surface of Eros and landed safely. Asteroids have been pushed to the tail-end of the itinerary of solar-system exploration because of their diminutive sizes. Indeed, the wealth of low-gravity phenomena associated with asteroids has captured the imagination of both researchers and the public alike. In the June issue of Physics World Clark R Chapman of the Southwest Research Institute, US, explains how the landing of a spacecraft on the asteroid Eros earlier this year has given space scientists the best view yet of small planetary bodies and has opened a new window on the solar system. (U.K.)

  9. Modeling the Thermodynamic Properties of the Inner Comae of Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boice, Daniel C.

    2017-10-01

    properties of small Solar System bodies, including near-Sun comets and asteroids.Acknowledgments: This work was supported by FAPESP under Grant No. 2015/03176-8 and the National Science Foundation Planetary Astronomy Program Grant No. 0908529.

  10. The Science of Sungrazers, Sunskirters, and Other Near-Sun Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Geraint H.; Knight, Matthew M.; Battams, Karl; Boice, Daniel C.; Brown, John; Giordano, Silvio; Raymond, John; Snodgrass, Colin; Steckloff, Jordan K.; Weissman, Paul; Fitzsimmons, Alan; Lisse, Carey; Opitom, Cyrielle; Birkett, Kimberley S.; Bzowski, Maciej; Decock, Alice; Mann, Ingrid; Ramanjooloo, Yudish; McCauley, Patrick

    2018-02-01

    This review addresses our current understanding of comets that venture close to the Sun, and are hence exposed to much more extreme conditions than comets that are typically studied from Earth. The extreme solar heating and plasma environments that these objects encounter change many aspects of their behaviour, thus yielding valuable information on both the comets themselves that complements other data we have on primitive solar system bodies, as well as on the near-solar environment which they traverse. We propose clear definitions for these comets: We use the term near-Sun comets to encompass all objects that pass sunward of the perihelion distance of planet Mercury (0.307 AU). Sunskirters are defined as objects that pass within 33 solar radii of the Sun's centre, equal to half of Mercury's perihelion distance, and the commonly-used phrase sungrazers to be objects that reach perihelion within 3.45 solar radii, i.e. the fluid Roche limit. Finally, comets with orbits that intersect the solar photosphere are termed sundivers. We summarize past studies of these objects, as well as the instruments and facilities used to study them, including space-based platforms that have led to a recent revolution in the quantity and quality of relevant observations. Relevant comet populations are described, including the Kreutz, Marsden, Kracht, and Meyer groups, near-Sun asteroids, and a brief discussion of their origins. The importance of light curves and the clues they provide on cometary composition are emphasized, together with what information has been gleaned about nucleus parameters, including the sizes and masses of objects and their families, and their tensile strengths. The physical processes occurring at these objects are considered in some detail, including the disruption of nuclei, sublimation, and ionisation, and we consider the mass, momentum, and energy loss of comets in the corona and those that venture to lower altitudes. The different components of comae and

  11. Nitrogen abundance in Comet Halley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wyckoff, S.; Tegler, S.C.; Engel, L.

    1991-01-01

    Data on the nitrogen-containing compounds that observed spectroscopically in the coma of Comet Halley are summarized, and the elemental abundance of nitrogen in the Comet Halley nucleus is derived. It is found that 90 percent of elemental nitrogen is in the dust fraction of the coma, while in the gas fraction, most of the nitrogen is contained in NH3 and CN. The elemental nitrogen abundance in the ice component of the nucleus was found to be deficient by a factor of about 75, relative to the solar photosphere, indicating that the chemical partitioning of N2 into NH3 and other nitrogen compounds during the evolution of the solar nebula cannot account completely for the low abundance ratio N2/NH3 = 0.1, observed in the comet. It is suggested that the low N2/NH3 ratio in Comet Halley may be explained simply by physical fractionation and/or thermal diffusion. 88 refs

  12. Lifetime of a spacecraft around a synchronous system of asteroids using a dipole model

    Science.gov (United States)

    dos Santos, Leonardo Barbosa Torres; de Almeida Prado, Antonio F. Bertachini; Sanchez, Diogo Merguizo

    2017-11-01

    Space missions allow us to expand our knowledge about the origin of the solar system. It is believed that asteroids and comets preserve the physical characteristics from the time that the solar system was created. For this reason, there was an increase of missions to asteroids in the past few years. To send spacecraft to asteroids or comets is challenging, since these objects have their own characteristics in several aspects, such as size, shape, physical properties, etc., which are often only discovered after the approach and even after the landing of the spacecraft. These missions must be developed with sufficient flexibility to adjust to these parameters, which are better determined only when the spacecraft reaches the system. Therefore, conducting a dynamic investigation of a spacecraft around a multiple asteroid system offers an extremely rich environment. Extracting accurate information through analytical approaches is quite challenging and requires a significant number of restrictive assumptions. For this reason, a numerical approach to the dynamics of a spacecraft in the vicinity of a binary asteroid system is offered in this paper. In the present work, the equations of the Restricted Synchronous Four-Body Problem (RSFBP) are used to model a binary asteroid system. The main objective of this work is to construct grids of initial conditions, which relates semi-major axis and eccentricity, in order to quantify the lifetime of a spacecraft when released close to the less massive body of the binary system (modeled as a rotating mass dipole). We performed an analysis of the lifetime of the spacecraft considering several mass ratios of a binary system of asteroids and investigating the behavior of a spacecraft in the vicinity of this system. We analyze direct and retrograde orbits. This study investigated orbits that survive for at least 500 orbital periods of the system (which is approximately one year), then not colliding or escaping from the system during this

  13. Automatic Video System for Continues Monitoring of the Meteor Activity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Koten, Pavel; Fliegel, K.; Vítek, S.; Páta, P.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 108, č. 1 (2011), s. 69-76 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/1302 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GAP102/10/1320 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : meteor * meteor showers * instrumentation Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.667, year: 2011

  14. The number of Jupiter family comets as a constraint on the transneptunian population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tancredi, G.; et al.

    Several duynamical studies point out that the comets of the Jupiter family were originated in a flat belt in the transneptunian region. The Jupiter family is a transient dynamical state between the injection from the outer region and i) the ejection out of the Solar System, ii) the collision against one of its members or iii) the desintegration into a meteor stream. It has been generally assumed that the Jupiter family (JF) is in a steady state; i.e. the injection is balanced by the ejection+collision+ desintegration. Knowing the duration of a typical visit into the Jupiter family and the number of JF comets we could infer the injection rate. The rate of escapes from the transneptunian region and the fraction that reach the Jupiter family can be computed from massive integrations of particles starting in the outer region. An estimate of the required population of transneptunian objects can then be inferred from these numbers. There have been published several estimates of the dynamical parameters mentioned above but the total number of JF comets has been difficult to estimate. Based on a compilation of all the reported nuclear magnitudes of JF comets, we derive the total number of objects in the cometary population. The observed population (~ 200) is a tiny fraction of the total population (several thousands). Compiling all these numbers, we then derive the required trasneptunian population.

  15. I. T. - R. O. C. K. S. Comet Nuclei Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalcher, N.

    2009-04-01

    samples will be performed by touch and go manoeuvres and a penetrator device [10]. Solar arrays are used as energy source and additional cooling is required to keep the samples at low temperatures (Lisse C., Schultz P., Meech K. J., Delamere W. A. Icarus 187,4-15 (2007). [4] Simon S.B., Joswiak D.J., Ishii H.A., Bradley J.P., Chi M., Grossman L., Aléon J., Brownlee D.E., Fallon S., Hutcheon I.D., Matrajt G., Mckeegan K.D.: Refractory Inclusion Returned by Stardust from Comet P81/Wild 2. Meteoritics and Planetary Science (2007). [5] George D. Cody, Harald Ade, Conel M. O'D. Alexander, Tohru Araki, Anna Butterworth, Holger Fleckenstein, George Flynn, Mary K. Gilles, Chris Jacobsen, A.L. D. Kilcoyne, Keiko Messenger, Scott A. Sandford, Tolek Tyliszczak, Andrew J.Westphal4, Susan Wirick, and Hikaru Yabuta. Quantitative Organic and Light Element analysis of Comet 81P/Wild 2 particles using C-, N-, and O- µ-XANES, Meteoretics and Planetary Science: In Press. [6] Stern, S. et al. Alice: The Rosetta Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph. Space Science Reviews 128, 507-527 (2007). [7] Balsiger, H. et al. Rosina-Rosetta Orbiter Spectrometer for Ion and Neutral Analysis. Space Science Reviews 128, 745-801 (2007). [8] Colangeli, L. et al. The Grain Impact Analyser and Dust Accumulator (GIADA) Experiment for the Rosetta Mission: Design, Performances and First Results. Space Science Reviews 128, 803-821 (2007). [9] Yoshimitsu, T., Kubota, T., Nakatani, I., Adachi, T. & Saito, H. Micro-hopping robot for asteroid exploration. Acta Astronautica 52, 441-446 (2003). [10] Lorenz, R. et al. Demonstration of comet sample collection by penetrator. ESA SP-542, 387-393 (2003). [11] Küppers et al. Triple F—a comet nucleus sample return mission. Experimental Astronomy, Online First (2008).

  16. An early look of comet C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring): Breathtaker or nightmare?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ye, Quan-Zhi; Hui, Man-To

    2014-01-01

    The dynamically new comet, C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring), is to make a close approach to Mars on 2014 October 19 at 18:30 UT at a distance of 40 ± 1 Martian radii. Such an extremely rare event offers a precious opportunity for the spacecrafts on Mars to closely study a dynamically new comet itself as well as the planet-comet interaction. Meanwhile, the high-speed meteoroids released from C/Siding Spring also pose a threat to physically damage the spacecrafts. Here we present our observations and modeling results of C/Siding Spring to characterize the comet and assess the risk posed to the spacecrafts on Mars. We find that the optical tail of C/Siding Spring is dominated by larger particles at the time of the observation. Synchrone simulation suggests that the comet was already active in late 2012 when it was more than 7 AU from the Sun. By parameterizing the dust activity with a semi-analytic model, we find that the ejection speed of C/Siding Spring is comparable to comets such as the target of the Rosetta mission, 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Under a nominal situation, the simulated dust cone will miss the planet by about 20 Martian radii. At the extreme ends of uncertainties, the simulated dust cone will engulf Mars, but the meteoric influx at Mars is still comparable to the nominal sporadic influx, seemly indicating that an intense and enduring meteoroid bombardment due to C/Siding Spring is unlikely. Further simulation also suggests that gravitational disruption of the dust tail may be significant enough to be observable at Earth.

  17. Green corona, geomagnetic activity and radar meteor rates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prikryl, P.

    1979-01-01

    The short-term dependence of radar meteor rates on geomagnetic activity and/or central meridian passage (CMP) of bright or faint green corona regions is studied. A superimposed-epoch analysis was applied to radar meteor observations from the Ottawa patrol radar (Springhill, Ont.) and Ksub(p)-indices of geomagnetic activity for the period 1963 to 1967. During the minimum of solar activity (1963 to 1965) the CMP of bright coronal regions was followed by the maximum in the daily rates of persistent meteor echoes (>=4s), and the minimum in the daily sums of Ksub(p)-indices whereas the minimum or the maximum, respectively, occurs after the CMP of faint coronal regions. The time delay between the CMP of coronal structures and the corresponding maxima or minima is found to be 3 to 4 days. However, for the period immediately after the minimum of solar activity (1966 to 1967) the above correlation with the green corona is void both for the geomagnetic activity and radar meteor rates. An inverse correlation was found between the radar meteor rates and the geomagnetic activity irrespective of the solar activity. The observed effect can be ascribed to the solar-wind-induced ''geomagnetic'' heating of the upper atmosphere and to the subsequent change in the density gradient in the meteor zone. (author)

  18. Rotation Frequencies of Small Jovian Trojan Asteroids: An Excess of Slow Rotators

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, Linda M.; Stephens, Robert D.; James, David J.; Coley, Daniel; Connour, Kyle

    2015-11-01

    Several lines of evidence support a common origin for, and possible hereditary link between, cometary nuclei and jovian Trojan asteroids. Due to their distance and low albedos, few comet-sized Trojans have been studied. We discuss the rotation properties of Jovian Trojan asteroids less than 30 km in diameter. Approximately half the 131 objects discussed here were studied using densely sampled lightcurves (French et al. 2015a, b); Stephens et al. 2015), and the other half were sparse lightcurves obtained by the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF; Waszcazk et al. 2015).A significant fraction (~40%) of the objects in the ground-based sample rotate slowly (P > 24h), with measured periods as long as 375 h (Warner and Stephens 2011). The PTF data show a similar excess of slow rotators. Only 5 objects in the combined data set have rotation periods of less than six hours. Three of these fast rotators were contained in the data set of French et al. these three had a geometric mean rotation period of 5.29 hours. A prolate spheroid held together by gravity rotating with this period would have a critical density of 0.43 gm/cm3, a density similar to that of comets (Lamy et al. 2004).Harris et al. (2012) and Warner et al. (2011) have explored the possible effects on asteroid rotational statistics with the results from wide-field surveys. We will examine Trojan rotation statistics with and without the results from the PTF.

  19. A surprise southern hemisphere meteor shower on New-Year's Eve 2015: the Volantids (IAU#758, VOL)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenniskens, P.; Baggaley, J.; Crumpton, I.; Aldous, P.; Gural, P. S.; Samuels, D.; Albers, J.; Soja, R.

    2016-04-01

    A new 32-camera CAMS network in New Zealand, spread over two stations on South Island, has detected a high southern declination shower that was active on New Year's Eve, 2015 December 31. During the observing interval from 09h12m - 15h45m UT, 21 out of 59 detected meteors radiated from the constellation of Volans, the flying fish, with a geocentric radiant at RA = 122.9 deg +- 4.7 deg, Dec = -71.9 deg +- 1.9 deg, and speed V_g = 28.4 +- 1.5 km/s. The new year arrived in New Zealand at 11h00m UT. Two more were detected the next night. No activity from this shower was observed the year prior. The meteoroids move in a 48 deg-inclined Jupiter-family comet orbit. The parent body has not yet been identified.

  20. Tying Extinction Events to Comet Impacts Large Enough to Cause an Extinction in Themselves.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgener, J. A.

    2017-12-01

    Comets over 35 km in size impacting Earth will create vast fireballs, and will boil large parts of the oceans, causing extinction events in themselves. They will likely provide enough energy to shatter the crust and eject large masses of molten rock from the mantle, forming traps. Traps are clearly associated with extinction events, but are not expected to cause extinctions. While Chicxulub is recognized to have occurred at the time of the K/Pg boundary layer, it is recognized as being too small in itself to cause an extinction. Are large comet impacts likely? The Kuiper belt has more than 100,000 objects over 100 km in diameter and millions over 10 km. Typically their orbits are less stable than asteroid orbits due to large bodies such as Pluto moving through the belt. The asteroid belt has only 10,000 objects over 10 km diameter. Comet impacts should be more common than asteroid impacts, yet none of the recognized craters are expected to be due to comets. There are many features on Earth that are poorly explained by Plate Tectonics that would be well explained if they were considered to be comet impact craters. A consideration of the Black Sea and the Tarim Basin will show that impact interpretations are a better fit than the present Plate Tectonics' explanations. Both basins are in the midst of mountain building from plate collisions, but are themselves not being disturbed by the plate collisions. Both are ellipses angled at 23.4 degrees to the equator, matching the angle expected for a low angle impact from a comet traveling in the ecliptic. Both are too deep at 15 km depths to be standard oceans (typically 5 km deep). Both are filled with horizontal layers of sediments, undisturbed by the mountain building occurring at the edges. Both have thin crusts and high Moho boundaries. Both have thin lithosphere. Yet both show GPS movement of the land around them moving away from them, as though they were much thicker and stronger than the surrounding land. The Tarim

  1. Developing an Asteroid Rotational Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geis, Gena; Williams, Miguel; Linder, Tyler; Pakey, Donald

    2018-01-01

    The goal of this project is to develop a theoretical asteroid rotational theory from first principles. Starting at first principles provides a firm foundation for computer simulations which can be used to analyze multiple variables at once such as size, rotation period, tensile strength, and density. The initial theory will be presented along with early models of applying the theory to the asteroid population. Early results confirm previous work by Pravec et al. (2002) that show the majority of the asteroids larger than 200m have negligible tensile strength and have spin rates close to their critical breakup point. Additionally, results show that an object with zero tensile strength has a maximum rotational rate determined by the object’s density, not size. Therefore, an iron asteroid with a density of 8000 kg/m^3 would have a minimum spin period of 1.16h if the only forces were gravitational and centrifugal. The short-term goal is to include material forces in the simulations to determine what tensile strength will allow the high spin rates of asteroids smaller than 150m.

  2. METEOR v1.0 - User's Guide; METEOR v1.0 - Guia de Usuarios

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palomo, E.

    1994-07-01

    This script is a User's Guide for the software package METEOR for statistical analysis of meteorological data series. The original version of METEOR have been developed by Ph.D. Elena Palomo, CIEMAT-IER, GIMASE. It is built by linking programs and routines written in FORTRAN 77 and it adds the graphical capabilities of GNUPLOT. The shape of this toolbox was designed following the criteria of modularity, flexibility and agility criteria. All the input, output and analysis options are structured in three main menus: i) the first is aimed to evaluate the quality of the data set; ii) the second is aimed for pre-processing of the data; and iii) the third is aimed towards the statistical analyses and for creating the graphical outputs. Actually the information about METEOR is constituted by three documents written in spanish: 1) METEOR v1.0: User's guide; 2) METEOR v1.0: A usage example; 3) METEOR v1.0: Design and structure of the software package. (Author)

  3. Seasonal Variation in Meteor Decay Time Profiles Measured by a Meteor Radar at King Sejong Station (62°S, 58°W), Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Y.; Kim, J.; Lee, C.; Jee, G.

    2008-12-01

    A VHF meteor radar at King Sejong Station (62°S, 58°W), Antarctica has been detecting echoes from more than 20,000 meteors per day since March 2007. Meteor echoes are decayed typically within seconds as meteor trail plasma spread away or are neutralized. Assuming that diffusion is the only process for decay of meteor echo signals, the atmospheric temperatures and pressures have been inferred from the measured meteor decay times at the peak meteor altitudes around 90 km. In this study, we analyze altitude profiles of meteor decay times in each month, which clearly show a maximum at 80 ~ 85 km. The maximum appears at higher altitude during austral summer than winter. The fast decay of meteor signals below the maximum cannot be explained by atmospheric diffusion which decreases with increasing atmospheric densities. We find that the measured meteor decay time profiles can be fitted with a loss rate profile, in addition to diffusion, with a peak altitude of 55 ~ 73 km and a peak rate of 4 ~ 15 sec- 1. The additional loss of meteor plasma may be due to electron absorption by icy particles in the mesosphere, but the estimated peak altitudes are much lower than the layers of NLC or PME. The estimated peak loss rates seem to be too large to be accounted by absorption by icy or dust particles. We will discuss other processes to explain the fast meteor times and their variation over season.

  4. ASTEROID POLARIMETRIC DATABASE V6.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Asteroid Polarimetric Database (APD) is a collection of asteroid polarimetry results compiled by D.F. Lupishko and S.V. Vasiliev of Karazin Kharkiv National...

  5. ASTEROID PHOTOMETRIC CATALOG V1.1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Asteroid Photometric Catalog (3rd update), Lagerkvist, et.al., 1993 [LAGERKVISTETAL1993], is a compilation of all asteroid lightcurve photometry published up to...

  6. Determination of the radius of comet 19P/Borrelly in support of the NMP DS1 Flyby

    Science.gov (United States)

    Festou, Michel

    1999-07-01

    Comet 19P/Borrelly is the ultimate target of the New Mellinium Program {NMP} Deep Space 1 asteroid-comet flyby mission. The size of this comet's nucleus is a critical parameter needed for flyby planning activities. However, as we describe below, P/Borrelly's radius is not well established. We, the NMP DS1 Science Team, request 1 orbit of HST/STIS time in Cycle 8 to refine the nuclear size estimate. This program cannot wait until Cycle 9 because of mission planning constraints and the fact that the comet is likely to be producing a weak but nonetheless enhanced coma by the time of Cycle 9. We therefore propose to observe comet P/Borrelly in Cycle 8 when the activity level of its nucleus is near its minimum, and quite possibly negligible. From a clear separation of the contributions of the coma and the nucleus in the inner part of STIS images, we will extract the cross section of Borrelly's nucleus. In addition to its immediate value for NMP DS1 mission planning, when c oupled to existing data sets, the STIS data will then enable us to model the coma morphology to better infer the effect of the nucleus outgassing on the comet's motion.

  7. Split Active Asteroid P/2016 J1 (PANSTARRS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hui, Man-To; Jewitt, David; Du, Xinnan

    2017-10-01

    We present a photometric and astrometric study of the split active asteroid P/2016 J1 (PANSTARRS). Separation occurred either in 2012 May to June, or 2010 April, with a separation speed Vsep = 0.70 ± 0.02 m s-1 for the former scenario and 0.83 ± 0.06 m s-1 for the latter. The two fragments (hereafter J1-A and J1-B) have similar, Sun-like colors that are comparable to the colors of primitive C- and G-type asteroids. With a nominal comet-like albedo, pR = 0.04, the effective, dust-contaminated cross sections are estimated to be 2.4 km2 (J1-A) and 0.5 km2 (J1-B). We estimate that the nucleus radii lie in the range 140 times of 2016 J1 are both short compared to the age of the solar system, raising the question of why this object still exists. We suggest that formerly buried ice became exposed at the surface, perhaps via a minor impact, and that sublimation torques then rapidly drove the body to breakup. Further disintegration events are anticipated owing to the rotational instability. Reference: Hui, M.-T., Jewitt, D. and Du, X., 2017. AJ, 153(4), p.141.

  8. Three-Dimensional Simulations of Oblique Asteroid Impacts into Water

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gisler, G. R.; Ferguson, J. M.; Heberling, T.; Plesko, C. S.; Weaver, R.

    2016-12-01

    Waves generated by impacts into oceans may represent the most significant danger from near-earth asteroids and comets. For impacts near populated shores, the crown splash and subsequent waves, accompanied by sediment lofting and high winds, could be more damaging than storm surges from the strongest hurricanes. For asteroids less than 500 m in diameter that impact into deep water far from shores, the waves produced will be detectable over large distances, but probably not significantly dangerous. We present new three-dimensional simulations of oblique impacts into deep water, with trajectory angles ranging from 20 degrees to 60 degrees (where 90 degrees is vertical). These simulations are performed with the Los Alamos Rage hydrocode, and include atmospheric effects including ablation and airbursts. These oblique impact simulations are specifically performed in order to help determine whether there are additional dangers from the obliquity of impact not covered by previous two-dimensional studies. Water surface elevation profiles, surface pressures, and depth-averaged mass fluxes within the water are prepared for use in propagation studies.

  9. Reflectance spectroscopy and asteroid surface mineralogy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gaffey, M.J.; Bell, J.F.; Cruikshank, D.P.

    1989-01-01

    Information available from reflectance spectroscopy on the surface mineralogy of asteroids is discussed. Current spectral interpretive procedures used in the investigations of asteroid mineralogy are described. Present understanding of the nature and history of asteroids is discussed together with some still unresolved issues such as the source of ordinary chondrites. 100 refs

  10. Project RAMA: Reconstructing Asteroids Into Mechanical Automata

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Jason; Fagin, Max; Snyder, Michael; Joyce, Eric

    2017-01-01

    Many interesting ideas have been conceived for building space-based infrastructure in cislunar space. From O'Neill's space colonies, to solar power satellite farms, and even prospecting retrieved near earth asteroids. In all the scenarios, one thing remained fixed - the need for space resources at the outpost. To satisfy this need, O'Neill suggested an electromagnetic railgun to deliver resources from the lunar surface, while NASA's Asteroid Redirect Mission called for a solar electric tug to deliver asteroid materials from interplanetary space. At Made In Space, we propose an entirely new concept. One which is scalable, cost effective, and ensures that the abundant material wealth of the inner solar system becomes readily available to humankind in a nearly automated fashion. We propose the RAMA architecture, which turns asteroids into self-contained spacecraft capable of moving themselves back to cislunar space. The RAMA architecture is just as capable of transporting conventional-sized asteroids on the 10-meter length scale as transporting asteroids 100 meters or larger, making it the most versatile asteroid retrieval architecture in terms of retrieved-mass capability. This report describes the results of the Phase I study funded by the NASA NIAC program for Made In Space to establish the concept feasibility of using space manufacturing to convert asteroids into autonomous, mechanical spacecraft. Project RAMA, Reconstituting Asteroids into Mechanical Automata, is designed to leverage the future advances of additive manufacturing (AM), in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) and in-situ manufacturing (ISM) to realize enormous efficiencies in repeated asteroid redirect missions. A team of engineers at Made In Space performed the study work with consultation from the asteroid mining industry, academia, and NASA. Previous studies for asteroid retrieval have been constrained to studying only asteroids that are both large enough to be discovered, and small enough to be

  11. Study of the Asteroid Florence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vodniza, Alberto; Pereira, Mario

    2018-06-01

    Asteroid Florence was discovered at Siding Spring Observatory in Australia (March 1981). Paul Chodas, manager of CNEOS-JPL said: “Florence is the largest asteroid to pass by our planet this close since the NASA program to detect and track near-Earth asteroids began” [1]. The asteroid passed 7.1 million kilometers away from the earth [2]. The GDSCC-NASA discovered that the asteroid has two small moons. The diameter of Florence is 4.5 kilometers, and the sizes of the two moons are probably between 100 – 300 meters across. The inner moon has a rotation period around Florence of about 8 hours, and the outer moon has a period of about 25 hours [3]. From our Observatory, located in Pasto-Colombia, we captured several pictures, videos and astrometry data during several hours during three days. Our data was published by the Minor Planet Center (MPC) and also appears at the web page of NEODyS [4]. The pictures were captured with the following equipment: CGE PRO 1400 CELESTRON and STL-1001 SBIG camera. Astrometry and photometry was carried out, and we calculated the orbital elements and the rotation period. Summary and conclusions: We obtained the following orbital parameters: eccentricity = 0.422548 +/- 0.000994, semi-major axis = 1.76675 +/- 0.00313 A.U, orbital inclination = 22.128 +/- 0.029 deg, longitude of the ascending node = 336.0960 +/- 0.0013 deg, argument of perihelion = 27.861 +/- 0.016, mean motion = 0.41970 +/- 0.00112 deg/d, perihelion distance = 1.0202151 +/- 5.27e-5 A.U, aphelion distance = 2.51329 +/- 0.00625 A.U, absolute magnitude = 14.4. The parameters were calculated based on 281 observations. Dates: 2017 September 01 to 05 with mean residual = 0.19 arcseconds. The asteroid has an orbital period of 2.35 years (857.74 days). The rotation period of the asteroid is 2.3 hours. Note: Spaceweather published our video on September 1-2017 [5].[1] https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/large-asteroid-to-safely-pass-earth-on-sept-1[2] http

  12. Comet showers and Nemesis, the death star

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hills, J.G.

    1984-01-01

    The recently proposed hypothesis that the periodic extinctions of terrestrial species are the result of comet showers catalyzed by a hypothetical distant solar companion, Nemesis, a tale of global death by comet bombardment of the earth, is discussed

  13. American Meteor Society Fireball reporting system and mobile application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hankey, M.

    2014-07-01

    The American Meteor Society (AMS) founded in 1911 pioneered the visual study of meteors and has collected data relating to meteor observations and bright fireballs for over 100 years. In December 2010, the online fireball reporting system was upgraded to an interactive application that utilizes Google Maps and other programmatic methods to pinpoint the observer's location, azimuth and elevation values with a high degree of precision. The AMS has collected 10s of 1000s of witness reports relating to 100s of events each year since the new application was released. Three dimensional triangulation methods that average the data collected from witnesses have been developed that can determine the start and end points of the meteor with an accuracy of web application. Users can file a new report directly on the phone or update the values submitted through a web report. After web users complete their fireball report online, they are prompted to download the app and update their observation with the more precise data provided by the sensors in the mobile device. The mobile app also provides an accurate means for the witness to report the elapsed time of the fireball. To log this value, the user drags the device across the sky where they saw the fireball. This process is designed to require no button click or user interaction to start and stop the time recording. A count down initiates the process and once the user's phone crosses the plane of azimuth for the end point of the fireball the velocity timer automatically stops. Users are asked to log the recording three times in an effort to minimize error. The three values are then averaged into a final score. Once enough witnesses have filed reports, elapsed time data collected from the mobile phone can be used to determine the velocity of the fireball. With the velocity, trajectory solution and RA/DEC the AMS can plot orbital estimates for significant fireball events reported to the society. Our hope is that overtime this

  14. CO2 Orbital Trends in Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Michael; Feaga, Lori; Bodewits, Dennis; McKay, Adam; Snodgrass, Colin; Wooden, Diane

    2014-12-01

    Spacecraft missions to comets return a treasure trove of details of their targets, e.g., the Rosetta mission to comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the Deep Impact experiment at comet 9P/Tempel 1, or even the flyby of C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) at Mars. Yet, missions are rare, the diversity of comets is large, few comets are easily accessible, and comet flybys essentially return snapshots of their target nuclei. Thus, telescopic observations are necessary to place the mission data within the context of each comet's long-term behavior, and to further connect mission results to the comet population as a whole. We propose a large Cycle 11 project to study the long-term activity of past and potential future mission targets, and select bright Oort cloud comets to infer comet nucleus properties, which would otherwise require flyby missions. In the classical comet model, cometary mass loss is driven by the sublimation of water ice. However, recent discoveries suggest that the more volatile CO and CO2 ices are the likely drivers of some comet active regions. Surprisingly, CO2 drove most of the activity of comet Hartley 2 at only 1 AU from the Sun where vigorous water ice sublimation would be expected to dominate. Currently, little is known about the role of CO2 in comet activity because telluric absorptions prohibit monitoring from the ground. In our Cycle 11 project, we will study the CO2 activity of our targets through IRAC photometry. In conjunction with prior observations of CO2 and CO, as well as future data sets (JWST) and ongoing Earth-based projects led by members of our team, we will investigate both long-term activity trends in our target comets, with a particular goal to ascertain the connections between each comet's coma and nucleus.

  15. Disintegration phenomena in Comet West

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekanina, Z.

    1976-01-01

    Two peculiarities of Comet West, the multiple splitting of the nucleus as seen in telescope observations and the complex structure of the dust tail, are discussed. A method of analysis based on the premise that the observed rate of separation of a fragment from the principal nucleus is determined by the difference in effective solar attraction acting on the bodies is applied to investigate the motion of the four fragments that separated from the nucleus of Comet West. The predicted motion of the fragments is in good agreement with available observations. It is suggested that the 'synchronic' bands of the dust tail consist of tiny fragments from relatively large particles that burst after release from the comet. The unusual orientation of these bands and their high surface brightness relative to the diffuse tail are explained by a sudden increase in the particle acceleration and in the total scattering surface as the result of the disintegration of the larger particles.

  16. CATASTROPHIC DISRUPTION OF COMET ISON

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Keane, Jacqueline V.; Kleyna, Jan T.; Riesen, Timm-Emmanuel; Meech, Karen J. [Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, 2680 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu, HI 96822 (United States); Milam, Stefanie N.; Charnley, Steven B. [Astrochemistry Laboratory, NASA GSFC, MS 690, Greenbelt, MD 20771 (United States); Coulson, Iain M. [Joint Astronomy Center, 660 North Aohoku Place, Hilo, HI 96720 (United States); Sekanina, Zdenek [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Kracht, Rainer, E-mail: keane@ifa.hawaii.edu [Ostlandring 53, D-25335 Elmshorn, Schleswig-Holstein (Germany)

    2016-11-10

    We report submillimeter 450 and 850 μ m dust continuum observations for comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) obtained at heliocentric distances 0.31–0.08 au prior to perihelion on 2013 November 28 ( r {sub h} = 0.0125 au). These observations reveal a rapidly varying dust environment in which the dust emission was initially point-like. As ISON approached perihelion, the continuum emission became an elongated dust column spread out over as much as 60″ (>10{sup 5} km) in the anti-solar direction. Deconvolution of the November 28.04 850 μ m image reveals numerous distinct clumps consistent with the catastrophic disruption of comet ISON, producing ∼5.2 × 10{sup 10} kg of submillimeter-sized dust. Orbital computations suggest that the SCUBA-2 emission peak coincides with the comet's residual nucleus.

  17. Comet-Narval acquisition notice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Le Bris, J.; Sellem, R.; Artiges, J.C.; Clavelin, J.F.; Du, S.; Grave, X.; Hubert, O.; Sauvage, J.; Roussiere, B.

    2006-01-01

    The COMET cards (encoding and time marking) serve to determine the energies and the time correlations of radiations detected during a multiparameter experiment while avoiding any extra specific module like coincidence circuits or delays) to set this time correlation. For each detected radiation, the arrival time information as well as the amplitude of the detected signal, are encoded. The results of these amplitude and time coding are associated to create an event. In this way, each detector is an independent source which provides a building block of the general information obtained by all the detectors. The COMET cards are associated with a NARVAL data acquisition system. This document is the instruction booklet of the COMET-NARVAL acquisition system

  18. Catastrophic Disruption of Comet ISON

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keane, Jacqueline V.; Milam, Stefanie N.; Coulson, Iain M.; Kleyna, Jan T.; Sekanina, Zdenek; Kracht, Rainer; Riesen, Timm-Emmanuel; Meech, Karen J.; Charnley, Steven B.

    2016-01-01

    We report submillimeter 450 and 850 microns dust continuum observations for comet C/2012 S1 (ISON) obtained at heliocentric distances 0.31-0.08 au prior to perihelion on 2013 November 28 (rh?=?0.0125 au). These observations reveal a rapidly varying dust environment in which the dust emission was initially point-like. As ISON approached perihelion, the continuum emission became an elongated dust column spread out over as much as 60? (greater than 10(exp 5) km in the anti-solar direction. Deconvolution of the November 28.04 850 microns image reveals numerous distinct clumps consistent with the catastrophic disruption of comet ISON, producing approximately 5.2?×?10(exp 10) kg of submillimeter-sized dust. Orbital computations suggest that the SCUBA-2 emission peak coincides with the comet's residual nucleus.

  19. Hummingbird Comet Nucleus Analysis Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel; Carle, Glenn C.; Lasher, Larry E.

    2000-01-01

    Hummingbird is a highly focused scientific mission, proposed to NASA s Discovery Program, designed to address the highest priority questions in cometary science-that of the chemical composition of the cometary nucleus. After rendezvous with the comet, Hummingbird would first methodically image and map the comet, then collect and analyze dust, ice and gases from the cometary atmosphere to enrich characterization of the comet and support landing site selection. Then, like its namesake, Hummingbird would carefully descend to a pre-selected surface site obtaining a high-resolution image, gather a surface material sample, acquire surface temperature and then immediately return to orbit for detailed chemical and elemental analyses followed by a high resolution post-sampling image of the site. Hummingbird s analytical laboratory contains instrumentation for a comprehensive molecular and elemental analysis of the cometary nucleus as well as an innovative surface sample acquisition device.

  20. Volcanism on differentiated asteroids (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, L.

    2013-12-01

    The Dawn spacecraft's investigation of 4 Vesta, best-preserved of the early-forming differentiated asteroids, prompts a reappraisal of factors controlling igneous activity on such bodies. Analogy with melt transfer in zones of partial melting on Earth implies that silicate melts moved efficiently within asteroid mantles in complex networks of veins and dikes, so that only a few percent of the mantle consisted of melt at any one time. Thus even in cases where large amounts of mantle melting occurred, the melts did not remain in the mantle to form "magma oceans", but instead migrated to shallow depths. The link between magma flow rate and the stresses needed to keep fractures open and allow flow fast enough to avoid excessive cooling implies that only within asteroids with radii more than ~190-250 km would continuous magma flow from mantle to surface be possible. In all smaller asteroids (including Vesta) magma must have accumulated in sills at the base of the lithosphere (the conductively controlled ~10 km thick thermal boundary layer) or in crustal magma reservoirs near its base. Magma would then have erupted intermittently to the surface from these steadily replenished reservoirs. The average rates of eruption to the surface (or shallow intrusion) should balance the magma production rate, but since magma could accumulate and erupt intermittently from these reservoirs, the instantaneous eruption rates could be hundreds to thousands of cubic m/s, comparable to historic basaltic eruption rates on Earth and very much greater than the average mantle melting rate. The absence of asteroid atmospheres makes explosive eruptions likely even if magmas are volatile-poor. On asteroids with radii less than ~100 km, gases and sub-mm pyroclastic melt droplets would have had speeds exceeding the escape speed assuming a few hundred ppm volatiles, and only cm sized or larger clasts would have been retained. On larger bodies almost all pyroclasts will have returned to the surface

  1. Charles Olivier and the rise of meteor science

    CERN Document Server

    Taibi, Richard

    2017-01-01

    This fascinating portrait of an amateur astronomy movement tells the story of how Charles Olivier recruited a hard-working cadre of citizen scientists to rehabilitate the study of meteors. By 1936, Olivier and members of his American Meteor Society had succeeded in disproving an erroneous idea about meteor showers. Using careful observations, they restored the public’s trust in predictions about periodic showers and renewed respect for meteor astronomy among professional astronomers in the United States. Charles Olivier and his society of observers who were passionate about watching for meteors in the night sky left a major impact on the field. In addition to describing Olivier’s career and describing his struggles with competitive colleagues in a hostile scientific climate, the author provides biographies of some of the scores of women and men of all ages who aided Olivier in making shower observations, from the Leonids and Perseids and others. Half of these amateur volunteers were from 13 to 25 years of...

  2. Mesospheric sodium over Gadanki during Geminid meteor shower 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lokanadham, B.; Rakesh Chandra, N.; Bhaskara Rao, S. Vijaya; Raghunath, K.; Yellaiah, G.

    Resonance LIDAR system at Gadanki has been used for observing the mesospheric sodium during the night of 12-13 Dec 2007 when the peak activity of Geminid meteor shower occurred. Geminid meteor shower is observed along with the co-located MST radar in the altitude range 80-110 km. Sodium density profiles have been obtained with a vertical resolution of 300 m and a temporal resolution of 120 s with sodium resonance scattering LIDAR system. The sodium layers were found to exist in the altitude range 90-100 km. The enhanced Geminid meteor rates were recorded with the co-located MST radar in the same altitude range. The sodium concentration in the atmospheric altitude of ~93 km is estimated to be 2000 per cc where the meteoric concentration of Geminid is maximum and reduced to around 800 on the non activity of Geminid. These observations showed that the sodium levels in the E-region are found to be increasing during meteor shower nights at least by a factor of two.

  3. Catalogue of Meteor Showers and Storms in Korean History

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sang-Hyeon Ahn

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available We present a more complete and accurate catalogue of astronomical records for meteor showers and meteor storms appeared in primary official Korean history books, such as Samguk-sagi, Koryo-sa, Seungjeongwon-ilgi, and Choson-Wangjo-Sillok. So far the catalogue made by Imoto and Hasegawa in 1958 has been widely used in the international astronomical society. The catalogue is based on a report by Sekiguchi in 1917 that is mainly based on secondary history books. We observed that the catalogue has a number of errors in either dates or sources of the records. We have thoroughly checked the primary official history books, instead of the secondary ones, in order to make a corrected and extended catalogue. The catalogue contains 25 records of meteor storms, four records of intense meteor-showers, and five records of usual showers in Korean history. We also find that some of those records seem to correspond to some presently active meteor showers such as the Leonids, the Perseids, and the ¥ç-Aquarids-Orionids pair. However, a large number of those records do not correspond to such present showers. This catalogue we obtained can be useful for various astrophysical studies in the future.

  4. Improving Photometric Calibration of Meteor Video Camera Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehlert, Steven; Kingery, Aaron; Suggs, Robert

    2017-01-01

    We present the results of new calibration tests performed by the NASA Meteoroid Environment Office (MEO) designed to help quantify and minimize systematic uncertainties in meteor photometry from video camera observations. These systematic uncertainties can be categorized by two main sources: an imperfect understanding of the linearity correction for the MEO's Watec 902H2 Ultimate video cameras and uncertainties in meteor magnitudes arising from transformations between the Watec camera's Sony EX-View HAD bandpass and the bandpasses used to determine reference star magnitudes. To address the first point, we have measured the linearity response of the MEO's standard meteor video cameras using two independent laboratory tests on eight cameras. Our empirically determined linearity correction is critical for performing accurate photometry at low camera intensity levels. With regards to the second point, we have calculated synthetic magnitudes in the EX bandpass for reference stars. These synthetic magnitudes enable direct calculations of the meteor's photometric flux within the camera bandpass without requiring any assumptions of its spectral energy distribution. Systematic uncertainties in the synthetic magnitudes of individual reference stars are estimated at approx. 0.20 mag, and are limited by the available spectral information in the reference catalogs. These two improvements allow for zero-points accurate to 0.05 - 0.10 mag in both filtered and unfiltered camera observations with no evidence for lingering systematics. These improvements are essential to accurately measuring photometric masses of individual meteors and source mass indexes.

  5. The source of solar energy, ca. 1840-1910: From meteoric hypothesis to radioactive speculations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kragh, Helge

    2016-12-01

    Why does the Sun shine? Today we know the answer to the question and we also know that earlier answers were quite wrong. The problem of the source of solar energy became an important part of physics and astronomy only with the emergence of the law of energy conservation in the 1840s. The first theory of solar heat based on the new law, due to J.R. Mayer, assumed the heat to be the result of meteors or asteroids falling into the Sun. A different and more successful version of gravitation-to-heat energy conversion was proposed by H. Helmholtz in 1854 and further developed by W. Thomson. For more than forty years the once so celebrated Helmholtz-Thomson contraction theory was accepted as the standard theory of solar heat despite its prediction of an age of the Sun of only 20 million years. In between the gradual demise of this theory and the radically different one based on nuclear processes there was a period in which radioactivity was considered a possible alternative to gravitational contraction. The essay discusses various pre-nuclear ideas of solar energy production, including the broader relevance of the question as it was conceived in the Victorian era.

  6. Spectral Classification of Asteroids by Random Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Chao; Ma, Yue-hua; Zhao, Hai-bin; Lu, Xiao-ping

    2017-10-01

    With the increasing spectral and photometric data of asteroids, a variety of classification methods for asteroids have been proposed. This paper classifies asteroids based on the observations in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Moving Object Catalogue (MOC) by using the random forest algorithm. In combination with the present taxonomies of Tholen, Bus, Lazzaro, and DeMeo, and the principal component analysis, we have classified 48642 asteroids according to their SDSS magnitudes at the g, r, i, and z wavebands. In this way, these asteroids are divided into 8 (C, X, S, B, D, K, L, and V) classes.

  7. Spectral Classification of Asteroids by Random Forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, C.; Ma, Y. H.; Zhao, H. B.; Lu, X. P.

    2016-09-01

    With the increasing asteroid spectral and photometric data, a variety of classification methods for asteroids have been proposed. This paper classifies asteroids based on the observations of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Moving Object Catalogue (MOC) by using the random forest algorithm. With the training data derived from the taxonomies of Tholen, Bus, Lazzaro, DeMeo, and Principal Component Analysis, we classify 48642 asteroids according to g, r, i, and z SDSS magnitudes. In this way, asteroids are divided into 8 spectral classes (C, X, S, B, D, K, L, and V).

  8. 100 and counting : SOHO's score as the world's top comet finder

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-02-01

    Like nearly all of SOHO's discoveries, the 100th comet showed up in images from the LASCO instrument. This is a set of coronagraphs that view the space around the Sun out to 20 million kilometres, while blotting out the bright solar disk with masks. Developed for SOHO by a multinational team led by the US Naval Research Laboratory, LASCO watches for mass ejections from the Sun that threaten to disturb the Earth's space environment. The comet discoveries are a big bonus. SOHO's experts spot many of the comets as soon as the images come in. But still pictures and movies from LASCO are freely available on the Internet to astronomers around the world, who can discover less obvious comets without leaving their desks. This was the case when Kazimieras Cernis of the Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astronomy in Vilnius, Lithuania, found SOHO-100. "On 4 February I saw the comet as a small speck of light in the previous day's LASCO images," Cernis explained. "It had no visible tail, but it was too fuzzy to be an asteroid. By the time I had seen the object moving steadily across the sky in six successive images, I was convinced it was a comet and I sent the details to the SOHO scientists for verification." The competition to find SOHO's 100th comet was keen. An amateur astronomer, Maik Meyer of Frauenstein, Germany, discovered SOHO-98 and 99. On 5 February, less than 24 hours after Cernis reported the candidate SOHO-100, Meyer found the candidate SOHO-101. On the same day and in the same LASCO images Douglas Biesecker, a member of the SOHO science team, spotted the candidate SOHO-102 travelling ahead of 101. Computations have now validated the orbits for all three candidates, and shown them to be bona fide comet discoveries. Other amateur astronomers have used the LASCO images to find comets. In the summer of 1999 Terry Lovejoy in Australia found five, and since September 1999 an amateur in England, Jonathan Shanklin, has spotted three more. "SOHO is a special chance for

  9. Tabulation of comet observations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1991-07-01

    Concerning comets: 1957 III Arend-Roland, 1957 V Mrkos, 1958 III Burnham, 1959 III Bester-Hoffmeister, 1959 VI Alcock, 1959 VIII P/Giacobini-Zinner, 1960 I P/Wild 1, 1960 II Burnham, 1960 III P/Schaumasse, 1960 VIII P/Finlay, 1961 V Wilson-Hubbard, 1961 VIII Seki, 1962 III Seki-Lines, 1962 VIII Humason, 1963 I Ikeya, 1963 III Alcock, 1963 V Pereyra, 1964 VI Tomita-Gerber-Honda, 1964 VIII Ikeya, 1964 IX Everhart, 1979 X Bradfield, 1980 X P/Stephan-Oterma, 1980 XII Meier, 1980 XIII P/Tuttle, 1981 II Panther, 1982 I Bowell, 1982 IV P/Grigg-Skjellerup, 1982 VII P/d'Arrest, 1986 III P/Halley, 1987 IV Shoemaker, 1987 XII P/Hartley 3, 1987 XIX P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 2, 1987 XXIX Bradfield, 1987 XXX Levy, 1987 XXXII McNaught, 1987 XXXIII P/Borrelly, 1987 XXXVI P/Parker-Hartley, 1987 XXXVII P/Helin- Roman-Alu 1, 1988 III Shoemaker-Holt, 1988 V Liller, 1988 VIII P/Ge-Wang, 1988 XI P/Shoemaker-Holt 2, 1988 XIV P/Tempel 2, 1988 XV Machholz, 1988 XX Yanaka, 1988 XXI Shoemaker, 1988 XXIV Yanaka, 1989 III Shoemaker, 1989 V Shoemaker-Holt-Rodriquez, 1989 VIII P/Pons-Winnecke, 1989 X P/Brorsen-Metcalf, 1989 XI P/Gunn, 1989 XIII P/Lovas 1, 1989 XVIII McKenzie-Russell, 1989 XIX Okazaki-Levy-Rudenko, 1989 XX P/Clark, 1989 XXI Helin-Ronan-Alu, 1989 XXII Aarseth-Brewington, 1989h P/Van Biesbroeck, 1989t P/Wild 2, 1989u P/Kearns-Kwee, 1989c1 Austin, 1989e1 Skorichenko-George, 1990a P/Wild 4, 1990b Černis-Kiuchi-Nakamura, 1990c Levy, 1990e P/Wolf-Harrington, 1990f P/Honda-Mrkos-Pajdušáková, 1990g McNaught-Hughes, 1990i Tsuchiya-Kiuchi, 1990n P/Taylor, 1990ο P/Shoemaker-Levy 1, 1991a P/Metcalf-Brewington, 1991b Arai, 1991c P/Swift-Gehrels, 1991d Shoemaker-Levy, 1991e P/Shoemaker-Levy 3, 1991h P/Takamizawa, 1991j P/Hartley 1, 1991k P/Mrkos, 1991l Helin-Lawrence, 1991n P/Faye, 1991q P/Levy, 1991t P/Hartley 2, P/Encke, P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 1.

  10. Simultaneous Mass Determination for Gravitationally Coupled Asteroids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baer, James [Private address, 3210 Apache Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15241 (United States); Chesley, Steven R., E-mail: jimbaer1@earthlink.net [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States)

    2017-08-01

    The conventional least-squares asteroid mass determination algorithm allows us to solve for the mass of a large subject asteroid that is perturbing the trajectory of a smaller test asteroid. However, this algorithm is necessarily a first approximation, ignoring the possibility that the subject asteroid may itself be perturbed by the test asteroid, or that the encounter’s precise geometry may be entangled with encounters involving other asteroids. After reviewing the conventional algorithm, we use it to calculate the masses of 30 main-belt asteroids. Compared to our previous results, we find new mass estimates for eight asteroids (11 Parthenope, 27 Euterpe, 51 Neimausa, 76 Freia, 121 Hermione, 324 Bamberga, 476 Hedwig, and 532 Herculina) and significantly more precise estimates for six others (2 Pallas, 3 Juno, 4 Vesta, 9 Metis, 16 Psyche, and 88 Thisbe). However, we also find that the conventional algorithm yields questionable results in several gravitationally coupled cases. To address such cases, we describe a new algorithm that allows the epoch state vectors of the subject asteroids to be included as solve-for parameters, allowing for the simultaneous solution of the masses and epoch state vectors of multiple subject and test asteroids. We then apply this algorithm to the same 30 main-belt asteroids and conclude that mass determinations resulting from current and future high-precision astrometric sources (such as Gaia ) should conduct a thorough search for possible gravitational couplings and account for their effects.

  11. Simultaneous Mass Determination for Gravitationally Coupled Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baer, James; Chesley, Steven R.

    2017-08-01

    The conventional least-squares asteroid mass determination algorithm allows us to solve for the mass of a large subject asteroid that is perturbing the trajectory of a smaller test asteroid. However, this algorithm is necessarily a first approximation, ignoring the possibility that the subject asteroid may itself be perturbed by the test asteroid, or that the encounter’s precise geometry may be entangled with encounters involving other asteroids. After reviewing the conventional algorithm, we use it to calculate the masses of 30 main-belt asteroids. Compared to our previous results, we find new mass estimates for eight asteroids (11 Parthenope, 27 Euterpe, 51 Neimausa, 76 Freia, 121 Hermione, 324 Bamberga, 476 Hedwig, and 532 Herculina) and significantly more precise estimates for six others (2 Pallas, 3 Juno, 4 Vesta, 9 Metis, 16 Psyche, and 88 Thisbe). However, we also find that the conventional algorithm yields questionable results in several gravitationally coupled cases. To address such cases, we describe a new algorithm that allows the epoch state vectors of the subject asteroids to be included as solve-for parameters, allowing for the simultaneous solution of the masses and epoch state vectors of multiple subject and test asteroids. We then apply this algorithm to the same 30 main-belt asteroids and conclude that mass determinations resulting from current and future high-precision astrometric sources (such as Gaia) should conduct a thorough search for possible gravitational couplings and account for their effects.

  12. Simultaneous Mass Determination for Gravitationally Coupled Asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baer, James; Chesley, Steven R.

    2017-01-01

    The conventional least-squares asteroid mass determination algorithm allows us to solve for the mass of a large subject asteroid that is perturbing the trajectory of a smaller test asteroid. However, this algorithm is necessarily a first approximation, ignoring the possibility that the subject asteroid may itself be perturbed by the test asteroid, or that the encounter’s precise geometry may be entangled with encounters involving other asteroids. After reviewing the conventional algorithm, we use it to calculate the masses of 30 main-belt asteroids. Compared to our previous results, we find new mass estimates for eight asteroids (11 Parthenope, 27 Euterpe, 51 Neimausa, 76 Freia, 121 Hermione, 324 Bamberga, 476 Hedwig, and 532 Herculina) and significantly more precise estimates for six others (2 Pallas, 3 Juno, 4 Vesta, 9 Metis, 16 Psyche, and 88 Thisbe). However, we also find that the conventional algorithm yields questionable results in several gravitationally coupled cases. To address such cases, we describe a new algorithm that allows the epoch state vectors of the subject asteroids to be included as solve-for parameters, allowing for the simultaneous solution of the masses and epoch state vectors of multiple subject and test asteroids. We then apply this algorithm to the same 30 main-belt asteroids and conclude that mass determinations resulting from current and future high-precision astrometric sources (such as Gaia ) should conduct a thorough search for possible gravitational couplings and account for their effects.

  13. Encounter of a different kind: Rosetta observes asteroid at close quarters

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-09-01

    ESA's comet chaser, Rosetta, last night flew by a small body in the main asteroid belt, asteroid Steins, collecting a wealth of information about this rare type of minor Solar System body. At 20:58 CEST (18:58 UT) last night, ESA's Rosetta probe approached asteroid 2867 Steins, coming to within a distance of only 800 km from it. Steins is Rosetta's first nominal scientific target in its 11½ year mission to ultimately explore the nucleus of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The success of this 'close' encounter was confirmed at 22:14 CEST, when ESA's ground control team at the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany, received initial telemetry from the spacecraft. During the flyby operations, Rosetta was out of reach as regards communication links because its antenna had to be turned away from Earth. At a distance of about 2.41 AU (360 million kilometres) from our planet, the radio signal from the probe took 20 minutes to reach the ground. Steins is a small asteroid of irregular shape with a diameter of only 4.6 km. It belongs to the rare class of E-type asteroids, which had not been directly observed by an interplanetary spacecraft before. Such asteroids are quite small in size and orbit and are mostly found in the inner part of the main asteroid belt located between Mars and Jupiter. They probably originate from the mantle of larger asteroids destroyed in the early history of the Solar System, and are thought to be composed mainly of silicate minerals with little or no iron content. The data collected by Rosetta last night and which will be analysed over the coming days and weeks will finally unveil the true nature of Steins. Through the study of minor bodies such as asteroids, Rosetta is opening up a new window onto the early history of our Solar System. It will give us a better understanding of the origins and evolution of the planets, and also a key to better interpreting asteroid data collected from the ground. Under Rosetta's scope This

  14. The Steward Observatory asteroid relational database

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sykes, Mark V.; Alvarezdelcastillo, Elizabeth M.

    1991-01-01

    The Steward Observatory Asteroid Relational Database (SOARD) was created as a flexible tool for undertaking studies of asteroid populations and sub-populations, to probe the biases intrinsic to asteroid databases, to ascertain the completeness of data pertaining to specific problems, to aid in the development of observational programs, and to develop pedagogical materials. To date, SOARD has compiled an extensive list of data available on asteroids and made it accessible through a single menu-driven database program. Users may obtain tailored lists of asteroid properties for any subset of asteroids or output files which are suitable for plotting spectral data on individual asteroids. The program has online help as well as user and programmer documentation manuals. The SOARD already has provided data to fulfill requests by members of the astronomical community. The SOARD continues to grow as data is added to the database and new features are added to the program.

  15. Shape and spin of asteroid 967 Helionape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apostolovska, G.; Kostov, A.; Donchev, Z.; Bebekovska, E. Vchkova; Kuzmanovska, O.

    2018-04-01

    Knowledge of the spin and shape parameters of the asteroids is very important for understanding of the conditions during the creation of our planetary system and formation of asteroid populations. The main belt asteroid and Flora family member 967 Helionape was observed during five apparitions. The observations were made at the Bulgarian National Astronomical Observatory (BNAO) Rozhen, since March 2006 to March 2016. Lihtcurve inversion method (Kaasalainen et al. (2001)), applied on 12 relative lightcurves obtained at various geometric conditions of the asteroid, reveals the spin vector, the sense of rotation and the preliminary shape model of the asteroid. Our aim is to contribute in increasing the set of asteroids with known spin and shape parameters. This could be done with dense lightcurves, obtained during small number of apparitions, in combination with sparse data produced by photometric asteroid surveys such as the Gaia satellite (Hanush (2011)).

  16. Implications of the Small Spin Changes Measured for Large Jupiter-Family Comet Nuclei

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kokotanekova, R.; Snodgrass, C.; Lacerda, P.; Green, S. F.; Nikolov, P.; Bonev, T.

    2018-06-01

    Rotational spin-up due to outgassing of comet nuclei has been identified as a possible mechanism for considerable mass-loss and splitting. We report a search for spin changes for three large Jupiter-family comets (JFCs): 14P/Wolf, 143P/Kowal-Mrkos, and 162P/Siding Spring. None of the three comets has detectable period changes, and we set conservative upper limits of 4.2 (14P), 6.6 (143P) and 25 (162P) minutes per orbit. Comparing these results with all eight other JFCs with measured rotational changes, we deduce that none of the observed large JFCs experiences significant spin changes. This suggests that large comet nuclei are less likely to undergo rotationally-driven splitting, and therefore more likely to survive more perihelion passages than smaller nuclei. We find supporting evidence for this hypothesis in the cumulative size distributions of JFCs and dormant comets, as well as in recent numerical studies of cometary orbital dynamics. We added 143P to the sample of 13 other JFCs with known albedos and phase-function slopes. This sample shows a possible correlation of increasing phase-function slopes for larger geometric albedos. Partly based on findings from recent space missions to JFCs, we hypothesise that this correlation corresponds to an evolutionary trend for JFCs. We propose that newly activated JFCs have larger albedos and steeper phase functions, which gradually decrease due to sublimation-driven erosion. If confirmed, this could be used to analyse surface erosion from ground and to distinguish between dormant comets and asteroids.

  17. Comets as Messengers from the Early Solar System - Emerging Insights on Delivery of Water, Nitriles, and Organics to Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mumma, Michael J.; Charnley, Steven B.

    2012-01-01

    The question of exogenous delivery of water and organics to Earth and other young planets is of critical importance for understanding the origin of Earth's volatiles, and for assessing the possible existence of exo-planets similar to Earth. Viewed from a cosmic perspective, Earth is a dry planet, yet its oceans are enriched in deuterium by a large factor relative to nebular hydrogen and analogous isotopic enrichments in atmospheric nitrogen and noble gases are also seen. Why is this so? What are the implications for Mars? For icy Worlds in our Planetary System? For the existence of Earth-like exoplanets? An exogenous (vs. outgassed) origin for Earth's atmosphere is implied, and intense debate on the relative contributions of comets and asteroids continues - renewed by fresh models for dynamical transport in the protoplanetary disk, by revelations on the nature and diversity of volatile and rocky material within comets, and by the discovery of ocean-like water in a comet from the Kuiper Belt (cf., Mumma & Charnley 2011). Assessing the creation of conditions favorable to the emergence and sustenance of life depends critically on knowledge of the nature of the impacting bodies. Active comets have long been grouped according to their orbital properties, and this has proven useful for identifying the reservoir from which a given comet emerged (OC, KB) (Levison 1996). However, it is now clear that icy bodies were scattered into each reservoir from a range of nebular distances, and the comet populations in today's reservoirs thus share origins that are (in part) common. Comets from the Oort Cloud and Kuiper Disk reservoirs should have diverse composition, resulting from strong gradients in temperature and chemistry in the proto-planetary disk, coupled with dynamical models of early radial transport and mixing with later dispersion of the final cometary nuclei into the long-term storage reservoirs. The inclusion of material from the natal interstellar cloud is probable

  18. Meteoric 10Be in soil profiles - A global meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graly, Joseph A.; Bierman, Paul R.; Reusser, Lucas J.; Pavich, Milan J.

    2010-01-01

    In order to assess current understanding of meteoric 10Be dynamics and distribution in terrestrial soils, we assembled a database of all published meteoric 10Be soil depth profiles, including 104 profiles from 27 studies in globally diverse locations, collectively containing 679 individual measurements. This allows for the systematic comparison of meteoric 10Be concentration to other soil characteristics and the comparison of profile depth distributions between geologic settings. Percent clay, 9Be, and dithionite-citrate extracted Al positively correlate to meteoric 10Be in more than half of the soils where they were measured, but the lack of significant correlation in other soils suggests that no one soil factor controls meteoric 10Be distribution with depth. Dithionite-citrate extracted Fe and cation exchange capacity are only weakly correlated to meteoric 10Be. Percent organic carbon and pH are not significantly related to meteoric 10Be concentration when all data are complied.The compilation shows that meteoric 10Be concentration is seldom uniform with depth in a soil profile. In young or rapidly eroding soils, maximum meteoric 10Be concentrations are typically found in the uppermost 20 cm. In older, more slowly eroding soils, the highest meteoric 10Be concentrations are found at depth, usually between 50 and 200 cm. We find that the highest measured meteoric 10Be concentration in a soil profile is an important metric, as both the value and the depth of the maximum meteoric 10Be concentration correlate with the total measured meteoric 10Be inventory of the soil profile.In order to refine the use of meteoric 10Be as an estimator of soil erosion rate, we compare near-surface meteoric 10Be concentrations to total meteoric 10Be soil inventories. These trends are used to calibrate models of meteoric 10Be loss by soil erosion. Erosion rates calculated using this method vary based on the assumed depth and timing of erosional events and on the reference data selected.

  19. Linear feature detection algorithm for astronomical surveys - II. Defocusing effects on meteor tracks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bektešević, Dino; Vinković, Dejan; Rasmussen, Andrew; Ivezić, Željko

    2018-03-01

    Given the current limited knowledge of meteor plasma micro-physics and its interaction with the surrounding atmosphere and ionosphere, meteors are a highly interesting observational target for high-resolution wide-field astronomical surveys. Such surveys are capable of resolving the physical size of meteor plasma heads, but they produce large volumes of images that need to be automatically inspected for possible existence of long linear features produced by meteors. Here, we show how big aperture sky survey telescopes detect meteors as defocused tracks with a central brightness depression. We derive an analytic expression for a defocused point source meteor track and use it to calculate brightness profiles of meteors modelled as uniform brightness discs. We apply our modelling to meteor images as seen by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and Large Synoptic Survey Telescope telescopes. The expression is validated by Monte Carlo ray-tracing simulations of photons travelling through the atmosphere and the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope telescope optics. We show that estimates of the meteor distance and size can be extracted from the measured full width at half-maximum and the strength of the central dip in the observed brightness profile. However, this extraction becomes difficult when the defocused meteor track is distorted by the atmospheric seeing or contaminated by a long-lasting glowing meteor trail. The full width at half-maximum of satellite tracks is distinctly narrower than meteor values, which enables removal of a possible confusion between satellites and meteors.

  20. French Meteor Network for High Precision Orbits of Meteoroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atreya, P.; Vaubaillon, J.; Colas, F.; Bouley, S.; Gaillard, B.; Sauli, I.; Kwon, M. K.

    2011-01-01

    There is a lack of precise meteoroids orbit from video observations as most of the meteor stations use off-the-shelf CCD cameras. Few meteoroids orbit with precise semi-major axis are available using film photographic method. Precise orbits are necessary to compute the dust flux in the Earth s vicinity, and to estimate the ejection time of the meteoroids accurately by comparing them with the theoretical evolution model. We investigate the use of large CCD sensors to observe multi-station meteors and to compute precise orbit of these meteoroids. An ideal spatial and temporal resolution to get an accuracy to those similar of photographic plates are discussed. Various problems faced due to the use of large CCD, such as increasing the spatial and the temporal resolution at the same time and computational problems in finding the meteor position are illustrated.

  1. Comet Mineralogy as Inferred from Infrared Spectra of Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooden, Diane H.

    2006-01-01

    For most comets, infrared (IR) spectroscopy (remote sensing) is the method through which we diagnose the mineralogy and size distribution of dust in their comae. The shape and contrast of the IR spectral features depend on the particle size: optically active minerals (absorbing of visible and near-IR solar photons) and submicron solid grains or highly porous (> 90% vacuum) grains primarily contribute to the shapes of the observed resonances. Comet mineralogies typically are determined by fitting thermal emission models of ensembles of discrete mineral grains to observed IR spectral energy distributions. The absorptivities (Q-abs) and scattering efficiencies (Q-scat) of the discrete mineral grains are computed using Mie scattering, Maxwell-Garnet mixing, Discrete Dipole Approximation, and Multi-Layered Sphere codes. These techniques when applied to crystalline minerals, specifically olivine (Mg_x, Fe_1-x)2 Si04, x>0.9, require the use of ellipsoidal shaped particles with elongated axial ratios or hollow spheres to produce the shapes of the resonances observed both from comet comae and laboratory samples. The wavelength positions of the distinct resonances from submicron-radii crystalline silicates, as well as their thermal equilibrium temperatures, constrain the crystalline olivine to have a relatively high Mg-content (x>0.9, or Fo>90). Only resonances computed for submicron Mg-rich crystalline olivine and crystalline orthopyroxene match the observed IR spectral features. However, this has led to the interpretation that micron-radii and larger crystals are absent from comet comae. Furthermore, the mass fraction of silicate crystals is dependent upon whether just the submicron portion of the size distribution is being compared or the submicron crystals compare to the aggregates of porous amorphous silicates that are computationally tractable as porous spheres. We will discuss the Deep Impact results as examples of these challenges to interpreting mid-IR spectra of

  2. Planetary Defense From Space: Part 2 (Simple) Asteroid Deflection Law

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maccone, Claudio

    2006-06-01

    A system of two space bases housing missiles for an efficient Planetary Defense of the Earth from asteroids and comets was firstly proposed by this author in 2002. It was then shown that the five Lagrangian points of the Earth Moon system lead naturally to only two unmistakable locations of these two space bases within the sphere of influence of the Earth. These locations are the two Lagrangian points L1 (in between the Earth and the Moon) and L3 (in the direction opposite to the Moon from the Earth). In fact, placing missiles based at L1 and L3 would enable the missiles to deflect the trajectory of incoming asteroids by hitting them orthogonally to their impact trajectory toward the Earth, thus maximizing the deflection at best. It was also shown that confocal conics are the only class of missile trajectories fulfilling this “best orthogonal deflection” requirement. The mathematical theory developed by the author in the years 2002 2004 was just the beginning of a more expanded research program about the Planetary Defense. In fact, while those papers developed the formal Keplerian theory of the Optimal Planetary Defense achievable from the Earth Moon Lagrangian points L1 and L3, this paper is devoted to the proof of a simple “(small) asteroid deflection law” relating directly the following variables to each other:the speed of the arriving asteroid with respect to the Earth (known from the astrometric observations);the asteroid's size and density (also supposed to be known from astronomical observations of various types);the “security radius” of the Earth, that is, the minimal sphere around the Earth outside which we must force the asteroid to fly if we want to be safe on Earth. Typically, we assume the security radius to equal about 10,000 km from the Earth center, but this number might be changed by more refined analyses, especially in the case of “rubble pile” asteroids;the distance from the Earth of the two Lagrangian points L1 and L3 where the

  3. Comets as parent bodies of CI1 carbonaceous meteorites and possible habitats of ice-microbes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickramasinghe, N. Chandra; Wickramasinghe, Janaki T.; Wallis, Jamie; Hoover, Richard B.; Rozanov, Alexei Y.

    2011-10-01

    Recent studies of comets and cometary dust have confirmed the presence of biologically relevant organic molecules along with clay minerals and water ice. It is also now well established by deuterium/hydrogen ratios that the CI1 carbonaceous meteorites contain indigenous extraterrestrial water. The evidence of extensive aqueous alteration of the minerals in these meteorites led to the hypothesis that water-bearing asteroids or comets represent the parent bodies of the CI1 (and perhaps CM2) carbonaceous meteorites. These meteorites have also been shown to possess a diverse array of complex organics and chiral and morphological biomarkers. Stable isotope studies by numerous independent investigators have conclusively established that the complex organics found in these meteorites are both indigenous and extraterrestrial in nature. Although the origin of these organics is still unknown, some researchers have suggested that they originated by unknown abiotic mechanisms and may have played a role in the delivery of chiral biomolecules and the origin of life on Early Earth. In this paper we review these results and investigate the thermal history of comets. We show that permanent as well as transient domains of liquid water can be maintained on a comet under a plausible set of assumptions. With each perihelion passage of a comet volatiles are preferentially released, and during millions of such passages the comet could shed crustal debris that may survive transit through the Earth's atmosphere as a carbonaceous meteorite. We review the current state of knowledge of comets and carbonaceous meteorites. We also present the results of recent studies on the long-term viability of terrestrial ice-microbiota encased in ancient glacial ice and permafrost. We suggest that the conditions which have been observed to prevail on many comets do not preclude either survivability (or even the active metabolism and growth) of many types of eukaryotic and prokaryotic microbial

  4. Comets as Parent Bodies of CI1 Carbonaceous Meteorites and Possible Habitats of Ice-Microbiota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickramasinghe, N. Chandra; Wallis, Daryl H.; Rozanov, Alexei Yu.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2011-01-01

    Recent studies of comets and cometary dust have confirmed the presence of biologically relevant organic molecules along with clay minerals and water ice. It is also now well established by deuterium/hydrogen ratios that the CI1 carbonaceous meteorites contain indigenous extraterrestrial water. The evidence of extensive aqueous alteration of the minerals in these meteorites led to the hypothesis that water-bearing asteroids or comets represent the parent bodies of the CI1 (and perhaps CM2) carbonaceous meteorites. These meteorites have also been shown to possess a diverse array of complex organics and chiral and morphological biomarkers. Stable isotope studies by numerous independent investigators have conclusively established that the complex organics found in these meteorites are both indigenous and extraterrestrial in nature. Although the origin of these organics is still unknown, some researchers have suggested that they originated by unknown abiotic mechanisms and may have played a role in the delivery of chiral biomolecules and the origin of life on Early Earth. In this paper we review these results and investigate the thermal history of comets. We show that permanent as well as transient domains of liquid water can be maintained on a comet under a plausible set of assumptions. With each perihelion passage of a comet volatiles are preferentially released, and during millions of such passages the comet could shed crustal debris that may survive transit through the Earth s atmosphere as a carbonaceous meteorite. We review the current state of knowledge of comets and carbonaceous meteorites. We also present the results of recent studies on the long-term viability of terrestrial ice-microbiota encased in ancient glacial ice and permafrost. We suggest that the conditions which have been observed to prevail on many comets do not preclude either survivability (or even the active metabolism and growth) of many types of eukaryotic and prokaryotic microbial

  5. The Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Paul; Gates, Michele; Johnson, Lindley; Chodas, Paul; Mazanek, Dan; Reeves, David; Ticker, Ronald

    2016-07-01

    To achieve its long-term goal of sending humans to Mars, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to proceed in a series of incrementally more complex human spaceflight missions. Today, human flight experience extends only to Low-Earth Orbit (LEO), and should problems arise during a mission, the crew can return to Earth in a matter of minutes to hours. The next logical step for human spaceflight is to gain flight experience in the vicinity of the Moon. These cis-lunar missions provide a "proving ground" for the testing of systems and operations while still accommodating an emergency return path to the Earth that would last only several days. Cis-lunar mission experience will be essential for more ambitious human missions beyond the Earth-Moon system, which will require weeks, months, or even years of transit time. In addition, NASA has been given a Grand Challenge to find all asteroid threats to human populations and know what to do about them. Obtaining knowledge of asteroid physical properties combined with performing technology demonstrations for planetary defense provide much needed information to address the issue of future asteroid impacts on Earth. Hence the combined objectives of human exploration and planetary defense give a rationale for the Asteroid Re-direct Mission (ARM). Mission Description: NASA's ARM consists of two mission segments: 1) the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM), the first robotic mission to visit a large (greater than ~100 m diameter) near-Earth asteroid (NEA), collect a multi-ton boulder from its surface along with regolith samples, demonstrate a planetary defense technique, and return the asteroidal material to a stable orbit around the Moon; and 2) the Asteroid Redirect Crewed Mission (ARCM), in which astronauts will take the Orion capsule to rendezvous and dock with the robotic vehicle, conduct multiple extravehicular activities to explore the boulder, and return to Earth with samples. NASA's proposed

  6. Physics-Based Modeling of Meteor Entry and Breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prabhu, Dinesh K.; Agrawal, Parul; Allen, Gary A., Jr.; Bauschlicher, Charles W., Jr.; Brandis, Aaron M.; Chen, Yih-Kang; Jaffe, Richard L.; Palmer, Grant E.; Saunders, David A.; Stern, Eric C.; hide

    2015-01-01

    A new research effort at NASA Ames Research Center has been initiated in Planetary Defense, which integrates the disciplines of planetary science, atmospheric entry physics, and physics-based risk assessment. This paper describes work within the new program and is focused on meteor entry and breakup.Over the last six decades significant effort was expended in the US and in Europe to understand meteor entry including ablation, fragmentation and airburst (if any) for various types of meteors ranging from stony to iron spectral types. These efforts have produced primarily empirical mathematical models based on observations. Weaknesses of these models, apart from their empiricism, are reliance on idealized shapes (spheres, cylinders, etc.) and simplified models for thermal response of meteoritic materials to aerodynamic and radiative heating. Furthermore, the fragmentation and energy release of meteors (airburst) is poorly understood.On the other hand, flight of human-made atmospheric entry capsules is well understood. The capsules and their requisite heatshields are designed and margined to survive entry. However, the highest speed Earth entry for capsules is 13 kms (Stardust). Furthermore, Earth entry capsules have never exceeded diameters of 5 m, nor have their peak aerothermal environments exceeded 0.3 atm and 1 kW/sq cm. The aims of the current work are: (i) to define the aerothermal environments for objects with entry velocities from 13 to 20 kms; (ii) to explore various hypotheses of fragmentation and airburst of stony meteors in the near term; (iii) to explore the possibility of performing relevant ground-based tests to verify candidate hypotheses; and (iv) to quantify the energy released in airbursts. The results of the new simulations will be used to anchor said risk assessment analyses. With these aims in mind, state-of-the-art entry capsule design tools are being extended for meteor entries. We describe: (i) applications of current simulation tools to

  7. Physical and dynamical properties of the anomalous comet 249P/LINEAR

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Julio A.; Licandro, Javier; Moreno, Fernando; Sosa, Andrea; Cabrera-Lavers, Antonio; de León, Julia; Birtwhistle, Peter

    2017-10-01

    Images and low-resolution spectra of the near-Earth Jupiter family comet (JFC) 249P/LINEAR in the visible range obtained with the instrument OSIRIS in the 10.4 m Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC) (La Palma, Spain) on January 3, 4, 6 and February 6, 2016 are presented, together with a series of images obtained with the 0.4m telescope of the Great Shefford Observatory obtained on Oct. 22 and 27, and Nov. 1 and 24, 2006. The reflectance spectrum of 249P is similar to that of a B-type asteroid. The comet has an absolute (visual) nuclear magnitude HV = 17.0 ± 0.4 , which corresponds to a radius of about 1-1.3 km for a geometric albedo ∼ 0.04 - 0.07 . From the analysis of GTC images using a Monte Carlo dust tail code we find that the time of maximum dust ejection rate was around 1.6 days before perihelion. The analysis of the dust tails during the 2006 and 2016 perihelion approaches reveals that, during both epochs, the comet repeated the same dust ejection pattern, with a similar short-lived activity period of about 20 days (FWHM) around perihelion and a dust loss rate peaking at 145 ± 50 kg/s. The total dust mass ejected during its last perihelion passage was (2.5 ± 0.9) × 108 kg, almost all this mass being emitted before the first observation of January 3, 2016. The activity onset, duration, and total ejected mass were very similar during the 2006 perihelion passage. This amount of dust mass is very low as compared with that from other active JFCs. The past orbital evolution of 249P and 100 clones were also followed over a time scale of ∼ 5 × 104 yr. The object and more than 60% of the clones remained bound to the near-Earth region for the whole computed period, keeping its perihelion distance within the range q ≃ 0.4 - 1.1 au. The combination of photometric and spectroscopic observations and dynamical studies show that the near-Earth comet 249P/LINEAR has several peculiar features that clearly differentiate it from typical JFCs. We may be in front of a new

  8. Comet C/2001 J1

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Helin, E.; Lawrence, K.; Kotková, Lenka; Tichá, J.; Tichý, M.

    č. 7623 (2001), s. 1 ISSN 0081-0304 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/99/0255 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : comet s * astrometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  9. The COMET Sleep Research Platform.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, Deborah A; DeSalvo, Steven; Miller, Richard A; Jónsson, Darrell; Griffin, Kara S; Hyde, Pamela R; Walsh, James K; Kushida, Clete A

    2014-01-01

    The Comparative Outcomes Management with Electronic Data Technology (COMET) platform is extensible and designed for facilitating multicenter electronic clinical research. Our research goals were the following: (1) to conduct a comparative effectiveness trial (CET) for two obstructive sleep apnea treatments-positive airway pressure versus oral appliance therapy; and (2) to establish a new electronic network infrastructure that would support this study and other clinical research studies. The COMET platform was created to satisfy the needs of CET with a focus on creating a platform that provides comprehensive toolsets, multisite collaboration, and end-to-end data management. The platform also provides medical researchers the ability to visualize and interpret data using business intelligence (BI) tools. COMET is a research platform that is scalable and extensible, and which, in a future version, can accommodate big data sets and enable efficient and effective research across multiple studies and medical specialties. The COMET platform components were designed for an eventual move to a cloud computing infrastructure that enhances sustainability, overall cost effectiveness, and return on investment.

  10. Grain coma production by comet nuclei during their vaporization, under solar radiation action and through collision with meteoroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Matsuura, O.T.

    1976-07-01

    For a model of compact cometary nucleus made up of hydrates mixed or unmixed with meteoric dust, some observable properties for long period comets are derived. The dust production is first considered to be due only to the vaporization of the nucleus under the action of the solar radiation. Then, taking into account the probability for the occurrence of collision of a nucleus with a meteoroid, a production due to a collisional process is studied. Using previously catalogued observational data, an evaluation of the main results coming from the present model is carried out. (Author) [pt

  11. Modeling Formaldehyde Emission in Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Disanti, M. A.; Reuter, D. C.; Bonev, B. P.; Mumma, M. J.; Villanueva, G. L.

    Modeling fluorescent emission from monomeric formaldehyde (H2CO) forms an integral part of our overall comprehensive program of measuring the volatile composition of comets through high-resolution (RP ~ 25,000) infrared spectroscopy using CSHELL at the IRTF and NIRSPEC at Keck II. The H2CO spectra contain lines from both the nu1 (symmetric CH2 stretch) and nu5 (asymmetric CH2 stretch) bands near 3.6 microns. We have acquired high-quality spectra of twelve Oort cloud comets, and at least six of these show clear emission from H2CO. We also detected H2CO with NIRSPEC in one Jupiter Family comet, 9P/Tempel 1, during Deep Impact observations. Our H2CO model, originally developed to interpret low-resolution spectra of comets Halley and Wilson (Reuter et al. 1989 Ap J 341:1045), predicts individual line intensities (g-factors) as a function of rotational temperature for approximately 1300 lines having energies up to approximately 400 cm^-1 above the ground state. Recently, it was validated through comparison with CSHELL spectra of C/2002 T7 (LINEAR), where newly developed analyses were applied to obtain robust determinations of both the rotational temperature and abundance of H2CO (DiSanti et al. 2006 Ap J 650:470). We are currently in the process of extending the model to higher rotational energy (i.e., higher rotational quantum number) in an attempt to improve the fit to high-J lines in our spectra of C/T7 and other comets. Results will be presented, and implications discussed.Modeling fluorescent emission from monomeric formaldehyde (H2CO) forms an integral part of our overall comprehensive program of measuring the volatile composition of comets through high-resolution (RP ~ 25,000) infrared spectroscopy using CSHELL at the IRTF and NIRSPEC at Keck II. The H2CO spectra contain lines from both the nu1 (symmetric CH2 stretch) and nu5 (asymmetric CH2 stretch) bands near 3.6 microns. We have acquired high-quality spectra of twelve Oort cloud comets, and at least six of

  12. An Automatic Video Meteor Observation Using UFO Capture at the Showa Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujiwara, Y.; Nakamura, T.; Ejiri, M.; Suzuki, H.

    2012-05-01

    The goal of our study is to clarify meteor activities in the southern hemi-sphere by continuous optical observations with video cameras with automatic meteor detection and recording at Syowa station, Antarctica.

  13. Spectroscopic Evidence for the Asteroidal Nature of the July 2009 Jovian Impactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisse, Carey; Orton, Glenn; Yanamandra-Fisher, Padma; Fletcher, Leigh; Depater, Imke; Hammel, Heidi

    2010-05-01

    The collision of a large object with Jupiter on July 19, 2009, heated its atmosphere, modified its composition and generated a prominent field of deposited particulate debris. Low-resolution 7-24 μm spectroscopy of the impact field obtained using the T-ReCS mid-infrared camera/spectrometer on Gemini/South on 24 July 2009 has revealed an excess 9-μm absorption in the impact debris in addition to that supplied by hot ammonia created in the impact. We have searched for candidate materials that would best fit the spectral feature near 9 μm, and find that the feature cannot be matched with candidate materials in Jupiter's atmosphere. A search through a large suite of gaseous and solid absorption spectra (c.f Lisse et al. 2008, 2009) revealed that the major competent matches were for (a) obsidian, a glassy silica, and (b) quartz and cristobalite, crystalline silicas, kinetic alteration products of primitive body ferromagnesian silicates formed at high pressures and temperatures over 1500 K. There are also weak features at 10 - 11 um consistent with olivine absorptions. While the high temperatures required to create silicas are also high enough to destroy the non-refractory water and organics dominating icy cometary bodies, and thus destroy their spectral signal, there was no detectable absorption due to pyroxene materials, which, along with olivines in roughly equal measure, comprise the majority of refractory silicaceous species found in comets (Lisse et al. 2007). This suggests that the impacting body was not a comet, but an olivine-rich differentiated body similar to asteroids that are abundant in the outer regions of the main asteroid belt (Lodders and Fegley 1998). We speculate that the weak structural strength of bulk cometary material causes a comet impactor to catastrophically disrupt at higher altitudes and lower temperatures than a strong, dense asteroidal body, so that the cometary refractory dust component remains relatively cold and unaltered through

  14. DISCOVERY OF MAIN-BELT COMET P/2006 VW{sub 139} BY Pan-STARRS1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hsieh, Henry H.; Yang Bin; Haghighipour, Nader; Kaluna, Heather M.; Denneau, Larry; Jedicke, Robert; Wainscoat, Richard J.; Armstrong, James D.; Micheli, Marco; Keane, Jacqueline V.; Urban, Laurie; Riesen, Timm; Meech, Karen J. [Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, 2680 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu, HI 96822 (United States); Fitzsimmons, Alan [Astrophysics Research Centre, Queens University Belfast, Belfast BT7 1NN (United Kingdom); Novakovic, Bojan [Department of Astronomy, Faculty of Mathematics, University of Belgrade, Studentski trg 16, 11000 Belgrade (Serbia); Duddy, Samuel R.; Lowry, Stephen C. [Centre for Astrophysics and Planetary Science, The University of Kent, Canterbury CT2 7NH (United Kingdom); Trujillo, Chadwick A. [Gemini Observatory, Northern Operations Center, 670 N. Aohoku Place, Hilo, HI 96720 (United States); Abe, Shinsuke; Cheng, Yu-Chi, E-mail: hsieh@ifa.hawaii.edu [Institute of Astronomy, National Central University, 300 Jhongda Rd, Jhongli 32001, Taiwan (China); and others

    2012-03-20

    The main-belt asteroid (300163) 2006 VW{sub 139} (later designated P/2006 VW{sub 139}) was discovered to exhibit comet-like activity by the Pan-STARRS1 (PS1) survey telescope using automated point-spread-function analyses performed by PS1's Moving Object Processing System. Deep follow-up observations show both a short ({approx}10'') antisolar dust tail and a longer ({approx}60'') dust trail aligned with the object's orbit plane, similar to the morphology observed for another main-belt comet (MBC), P/2010 R2 (La Sagra), and other well-established comets, implying the action of a long-lived, sublimation-driven emission event. Photometry showing the brightness of the near-nucleus coma remaining constant over {approx}30 days provides further evidence for this object's cometary nature, suggesting it is in fact an MBC, and not a disrupted asteroid. A spectroscopic search for CN emission was unsuccessful, though we find an upper limit CN production rate of Q{sub CN} < 1.3 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 24} mol s{sup -1}, from which we infer a water production rate of Q{sub H{sub 2O}}<10{sup 26} mol s{sup -1}. We also find an approximately linear optical spectral slope of 7.2%/1000 A, similar to other cometary dust comae. Numerical simulations indicate that P/2006 VW{sub 139} is dynamically stable for >100 Myr, while a search for a potential asteroid family around the object reveals a cluster of 24 asteroids within a cutoff distance of 68 m s{sup -1}. At 70 m s{sup -1}, this cluster merges with the Themis family, suggesting that it could be similar to the Beagle family to which another MBC, 133P/Elst-Pizarro, belongs.

  15. Asteroids. Prospective energy and material resources

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Badescu, Viorel (ed.) [Bucharest Polytechnic Univ. (Romania). Candida Oancea Institute

    2013-11-01

    Recent research on Prospective Energy and Material Resources on Asteroids. Carefully edited book dedicated to Asteroids prospective energy and material resources. Written by leading experts in the field. The Earth has limited material and energy resources while these resources in space are virtually unlimited. Further development of humanity will require going beyond our planet and exploring of extraterrestrial resources and sources of unlimited power. Thus far, all missions to asteroids have been motivated by scientific exploration. However, given recent advancements in various space technologies, mining asteroids for resources is becoming ever more feasible. A significant portion of asteroids value is derived from their location; the required resources do not need to be lifted at a great expense from the surface of the Earth. Resources derived from Asteroid not only can be brought back to Earth but could also be used to sustain human exploration of space and permanent settlements in space. This book investigates asteroids' prospective energy and material resources. It is a collection of topics related to asteroid exploration, and utilization. It presents past and future technologies and solutions to old problems that could become reality in our life time. The book therefore is a great source of condensed information for specialists involved in current and impending asteroid-related activities and a good starting point for space researchers, inventors, technologists and potential investors. Written for researchers, engineers, and businessmen interested in asteroids' exploration and exploitation.

  16. Asteroid exploration and utilization: The Hawking explorer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, Alan; Date, Medha; Duarte, Manny; Erian, Neil; Gafka, George; Kappler, Peter; Patano, Scott; Perez, Martin; Ponce, Edgar; Radovich, Brian

    1991-01-01

    The Earth is nearing depletion of its natural resources at a time when human beings are rapidly expanding the frontiers of space. The resources which may exist on asteroids could have enormous potential for aiding and enhancing human space exploration as well as life on Earth. With the possibly limitless opportunities that exist, it is clear that asteroids are the next step for human existence in space. This report comprises the efforts of NEW WORLDS, Inc. to develop a comprehensive design for an asteroid exploration/sample return mission. This mission is a precursor to proof-of-concept missions that will investigate the validity of mining and materials processing on an asteroid. Project STONER (Systematic Transfer of Near Earth Resources) is based on two utilization scenarios: (1) moving an asteroid to an advantageous location for use by Earth; and (2) mining an asteroids and transporting raw materials back to Earth. The asteroid explorer/sample return mission is designed in the context of both scenarios and is the first phase of a long range plane for humans to utilize asteroid resources. The report concentrates specifically on the selection of the most promising asteroids for exploration and the development of an exploration scenario. Future utilization as well as subsystem requirements of an asteroid sample return probe are also addressed.

  17. The 2011 Draconids: The First European Airborne Meteor Observation Campaign

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vaubaillon, J.; Koten, Pavel; Margonis, A.; Toth, J.; Rudawska, R.; Gritsevich, M.; Zender, J.; McAuliffe, J.; Pautet, D.; Jenniskens, P.; Koschny, D.; Colas, F.; Bouley, S.; Maquet, L.; Leroy, A.; Lecacheux, J.; Borovička, Jiří; Watanabe, J.; Oberst, J.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 114, 3-4 (2015), s. 137-157 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA14-25251S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteors * Draconids * 21P/Giacobini-Zinner Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.659, year: 2015

  18. Activity of the Leonid meteor shower on 2009 November 17

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Koten, Pavel; Borovička, Jiří; Kokhirova, G.I.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 528, April (2011), A94/1-A94/4 ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/1302 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : meteorites * meteors * meteoroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.587, year: 2011

  19. Building single-page web apps with meteor

    CERN Document Server

    Vogelsteller, Fabian

    2015-01-01

    If you are a web developer with basic knowledge of JavaScript and want to take on Web 2.0, build real-time applications, or simply want to write a complete application using only JavaScript and HTML/CSS, this is the book for you.This book is based on Meteor 1.0.

  20. Spectroscopic Observations of the 2011 Draconids Meteor Shower

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rudawska, R.; Zender, J.; Jenniskens, P.; Vaubaillon, J.; Koten, Pavel; Margonis, A.; Toth, J.; McAuliffe, J.; Koschny, D.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 112, 1-4 (2014), s. 45-57 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/1302 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteorites * meteors * meteoroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.667, year: 2014

  1. CAMS newly detected meteor showers and the sporadic background

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenniskens, P.; Nénon, Q.; Gural, P. S.; Albers, J.; Haberman, B.; Johnson, B.; Morales, R.; Grigsby, B. J.; Samuels, D.; Johannink, C.

    2016-03-01

    The Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance (CAMS) video-based meteoroid orbit survey adds 60 newly identified showers to the IAU Working List of Meteor Showers (numbers 427, 445-446, 506-507, and part of 643-750). 28 of these are also detected in the independent SonotaCo survey. In total, 230 meteor showers and shower components are identified in CAMS data, 177 of which are detected in at least two independent surveys. From the power-law size frequency distribution of detected showers, we extrapolate that 36% of all CAMS-observed meteors originated from ∼700 showers above the N = 1 per 110,000 shower limit. 71% of mass falling to Earth from streams arrives on Jupiter-family type orbits. The transient Geminids account for another 15%. All meteoroids not assigned to streams form a sporadic background with highest detected numbers from the apex source, but with 98% of mass falling in from the antihelion source. Even at large ∼7-mm sizes, a Poynting-Robertson drag evolved population is detected, which implies that the Grün et al. collisional lifetimes at these sizes are underestimated by about a factor of 10. While these large grains survive collisions, many fade on a 104-y timescale, possibly because they disintegrate into smaller particles by processes other than collisions, leaving a more resilient population to evolve.

  2. Limits on radio emission from meteors using the MWA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xiang; Hancock, Paul; Devillepoix, Hadrien A. R.; Wayth, Randall B.; Beardsley, A.; Crosse, B.; Emrich, D.; Franzen, T. M. O.; Gaensler, B. M.; Horsley, L.; Johnston-Hollitt, M.; Kaplan, D. L.; Kenney, D.; Morales, M. F.; Pallot, D.; Steele, K.; Tingay, S. J.; Trott, C. M.; Walker, M.; Williams, A.; Wu, C.; Ji, Jianghui; Ma, Yuehua

    2018-04-01

    Recently, low frequency, broadband radio emission has been observed accompanying bright meteors by the Long Wavelength Array (LWA). The broadband spectra between 20 and 60 MHz were captured for several events, while the spectral index (dependence of flux density on frequency, with Sν∝να) was estimated to be -4 ± 1 during the peak of meteor afterglows. Here we present a survey of meteor emission and other transient events using the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) at 72-103 MHz. In our 322-hour survey, down to a 5σ detection threshold of 3.5 Jy/beam, no transient candidates were identified as intrinsic emission from meteors. We derived an upper limit of -3.7 (95% confidence limit) on the spectral index in our frequency range. We also report detections of other transient events, like reflected FM broadcast signals from small satellites, conclusively demonstrating the ability of the MWA to detect and track space debris on scales as small as 0.1 m in low Earth orbits.

  3. Colorimetry and magnitudes of asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowell, E.; Lumme, K.

    1979-01-01

    In the present paper, 1500 UBV observations are analyzed by a new rather general multiple scattering theory which provided clear insight into previously poorly-recognized optical nature of asteroid surfaces. Thus, phase curves are shown to consist of a surface-texture controlled component, due to singly scattered light, and a component due to multiple scattering. Phase curve shapes can be characterized by a single parameter, the multiple scattering factor, Q. As Q increases, the relative importance of the opposition effect diminishes. Asteroid surfaces are particulate and strikingly similar to texture, being moderately porous and moderately rough on a scale greater than the wavelength of light. In concequence, Q (and also the phase coefficient) correlate well with geometric albedo, and there exists a purely photometric means of determining albedos and diameters.

  4. The asteroid 2014 JO25

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vodniza, Alberto; Pereira, Mario

    2017-10-01

    The asteroid 2014 JO25 was discovered by A. D. Grauer at the Mt. Lemmon Survey on May 2014, and Joe Masiero used observations from the NEOWISE in 2014 to estimate a diameter of 650 meters [1]. However, using the radio telescope at Arecibo-Puerto Rico, astronomers obtained radar images on April 17-2017 and Edgar Rivera Valentín (scientist at Arecibo) said: “We found 2014 JO25 is a contact binary asteroid, two space rocks that were originally separate bodies, and each segment is about 640 meters and 670 meters, for a total of about 1.3 km long. Its rotation is of 3.5 hours” [2]. This asteroid flew past Earth on April 19 at a distance of about 4.6 lunar distances from the Earth. This was the closest approach by an asteroid since 4179 Toutatis. Toutatis flew past Earth on September 2004 at a distance of about 4 lunar distances from the Earth [3]. In April 12-2020 the asteroid will be at a minimum possible distance of 0.1617280 A.U from Earth [4]. From our observatory, located in Pasto-Colombia, we obtained a lot of pictures. Our data was published by the Minor Planet Center [5] and also appears at the web page of NEODyS [6]. Astrometry and photometry were carried out, and we calculated the orbital elements. We obtained the following orbital parameters: eccentricity=0.88454+/-0.00152, semi-major axis= 2.0573+/- 0.0216 A.U, orbital inclination=25.22+/-0.10 deg, longitude of the ascending node =30.6530+/-0.0032 deg, argument of perihelion=49.586+/-0.012 deg, mean motion = 0.33402+/-0.00527 deg/d, perihelion distance=0.237524+/-0.000644 A.U, aphelion distance=3.8770+/-0.0449 A.U, absolute magnitude =18.1. The parameters were calculated based on 164 observations. Dates: 2017 April: 22 to 24 with mean residual=0.22 arcseconds.The asteroid has an orbital period of 2.95 years.[1] https://echo.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroids/2014JO25/2014JO25_planning.html[2] http://earthsky.org/astronomy-essentials/large-asteroid-2014-jo25-close-april-19-2017-how-to-see[3] https

  5. Asteroids prospective energy and material resources

    CERN Document Server

    2013-01-01

    The Earth has limited material and energy resources while these resources in space are virtually unlimited. Further development of humanity will require going beyond our planet and exploring of extraterrestrial resources and sources of unlimited power.   Thus far, all missions to asteroids have been motivated by scientific exploration. However, given recent advancements in various space technologies, mining asteroids for resources is becoming ever more feasible. A significant portion of asteroids value is derived from their location; the required resources do not need to be lifted at a great expense from the surface of the Earth.   Resources derived from Asteroid not only can be brought back to Earth but could also be used to sustain human exploration of space and permanent settlements in space.   This book investigates asteroids' prospective energy and material resources. It is a collection of topics related to asteroid exploration, and utilization. It presents past and future technologies and solutions t...

  6. Physical studies of asteroids. XXXII. Rotation periods and UBVRI-colours for selected asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piironen, J.; Lagerkvist, C.-I.; Erikson, A.; Oja, T.; Magnusson, P.; Festin, L.; Nathues, A.; Gaul, M.; Velichko, F.

    1998-03-01

    We present lightcurves of selected asteroids. Most of the asteroids were included to obtain refined spin periods. Enhanced periods were determined for 11 Parthenope, 306 Unitas and 372 Palma. We confirmed the spin periods of 8 Flora, 13 Egeria, 71 Niobe, 233 Asterope, 291 Alice, 409 Aspasia, 435 Ella and 512 Taurinensis. We determined also BV-colours for most of the included asteroids and UBVRI-colours for a total of 22 asteroids.

  7. Comet Halley and its historic passages during the past millennium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Legrand, J.P.

    1986-01-01

    The March 12, 1759 return of Comet Halley verified Halley's hypothesis on the existence of periodic comets and supported Newton's principle of universal attraction. Comet Halley's appearances before the 16th century are traced and it is noted that the length of the comet's tail has varied greatly. The comet's rendezvous with ESA's satellite Giotto is discussed briefly

  8. Storyboard GALILEO CRUISE SCIENCE OPPORTUNITIES describes asteroid encounters

    Science.gov (United States)

    1989-01-01

    Storyboard with mosaicked image of an asteroid and entitled GALILEO CRUISE SCIENCE OPPORTUNITIES describes asteroid objectives. These objectives include: first asteroid encounter; surface geology, composition size, shape, mass; and relation of primitive bodies to meteorites.

  9. Rationalization of Comet Halley's periods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belton, Michael J. S.

    1990-01-01

    The sense of long axis orientation of Comet Halley during the Vega 1 encounter must be reversed from that deduced by Sagdeev et al. (1986) in order to harmonize the comet nucleus' Vega/Giotto-observed orientations with periodicities extracted from time-series brightness data. It is also demonstrated that Vega/Giotto observations can be satisfied by either a 2.2- or 3.7-day long-axis free precession period. A novel Fourier algorithm is used to reanalyze five independent data sets; strong evidence is adduced for periods harmonically related to a 7.4-day period. The preferred candidate models for Halley's nuclear rotation are characterized by a long-axis precession period of 3.7 days.

  10. Comet Assay in Cancer Chemoprevention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santoro, Raffaela; Ferraiuolo, Maria; Morgano, Gian Paolo; Muti, Paola; Strano, Sabrina

    2016-01-01

    The comet assay can be useful in monitoring DNA damage in single cells caused by exposure to genotoxic agents, such as those causing air, water, and soil pollution (e.g., pesticides, dioxins, electromagnetic fields) and chemo- and radiotherapy in cancer patients, or in the assessment of genoprotective effects of chemopreventive molecules. Therefore, it has particular importance in the fields of pharmacology and toxicology, and in both environmental and human biomonitoring. It allows the detection of single strand breaks as well as double-strand breaks and can be used in both normal and cancer cells. Here we describe the alkali method for comet assay, which allows to detect both single- and double-strand DNA breaks.

  11. Radar observations of Comet Halley

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campbell, D.B.; Harmon, J.K.; Shapiro, I.I.

    1989-01-01

    Five nights of Arecibo radar observations of Comet Halley are reported which reveal a feature in the overall average spectrum which, though weak, seems consistent with being an echo from the comet. The large radar cross section and large bandwidth of the feature suggest that the echo is predominantly from large grains which have been ejected from the nucleus. Extrapolation of the dust particle size distribution to large grain sizes gives a sufficient number of grains to account for the echo. The lack of a detectable echo from the nucleus, combined with estimates of its size and rotation rate from spacecraft encounters and other data, indicate that the nucleus has a surface of relatively high porosity. 33 references

  12. Comet Halley, parameter study I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Huebner, W.F.; Fikani, M.M.

    1982-06-01

    To aid in defining a mission to comet P/Halley, its inner coma is simulated by a computer program that models time-dependent chemical reactions in a radially and isentropically expanding gas, taking into account attenuation of solar ultraviolet radiation in the subsolar direction. Column density predictions are based on intelligently selected combinations of poorly known values for nucleus parameters that include size, visual albedo, and infrared emissivity. Only one chemical composition and a minor modification of it are considered here; the dust-to-gas ratio in this model is zero. Although the somewhat optimistically volatile composition chosen here favors a smaller nucleus, a mean nuclear radius of only 0.5 km is unlikely. No significant increase of molecular column density is predicted by this model as a spacecraft approaches, once it is less than a few 10 4 km from the nucleus. Predictions are made for various heliocentric distances of interest for comet missions and for ground observations

  13. Comet Halley: nucleus and jets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sagdeev, R.Z.; Avanesov, G.A.; Barinov, I.V.

    1986-06-01

    The VEGA-1 and VEGA-2 spacecrafts made their closest approach to Comet Halley on 6 and 9 March, respectively. In this paper results of the onboard imaging experiment are discussed. The nucleus of the comet was clearly identifyable as an irregularly shaped object with overall dimensions of (16+-1)x(8+-1)x(8+-1) km. The nucleus rotates around its axis which is nearly perpendicular to the orbital plane, with a period of 53+-2 hours. Its albedo is only 0.04+-002. Most of the jet features observed during the second fly-by were spatially reconstructed. These sources form a quasi-linear structure on the surface. The dust above the surface is shown to be optically thin except certain specific dust jets. Brightness features on the surface are clearly seen. Correlating the data with other measurements it is concluded that the dirty snow-ball model probably has to be revised. (author)

  14. Investigating the Geological History of Asteroid 101955 Bennu Through Remote Sensing and Returned Sample Analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messenger, S.; Connolly, H. C., Jr.; Lauretta, D. S.; Bottke, W. F.

    2014-01-01

    The NASA New Frontiers Mission OSRIS-REx will return surface regolith samples from near-Earth asteroid 101955 Bennu in September 2023. This target is classified as a B-type asteroid and is spectrally similar to CI and CM chondrite meteorites [1]. The returned samples are thus expected to contain primitive ancient Solar System materials that formed in planetary, nebular, interstellar, and circumstellar environments. Laboratory studies of primitive astromaterials have yielded detailed constraints on the origins, properties, and evolutionary histories of a wide range of Solar System bodies. Yet, the parent bodies of meteorites and cosmic dust are generally unknown, genetic and evolutionary relationships among asteroids and comets are unsettled, and links between laboratory and remote observations remain tenuous. The OSIRIS-REx mission will offer the opportunity to coordinate detailed laboratory analyses of asteroidal materials with known and well characterized geological context from which the samples originated. A primary goal of the OSIRIS-REx mission will be to provide detailed constraints on the origin and geological and dynamical history of Bennu through coordinated analytical studies of the returned samples. These microanalytical studies will be placed in geological context through an extensive orbital remote sensing campaign that will characterize the global geological features and chemical diversity of Bennu. The first views of the asteroid surface and of the returned samples will undoubtedly bring remarkable surprises. However, a wealth of laboratory studies of meteorites and spacecraft encounters with primitive bodies provides a useful framework to formulate priority scientific questions and effective analytical approaches well before the samples are returned. Here we summarize our approach to unraveling the geological history of Bennu through returned sample analyses.

  15. Geotechnical Tests on Asteroid Simulant Orgueil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Alexander D'marco

    2017-01-01

    In the last 100 years, the global population has more than quadrupled to over seven billion people. At the same time, the demand for food and standard of living has been increasing which has amplified the global water use by nearly eight times from approximately 500 to 4000 cu km per yr from 1900 to 2010. With the increasing concern to sustain the growing population on Earth it is necessary to seek other approaches to ensure that our planet will have resources for generations to come. In recent years, the advancement of space travel and technology has allowed the idea of mining asteroids with resources closer to becoming a reality. During the duration of the internship at NASA Kennedy Space Center, several geotechnical tests were conducted on BP-1 lunar simulant and asteroid simulant Orgueil. The tests that were conducted on BP-1 was to practice utilizing the equipment that will be used on the asteroid simulant and the data from those tests will be omitted from report. Understanding the soil mechanics of asteroid simulant Orgueil will help provide basis for future technological advances and prepare scientists for the conditions they may encounter when mining asteroids becomes reality in the distant future. Distinct tests were conducted to determine grain size distribution, unconsolidated density, and maximum density. Once the basic properties are known, the asteroid simulant will be altered to different levels of compaction using a vibrator table to see how compaction affects the density. After different intervals of vibration compaction, a miniature vane shear test will be conducted. Laboratory vane shear testing is a reliable tool to investigate strength anisotropy in the vertical and horizontal directions of a very soft to stiff saturated fine-grained clayey soil. This test will provide us with a rapid determination of the shear strength on the undisturbed compacted regolith. The results of these tests will shed light on how much torque is necessary to drill

  16. Solar wind stagnation near comets

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Galeev, A.A.; Cravens, T.E.; Gombosi, T.I.

    1983-03-01

    The nature of the solar wind flow near comets is examined analytically. In particular, the typical values for the stagnation pressure and magnetic barrier strength are estimated, taking into account the magnetic field line tension and the charge exchange cooling of the mass loaded solar wind. Knowledge of the strength of the magnetic barrier is required in order to determine the location of the contact discontinuity which separates the contaminated solar wind plasma and the outflowing plasma of the cometary ionosphere. (author)

  17. On the asymmetric evolution of the perihelion distances of near-Earth Jupiter family comets around the discovery time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sosa, A.; Fernández, J. A.; Pais, P.

    2012-12-01

    We study the dynamical evolution of the near-Earth Jupiter family comets (NEJFCs) that came close to or crossed the Earth's orbit at the epoch of their discovery (perihelion distances qdisc time evolution of the mean perihelion distance bar{q} of the NEJFCs at the discovery time of each comet (taken as t = 0) and a past-future asymmetry of bar{q} in an interval -1000 yr, +1000 yr centred on t = 0, confirming previous results. The asymmetry indicates that there are more comets with greater q in the past than in the future. For comparison purposes, we also analysed the population of near-Earth asteroids in cometary orbits (defined as those with aphelion distances Q > 4.5 AU) and with absolute magnitudes H time a large sample of fictitious comets, cloned from the observed NEJFCs, over a 20 000 yr time interval and started the integration before the comet's discovery time, when it had a perihelion distance q > 2 AU. By assuming that NEJFCs are mostly discovered when they decrease their perihelion distances below a certain threshold qthre = 1.05 AU for the first time during their evolution, we were able to reproduce the main features of the observed bar{q} evolution in the interval [-1000, 1000] yr with respect to the discovery time. Our best fits indicate that 40% of the population of NEJFCs would be composed of young, fresh comets that entered the region q spending at least 3000 yr in the q family comets (JFCs).

  18. Comet coma sample return instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albee, A. L.; Brownlee, Don E.; Burnett, Donald S.; Tsou, Peter; Uesugi, K. T.

    1994-01-01

    The sample collection technology and instrument concept for the Sample of Comet Coma Earth Return Mission (SOCCER) are described. The scientific goals of this Flyby Sample Return are to return to coma dust and volatile samples from a known comet source, which will permit accurate elemental and isotopic measurements for thousands of individual solid particles and volatiles, detailed analysis of the dust structure, morphology, and mineralogy of the intact samples, and identification of the biogenic elements or compounds in the solid and volatile samples. Having these intact samples, morphologic, petrographic, and phase structural features can be determined. Information on dust particle size, shape, and density can be ascertained by analyzing penetration holes and tracks in the capture medium. Time and spatial data of dust capture will provide understanding of the flux dynamics of the coma and the jets. Additional information will include the identification of cosmic ray tracks in the cometary grains, which can provide a particle's process history and perhaps even the age of the comet. The measurements will be made with the same equipment used for studying micrometeorites for decades past; hence, the results can be directly compared without extrapolation or modification. The data will provide a powerful and direct technique for comparing the cometary samples with all known types of meteorites and interplanetary dust. This sample collection system will provide the first sample return from a specifically identified primitive body and will allow, for the first time, a direct method of matching meteoritic materials captured on Earth with known parent bodies.

  19. The thermal evolution of large water-rich asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, B. E.; Castillo, J. C.

    2009-12-01

    Water and heat played a significant role in the formation and evolution of large main belt asteroids, including 1 Ceres, 2 Pallas, and 24 Themis, for which there is now evidence of surficial water ice (Rivkin & Emery, ACM 2008). Shape measurements indicate some differentiation of Ceres’ interior, which, in combination with geophysical modeling, may indicate compositional layering in a core made up of anhydrous and hydrated silicate and a water ice mantle (Castillo-Rogez & McCord, in press, Icarus). We extend these interior models now to other large, possibly water-rich main belt asteroids, namely Pallas, at mean radius 272 km, and the Themis family parent body, at mean radius 150 km. The purpose of this study is to compare geophysical models against available constraints on the physical properties of these objects and to offer constraints on the origin of these objects. Pallas is the largest B-type asteroid. Its surface of hydrated minerals and recent constraint on its density, 2.4-2.8 g/cm3, seems to imply that water strongly affected its evolution (Schmidt et al., in press, Science). 24 Themis is the largest member of the Themis family that now counts about 580 members, including some of the main belt comets. The large member 90 Antiope has a density of about 1.2 g/cm3, while 24 Themis has a density of about 2.7 +/-1.3 g/cm3. The apparent contrast in the densities and spectral properties of the Themis family members may reflect a compositional layering in the original parent body. In the absence of tidal heating and with little accretional heat, the evolution of these small water-rich objects is a function of their initial composition and temperature. The latter depends on the location of formation (in the inner or outer solar system) and most importantly on the time and duration of accretion, which determines the amount of short-lived radioisotopes available for early internal activity. New accretional models suggest that planetesimals grew rapidly throughout

  20. Halley comet, implication on the origin

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Festou, M.C.

    1990-01-01

    One will first give a rapid description of the different parts that compose a comet coma. Then one will describe the spectrum of comets from the UV to the IR regions with special emphasis on how information relative to the physico-chemistry of comet atmospheres can be retrieved. Our basic knowledge about the composition of comets before 1985 will be summarized and the input of the 1985-86 observing campaign of comet Halley will be shown (in situ, ground-based and space borne observations). One will see then that the chemical composition of comets appears as of today completely compatible with a formation from pre-solar matter that condensed inside the solar system [fr

  1. IR-dust observations of Comet Tempel 2 with CRAF VIMS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Combi, M.R.; McCord, T.B.; Bell, J.F.; Brown, R.H.; Clark, R.N.; Cruikshank, D.P.; Johnson, T.V.; Lebofsky, L.A.; Matson, D.L.

    1988-01-01

    Measurement strategies are now being planned for using the Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) to observe the asteroid Hestia, and the nucleus, and the gas and dust in the coma of comet P/Tempel 2 as part of the Comet Rendezvous Asteroid Flyby (CRAF) mission. The spectral range of VIMS will cover wavelengths from 0.35 to 5.2 micrometers, with a spectral resolution of 11 nm from 0.35 to 2.4 micrometers and of 22 nm from 2.4 to 5.2 micrometers. The instantaneous field of view (IFOV) provided by the foreoptics is 0.5 milliradians, and the current design of the instrument provides for a scanning secondary mirror which will scan a swath of length 72 IFOVs. The CRAF high resolution scan platform motion will permit slewing VIMS in a direction perpendicular to the swath. This enables the building of a two dimensional image in any or all wavelength channels. Important measurements of the dust coma will include the onset of early coma activity, the mapping of gas and dust jets and correlations with active nucleus areas, observations of the dust coma from various scattering phase angles, coverage of the low wavelength portion of the thermal radiation, and the 3.4 micrometer hydrocarbon emission. A description of the VIMS instrument is presented

  2. Asteroid size distributions for the main belt and for asteroid families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazantzev, A.; Kazantzeva, L.

    2017-12-01

    The asteroid-size distribution for he Eos family was constructed. The WISE database containing the albedo p and the size D of over 80,000 asteroids was used. The b parameter of the power-law dependence has a minimum at some average values of the asteroid size of the family. A similar dependence b(D) exists for the whole asteroid belt. An assumption on the possible similarity of the formation mechanisms of the asteroid belt as a whole and separate families is made.

  3. Rosetta comet-chaser takes a close look at planet Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-09-01

    Its final destination is comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, which it will reach only in 2014, after travelling some 6000 million kilometres in 10 years (its epic voyage began on 2 March 2004 with a launch by an Ariane 5 rocket). Rosetta will next be heading for the Sun, and its journey will require two more swing-bys around the Earth, in November this year and November 2009. Once at its destination, Rosetta will first deposit, from a height of about one kilometre, a small but very complex lander on the comet’s nucleus. This lander, a sort of miniature chemical laboratory packed with sophisticated instruments, will analyse the surface and provide information on the nucleus. The Rosetta probe will then chase the comet for one year and observe its nucleus as it continues on its trip towards the inner solar system at a speed of 135,000 km per hour. There is still a long way to go, but so far everything seems to be going exactly according to plan. ESA's Director of Science, David Southwood, witnessing the Mars swing-by at ESOC with scientists involved in the mission and the operations teams, said: "Interplanetary expeditions rely on very complex communication links. ESA’s mission operations centre here in Darmstadt is doing a great job. I and all the scientists involved in the mission are grateful to the experts who are taking such good care of 'our baby'. And this is only the beginning. The true excitement of targeting and releasing the lander on the comet’s nucleus is yet to come. Today we have reached another milestone on the way to finding an answer to questions such as whether life on Earth began with the help of comets." “The successful Mars swingby of the ESA Rosetta spacecraft has been the most critical event in the mission since launch. Now we are heading back to Earth in order to gain, in November this year, further momentum for the subsequent visits of the asteroids and the comet. I would like to thank all those who have contributed to this achievement

  4. Castalia: A European Mission to a Main Belt Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snodgrass, Colin; Castalia mission science Team

    2013-10-01

    Main Belt Comets (MBCs) are a newly identified population, with stable asteroid-like orbits in the outer main belt and a comet-like appearance. It is believed that they survived the age of the solar system in a dormant state and that their activity occurred only recently. Water ice is the only volatile expected to survive, and only when buried under an insulating surface. Excavation by impact could bring the water ice (closer) to the surface and trigger the start of MBC activity. The specific science goals of the Castalia mission are: 1. Characterize a new Solar System family, the MBCs, by in-situ investigation 2. Understand the physics of activity on MBCs 3. Directly detect water in the asteroid belt 4. Test if MBCs are a viable source for Earth’s water 5. Use MBCs as tracers of planetary system formation and evolution These goals can be achieved by a spacecraft designed to rendezvous with and orbit an MBC for some months, arriving before the active period begins for mapping before directly sampling the gas and dust released during the active phase. Given the low level of activity of MBCs, and the expectation that their activity comes from only a localized patch on the surface, the orbiting spacecraft will have to be able to maintain a very close orbit over extended periods - the Castalia plan envisages an orbiter capable of ‘hovering’ autonomously at distances of only a few km from the surface of the MBC. The straw-man instrument payload is made up of: - Visible and near-infrared spectral imager - Thermal infrared imager - Radio science - Dust impact detector - Dust composition analyzer - Neutral/ion mass spectrometer - Magnetometer - Plasma package In addition to this, the option of a surface science package is being considered. At the moment MBC 133P/Elst-Pizarro is the best-known target for such a mission. A design study for the Castalia mission has been carried out in partnership between the science team, DLR and OHB Systems. This study looked at

  5. Castalia - European Mission to a Main Belt Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilchenbach, M.

    2013-12-01

    Main Belt Comets (MBCs) are a recently identified new solar system population with stable asteroid-like orbits and a comet-like appearance. It is believed that they survived the age of the solar system in a dormant state and that their activity occurred only recently. Buried water ice is the only volatile expected to survive under an insulating surface. Excavation by an impact might expose the ice and trigger the start of MBC activity. The specific science goals of the Castalia mission are: 1. Characterize a new Solar System family, the MBCs, by in-situ investigation 2. Understand the physics of activity on MBCs 3. Directly detect water in the asteroid belt 4. Test if MBCs are a viable source for Earth's water 5. Use MBCs as tracers of planetary system formation and evolution These goals can be achieved by a spacecraft designed to rendezvous with and orbit an MBC for a time interval of some months, arriving before the active period for mapping and then directly sampling the gas and dust released during the active phase. Given the low level of activity of MBCs, and the expectation that their activity comes from only a localized patch on the surface, the orbiting spacecraft will have to be able to maintain a very close orbit over extended periods - the Castalia plan envisages an orbiter capable of ';hovering' autonomously at distances of only a few km from the surface of the MBC. The straw-man instrument payload is made up of: - Visible and near-infrared spectral imager - Thermal infrared imager - Radio science - Dust impact detector - Dust composition analyzer - Neutral/ion mass spectrometer - Magnetometer - Plasma package In addition to this, the option of a surface science package is being considered. At the moment MBC 133P/Elst-Pizarro is the best-known target for such a mission. A design study for the Castalia mission has been carried out in partnership between the science team, DLR and OHB Systems. This study looked at possible missions to 133P with launch

  6. Asteroid Impact & Deflection Assessment mission: Kinetic impactor

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cheng, A.F.; Michel, R.; Jutzi, M.; Rivkin, A. S.; Stickle, A.; Barnouin, O.; Ernst, C.; Atchison, J.; Pravec, Petr; Richardson, D.C.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 121, February (2016), s. 25-37 ISSN 0032-0633 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : planetary defense * near- Earth asteroids * asteroid impact hazards Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 1.892, year: 2016

  7. Binary asteroid population. 1. Angular momentum content

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Harris, A. W.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 190, č. 1 (2007), s. 250-259 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA205/05/0604 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * satellites of asteroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.869, year: 2007

  8. Spectroscopy of near-Earth asteroids

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Michelsen, René; Nathues, Andreas; Lagerkvist, Claes-Ingvar

    2006-01-01

    We present spectra and taxonomic classifications of 12 Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs) and 2 inner Main Belt asteroids. The observations were carried out with the ESO 3.5 m NTT and the Danish 1.54 m telescope at La Silla, Chile. Eleven of the investigated NEAs belong to the S class while only one C-t...

  9. Lightcurve Photometry of Six Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrero, Andrea

    2012-07-01

    Observations from 2012 January to March lead to the determination of the rotation periods for six main-belt asteroids: 33 Polyhymnia, P = 18.604 ± 0.004 h; 467 Laura, P = 37.4 ± 0.1 h; 825 Tanina, P = 6.940 ± 0.001 h; 1421 Esperanto, P = 21.982 ± 0.005 h; 3481 Xianglupeak, P = 5.137 ± 0.003 h; and 4350 Shibecha, which had two possible solutions, P = 2.890 ± 0.001 h and P = 5.778 ± 0.002 h.

  10. Absence of satellites of asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gehrels, T.; Drummond, J.D.; Levenson, N.A.

    1987-01-01

    The absence of satellites within 0.1-7.0 arcmin of minor planets noted in the present CCD imaging survey is judged consistent with previous theoretical studies of collisions in which it is held that satellites would have to be larger than about 30 km in order to be collisionally stable. In view of tidal stability, the only main belt asteroid satellites which could conceivably possess stability over eons are near-contact binaries. Any recent collisional debris would be chaotic and collisionally unstable. 15 references

  11. Modelling the motion of meteors in the Earth's atmosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rodrigues, Hilário

    2013-01-01

    This work discusses the motion of meteors in the Earth's atmosphere. The equations of motion of the projectile are presented and a simplified numerical approach to solve them is discussed. An algorithm for solving the equations of motion is constructed, and implemented in a very simple way using Excel software. The paper is intended as an example of the application of Newton's laws of motion at undergraduate level. (paper)

  12. Spectral, Photometric, and Dynamic Analysis of Eight Draconid Meteors

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Borovička, Jiří; Koten, Pavel; Shrbený, Lukáš; Štork, Rostislav; Hornoch, Kamil

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 113, 1-4 (2014), s. 15-31 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP209/11/1382; GA ČR GPP209/11/P651; GA ČR GA205/09/1302 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : meteors * meteoroids * Draconids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.667, year: 2014

  13. The flyby of Rosetta at asteroid Šteins - mission and science operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Accomazzo, Andrea; Wirth, Kristin R.; Lodiot, Sylvain; Küppers, Michael; Schwehm, Gerhard

    2010-07-01

    The international Rosetta mission, a cornerstone mission of the european space agency scientific Programme, was launched on 2nd March 2004 on its 10 years journey towards a rendezvous with comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko ( Gardini et al., 1999). During its interplanetary flight towards its target Rosetta crosses the asteroid belt twice with the opportunity to observe at close quarters two asteroids: (2867)-Šteins in 2008 and (21)-Lutetia in 2010. The spacecraft design was such that these opportunities could be fully exploited to deliver valuable data to the scientific community. The mission trajectory was controlled such that Rosetta would fly next to asteroid Šteins on the 5th of September 2008 with a relative speed of 8.6 km/s at a minimum distance of 800 km. Mission operations have been carefully planned to achieve the best possible flyby scenario and scientific outcome. The flyby scenario, the optical navigation campaign, and the planning of the scientific observations had to be adapted by the Mission and the Science Operations Centres to the demanding requirements expressed by the scientific community. The flyby was conducted as planned with a large number of successful observations.

  14. Basic targeting strategies for rendezvous and flyby missions to the near-Earth asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perozzi, Ettore; Rossi, Alessandro; Valsecchi, Giovanni B.

    2001-01-01

    Missions to asteroids and comets are becoming increasingly feasible both from a technical and a financial point of view. In particular, those directed towards the Near-Earth Asteroids have proven suitable for a low-cost approach, thus attracting the major space agencies as well as private companies. The choice of a suitable target involves both scientific relevance and mission design considerations, being often a difficult task to accomplish due to the limited energy budget at disposal. The aim of this paper is to provide an approach to basic trajectory design which allows to account for both aspects of the problem, taking into account scientific and technical information. A global characterization of the Near-Earth Asteroids population carried out on the basis of their dynamics, physical properties and flight dynamics considerations, allows to identify a group of candidates which satisfy both, the scientific and engineering requirements. The feasibility of rendezvous and flyby missions towards them is then discussed and the possibility of repeated encounters with the same object is investigated, as an intermediate scenario. Within this framework, the capability of present and near future launch and propulsion systems for interplanetary missions is also addressed.

  15. UV Spectroscopy of Metallic Asteroid (16) Psyche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunningham, N. J.; Becker, T. M.; Retherford, K. D.; Roth, L.; Feaga, L. M.; Wahlund, J.-E.; Elkins-Tanton, L. T.

    2017-09-01

    Asteroid (16) Psyche is the largest M-type asteroid, and the planned destination of the NASA Discovery mission Psyche and the proposed ESA M5 mission Heavy Metal. Psyche is considered to be the exposed core of a differentiated asteroid, whose mantle has been stripped by collisions; but other histories have been proposed. We observed Psyche with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) and Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) aboard the Hubble Space Telescope, to obtain a full ultraviolet (UV) spectrum of both of Psyche's hemispheres. We seek to test three possible scenarios for Psyche's origin: Is Psyche the exposed core of a differentiated asteroid? Is it an asteroid with high olivine content that has been space-weathered? Or did Psyche accrete as-is in a highly-reducing environment early in the history of the solar system? We will present the UV spectra and their implications for Psyche's history.

  16. Spectrophotometry of 25 comets - Post-Halley updates for 17 comets plus new observations for eight additional comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newburn, Ray L., Jr.; Spinrad, Hyron

    1989-01-01

    The best possible production figures within the current post-Halley framework and available observations are given for H2O, O(1D), CN, C3, C2 and dust in 25 comets. Of these, the three objects with the smallest mixing ratios of all minor species have moderate to little or no dust and appear 'old'. Comets with large amounts of CN are very dusty, and there is a clear correlation of CN with dust, although comets with little or no dust still have some CN. Thus, CN appears to have at least two sources, dust and one or more parent gases. Also, the C2/CN production ratio changes continuously with heliocentric distance in every comet considered, suggesting that C2 production may be a function of coma density as well as parental abundance. Dust production ranges from essentially zero in Comet Sugano-Saigusa-Fujikawa up to 67,000 kg/s for Halley on March 14, 1986.

  17. Comet Dust After Deep Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooden, Diane H.; Harker, David E.; Woodward, Charles E.

    2006-01-01

    When the Deep Impact Mission hit Jupiter Family comet 9P/Tempel 1, an ejecta crater was formed and an pocket of volatile gases and ices from 10-30 m below the surface was exposed (A Hearn et aI. 2005). This resulted in a gas geyser that persisted for a few hours (Sugita et al, 2005). The gas geyser pushed dust grains into the coma (Sugita et a1. 2005), as well as ice grains (Schulz et al. 2006). The smaller of the dust grains were submicron in radii (0-25.3 micron), and were primarily composed of highly refractory minerals including amorphous (non-graphitic) carbon, and silicate minerals including amorphous (disordered) olivine (Fe,Mg)2SiO4 and pyroxene (Fe,Mg)SiO3 and crystalline Mg-rich olivine. The smaller grains moved faster, as expected from the size-dependent velocity law produced by gas-drag on grains. The mineralogy evolved with time: progressively larger grains persisted in the near nuclear region, having been imparted with slower velocities, and the mineralogies of these larger grains appeared simpler and without crystals. The smaller 0.2-0.3 micron grains reached the coma in about 1.5 hours (1 arc sec = 740 km), were more diverse in mineralogy than the larger grains and contained crystals, and appeared to travel through the coma together. No smaller grains appeared at larger coma distances later (with slower velocities), implying that if grain fragmentation occurred, it happened within the gas acceleration zone. These results of the high spatial resolution spectroscopy (GEMINI+Michelle: Harker et 4. 2005, 2006; Subaru+COMICS: Sugita et al. 2005) revealed that the grains released from the interior were different from the nominally active areas of this comet by their: (a) crystalline content, (b) smaller size, (c) more diverse mineralogy. The temporal changes in the spectra, recorded by GEMIM+Michelle every 7 minutes, indicated that the dust mineralogy is inhomogeneous and, unexpectedly, the portion of the size distribution dominated by smaller grains has

  18. Character of meteoric leaks in the salt mines of south Louisiana, U.S.A.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Madhurendu B.

    1983-10-01

    The brine leaks of salt mines of south Louisiana are of two genetic categories: meteoric and non-meteoric (connate/formation water type), as established essentially on the basis of oxygen- and hydrogen-isotope analyses. This paper highlights the hydrochemical aspects of those mine leaks and develops simple non-isotopic criteria to differentiate the meteoric leaks from the non-meteoric. The meteoric leaks of the salt mines generally occur down to a depth level of 214 m (700 ft.) (below mean sea level) below which the leaks are mostly non-meteoric. The meteoric brine is essentially Na1bCl in type, reflecting the mineralogy of almost pure halite (with ˜ 1-2% anhydrite) of the Gulf (of Mexico) Coast dome salt. The meteoric leaks are distinctly different from the non-meteoric leaks on the log-log plots of chloride concentrations vs. those of Ca 2+, Mg 2+, K +, Sr + and Br -, in all of which the meteoric brines are conspicuously low. This study is potentially useful in the development of a mine or crypt in salt dome(s) under consideration for possible nuclear-waste isolation in the Gulf Coast region.

  19. Development of the mesospheric Na layer at 69° N during the Geminids meteor shower 2010

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Dunker

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The ECOMA sounding rocket campaign in 2010 was performed to investigate the charge state and number density of meteoric smoke particles during the Geminids meteor shower in December 2010. The ALOMAR Na lidar contributed to the campaign with measurements of sodium number density, temperature and line-of-sight wind between 80 and 110 km altitude over Andøya in northern Norway. This paper investigates a possible connection between the Geminids meteor shower and the mesospheric sodium layer. We compare with data from a meteor radar and from a rocket-borne in situ particle instrument on three days. Our main result is that the sodium column density is smaller during the Geminids meteor shower than the winter average at the same latitude. Moreover, during two of the three years considered, the sodium column density decreased steadily during these three weeks of the year. Both the observed decrease of Na column density by 30% and of meteoric smoke particle column density correlate well with a corresponding decrease of sporadic meteor echoes. We found no correlation between Geminids meteor flux rates and sodium column density, nor between sporadic meteors and Na column density (R = 0.25. In general, we found the Na column density to be at very low values for winter, between 1.8 and 2.6 × 1013 m−2. We detected two meteor trails containing sodium, on 13 December 2010 at 87.1 km and on 19 December 2010 at 84 km. From these meteor trails, we estimate a global meteoric Na flux of 121 kg d−1 and a global total meteoric influx of 20.2 t d−1.

  20. Split Active Asteroid P/2016 J1 (PANSTARRS)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hui, Man-To; Jewitt, David [Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences, UCLA, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Box 951567, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States); Du, Xinnan, E-mail: pachacoti@ucla.edu [Department of Physics and Astronomy, UCLA, 430 Portola Plaza, Box 951547, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1547 (United States)

    2017-04-01

    We present a photometric and astrometric study of the split active asteroid P/2016 J1 (PANSTARRS). The two components (hereafter J1-A and J1-B) separated either ∼1500 days (2012 May to June) or 2300 days (2010 April) prior to the current epoch, with a separation speed V {sub sep} = 0.70 ± 0.02 m s{sup −1} for the former scenario and 0.83 ± 0.06 m s{sup −1} for the latter. Keck photometry reveals that the two fragments have similar, Sun-like colors that are comparable to the colors of primitive C- and G-type asteroids. With a nominal comet-like albedo, p{sub R} = 0.04, the effective, dust-contaminated cross sections are estimated to be 2.4 km{sup 2} for J1-A and 0.5 km{sup 2} for J1-B. We estimate that the nucleus radii lie in the range 140 ≲  R {sub N} ≲ 900 m for J1-A and 40 ≲  R {sub N} ≲ 400 m for J1-B. A syndyne–synchrone simulation shows that both components have been active for 3–6 months, by ejecting dust grains at speeds ∼0.5 m s{sup −1} with rates ∼1 kg s{sup −1} for J1-A and 0.1 kg s{sup −1} for J1-B. In its present orbit, the rotational spin-up and devolatilization times of 2016 J1 are very small compared to the age of the solar system, raising the question of why this object still exists. We suggest that ice that was formerly buried within this asteroid became exposed at the surface, perhaps via a small impact, and that sublimation torques then rapidly drove it to breakup. Further disintegration events are anticipated owing to the rotational instability.

  1. Hydrodynamic Modeling of the Deep Impact Mission into Comet Tempel 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sorli, Kya; Remington, Tané; Bruck Syal, Megan

    2018-01-01

    Kinetic impact is one of the primary strategies to deflect hazardous objects off of an Earth-impacting trajectory. The only test of a small-body impact is the 2005 Deep Impact mission into comet Tempel 1, where a 366-kg mass impactor collided at ~10 km/s into the comet, liberating an enormous amount of vapor and ejecta. Code comparisons with observations of the event represent an important source of new information about the initial conditions of small bodies and an extraordinary opportunity to test our simulation capabilities on a rare, full-scale experiment. Using the Adaptive Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (ASPH) code, Spheral, we explore how variations in target material properties such as strength, composition, porosity, and layering affect impact results, in order to best match the observed crater size and ejecta evolution. Benchmarking against this unique small-body experiment provides an enhanced understanding of our ability to simulate asteroid or comet response to future deflection missions. This work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344. LLNL-ABS-739336-DRAFT.

  2. Amino Acids from a Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Jamie Elisla

    2009-01-01

    NASA's Stardust spacecraft returned samples from comet 81P/Wild 2 to Earth in January 2006. Examinations of the organic compounds in cometary samples can reveal information about the prebiotic organic inventory present on the early Earth and within the early Solar System, which may have contributed to the origin of life. Preliminary studies of Stardust material revealed the presence of a suite of organic compounds including several amines and amino acids, but the origin of these compounds (cometary- vs. terrestrial contamination) could not be identified. We have recently measured the carbon isotopic ratios of these amino acids to determine their origin, leading to the first detection of a coetary amino acid.

  3. On the nature of the Halley comet

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dobrovol'skij, O.V.; Ioffe, Z.M.

    1987-01-01

    The results of study of the Halley comet by means of the ''Vega'', ''Suisej'', ''Sakigaki'' and ''Jotton'' space probes are presented in the popular form. The form and composition of the comet nucleus, its atmosphere and processes ocurring when moving in the near-the-solar space are described

  4. Origin of comets - implications for planetary formation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weissman, P.R.; Arizona Univ., Tucson)

    1985-01-01

    Primordial and episodic theories for the origin of comets are discussed. The implications of the former type for the origin of the solar system are considered. Candidate sites for the formation of comets are compared. The possible existence of a massive inner Oort cloud is discussed

  5. Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 meets Jupiter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, D. H.; Shoemaker, E. M.; Shoemaker, C. S.

    1995-08-01

    The impact of comet D/1993 F2 (Shoemaker-Levy 9) with Jupiter was unforgettable, an event probably not to be repeated for millennia to come. One year later the astronomers who first spotted the comet reflect on their discovery, on the anxious months of anticipation before the collision and on what has been learned since.

  6. Comet mission hopes to uncover Earth's origins

    CERN Multimedia

    Henderson, M

    2004-01-01

    "A European spacecraft that will hunt down a comet in search of clues to the origin of life on Earth will blast off tomorrow from the Kourou spaceport in French Guiana. The Rosetta probe will take 12 years to catch up with Churyumov-Gerasimenko before becoming the first spacecraft to make a soft, controlled landing on a comet's nucleus" (1 page).

  7. Comets and How to Observe Them

    CERN Document Server

    Schmude, Richard

    2010-01-01

    Comets have inspired wonder, excitement and even fear ever since they were first observed. They contain material from early in the life of the Solar System, held in deep-freeze. This makes them key in our understanding of the formation and evolution of many Solar System bodies. Recent ground- and space-based observations have changed much in our understanding of comets. Comets and How to Observe Them gives a summary of our current knowledge and describes how amateur astronomers can contribute to the body of scientific knowledge of comets. This book contains many practical examples of how to construct comet light-curves, measure how fast a comet’s coma expands, and determine the rotation period of the nucleus. All these examples are illustrated with drawings and photographs.

  8. C/2013 P2 Pan STARRS - The Manx Comet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meech, Karen J.; Yang, Bin; Keane, Jacqueline; Hainaut, Olivier; Kleyna, Jan; Hsieh, Henry; Bauer, James; Wainscoat, Richard; Veres, Peter

    2014-11-01

    On Aug 4, 2013 an apparently asteroidal object was discovered by the Pan STARRS1 (PS1) survey telescope on Haleakala at magnitude 20.4 (corresponding to a nucleus radius between 1.4-2.9 km for albedos between 0.25-0.04). PS1 pre-recovery images taken on July 26 and on Aug. 3 allowed a good orbit to be determined. The orbit looks like that of a long-period comet with a semi major axis of 2720 AU and an eccentricity of 0.999. Shortly following the discovery, reports from small telescopes came in that there was low level activity associated with this object (at r = 3.45 AU), and the object was designated P/2013 P2 (Pan STARRS). The activity was not seen in images obtained with PS1, the Faulkes N telescope or the CFHT 3.6m, however the object was passing through a region of significant nebulosity. Deep images obtained on the CFHT on Aug. 8 and follow up images obtained with the Gemini North 8m telescope on Sep. 9 showed a very faint tail extending a few arcsec to PA=45 deg (inconsistent with the earlier reports). The object was observed using several facilities up until solar conjunction, and again after perihelion (Feb. 17, 2014) in March, with little increase in activity. A search of the NEOWISE archives show no detection during the cryogenic and immediate pos-cryogenic phases, so we can only place an upper limit on the nucleus size from these data. An object on a long-period comet orbit at this heliocentric distance typically should be very active, and our team hypothesized that this could either be a nearly-extinct comet or possibly inner solar system material ejected to the outer solar system during planet migration as predicted by various dynamical models. To distinguish between these scenarios, we obtained both optical and near-IR spectra of P/2013 P2 on 2014 May 7 and 21, when the object was at r=2.97 and 2.99 AU, respectively. Initial reductions show no emission lines. We will report on our spectra and imaging data, and discuss the implications for the origin

  9. Working Group Reports and Presentations: Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, John

    2006-01-01

    The study and utilization of asteroids will be an economical way to enable exploration of the solar system and extend human presence in space. There are thousands of near-earth objects (NEOs) that we will be able to reach. They offer resources, transportation, and exploration platforms, but also present a potential threat to civilization. Asteroids play a catastrophic role in the history of the Earth. Geological records indicate a regular history of massive impacts, which astronomical observations confirm is likely to continue with potentially devastating consequences. However, study and exploration of near earth asteroids can significantly increase advanced warning of an Earth impact, and potentially lead to the technology necessary to avert such a collision. Efforts to detect and prevent cataclysmic events would tend to foster and likely require international cooperation toward a unified goal of self-preservation. Exploration of asteroids will help us to understand our history and perhaps save our future. Besides the obvious and compelling scientific and security drivers for asteroid research and exploration, there are numerous engineering and industrial applications for near-term asteroid exploration. We have strong evidence that some asteroids are metal rich. Some are water and organic rich. They can be reached with a very low fuel cost compared to other solar system destinations. Once we reach them, there are efficient, simple extraction technologies available that would facilitate utilization. In addition, the costs of returning extracted resources from asteroids will be a fraction of the cost to return similar resources from the moon to Low Earth Orbit (LEO). These raw materials, extracted and shipped at relatively low cost, can be used to manufacture structures, fuel, and products which could be used to foster mankind s further exploration of the solar system. Asteroids also have the potential to offer transport to several destinations in the solar system

  10. Instrument for the detection of meteors in the infrared

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svedhem, H.; Koschny, D.; Ter Haar, J.

    2014-07-01

    The flux of interplanetary particles in the size range 2 mm to 20 m is poorly constrained due to insufficient data --- the larger bodies may be observed remotely by ground-based or space-based telescopes and the smaller particles are measured by in-situ impact detectors in space or by meteor cameras from ground. An infrared video rate imager in Earth orbit would enable a systematic characterization for an extended period, day and night, of the flux in this range by monitoring the bright meteor/fireball generated during atmospheric entry. Due to the low flux of meteoroids in this range a very large detector is required. With this method a large portion of the Earth atmosphere is in fact used as a huge detector. Such an instrument has never flown in Earth orbit. The only sensors of a similar kind fly on US defense satellites for monitoring launches of ballistic missiles. The data from these sensors, however, is largely inaccessible to scientists. The knowledge on emission of light by meteors/bolides at infrared wavelengths is very limited while it can be suspected that the continuum emission from meteors/bolides have stronger emission at infrared wavelengths than in the visible due to the likely low temperatures of these events. At the same time line emission is dominating over the continuum in the visible so it is not clear how this will compare with the continuum in the infrared. We have developed a bread-board version of an IR video rate camera, the SPOSH-IR. The instrument is based on an earlier technology development, SPOSH --- Smart Panoramic Optical Sensor Head, for operation in the visible range, but with the sensor replaced by a cooled IR detector and new infrared optics. The earlier work has proven the concept of the instrument and of automatic detection of meteors/bolides in the visible wavelength range. The new hardware has been built by Jena-Optronik, Jena, Germany and has been tested during several meteor showers in the Netherlands and at ESA's OGS

  11. Antioxidants and the Comet assay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cemeli, Eduardo; Baumgartner, Adolf; Anderson, Diana

    2009-01-01

    It is widely accepted that antioxidants, either endogenous or from the diet, play a key role in preserving health. They are able to quench radical species generated in situations of oxidative stress, either triggered by pathologies or xenobiotics, and they protect the integrity of DNA from genotoxicants. Nevertheless, there are still many compounds with unclear or unidentified prooxidant/antioxidant activities. This is of concern since there is an increase in the number of compounds synthesized or extracted from vegetables to which humans might be exposed. Despite the well-established protective effects of fruit and vegetables, the antioxidant(s) responsible have not all been clearly identified. There might also be alternative mechanisms contributing to the protective effects for which a comprehensive description is lacking. In the last two decades, the Comet assay has been extensively used for the investigation of the effects of antioxidants and many reports can be found in the literature. The Comet assay, a relatively fast, simple, and sensitive technique for the analysis of DNA damage in all cell types, has been applied for the screening of chemicals, biomonitoring and intervention studies. In the present review, several of the most well-known antioxidants are considered. These include: catalase, superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, selenium, iron chelators, melatonin, melanin, vitamins (A, B, C and E), carotenes, flavonoids, isoflavones, tea polyphenols, wine polyphenols and synthetic antioxidants. Investigations showing beneficial as well as non-beneficial properties of the antioxidants selected, either at the in vitro, ex vivo or in vivo level are discussed.

  12. comets in the STIP context

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wallis, M.K.

    1977-01-01

    Fluid descriptions of plasma motion through a cometary coma are briefly sketched, distinguishing the bow shock and ionizing flow region mainly within it, the tail region and ray structure, and the 'ionosphere' coupled closely to the expanding cometary gas. Whether there is a contact discontinuity or continuous transition between the incoming flow and the ionosphere depends on solar fluxes rather than comet size. A discontinuity as observed requires much faster ionization in the inner coma or severe collisional cooling of incoming plasma. Changes in structure and brightness may reflect solar UV and solar plasma variations, but may also be evidence of intrinsic instabilities of hydrodynamic/MHD or chemically-reactive flow. Molecular ionization and dissociation processes strongly influence the stagnation region ahead of the comet, and make it particularly susceptible to flow instabilities. Solar UV variations are energetically dominant within the ionosphere, changing the evaporation and chemical reaction rates, and probably stimulate dust halos. Shocked changes in the solar wind propagating through the head can trigger structural and intensity fluctuations in the plasma, notably disruptions of the plasma tail. (Auth.)

  13. Asteroid impacts, microbes, and the cooling of the atmosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oberbeck, V.R. (NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA (United States)); Mancinelli, R.L. (SETI Institute, Mountain View, CA (United States))

    1994-03-01

    Earth's surface temperature constrained microbial evolution, according to Schwartzman et al. (1993). Their hypothesis states that the maximal temperature that extant organisms of a given type tolerate is the surface temperature occurring when that type of organism arose. Schwartzman and his colleagues concluded that the temperature changed from 100[degrees]C to 50[degrees]C between 3.75 billion years ago (BYA) and 1 BYA. These temperatures are consistent with those derived from oxygen isotope ratios derived from oxygen isotope ratios in ancient sediments (Karhu and Epstein 1986, Knauth and Lowe 1978). The 100[degrees]C surface temperature they derive for 3.75 BYA is also the same as Earth's surface temperature 4.4 BYA (Kosting and Ackerman 1986). In this article, we address the cause of the delay in surface cooling until 3.75 BYA, and we explore the implications for microbial evolution of a high temperature on early Earth. We propose that three effects of the early heavy bombardment of Earth by asteroids, and comets, until 3.8 BYA, could have delayed onset of surface cooling.

  14. Tidal disruption of asteroids by supermassive black holes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gomboc A.

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The compact radio source Sgr A* at the centre of our Galaxy harbours a super-massive black hole, and is therefore the nearest laboratory for testing the super-massive black hole astrophysics and environment. Since it is not an active galactic nucleus, it also offers the possibility of observing the capture of low-mass objects, such as comets or asteroids, that may orbit the central black hole. In this paper we discuss conditions for tidal disruption of low-mass objects and predictions of the appearance and light curve of such events, as well as their relevance for the X-ray and infra-red flares detected in Sgr A*. The modelled light curves of such tidal disruption events bear marks of the strong gravitational field: tidal squeezing and elongation of the object, gravitational lensing, aberration of light, and Doppler effects. Finally, we show that this model is able to reproduce and fit X-ray flares.

  15. Re-accumulation of Asteroids to Equilibrium Figures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hestroffer, D.; Tanga, P.; Richardson, D. C.; Berthier, J.; Cellino, A.; Durech, J.; Michel, P.

    2008-09-01

    Since their formation, asteroids since their formation have experienced little physical, geological or thermal evolution. Like comets they are thought to be among the most pristine remnants of the early solar system. One physical process, however, has played a major role since the ancient times: collisions. Dynamical families were produced by catastrophic collisions involving large enough energy to break the parent body. Other lines of evidence suggest that catastrophic collisions can also produce rubble-piles, i.e., loosely bound of post-collisional aggregates that re-accumulate to form a single body, and are kept together by gravity. The main objective of this work is to understand if—and under what conditions—Jacobi ellipsoids or other equilibrium figures can be obtained naturally by this way. This is done by performing numerical experiments simulating the re-accumulation process, and by performing high-angular resolution observations in order to better constrain the shape and density of the targets. It is shown that the outcomes of reaccumulation events tend to produce a rather narrow variety of possible shapes, and in some cases also binary systems.

  16. Asteroid Redirection Mission Evaluation Using Multiple Landers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bazzocchi, Michael C. F.; Emami, M. Reza

    2018-01-01

    In this paper, a low-thrust tugboat redirection method is assessed using multiple spacecraft for a target range of small near-Earth asteroids. The benefits of a landed configuration of tugboat spacecraft in formation are examined for the redirection of a near-Earth asteroid. The tugboat method uses a gimballed thruster with a highly collimated ion beam to generate a thrust on the asteroid. The target asteroid range focuses on near-Earth asteroids smaller than 150 m in diameter, and carbonaceous (C-type) asteroids, due to the volatiles available for in-situ utilization. The assessment focuses primarily on the three key parameters, i.e., the asteroid mass redirected, the timeframe for redirection, and the overall system cost. An evaluation methodology for each parameter is discussed in detail, and the parameters are employed to determine the expected return and feasibility of the redirection mission. The number of spacecraft employed is optimized along with the electrical power needed for each spacecraft to ensure the highest possible return on investment. A discussion of the optimization results and the benefits of spacecraft formation for the tugboat method are presented.

  17. OpenComet: An automated tool for comet assay image analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin M. Gyori

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Reactive species such as free radicals are constantly generated in vivo and DNA is the most important target of oxidative stress. Oxidative DNA damage is used as a predictive biomarker to monitor the risk of development of many diseases. The comet assay is widely used for measuring oxidative DNA damage at a single cell level. The analysis of comet assay output images, however, poses considerable challenges. Commercial software is costly and restrictive, while free software generally requires laborious manual tagging of cells. This paper presents OpenComet, an open-source software tool providing automated analysis of comet assay images. It uses a novel and robust method for finding comets based on geometric shape attributes and segmenting the comet heads through image intensity profile analysis. Due to automation, OpenComet is more accurate, less prone to human bias, and faster than manual analysis. A live analysis functionality also allows users to analyze images captured directly from a microscope. We have validated OpenComet on both alkaline and neutral comet assay images as well as sample images from existing software packages. Our results show that OpenComet achieves high accuracy with significantly reduced analysis time.

  18. Prospects for asteroid mass determination from close encounters between asteroids: ESA's Gaia space mission and beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivantsov, Anatoliy; Hestroffer, Daniel; Eggl, Siegfried

    2018-04-01

    We present a catalog of potential candidates for asteroid mass determination based on mutual close encounters of numbered asteroids with massive perturbers (D>20 km). Using a novel geometric approach tuned to optimize observability, we predict optimal epochs for mass determination observations. In contrast to previous studies that often used simplified dynamical models, we have numerically propagated the trajectories of all numbered asteroids over the time interval from 2013 to 2023 using relativistic equations of motion including planetary perturbations, J2 of the Sun, the 16 major asteroid perturbers and the perturbations due to non-sphericities of the planets. We compiled a catalog of close encounters between asteroids where the observable perturbation of the sky plane trajectory is greater than 0.5 mas so that astrometric measurements of the perturbed asteroids in the Gaia data can be leveraged. The catalog v1.0 is available at ftp://dosya.akdeniz.edu.tr/ivantsov.

  19. Detection and Characterisation of Meteors as a Big Data Citizen Science project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gritsevich, M.

    2017-12-01

    Out of a total around 50,000 meteorites currently known to science, the atmospheric passage was recorded instrumentally in only 30 cases with the potential to derive their atmospheric trajectories and pre-impact heliocentric orbits. Similarly, while the observations of meteors, add thousands of new entries per month to existing databases, it is extremely rare they lead to meteorite recovery. Meteor studies thus represent an excellent example of the Big Data citizen science project, where progress in the field largely depends on the prompt identification and characterisation of meteor events as well as on extensive and valuable contributions by amateur observers. Over the last couple of decades technological advancements in observational techniques have yielded drastic improvements in the quality, quantity and diversity of meteor data, while even more ambitious instruments are about to become operational. This empowers meteor science to boost its experimental and theoretical horizons and seek more advanced scientific goals. We review some of the developments that push meteor science into the Big Data era that requires more complex methodological approaches through interdisciplinary collaborations with other branches of physics and computer science. We argue that meteor science should become an integral part of large surveys in astronomy, aeronomy and space physics, and tackle the complexity of micro-physics of meteor plasma and its interaction with the atmosphere. The recent increased interest in meteor science triggered by the Chelyabinsk fireball helps in building the case for technologically and logistically more ambitious meteor projects. This requires developing new methodological approaches in meteor research, with Big Data science and close collaboration between citizen science, geoscience and astronomy as critical elements. We discuss possibilities for improvements and promote an opportunity for collaboration in meteor science within the currently

  20. A Numerical Model to Assess Soil Fluxes from Meteoric 10Be Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campforts, B.; Govers, G.; Vanacker, V.; Vanderborght, J.; Smolders, E.; Baken, S.

    2015-12-01

    Meteoric 10Be may be mobile in the soil system. The latter hampers a direct translation of meteoric 10Be inventories into spatial variations in erosion and deposition rates. Here, we present a spatially explicit 2D model that allows us to simulate the behaviour of meteoric 10Be in the soil system. The Be2D model is then used to analyse the potential impact of human-accelerated soil fluxes on meteoric 10Be inventories. The model consists of two parts. A first component deals with advective and diffusive mobility of meteoric 10Be within the soil profile including particle migration, chemical leaching and bioturbation, whereas a second component describes lateral soil (and meteoric 10Be) fluxes over the hillslope. Soil depth is calculated dynamically, accounting for soil production through weathering and lateral soil fluxes from creep, water and tillage erosion. Model simulations show that meteoric 10Be inventories can indeed be related to erosion and deposition, across a wide range of geomorphological and pedological settings. However, quantification of the effects of vertical mobility is essential for a correct interpretation of the observed spatial patterns in 10Be data. Moreover, our simulations suggest that meteoric 10Be can be used as a tracer to unravel human impact on soil fluxes when soils have a high retention capacity for meteoric meteoric 10Be. Application of the Be2D model to existing data sets shows that model parameters can reliably be constrained, resulting in a good agreement between simulated and observed meteoric 10Be concentrations and inventories. This confirms the suitability of the Be2D model as a robust tool to underpin quantitative interpretations of spatial variability in meteoric 10Be data for eroding landscapes.

  1. Delivery of water and organics to Mercury through asteroid and comet impacts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frantseva, Kateryna; Mueller, Michael; van der Tak, Floris F. S.

    2017-01-01

    Detection and observation of the bright and dark polar deposits in permanently shadowed northpolar regions of Mercury suggest that these regions contain water and organic compounds. This is somehow surprising taking into account the planet’s proximity to the Sun. Water flux on Mercury was studied in

  2. Collisional Processing of Comet and Asteroid Surfaces: Velocity Effects on Absorption Spectra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederer, S. M.; Jensen, E. A.; Wooden, D. H.; Lindsay, S. S.; Smith, D. C.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Keller, L. P.; Cintala, M. J.; Zolensky, M. E.

    2012-01-01

    A new paradigm has emerged where 3.9 Gyr ago, a violent reshuffling reshaped the placement of small bodies in the solar system (the Nice model). Surface properties of these objects may have been affected by collisions caused by this event, and by collisions with other small bodies since their emplacement. These impacts affect the spectrographic observations of these bodies today. Shock effects (e.g., planar dislocations) manifest in minerals allowing astronomers to better understand geophysical impact processing that has occurred on small bodies. At the Experimental Impact Laboratory at NASA Johnson Space Center, we have impacted forsterite and enstatite across a range of velocities. We find that the amount of spectral variation, absorption wavelength, and full width half maximum of the absorbance peaks vary non-linearly with the velocity of the impact. We also find that the spectral variation increases with decreasing crystal size (single solid rock versus granular). Future analyses include quantification of the spectral changes with different impactor densities, temperature, and additional impact velocities. Results on diopside, fayalite, and magnesite can be found in Lederer et al., this meeting.

  3. Impact of an asteroid or comet in the ocean and extinction of terrestrial life

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahrens, T.J.; O'Keefe, J.D.

    1983-01-01

    Finite difference calculations describing the impact mechanics associated with a 10 to 30 km diameter silicate or water object impacting a 5 km deep ocean overlying a silicate solid planet at 30 km/sec demonstrate that from 12 to 15% of the bolide energy resides in the water. In the gravity field of the earth some 10 to 30 times the impactor mass of water is launched on trajectories which would take it to altitudes of 10 km or higher. This ejecta launched on trajectories which can achieve stratospheric heights is 10 1 to 10 2 projectile masses, similar to that resulting from impact of objects on an ocean-free silicate half-space (continent). Ejecta composed of impactor material, launched on trajectories which would carry it to stratospheric heights, matches the fraction (10 -2 to 10 -1 ) of bolide (extraterrestrial) material found in the platinum-metal-rich Cretaceous-Tertiary and Eocene-Oligocene boundary layers. Oceanic impact results in giant tsunamis initially having amplitudes of approx. 4 km, representing the solitary waterwave stability limit in the deep ocean, and containing 10 -2 to 10 -1 of the energy of the impact. Using the constraint of no observed turbidities in marine sediments in the Cretaceous-Tertiary and Eocene-Oligocene boundary materials (calculated maximum water-sediment interface particle velocity approx. 10 0 m/sec) implies a maximum impactor energy of approx. 10 28 to approx. 10 29 erg corresponding to a maximum diameter for a silicate impactor of approx. 2 km (at 11 km/sec). Minimal global tsunami run-up heights on the continents corresponding to impacts of this energy are 300-400 m. We speculate that such waves would inundate all low altitude continental areas. As a result, the terrestrial animal food chain would be seriously perturbed, which could have caused extinction of large terrestrial animals

  4. Impact of an asteroid or comet in the ocean and extinction of terrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahrens, T. J.; Okeefe, J. D.

    1982-01-01

    Finite difference calculations describing the impact mechanics associated with a 10 to 30 km diameter silicate or water object impacting a 5 km deep ocean overlying a silicate solid planet demonstrate that from 12 to 15% of the bolide energy resides in the water. It is speculated that minimal global tsunami run-up heights on the continents would be 300-400 meters, and that such waves would inundate all low altitude continental areas, and strip and silt-over virtually all vegetation. As a result the terrestrial animal food chain would be seriously perturbed. This could in turn cause extinction of large terrestrial animals.

  5. Infrared spectral reflectances of asteroid surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, H. P.; Veeder, G. J.

    1979-01-01

    This review compares the types of compositional information produced by three complementary techniques used in infrared observations of asteroid surfaces: broadband JHKL photometry, narrow band photometry, and multiplex spectroscopy. The high information content of these infrared observations permits definitive interpretations of asteroid surface compositions in terms of the major meteoritic minerals (olivine, pyroxene, plagioclase feldspar, hydrous silicates, and metallic Ni-Fe). These studies emphasize the individuality of asteroid surface compositions, the inadequacy of simple comparisons with spectra of meteorites, and the need to coordinate spectral measurements of all types to optimize diagnostic capabilities.

  6. Comet Halley Returns. A Teacher's Guide, 1985-1986.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, Robert D.; Bondurant, R. Lynn, Jr.

    This booklet was designed as an aid for elementary and secondary school teachers. It is divided into two distinct parts. Part I is a brief tutorial which introduces some of the most important concepts about comets. Areas addressed include: the historical importance of Comet Halley; how comets are found and names; cometary orbits; what Comet Halley…

  7. The Comet Halley Handbook: An Observer's Guide. Second Edition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeomans, Donald K.

    This handbook contains information on: (1) the orbit of comet Halley; (2) the expected physical behavior of comet Halley in 1985-1986, considering brightness estimates, coma diameters, and tail lengths; (3) observing conditions for comet Halley in 1985-1986; and (4) observing conditions for the dust tail of comet Halley in 1985-1986. Additional…

  8. Asteroid Spectroscopy: A Declaration of Independence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, J. F.

    1995-09-01

    One of the shibboleths of asteroid spectroscopy for the past 25 years has been that a detailed knowledge of meteoritics is essential for proper interpretation of asteroid spectra. In fact, several recent spectroscopic discoveries have overturned long-standing models based on popular interpretations of meteorite data. A case can be made that spectroscopists could have made much faster progress if they had worked in total isolation from meteoritics. Consider the first three spectral classes identified in the 1970s: Vesta: The very first asteroid spectrum was unambigously basaltic, yet some meteoriticists have persistently resisted the obvious conclusion that the HED clan comes from Vesta, because A) Vesta is "impossibly" far from the known dynamical escape hatches; and B) the HED O-isotope data "establishes" a lirlk with pallasites and IIIAB irons, suggesting that their parent was some other completely disrupted asteroid. The discovery of a "dynamically impossible" extended family of basaltic fragments extending from Vesta to the 3:1 resonance [1] makes it clear that HEDs must originate on Vesta, and that dynamical, physical and isotopic arguments all led in the wrong direction. Stony: In the early 1970s meteorite fall statistics led to an expectation that many of the larger asteroids would be ordinary chondrites. When the most common class of asteroids proved to have silicate absorption bands, many concluded that these objects were the expected ordinary chondrite parent asteroids. The later discovery that S-type spectra do not actually resemble OCs was rationalized with imaginary "space weathering" processes (which have never been observed or simulated despite 20 years of wasted effort). Now that the real weathering trends in S asteroids have been resolved [2] and asteroids which actually do look like OCs discovered [3], it is clear that the eDhre controversy over S asteroid composition was a blind alley that could have been avoided by taking the spectra at face

  9. METEOR v1.0 - Design and structure of the software package; METEOR v1.0 - Estructura y modulos informaticos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Palomo, E.

    1994-07-01

    This script describes the structure and the separated modules of the software package METEOR for the statistical analysis of meteorological data series. It contains a systematic description of the subroutines of METEOR and, also, of the required shape for input and output files. The original version of METEOR have been developed by Ph.D. Elena Palomo, CIEMAT-IER, GIMASE. It is built by linking programs and routines written in FORTRAN 77 and it adds thc graphical capabilities of GNUPLOT. The shape of this toolbox was designed following the criteria of modularity, flexibility and agility criteria. All the input, output and analysis options are structured in three main menus: i) the first is aimed to evaluate the quality of the data set; ii) the second is aimed for pre-processing of the data; and iii) the third is aimed towards the statistical analyses and for creating the graphical outputs. Actually the information about METEOR is constituted by three documents written in spanish: 1) METEOR v1.0: User's guide; 2) METEOR v1.0: A usage example; 3) METEOR v 1.0: Design and structure of the software package. (Author)

  10. COLOR SYSTEMATICS OF COMETS AND RELATED BODIES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jewitt, David, E-mail: jewitt@ucla.edu [Department of Earth, Planetary and Space Sciences, UCLA, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States)

    2015-12-15

    Most comets are volatile-rich bodies that have recently entered the inner solar system following long-term storage in the Kuiper belt and the Oort cloud reservoirs. These reservoirs feed several distinct, short-lived “small body” populations. Here, we present new measurements of the optical colors of cometary and comet-related bodies including long-period (Oort cloud) comets, Damocloids (probable inactive nuclei of long-period comets) and Centaurs (recent escapees from the Kuiper belt and precursors to the Jupiter family comets). We combine the new measurements with published data on short-period comets, Jovian Trojans and Kuiper belt objects to examine the color systematics of the comet-related populations. We find that the mean optical colors of the dust in short-period and long-period comets are identical within the uncertainties of measurement, as are the colors of the dust and of the underlying nuclei. These populations show no evidence for scattering by optically small particles or for compositional gradients, even at the largest distances from the Sun, and no evidence for ultrared matter. Consistent with earlier work, ultrared surfaces are common in the Kuiper belt and on the Centaurs, but not in other small body populations, suggesting that this material is hidden or destroyed upon entry to the inner solar system. The onset of activity in the Centaurs and the disappearance of the ultrared matter in this population begin at about the same perihelion distance (∼10 AU), suggesting that the two are related. Blanketing of primordial surface materials by the fallback of sub-orbital ejecta, for which we calculate a very short timescale, is the likely mechanism. The same process should operate on any mass-losing body, explaining the absence of ultrared surface material in the entire comet population.

  11. Seismic characterization of the Chelyabinsk meteor's terminal explosion

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Álvaro; Heimann, Sebastian; Wang, Rongjiang; Cesca, Simone; Dahm, Torsten

    2014-05-01

    On February 15th, 2013, an exceptionally large meteor in the region of Chelyabinsk, Russia, produced a powerful shock wave which caused unprecedented damage to people and property, the strongest atmospheric infrasound signal ever recorded, and remarkable ground motion. Here we describe and model the resulting Rayleigh waves, recorded at broadband seismic stations at distances from ~230 to ~4,100 km. Our full-waveform modeling uses a seismogram simulation code specifically tailored to consider wave propagation in the atmosphere and solid Earth, and the coupling at the interface between them. An isotropic point-like airburst reproduces very well the available seismic observations, without requiring a more complex explanation, such as a moving source. The measured seismic shaking was generated by direct coupling of the atmospheric shock wave to the ground, and then it propagated outwards faster than the atmospheric shock wave itself, at up to 3.9 km/s. The best-fitting airburst location (61.22° E, 54.88° N) is SW of Chelyabinsk city, exactly at the terminal part of the meteor's trajectory, just after it experienced a dramatic flare, with apparent brightness larger than the Sun's. We estimated the meteor's ground path from published trajectory data, eyewitness observations, and detailed satellite imagery of the exact location where a major meteorite fragment landed, in the frozen Lake Chebarkul (60.32074° E, 54.95966° N). Fixing the source origin time allowed us calculating that the explosion took place in the stratosphere, at an altitude of 22.5 ± 1.5 km. This value is lower than the reported altitude of peak brightness (about 29.5 km), but more consistent with the observations of shock wave travel times. Such results highlight the importance of terminal energy release down to lower altitude. We analyzed a surveillance video recorded inside a factory (61.347° E, 54.902° N) at Korkino, a locality close to the airburst. It shows a time delay of 87.5 seconds

  12. A Comet Engulfs Mars: MAVEN Observations of Comet Siding Spring's Influence on the Martian Magnetosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Espley, Jared R.; Dibraccio, Gina A.; Connerney, John E. P.; Brain, David; Gruesbeck, Jacob; Soobiah, Yasir; Halekas, Jasper S.; Combi, Michael; Luhmann, Janet; Ma, Yingjuan

    2015-01-01

    The nucleus of comet C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) passed within 141,000?km of Mars on 19 October 2014. Thus, the cometary coma and the plasma it produces washed over Mars for several hours producing significant effects in the Martian magnetosphere and upper atmosphere. We present observations from Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN's (MAVEN's) particles and field's instruments that show the Martian magnetosphere was severely distorted during the comet's passage. We note four specific major effects: (1) a variable induced magnetospheric boundary, (2) a strong rotation of the magnetic field as the comet approached, (3) severely distorted and disordered ionospheric magnetic fields during the comet's closest approach, and (4) unusually strong magnetosheath turbulence lasting hours after the comet left. We argue that the comet produced effects comparable to that of a large solar storm (in terms of incident energy) and that our results are therefore important for future studies of atmospheric escape, MAVEN's primary science objective.

  13. Knut Lundmark, meteors and an early Swedish crowdsourcing experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kärnfelt, Johan

    2014-10-01

    Mid twentieth century meteor astronomy demanded the long-term compilation of observations made by numerous individuals over an extensive geographical area. Such a massive undertaking obviously required the participation of more than just professional astronomers, who often sought to expand their ranks through the use of amateurs that had a basic grasp of astronomy as well as the night sky, and were thus capable of generating first-rate astronomical reports. When, in the 1920s, renowned Swedish astronomer Knut Lundmark turned his attention to meteor astronomy, he was unable to rely even upon this solution. In contrast to many other countries at the time, Sweden lacked an organized amateur astronomy and thus contained only a handful of competent amateurs. Given this situation, Lundmark had to develop ways of engaging the general public in assisting his efforts. To his advantage, he was already a well-established public figure who had published numerous popular science articles and held talks from time to time on the radio. During the 1930s, this prominence greatly facilitated his launching of a crowdsourcing initiative for the gathering of meteor observations. This paper consists of a detailed discussion concerning the means by which Lundmark's initiative disseminated astronomical knowledge to the general public and encouraged a response that might directly contribute to the advancement of science. More precisely, the article explores the manner in which he approached the Swedish public, the degree to which that public responded and the extent to which his efforts were successful. The primary aim of this exercise is to show that the apparently recent Internet phenomenon of 'crowdsourcing', especially as it relates to scientific research, actually has a pre-Internet history that is worth studying. Apart from the fact that this history is interesting in its own right, knowing it can provide us with a fresh vantage point from which to better comprehend and appreciate

  14. A dynamical study on extrasolar comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loibnegger, B.; Dvorak, R.

    2017-09-01

    Since the detection of absorption features in spectra of beta Pictoris varying on short time scales it is known that comets exist in other stellar systems. We investigate the dynamics of comets in two differently build systems (HD 10180 and HIP 14810). The outcomes of the scattering process, as there are collisions with the planets, captures and ejections from the systems are analysed statistically. Collisions and close encounters with the planets are investigated in more detail in order to conclude about transport of water and organic material. We will also investigate the possibility of detection of comets in other planetary systems.

  15. The spacecraft encounters of Comet Halley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asoka Mendis, D.; Tsurutani, Bruce T.

    1986-01-01

    The characteristics of the Comet Halley spacecraft 'fleet' (VEGA 1 and VEGA 2, Giotto, Suisei, and Sakigake) are presented. The major aims of these missions were (1) to discover and characterize the nucleus, (2) to characterize the atmosphere and ionosphere, (3) to characterize the dust, and (4) to characterize the nature of the large-scale comet-solar wind interaction. While the VEGA and Giotto missions were designed to study all four areas, Suisei addressed the second and fourth. Sakigake was designed to study the solar wind conditions upstream of the comet. It is noted that NASA's Deep Space Network played an important role in spacecraft tracking.

  16. Automated Meteor Detection by All-Sky Digital Camera Systems

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Suk, Tomáš; Šimberová, Stanislava

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 120, č. 3 (2017), s. 189-215 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-16928S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 ; RVO:67985556 Keywords : meteor detection * autonomous fireball observatories * fish-eye camera * Hough transformation Subject RIV: IN - Informatics, Computer Science; BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics (ASU-R) OBOR OECD: Computer sciences, information science, bioinformathics (hardware development to be 2.2, social aspect to be 5.8); Astronomy (including astrophysics,space science) (ASU-R) Impact factor: 0.875, year: 2016

  17. PROPERTIES OF NEAR-SUN ASTEROIDS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jewitt, David, E-mail: jewitt@ucla.edu [Department of Earth and Space Sciences and Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California at Los Angeles, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States)

    2013-05-15

    Asteroids near the Sun can attain equilibrium temperatures sufficient to induce surface modification from thermal fracture, desiccation, and decomposition of hydrated silicates. We present optical observations of nine asteroids with perihelia <0.25 AU (sub-solar temperatures {>=}800 K) taken to search for evidence of thermal modification. We find that the broadband colors of these objects are diverse but statistically indistinguishable from those of planet-crossing asteroids having perihelia near 1 AU. Furthermore, images of these bodies taken away from perihelion show no evidence for on-going mass-loss (model-dependent limits {approx}<1 kg s{sup -1}) that might result from thermal disintegration of the surface. We conclude that, while thermal modification may be an important process in the decay of near-Sun asteroids and in the production of debris, our new data provide no evidence for it.

  18. Chelyabinsk: Portrait of an asteroid airburst

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kring, David A.; Boslough, Mark

    2014-09-01

    Video and audio from hundreds of smartphones and dashboard cameras combined with seismic, acoustic, and satellite measurements provide the first precise documentation of a 10 000-ton asteroid explosion.

  19. Shaping asteroid models using genetic evolution (SAGE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartczak, P.; Dudziński, G.

    2018-02-01

    In this work, we present SAGE (shaping asteroid models using genetic evolution), an asteroid modelling algorithm based solely on photometric lightcurve data. It produces non-convex shapes, orientations of the rotation axes and rotational periods of asteroids. The main concept behind a genetic evolution algorithm is to produce random populations of shapes and spin-axis orientations by mutating a seed shape and iterating the process until it converges to a stable global minimum. We tested SAGE on five artificial shapes. We also modelled asteroids 433 Eros and 9 Metis, since ground truth observations for them exist, allowing us to validate the models. We compared the derived shape of Eros with the NEAR Shoemaker model and that of Metis with adaptive optics and stellar occultation observations since other models from various inversion methods were available for Metis.

  20. Chelyabinsk: Portrait of an asteroid airburst

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kring, David A.; Boslough, Mark

    2014-01-01

    Video and audio from hundreds of smartphones and dashboard cameras combined with seismic, acoustic, and satellite measurements provide the first precise documentation of a 10 000-ton asteroid explosion

  1. SAWYER ASTEROID SPECTRA V1.1

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Partial spectral data for the plots presented in S. Sawyer's PhD Thesis, 'A High Resolution Spectroscopic Survey of Low Albedo Main Belt Asteroids', 1991.

  2. Asteroid rotation excitation by subcatastrophic impacts

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Henych, T.; Pravec, Petr

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 432, č. 2 (2013), s. 1623-1631 ISSN 0035-8711 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : numerical methods * minor planets * general asteroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy , Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 5.226, year: 2013

  3. Families Among High-Inclination Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, B.; Cellino, A.; Knezevic, Z.

    2012-05-01

    We review briefly the most important results of the classification of high-inclination asteroids into families performed by Novakovic et al.(Icarus, 2011,216) and present some new results about a very interesting (5438) Lorre cluster.

  4. ASTEROID SPIN VECTORS V4.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This is a tabulation of determinations of asteroid pole orientations gathered from the literature from 1932 through 1995. It is an updated (Dec. 1995) version of the...

  5. Optimized Bucket Wheel Design for Asteroid Excavation

    OpenAIRE

    Nallapu, Ravi Teja; Thoesen, Andrew; Garvie, Laurence; Asphaug, Erik; Thangavelautham, Jekanthan

    2017-01-01

    Current spacecraft need to launch with all of their required fuel for travel. This limits the system performance, payload capacity, and mission flexibility. One compelling alternative is to perform In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) by extracting fuel from small bodies in local space such as asteroids or small satellites. Compared to the Moon or Mars, the microgravity on an asteroid demands a fraction of the energy for digging and accessing hydrated regolith just below the surface. Previous ...

  6. Asteroids Lightcurves Analysis: 2016 November - 2017 June

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carbognani, Albino; Bacci, Paolo; Buzzi, Luca

    2018-01-01

    Twelve near-Earth asteroids were observed from 2016 November through 2017 June to find the synodic rotation period and lightcurve amplitudes for each asteroid. Results are reported for 2329 Orthos, (138846) 2000 VJ61, (326683) 2002 WP, (489337) 2006 UM, (494706) 2005 GL9, 2005 TF, 2017 BJ30, 2017 BQ6, 2017 CS, 2017 DC36, 2017 GK4, and 2017 JA2.

  7. Dynamical properties of the Watsonia asteroid family

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsirvoulis, G.; Novakovic, B.; Knezevic, Z.; Cellino, A.

    2014-07-01

    Introduction: In recent years, a rare class of asteroids has been discovered [1], with its distinguishing characteristic being the anomalous polarimetric properties of its members. Named Barbarians, after (234) Barbara, the prototype of the class, these asteroids show negative polarization at unusually high phase-angles compared to normal asteroids. Motivated by the fact that some of the few discovered Barbarians seemed to be related to the Watsonia asteroid family, Cellino et al. [2] performed a search for more Barbarians among its members. A positive result of this search led to the conclusion that Watsonia is indeed an important repository of Barbarian asteroids. Based on these findings, we decided to analyze this family in detail. Basic information: According to available data, Watsonia is an L-type asteroid family, located in the middle of the main asteroid belt (2.68 < a_{p} < 2.82 au), with low to moderate orbital eccentricities (0.1 < e_{p} < 0.15) and relatively high inclinations (16.5^{o} < i_{p} < 18^{o}). Methodology: The first step in our study is to derive a reliable list of Watsonia family members. To that purpose, we first calculate the synthetic proper elements [3] of an extended catalogue including numbered, as well as multi and single opposition asteroids, in a wide region around the family. To this catalogue we apply the Hierarchical Clustering Method (HCM)[4] to determine the membership of the family, coinciding with the requirement that all confirmed neighboring Barbarians are included (see figure). To detect potential interlopers and refine the membership list, additional data such as the SDSS colors and WISE albedos are used. Moreover, we identify all relevant resonances and analyze the dynamical characteristics of the region occupied by the family. Then we estimate the age of the family, and finally, we perform numerical integrations of test particles to investigate possible dynamical links to other known Barbarians and to the near

  8. A New Orbit for Comet C/1865 B1 (Great Southern Comet of 1865)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branham, Richard L., Jr.

    2018-04-01

    Comet C/1865 B1 (Great southern comet of 1865), observed only in the southern hemisphere, is one of a large number of comets with parabolic orbits. Given that there are 202 observations in right ascension and 165 in declination it proves possible to calculate a better orbit than that Körber published in 1887, the orbit used in various catalogs and data bases. C/1865 B1's orbit is hyperbolic and statistically distinguishable from a parabola. This object, therefore, cannot be considered an NEO. The comet has a small perihelion distance of 0.026 AU.

  9. Kinematic Characteristics of Meteor Showers by Results of the Combined Radio-Television Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narziev, Mirhusen

    2016-07-01

    One of the most important tasks of meteor astronomy is the study of the distribution of meteoroid matter in the solar system. The most important component to address this issue presents the results of measurements of the velocities, radiants, and orbits of both showers and sporadic meteors. Radiant's and orbits of meteors for different sets of data obtained as a result of photographic, television, electro-optical, video, Fireball Network and radar observations have been measured repeatedly. However, radiants, velocities and orbits of shower meteors based on the results of combined radar-optical observations have not been sufficiently studied. In this paper, we present a methods for computing the radiants, velocities, and orbits of the combined radar-TV meteor observations carried out at HisAO in 1978-1980. As a result of the two-year cycle of simultaneous TV-radar observations 57 simultaneous meteors have been identified. Analysis of the TV images has shown that some meteor trails appeared as dashed lines. Among the simultaneous meteors of d-Aquariids 10 produced such dashed images, and among the Perseids there were only 7. Using a known method, for such fragmented images of simultaneous meteors - together with the measured radar distance, trace length, and time interval between the segments - allowed to determine meteor velocity using combined method. In addition, velocity of the same meteors was measured using diffraction and radar range-time methods based on the results of radar observation. It has been determined that the mean values of meteoroid velocity based on the combined radar-TV observations are greater in 1 ÷ 3 km / c than the averaged velocity values measured using only radar methods. Orbits of the simultaneously observed meteors with segmented photographic images were calculated on the basis of the average velocity observed using the combined radar-TV method. The measured results of radiants velocities and orbital elements of individual meteors

  10. IAU Meteor Data Center-the shower database: A status report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jopek, Tadeusz Jan; Kaňuchová, Zuzana

    2017-09-01

    Currently, the meteor shower part of Meteor Data Center database includes: 112 established showers, 563 in the working list, among them 36 have the pro tempore status. The list of shower complexes contains 25 groups, 3 have established status and 1 has the pro tempore status. In the past three years, new meteor showers submitted to the MDC database were detected amongst the meteors observed by CAMS stations (Cameras for Allsky Meteor Surveillance), those included in the EDMOND (European viDeo MeteOr Network Database), those collected by the Japanese SonotaCo Network, recorded in the IMO (International Meteor Organization) database, observed by the Croatian Meteor Network and on the Southern Hemisphere by the SAAMER radar. At the XXIX General Assembly of the IAU in Honolulu, Hawaii in 2015, the names of 18 showers were officially accepted and moved to the list of established ones. Also, one shower already officially named (3/SIA the Southern iota Aquariids) was moved back to the working list of meteor showers. At the XXIX GA IAU the basic shower nomenclature rule was modified, the new formulation predicates ;The general rule is that a meteor shower (and a meteoroid stream) should be named after the constellation that contains the nearest star to the radiant point, using the possessive Latin form;. Over the last three years the MDC database was supplemented with the earlier published original data on meteor showers, which permitted verification of the correctness of the MDC data and extension of bibliographic information. Slowly but surely new database software options are implemented, and software bugs are corrected.

  11. Hybrid Guidance Control for a Hypervelocity Small Size Asteroid Interceptor Vehicle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zebenay, Melak M.; Lyzhoft, Joshua R.; Barbee, Brent W.

    2017-01-01

    Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) are comets and/or asteroids that have orbits in proximity with Earth's own orbit. NEOs have collided with the Earth in the past, which can be seen at such places as Chicxulub crater, Barringer crater, and Manson crater, and will continue in the future with potentially significant and devastating results. Fortunately such NEO collisions with Earth are infrequent, but can happen at any time. Therefore it is necessary to develop and validate techniques as well as technologies necessary to prevent them. One approach to mitigate future NEO impacts is the concept of high-speed interceptor. This concept is to alter the NEO's trajectory via momentum exchange by using kinetic impactors as well as nuclear penetration devices. The interceptor has to hit a target NEO at relative velocity which imparts a sufficient change in NEO velocity. NASA's Deep Impact mission has demonstrated this scenario by intercepting Comet Temple 1, 5 km in diameter, with an impact relative speed of approximately 10 km/s. This paper focuses on the development of hybrid guidance navigation and control (GNC) algorithms for precision hypervelocity intercept of small sized NEOs. The spacecraft's hypervelocity and the NEO's small size are critical challenges for a successful mission as the NEO will not fill the field of view until a few seconds before intercept. The investigation needs to consider the error sources modeled in the navigation simulation such as spacecraft initial state uncertainties in position and velocity. Furthermore, the paper presents three selected spacecraft guidance algorithms for asteroid intercept and rendezvous missions. The selected algorithms are classical Proportional Navigation (PN) based guidance that use a first order difference to compute the derivatives, Three Plane Proportional Navigation (TPPN), and the Kinematic Impulse (KI). A manipulated Bennu orbit that has been changed to impact Earth will be used as a demonstrative example to compare the

  12. The Asteroid Impact and Deflection Assessment Mission and its Potential Contributions to Human Exploration of Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Paul A.; Rivkin, Andy S.

    2014-01-01

    The joint ESA and NASA Asteroid Impact and Deflection Assessment (AIDA) mission will directly address aspects of NASA's Asteroid Initiative and will contribute to future human exploration. The NASA Asteroid Initiative is comprised of two major components: the Grand Challenge and the Asteroid Mission. The first component, the Grand Challenge, focuses on protecting Earth's population from asteroid impacts by detecting potentially hazardous objects with enough warning time to either prevent them from impacting the planet, or to implement civil defense procedures. The Asteroid Mission, involves sending astronauts to study and sample a near-Earth asteroid (NEA) prior to conducting exploration missions of the Martian system, which includes Phobos and Deimos. AIDA's primary objective is to demonstrate a kinetic impact deflection and characterize the binary NEA Didymos. The science and technical data obtained from AIDA will aid in the planning of future human exploration missions to NEAs and other small bodies. The dual robotic missions of AIDA, ESA's Asteroid Impact Monitor (AIM) and NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART), will provide a great deal of technical and engineering data on spacecraft operations for future human space exploration while conducting in-depth scientific examinations of the binary target Didymos both prior to and after the kinetic impact demonstration. The knowledge gained from this mission will help identify asteroidal physical properties in order to maximize operational efficiency and reduce mission risk for future small body missions. The AIDA data will help fill crucial strategic knowledge gaps concerning asteroid physical characteristics that are relevant for human exploration considerations at similar small body destinations.

  13. Asteroid 'Bites the Dust' Around Dead Star

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope set its infrared eyes upon the dusty remains of shredded asteroids around several dead stars. This artist's concept illustrates one such dead star, or 'white dwarf,' surrounded by the bits and pieces of a disintegrating asteroid. These observations help astronomers better understand what rocky planets are made of around other stars. Asteroids are leftover scraps of planetary material. They form early on in a star's history when planets are forming out of collisions between rocky bodies. When a star like our sun dies, shrinking down to a skeleton of its former self called a white dwarf, its asteroids get jostled about. If one of these asteroids gets too close to the white dwarf, the white dwarf's gravity will chew the asteroid up, leaving a cloud of dust. Spitzer's infrared detectors can see these dusty clouds and their various constituents. So far, the telescope has identified silicate minerals in the clouds polluting eight white dwarfs. Because silicates are common in our Earth's crust, the results suggest that planets similar to ours might be common around other stars.

  14. Abodes for life in carbonaceous asteroids?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramov, Oleg; Mojzsis, Stephen J.

    2011-05-01

    Thermal evolution models for carbonaceous asteroids that use new data for permeability, pore volume, and water circulation as input parameters provide a window into what are arguably the earliest habitable environments in the Solar System. Plausible models of the Murchison meteorite (CM) parent body show that to first-order, conditions suitable for the stability of liquid water, and thus pre- or post-biotic chemistry, could have persisted within these asteroids for tens of Myr. In particular, our modeling results indicate that a 200-km carbonaceous asteroid with a 40% initial ice content takes almost 60 Myr to cool completely, with habitable temperatures being maintained for ˜24 Myr in the center. Yet, there are a number of indications that even with the requisite liquid water, thermal energy sources to drive chemical gradients, and abundant organic "building blocks" deemed necessary criteria for life, carbonaceous asteroids were intrinsically unfavorable sites for biopoesis. These controls include different degrees of exothermal mineral hydration reactions that boost internal warming but effectively remove liquid water from the system, rapid (1-10 mm yr -1) inward migration of internal habitable volumes in most models, and limitations imposed by low permeabilities and small pore sizes in primitive undifferentiated carbonaceous asteroids. Our results do not preclude the existence of habitable conditions on larger, possibly differentiated objects such as Ceres and the Themis family asteroids due to presumed longer, more intense heating and possible long-lived water reservoirs.

  15. An ISU study of asteroid mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burke, J. D.

    During the 1990 summer session of the International Space University, 59 graduate students from 16 countries carried out a design project on using the resources of near-earth asteroids. The results of the project, whose full report is now available from ISU, are summarized. The student team included people in these fields: architecture, business and management, engineering, life sciences, physical sciences, policy and law, resources and manufacturing, and satellite applications. They designed a project for transporting equipment and personnel to a near-earth asteroid, setting up a mining base there, and hauling products back for use in cislunar space. In addition, they outlined the needed precursor steps, beginning with expansion of present ground-based programs for finding and characterizing near-earth asteroids and continuing with automated flight missions to candidate bodies. (To limit the summer project's scope the actual design of these flight-mission precursors was excluded.) The main conclusions were that asteroid mining may provide an important complement to the future use of lunar resources, with the potential to provide large amounts of water and carbonaceous materials for use off earth. However, the recovery of such materials from presently known asteroids did not show an economic gain under the study assumptions; therefore, asteroid mining cannot yet be considered a prospective business.

  16. The Implications of the Excited Rotation of Comet 252P/2000 G1 (LINEAR)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jian-Yang; Samarasinha, Nalin H.; Kelley, Michael S. P.; Farnocchia, Davide; Mutchler, Max J.; Ren, Yanqiong; Lu, Xiaoping; Tholen, David J.; Lister, Tim; Micheli, Marco

    2018-01-01

    Jupiter Family comet (JFC) 252P/LINEAR had a close encounter to Earth on 2016 March 21. We imaged the comet with the Hubble Space Telescope Wide Field Camera 3 UVIS channel through the V- and r’-band filters spanning ~8 hours on 2016 April 4. The pixel scale of 2.7 km/pixel allowed us to study the structure of the cometary coma at scales of a few kilometers to a few hundred kilometers from the nucleus, a characteristic that is unique to our data. The dust coma of 252P showed a strong, well defined, narrow and nearly linear feature in the sunward direction, and its projected position angle moved about the nucleus for ~60 deg in 8 hours, consistent with an apparent periodicity of ~7.24 hours. On the other hand, the lightcurve measured in both V- and r’-band images from a 13 km radius aperture, after corrected for color term, showed a variability of >0.14 mag that is consistent with an apparent periodicity of ~5.4 hours or its multiples. We suggest that the two different periodicities derived from coma morphology and the lightcurve is a strong indication that the nucleus of 252P is in a non-principal axis (NPA) rotation, joining two other confirmed NPA rotators (1P/Halley and 103P/Hartley 2) and comets that are potentially in NPA rotational states (e.g., 2P/Encke). However, this apparition has been unusual for 252P. In the past three perihelion passages since discovery, the comet was very weakly active compared to other JFCs. Meteor evidence also exists that it probably has been very weakly active for a few hundred years. But in our data, we saw a very active comet in this 2016 apparition with an active fraction of 40% to >100%, representing an increase of 100x with respect to its recent past. Based on our observations, 252P has a small nucleus with a radius of ~0.3 km, which suggests that its rotational state could be relatively easily changed by torques caused by outgassing. Since the very weak outgassing in the past is not likely to change the rotational state

  17. Comparison of the oxidation state of Fe in comet 81P/Wild 2 and chondritic-porous interplanetary dust particles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ogliore, Ryan C.; Butterworth, Anna L.; Fakra, Sirine C.; Gainsforth, Zack; Marcus, Matthew A.; Westphal, Andrew J.

    2010-07-16

    The fragile structure of chondritic-porous interplanetary dust particles (CP-IDPs) and their minimal parent-body alteration have led researchers to believe these particles originate in comets rather than asteroids where aqueous and thermal alterations have occurred. The solar elemental abundances and atmospheric entry speed of CP-IDPs also suggest a cometary origin. With the return of the Stardust samples from Jupiter-family comet 81P/Wild 2, this hypothesis can be tested. We have measured the Fe oxidation state of 15 CP-IDPs and 194 Stardust fragments using a synchrotron-based x-ray microprobe. We analyzed {approx}300 ng of Wild 2 material - three orders of magnitude more material than other analyses comparing Wild 2 and CP-IDPs. The Fe oxidation state of these two samples of material are > 2{sigma} different: the CP-IDPs are more oxidized than the Wild 2 grains. We conclude that comet Wild 2 contains material that formed at a lower oxygen fugacity than the parent-body, or parent bodies, of CP-IDPs. If all Jupiter-family comets are similar, they do not appear to be consistent with the origin of CP-IDPs. However, comets that formed from a different mix of nebular material and are more oxidized than Wild 2 could be the source of CP-IDPs.

  18. Scientists Revise Thinking on Comets, Planet Jupiter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chemical and Engineering News, 1974

    1974-01-01

    Discusses scientific information obtained from Pioneer 10's Jupiter flyby and the comet Kohoutek's first trip around the sun, including the high hydrogen emission of Jupiter's principal moon, Io. (CC)

  19. Comet C/2004 P1 (NEAT)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tichá, J.; Tichý, M.; Kušnirák, Peter

    -, č. 8383 (2004), s. 1 ISSN 0081-0304 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003204 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : new comet * astrometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics

  20. Comet P/2004 F3 (NEAT)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tichá, J.; Tichý, M.; Kušnirák, Peter

    -, č. 8313 (2004), s. 1 ISSN 0081-0304 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003204 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : comet * astrometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics