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Sample records for hayabusa asteroid explorer

  1. Microwave Discharge Ion Engines onboard Hayabusa Asteroid Explorer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuninaka, Hitoshi

    2008-01-01

    The Hayabusa spacecraft rendezvoused with the asteroid Itokawa in 2005 after the powered flight in the deep space by the μl0 cathode-less electron cyclotron resonance ion engines. Though the spacecraft was seriously damaged after the successful soft-landing and lift-off, the xenon cold gas jets from the ion engines rescued it. New attitude stabilization method using a single reaction wheel, the ion beam jets, and the photon pressure was established and enabled the homeward journey from April 2007 aiming the Earth return on 2010. The total accumulated operational time of the ion engines reaches 31,400 hours at the end of 2007. One of four thrusters achieved 13,400-hour space operation

  2. Hayabusa2 Sampler: Collection of Asteroidal Surface Material

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawada, Hirotaka; Okazaki, Ryuji; Tachibana, Shogo; Sakamoto, Kanako; Takano, Yoshinori; Okamoto, Chisato; Yano, Hajime; Miura, Yayoi; Abe, Masanao; Hasegawa, Sunao; Noguchi, Takaaki

    2017-07-01

    Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) launched the asteroid exploration probe "Hayabusa2" in December 3rd, 2014, following the 1st Hayabusa mission. With technological and scientific improvements from the Hayabusa probe, we plan to visit the C-type asteroid 162137 Ryugu (1999 JU3), and to sample surface materials of the C-type asteroid that is likely to be different from the S-type asteroid Itokawa and contain more pristine materials, including organic matter and/or hydrated minerals, than S-type asteroids. We developed the Hayabusa2 sampler to collect a minimum of 100 mg of surface samples including several mm-sized particles at three surface locations without any severe terrestrial contamination. The basic configuration of the sampler design is mainly as same as the 1st Hayabusa (Yano et al. in Science, 312(5778):1350-1353, 2006), with several minor but important modifications based on lessons learned from the Hayabusa to fulfill the scientific requirements and to raise the scientific value of the returned samples.

  3. Three dimensional modelling for the target asteroid of HAYABUSA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demura, H.; Kobayashi, S.; Asada, N.; Hashimoto, T.; Saito, J.

    Hayabusa program is the first sample return mission of Japan. This was launched at May 9 2003, and will arrive at the target asteroid 25143 Itokawa on June 2005. The spacecraft has three optical navigation cameras, which are two wide angle ones and a telescopic one. The telescope with a filter wheel was named AMICA (Asteroid Multiband Imaging CAmera). We are going to model a shape of the target asteroid by this telescope; expected resolution: 1m/pixel at 10 km in distanc, field of view: 5.7 squared degrees, MPP-type CCD with 1024 x 1000 pixels. Because size of the Hayabusa is about 1x1x1 m, our goal is shape modeling with about 1m in precision on the basis of a camera system with scanning by rotation of the asteroid. This image-based modeling requires sequential images via AMICA and a history of distance between the asteroid and Hayabusa provided by a Laser Range Finder. We established a system of hierarchically recursive search with sub-pixel matching of Ground Control Points, which are picked up with Susan Operator. The matched dataset is restored with a restriction of epipolar geometry, and the obtained a group of three dimensional points are converted to a polygon model with Delaunay Triangulation. The current status of our development for the shape modeling is displayed.

  4. MASCOT—The Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout Onboard the Hayabusa2 Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Tra-Mi; Baturkin, Volodymyr; Grimm, Christian; Grundmann, Jan Thimo; Hobbie, Catherin; Ksenik, Eugen; Lange, Caroline; Sasaki, Kaname; Schlotterer, Markus; Talapina, Maria; Termtanasombat, Nawarat; Wejmo, Elisabet; Witte, Lars; Wrasmann, Michael; Wübbels, Guido; Rößler, Johannes; Ziach, Christian; Findlay, Ross; Biele, Jens; Krause, Christian; Ulamec, Stephan; Lange, Michael; Mierheim, Olaf; Lichtenheldt, Roy; Maier, Maximilian; Reill, Josef; Sedlmayr, Hans-Jürgen; Bousquet, Pierre; Bellion, Anthony; Bompis, Olivier; Cenac-Morthe, Celine; Deleuze, Muriel; Fredon, Stephane; Jurado, Eric; Canalias, Elisabet; Jaumann, Ralf; Bibring, Jean-Pierre; Glassmeier, Karl Heinz; Hercik, David; Grott, Matthias; Celotti, Luca; Cordero, Federico; Hendrikse, Jeffrey; Okada, Tatsuaki

    2017-07-01

    On December 3rd, 2014, the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) launched successfully the Hayabusa2 (HY2) spacecraft to its journey to Near Earth asteroid (162173) Ryugu. Aboard this spacecraft is a compact landing package, MASCOT (Mobile Asteroid surface SCOuT), which was developed by the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) in collaboration with the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES). Similar to the famous predecessor mission Hayabusa, Hayabusa2, will also study an asteroid and return samples to Earth. This time, however, the target is a C-type asteroid which is considered to be more primitive than (25143) Itokawa and provide insight into an even earlier stage of our Solar System.

  5. Preliminary Examination of Particles Recovered from the Surface of the Asteroid Itokawa by the Hayabusa Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuchiyama, A.; Ebihara, M.; Kimura, M.; Kitajima, F.; Kotsugi, M.; Ito, S.; Nagao, K.; Nakamura, T.; Naraoka, H.; Noguchi, T.; hide

    2011-01-01

    The Hayabusa spacecraft arrived at S-type Asteroid 25143 Itokawa in November 2006, and reveal astounding features of the small asteroid (535 x 294 x 209 m). Near-infrared spectral shape indicates that the surface of this body has an olivinerich mineral assemblage potentially similar to that of LL5 or LL6 chondrites with different degrees of space weathering. Based on the surface morphological features observed in high-resolution images of Itokawa s surface, two major types of boulders were distinguished: rounded and angular boulders. Rounded boulders seem to be breccias, while angular boulders seem to have severe impact origin. Although the sample collection did not be made by normal operations, it was considered that some amount of samples, probably small particles of regolith, was collected from MUSES-C regio on the Itokawa s surface. The sample capsule was successfully recovered on the earth on June 13, 2010, and was opened at curation facility of JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency), Sagamihara, Japan. A large number of small particles were found in the sample container. Preliminary analysis with SEM/EDX at the curation facility showed that at least more than 1500 grains were identified as rocky particles, and most of them were judged to be of extraterrestrial origin, and definitely from Asteroid Itokawa. Minerals (olivine, low-Ca pyroxene, high-Ca pyroxene, plagioclase, Fe sulfide, Fe-Ni metal, chromite, Ca phosphate), roughly estimated mode the minerals and rough measurement of the chemical compositions of the silicates show that these particles are roughly similar to LL chondrites. Although their size are mostly less than 10 m, some larger particles of about 100 m or larger were also identified. A part of the sample (probably several tens particles) will be selected by Hayabusa sample curation team and examined preliminary in Japan within one year after the sample recovery in prior to detailed analysis phase. Hayabusa Asteroidal Sample Preliminary

  6. Initial inflight calibration for Hayabusa2 optical navigation camera (ONC) for science observations of asteroid Ryugu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, H.; Yamada, M.; Kouyama, T.; Tatsumi, E.; Kameda, S.; Honda, R.; Sawada, H.; Ogawa, N.; Morota, T.; Honda, C.; Sakatani, N.; Hayakawa, M.; Yokota, Y.; Yamamoto, Y.; Sugita, S.

    2018-01-01

    Hayabusa2, the first sample return mission to a C-type asteroid was launched by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) on December 3, 2014 and will arrive at the asteroid in the middle of 2018 to collect samples from its surface, which may contain both hydrated minerals and organics. The optical navigation camera (ONC) system on board the Hayabusa2 consists of three individual framing CCD cameras, ONC-T for a telescopic nadir view, ONC-W1 for a wide-angle nadir view, and ONC-W2 for a wide-angle slant view will be used to observe the surface of Ryugu. The cameras will be used to measure the global asteroid shape, local morphologies, and visible spectroscopic properties. Thus, image data obtained by ONC will provide essential information to select landing (sampling) sites on the asteroid. This study reports the results of initial inflight calibration based on observations of Earth, Mars, Moon, and stars to verify and characterize the optical performance of the ONC, such as flat-field sensitivity, spectral sensitivity, point-spread function (PSF), distortion, and stray light of ONC-T, and distortion for ONC-W1 and W2. We found some potential problems that may influence our science observations. This includes changes in sensitivity of flat fields for all bands from those that were measured in the pre-flight calibration and existence of a stray light that arises under certain conditions of spacecraft attitude with respect to the sun. The countermeasures for these problems were evaluated by using data obtained during initial in-flight calibration. The results of our inflight calibration indicate that the error of spectroscopic measurements around 0.7 μm using 0.55, 0.70, and 0.86 μm bands of the ONC-T can be lower than 0.7% after these countermeasures and pixel binning. This result suggests that our ONC-T would be able to detect typical strength (∼3%) of the serpentine absorption band often found on CM chondrites and low albedo asteroids with ≥ 4

  7. Rotational Characterization of Hayabusa II Target Asteroid (162173) 1999 JU3

    OpenAIRE

    Moskovitz, Nicholas; Abe, Shinsuke; Pan, Kang-Shian; Osip, David; Pefkou, Dimitra; Melita, Mario; Elias, Mauro; Kitazato, Kohei; Bus, Schelte; DeMeo, Francesca; Binzel, Richard; Abell, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The Japanese Space Agency's Hayabusa II mission is scheduled to rendezvous with and return a sample from the near-Earth asteroid (162173) 1999 JU3. Previous visible-wavelength spectra of this object show significant variability across multiple epochs which could be the result of a compositionally heterogeneous surface. We present new visible and near-infrared spectra to demonstrate that thermally altered carbonaceous chondrites are plausible compositional analogs, however this is a tentative ...

  8. Oxygen and Magnesium Isotopic Compositions of Asteroidal Materials Returned from Itokawa by the Hayabusa Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yurimoto, H; Abe, M.; Ebihara, M.; Fujimura, A.; Hashizume, K.; Ireland, T. R.; Itoh, S.; Kawaguchi, K.; Kitajima, F.; Mukai, T.; hide

    2011-01-01

    The Hayabusa spacecraft made two touchdowns on the surface of Asteroid 25143 Itokawa on November 20th and 26th, 2005. The Asteroid 25143 Itokawa is classified as an S-type asteroid and inferred to consist of materials similar to ordinary chondrites or primitive achondrites [1]. Near-infrared spectroscopy by the Hayabusa spacecraft proposed that the surface of this body has an olivine-rich mineral assemblage potentially similar to that of LL5 or LL6 chondrites with different degrees of space weathering [2]. The spacecraft made the reentry into the Earth s atmosphere on June 12th, 2010 and the sample capsule was successfully recovered in Australia on June 13th, 2010. Although the sample collection processes on the Itokawa surface had not been made by the designed operations, more than 1,500 grains were identified as rocky particles in the sample curation facility of JAXA, and most of them were judged to be of extraterrestrial origin, and definitely from Asteroid Itokawa on November 17th, 2010 [3]. Although their sizes are mostly less than 10 microns, some larger grains of about 100 microns or larger were also included. The mineral assembly is olivine, pyroxene, plagioclase, iron sulfide and iron metal. The mean mineral compositions are consistent with the results of near-infrared spectroscopy from Hayabusa spacecraft [2], but the variations suggest that the petrologic type may be smaller than the spectroscopic results. Several tens of grains of relatively large sizes among the 1,500 grains will be selected by the Hayabusa sample curation team for preliminary examination [4]. Each grain will be subjected to one set of preliminary examinations, i.e., micro-tomography, XRD, XRF, TEM, SEM, EPMA and SIMS in this sequence. The preliminary examination will start from the last week of January 2011. Therefore, samples for isotope analyses in this study will start from the last week of February 2011. By the time of the LPSC meeting we will have measured the oxygen and

  9. Hayabusa Asteroidal Sample Preliminary Examination Team (HASPET) and the Astromaterial Curation Facility at JAXA/ISAS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yano, H.; Fujiwara, A.

    After the successful launch in May 2003, the Hayabusa (MUSES-C) mission of JAXA/ISAS will collect surface materials (e.g., regolith) of several hundred mg to several g in total from the S-type near Earth asteroid (25143) Itokawa in late 2005 and bring them back to ground laboratories in the summer of 2007. The retrieved samples will be given initial analysis at the JAXA/ISAS astromaterial curation facility, which is currently in the preparation for its construction, by the Hayabusa Asteroidal Sample Preliminary Examination Team (HASPET). HASPET is consisted of the ISAS Hayabusa team, the international partners from NASA and Australia and all-Japan meteoritic scientists to be selected as outsourcing parts of the initial analyses. The initial analysis to characterize general aspects of returned samples can consume only 15 % of its total mass and must complete the whole analyses including the database building before international AO for detailed analyses within the maximum of 1 year. Confident exercise of non-destructive, micro-analyses whenever possible are thus vital for the HASPET analysis. In the purpose to survey what kinds and levels of micro-analysis techniques in respective fields, from major elements and mineralogy to trace and isotopic elements and organics, are available in Japan at present, ISAS has conducted the HASPET open competitions in 2000-01 and 2004. The initial evaluation was made by multiple domestic peer reviews. Applicants were then provided two kinds of unknown asteroid sample analogs in order to conduct proposed analysis with self-claimed amount of samples in self-claimed duration. After the completion of multiple, international peer reviews, the Selection Committee compiled evaluations and recommended the finalists of each round. The final members of the HASPET will be appointed about 2 years prior to the Earth return. Then they will conduct a test-run of the whole initial analysis procedures at the ISAS astromaterial curation facility and

  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. Hayabusa2 NIRS3’s Investigation to Characterize and Select Sampling and Landing Sites on Asteroid (25143) Ryugu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takir, Driss; Hibbitts, Charles A.; Le Corre, Lucille; Emery, Joshua P.; Kitazato, Kohei; Sugita, Seiji; Nakauchi, Yusuke

    2017-10-01

    Following the visit of the spacecraft Hayabusa to (25143) Itokawa in 2005, the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) launched a second spacecraft, Hayabusa2, in 2014 to the near-Earth Apollo asteroid (162173) Ryugu, a C-complex asteroid. Hayabusa2 will arrive at Ryugu in 2018. Near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) are important objects to study because of their possible role in the delivery of water and complex organic molecules to early Earth, and their threats to impact the Earth at irregular and unpredictable periods in the future. Hayabusa2 mission will provide exceptional science with a primary objective to illuminate the origin, evolution, and distribution of volatiles and organics on the surface of Ryugu and in the Solar System. Here we present our Near Infrared Spectrometer(NIRS3)-related strategy and plan to help the science team to characterize and select sampling and landing sites to collect carbonaceous samples from Ryugu and bring them back to Earth in 2020. Our plan includes, (1) measuring spectra of various carbonaceous chondrites and end-member hydrated silicates under asteroid-like conditions (vacuum and elevated temperatures) to develop spectral parameters of minerals and chemical compounds that we expect to detect on Ryugu, particularly around 2.8 to 3.2 µm, and (2) thermally and photometrically correcting Ryugu’s spectra to create site-specific and global maps of the mineralogical and chemical relative abundances across Ryugu’s surface, in addition to creating various albedo maps, including the geometric and bolometric Bond albedo. Previous 3-µm spectroscopic studies were conducted in ambient terrestrial environments, and hence were contaminated by atmospheric water. In our work, however, chondrite reflectance and hydrated mineral spectra are measured under asteroid-like conditions to remove adsorbed water and accurately compute the spectral parameters that will be used for Ryugu’s mineralogical and chemical mapping.AcknowledgementsWe wish to thank the

  12. Three Dimensional Structures of Particles Recovered from the Asteroid Itokawa by the Hayabusa Mission and a Role of X-Ray Microtomography in the Preliminary Examination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuchiyama, A.; Uesugi, M.; Uesugi, K.; Nakano, T.; Nakamura, T.; Noguchi, T.; Noguchi, R.; Matsumoto, T.; Matsuno, J.; Nagano, T.; hide

    2011-01-01

    Particles of regolith on S-type Asteroid 25143 Itokawa were successfully recovered by the Hayabusa mission of JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency). Near-infrared spectral study of Itokawa s surface indicates that these particles are materials similar to LL5 or LL6 chondrites. High-resolution images of Itokawa's surface suggest that they may be breccias and some impact products. At least more than 1500 particles were identified as Itokawa origin at curation facility of JAXA. Preliminary analysis with SEM/EDX at the curation facility shows that they are roughly similar to LL chondrites. Although most of them are less than 10 micron in size, some larger particles of about 100 micron or larger were also identified. A part of the sample (probably several tens particles) will be selected by Hayabusa sample curation team, and sequential examination will start from January 2011 by Hayabusa Asteroidal Sample Preliminary Examination Team (HASPET). In mainstream of the analytical flow, each particle will be examined by microtomography, XRD and XRF first as nondestructive analyses, and then the particle will be cut by an ultra-microtome and examined by TEM, SEM, EPMA, SIMS, PEEM/XANES, and TOF-SIMS sequentially. Three-dimensional structures of Itokawa particles will be obtained by microtomography sub-team of HASPET. The results together with XRD and XRF will be used for design of later destructive analyses, such as determination of cutting direction and depth, to obtain as much information as possible from small particles. Scientific results and a role of the microtomography in the preliminary examination will be presented.

  13. The Camera of the MASCOT Asteroid Lander on Board Hayabusa 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaumann, R.; Schmitz, N.; Koncz, A.; Michaelis, H.; Schroeder, S. E.; Mottola, S.; Trauthan, F.; Hoffmann, H.; Roatsch, T.; Jobs, D.; Kachlicki, J.; Pforte, B.; Terzer, R.; Tschentscher, M.; Weisse, S.; Mueller, U.; Perez-Prieto, L.; Broll, B.; Kruselburger, A.; Ho, T.-M.; Biele, J.; Ulamec, S.; Krause, C.; Grott, M.; Bibring, J.-P.; Watanabe, S.; Sugita, S.; Okada, T.; Yoshikawa, M.; Yabuta, H.

    2017-07-01

    The MASCOT Camera (MasCam) is part of the Mobile Asteroid Surface Scout (MASCOT) lander's science payload. MASCOT has been launched to asteroid (162173) Ryugu onboard JAXA's Hayabusa 2 asteroid sample return mission on Dec 3rd, 2014. It is scheduled to arrive at Ryugu in 2018, and return samples to Earth by 2020. MasCam was designed and built by DLR's Institute of Planetary Research, together with Airbus-DS Germany. The scientific goals of the MasCam investigation are to provide ground truth for the orbiter's remote sensing observations, provide context for measurements by the other lander instruments (radiometer, spectrometer and magnetometer), the orbiter sampling experiment, and characterize the geological context, compositional variations and physical properties of the surface (e.g. rock and regolith particle size distributions). During daytime, clear filter images will be acquired. During night, illumination of the dark surface is performed by an LED array, equipped with 4×36 monochromatic light-emitting diodes (LEDs) working in four spectral bands. Color imaging will allow the identification of spectrally distinct surface units. Continued imaging during the surface mission phase and the acquisition of image series at different sun angles over the course of an asteroid day will contribute to the physical characterization of the surface and also allow the investigation of time-dependent processes and to determine the photometric properties of the regolith. The MasCam observations, combined with the MASCOT hyperspectral microscope (MMEGA) and radiometer (MARA) thermal observations, will cover a wide range of observational scales and serve as a strong tie point between Hayabusa 2's remote-sensing scales (103-10^{-3} m) and sample scales (10^{-3}-10^{-6} m). The descent sequence and the close-up images will reveal the surface features over a broad range of scales, allowing an assessment of the surface's diversity and close the gap between the orbital observations

  14. Performance of Hayabusa2 DCAM3-D Camera for Short-Range Imaging of SCI and Ejecta Curtain Generated from the Artificial Impact Crater Formed on Asteroid 162137 Ryugu (1999 JU3)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishibashi, K.; Shirai, K.; Ogawa, K.; Wada, K.; Honda, R.; Arakawa, M.; Sakatani, N.; Ikeda, Y.

    2017-07-01

    Deployable Camera 3-D (DCAM3-D) is a small high-resolution camera equipped on Deployable Camera 3 (DCAM3), one of the Hayabusa2 instruments. Hayabusa2 will explore asteroid 162137 Ryugu (1999 JU3) and conduct an impact experiment using a liner shooting device called Small Carry-on Impactor (SCI). DCAM3 will be detached from the Hayabusa2 spacecraft and observe the impact experiment. The purposes of the observation are to know the impact conditions, to estimate the surface structure of asteroid Ryugu, and to understand the physics of impact phenomena on low-gravity bodies. DCAM3-D requires high imaging performance because it has to image and detect multiple targets of different scale and radiance, i.e., the faint SCI before the shot from 1-km distance, the bright ejecta generated by the impact, and the asteroid. In this paper we report the evaluation of the performance of the CMOS imaging sensor and the optical system of DCAM3-D. We also describe the calibration of DCAM3-D. We confirmed that the imaging performance of DCAM3-D satisfies the required values to achieve the purposes of the observation.

  15. Ground-based characterization of Hayabusa2 mission target asteroid 162173 Ryugu: constraining mineralogical composition in preparation for spacecraft operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Corre, Lucille; Sanchez, Juan A.; Reddy, Vishnu; Takir, Driss; Cloutis, Edward A.; Thirouin, Audrey; Becker, Kris J.; Li, Jian-Yang; Sugita, Seiji; Tatsumi, Eri

    2018-03-01

    Asteroids that are targets of spacecraft missions are interesting because they present us with an opportunity to validate ground-based spectral observations. One such object is near-Earth asteroid (NEA) (162173) Ryugu, which is the target of the Japanese Space Agency's (JAXA) Hayabusa2 sample return mission. We observed Ryugu using the 3-m NASA Infrared Telescope Facility on Mauna Kea, Hawaii, on 2016 July 13 to constrain the object's surface composition, meteorite analogues, and link to other asteroids in the main belt and NEA populations. We also modelled its photometric properties using archival data. Using the Lommel-Seeliger model we computed the predicted flux for Ryugu at a wide range of viewing geometries as well as albedo quantities such as geometric albedo, phase integral, and spherical Bond albedo. Our computed albedo quantities are consistent with results from Ishiguro et al. Our spectral analysis has found a near-perfect match between our spectrum of Ryugu and those of NEA (85275) 1994 LY and Mars-crossing asteroid (316720) 1998 BE7, suggesting that their surface regoliths have similar composition. We compared Ryugu's spectrum with that of main belt asteroid (302) Clarissa, the largest asteroid in the Clarissa asteroid family, suggested as a possible source of Ryugu by Campins et al. We found that the spectrum of Clarissa shows significant differences with our spectrum of Ryugu, but it is similar to the spectrum obtained by Moskovitz et al. The best possible meteorite analogues for our spectrum of Ryugu are two CM2 carbonaceous chondrites, Mighei and ALH83100.

  16. Characterization of the Surface Properties of MUSES-C/Hayabusa Spacecraft Target Asteroid 25143 Itokawa (1998 SF36)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lederer, S. M.; Domingue, D. L.; Vilas, F.; Abe, M.; Farnham, T. L.; Jarvis, K. S.; Lowry, S. C.; Ohba, Y.; Weissman, P. R.; French, L. M.

    2004-01-01

    Several spacecraft missions have recently targeted asteroids to study their morphologies and physical properties (e.g. Galileo, NEAR Shoemaker), and more are planned. MUSES-C is a Japanese mission designed to rendezvous with a near-Earth asteroid (NEA). The MUSES-C spacecraft, Hayabusa, was launched successfully in May 2003. It will rendezvous with its target asteroid in 2005, and return samples to the Earth in 2007. Its target, 25143 Itokawa (1998 SF36), made a close approach to the Earth in 2001. We collected an extensive ground-based database of broadband photometry obtained during this time, which maximized the phase angle coverage, to characterize this target in preparation for the mission. Our project was designed to capitalize on the broadband UBVRI photometric observations taken with a series of telescopes, instrumentation, and observers. Photometry and spectrophotometry of Itokawa were acquired at Lowell, McDonald, Steward, Palomar, Table Mountain and Kiso Observatories. The photometric data sets were combined to calculate Hapke model parameters of the surface material of Itokawa, and examine the solar-corrected broadband color characteristics of the asteroid. Broadband photometry of an object can be used to: (1) determine its colors and thereby contribute to the understanding of its surface composition and taxonomic class, and (2) infer global physical surface properties of the target body. We present both colors from UBVRI observations of the MUSES-C target Itokawa, and physical properties derived by applying a Hapke model to the broadband BVRI photometry.

  17. 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.

  18. Hayabusa2 Sample Catcher and Container: Metal-Seal System for Vacuum Encapsulation of Returned Samples with Volatiles and Organic Compounds Recovered from C-Type Asteroid Ryugu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okazaki, Ryuji; Sawada, Hirotaka; Yamanouchi, Shinji; Tachibana, Shogo; Miura, Yayoi N.; Sakamoto, Kanako; Takano, Yoshinori; Abe, Masanao; Itoh, Shoichi; Yamada, Keita; Yabuta, Hikaru; Okamoto, Chisato; Yano, Hajime; Noguchi, Takaaki; Nakamura, Tomoki; Nagao, Keisuke

    2017-07-01

    The spacecraft Hayabusa2 was launched on December 3, 2014, to collect and return samples from a C-type asteroid, 162173 Ryugu (provisional designation, 1999 JU3). It is expected that the samples collected contain organic matter and water-bearing minerals and have key information to elucidate the origin and history of the Solar System and the evolution of bio-related organics prior to delivery to the early Earth. In order to obtain samples with volatile species without terrestrial contamination, based on lessons learned from the Hayabusa mission, the sample catcher and container of Hayabusa2 were refined from those used in Hayabusa. The improvements include (1) a mirror finish of the inner wall surface of the sample catcher and the container, (2) adoption of an aluminum metal sealing system, and (3) addition of a gas-sampling interface for gas collection and evacuation. The former two improvements were made to limit contamination of the samples by terrestrial atmosphere below 1 Pa after the container is sealed. The gas-sampling interface will be used to promptly collect volatile species released from the samples in the sample container after sealing of the container. These improvements maintain the value of the returned samples.

  19. Neutron activation analysis of small particles brought back from the asteroid Itokawa by the space probe Hayabusa

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ebihara, Mitsuru

    2013-01-01

    The probe in the title launched in May 2003, landed on the asteroid 25143 (Itokawa) to collect the surface material, and returned to the desert of Australia in June 2010. The material carried in Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) was found to be >1,500 particles of extraterrestrial origin. This paper reports the results of activation analysis of a part of particles for the purpose of characterizing the elemental composition. The size of particles was mostly <100 mc-m and the mass, several 10s mc-g. The experiment was performed preliminarily on Kilabo meteorite using Kyoto University Research Reactor (KURR) as a neutron source, and then on 1 Itokawa particle named RA-QD02-0049, which was activated for 19 hr. The cooled particle was found to be split mainly in 2 parts (0049-1 and -2), which were subjected to analysis of gamma ray with Ge semiconductor detector in the KURR Institute and Kanazawa University. Analysis revealed that the 2 particles contained 8 elements of Na, Sc, Cr, Fe, Co, Ni, Zn and Ir, which were then quantitated with similarly neutron irradiated Allende meteorite, basalt JB-1 and highly purified Fe, and with previous findings by scanning electron microscope with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometer (SEM-EDX) showing the Itokawa particle was an olivine. Finally, 0049-1 and -2 were found to be of mass of 1.6 and 1.5 mc-g, respectively, based on which the calculated contents of the 8 elements revealed that they were homogeneously existed in the Itokawa particle. Comparison of elemental composition of the particle with those of various intra- and extra-terrestrial rocks and meteorites suggested that Itokawa had a feature of elements aggregated at the early stage after formation of the solar system 4.5 billion years ago. (T.T.)

  20. A Transmission Electron Microscope Investigation of Space Weathering Effects in Hayabusa Samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Lindsay P.; Berger, Eve L.

    2014-01-01

    The Hayabusa mission to asteroid 25143 Itokawa successfully returned the first direct samples of the regolith from the surface of an asteroid. The Hayabusa samples thus present a special opportunity to directly investigate the evolution of asteroidal surfaces, from the development of the regolith to the study of the more complex effects of space weathering. Here we describe the mineralogy, microstructure and composition of three Hayabusa mission particles using transmission electron microscope (TEM) techniques

  1. Heavy Metal - Exploring a magnetised metallic asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wahlund, J.-E.; Andrews, D. J.

    2017-09-01

    We propose an ESA/M5 spacecraft mission to orbit and explore (16) Psyche - the largest M-class metallic asteroid in the main belt. Recent estimates of the shape, 279×232×189 km and mass, 2.7×1019 kg of (16) Psyche make it one of the largest and densest of asteroids, 4.5 g cm-3, and together with the high surface radar reflectivity and the spectral data measured from Earth it is consistent with a bulk composition rich in iron-nickel. (16) Psyche orbits the Sun with semi-major axis 2.9 AU, 3º inclination, and is as yet unexplored in-situ.

  2. The Hayabusa Curation Facility at Johnson Space Center

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, M.; Bastien, R.; McCann, B.; Frank, D.; Gonzalez, C.; Rodriguez, M.

    2013-01-01

    The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Hayabusa spacecraft made contact with the asteroid 25143 Itokawa and collected regolith dust from Muses Sea region of smooth terrain [1]. The spacecraft returned to Earth with more than 10,000 grains ranging in size from just over 300 µm to less than 10 µm [2, 3]. These grains represent the only collection of material returned from an asteroid by a spacecraft. As part of the joint agreement between JAXA and NASA for the mission, 10% of the Hayabusa grains are being transferred to NASA for parallel curation and allocation. In order to properly receive process and curate these samples, a new curation facility was established at Johnson Space Center (JSC). Since the Hayabusa samples within the JAXA curation facility have been stored free from exposure to terrestrial atmosphere and contamination [4], one of the goals of the new NASA curation facility was to continue this treatment. An existing lab space at JSC was transformed into a 120 sq.ft. ISO class 4 (equivalent to the original class 10 standard) clean room. Hayabusa samples are stored, observed, processed, and packaged for allocation inside a stainless steel glove box under dry N2. Construction of the clean laboratory was completed in 2012. Currently, 25 Itokawa particles are lodged in NASA's Hayabusa Lab. Special care has been taken during lab construction to remove or contain materials that may contribute contaminant particles in the same size range as the Hayabusa grains. Several witness plates of various materials are installed around the clean lab and within the glove box to permit characterization of local contaminants at regular intervals by SEM and mass spectrometry, and particle counts of the lab environment are frequently acquired. Of particular interest is anodized aluminum, which contains copious sub-mm grains of a multitude of different materials embedded in its upper surface. Unfortunately the use of anodized aluminum was necessary in the construction

  3. 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.

  4. The Nature of C Asteroid Regolith from Meteorite Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, M.; Mikouchi, T.; Hagiya, K.; Ohsumi, K.; Komatsu, M.; Jenniskens, P.; Le, L.; Yin, Q.-Z; Kebukawa, Y.; Fries, M.

    2013-01-01

    Regolith from C (and related) asteroid bodies are a focus of the current missions Dawn at Ceres, Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS REx. An asteroid as large as Ceres is expected to be covered by a mature regolith, and as Hayabusa demonstrated, flat and therefore engineeringly-safe ponded deposits will probably be the sampling sites for both Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS REx. Here we examine what we have learned about the mineralogy of fine-grained asteroid regolith from recent meteorite studies and the examination of the samples harvested from asteroid Itokawa by Hayabusa.

  5. 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...

  6. Exploration of the Moon and Asteroids by Secondary Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaner, A. J.; Bakerman, M. N.; Buxner, S.

    2016-12-01

    Since 2014, the Exploration of the Moon and Asteroids by Secondary Students, or ExMASS, program provides an opportunity for students to participate in authentic scientific research. The ExMASS program is an effort managed by the Center for Lunar Science and Exploration (CLSE). Led by the Lunar and Planetary Institute and Johnson Space Center, CLSE is one of nine teams comprising NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI). Over the course of one academic year, 10 teams of U.S. high school students conduct their own scientific investigations of Earth's Moon, or asteroids, with guidance from a scientist advisor. The program includes two elements: 1) two guided-inquiry introductory research activities that builds student knowledge of current lunar/asteroid science and lunar/asteroid data, and 2) an open-inquiry research project in which the students apply their knowledge to a self-defined project. Because the research is student-driven, it is not necessarily original research; original research is therefore not required. However, one team's research has been published in a professional journal. At the end of the school year, teams submit an abstract and research poster which are scored by a panel a judges. The top four scoring teams gather virtually to give short presentations to the judges. After presentations and time for Q&A, the judges choose one team to present in person at the Exploration Science Forum (ESF). The posters of all finalist schools are displayed at the ESF. The ExMASS program is evaluated by collecting data on changes in students' lunar/asteroid content knowledge, student attitudes toward science and science careers, and student perceptions of the processes of science in which their team participated. Exit surveys for teachers, students, and advisors are also distributed at the end of each program year to gather general feedback about the program and its impact. Results of this data from the first two years of the Ex

  7. International CJMT-1 Workshop on Asteroidal Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ip, Wing-Huen

    2014-03-01

    An international workshop on asteroidal science was held between October 16 and 17, 2012, at the Macau University of Science and Technology gathering together experts on asteroidal study in China, Japan, Macao and Taiwan. For this reason, we have called it CJMT-1 Workshop. Though small in sizes, the asteroids orbiting mainly between the orbit of Mars and of Jupiter have important influence on the evolution of the planetary bodies. Topics ranging from killer asteroids to space resources are frequently mentioned in news reports with prominence similar to the search for water on Mars. This also means that the study of asteroids is very useful in exciting the imagination and interest in science of the general public. Several Asian countries have therefore developed long-term programs integrating ground-based observations and space exploration with Japan being the most advanced and ambitious as demonstrated by the very successful Hayabusa mission to asteroid 25143 Itokawa. In this volume we will find descriptions of the mission planning of Hayabusa II to the C-type near-Earth asteroid, 1999 JU3. Not to be outdone, China's Chang-E 2 spacecraft was re-routed to a flyby encounter with asteroid 4179 Toutatis in December 2012. It is planned that in the next CJMT workshop, we will have the opportunity to learn more about the in-depth data analysis of the Toutatis observations and the progress reports on the Hayabusa II mission which launch date is set to be July 2014. Last but not least, the presentations on the ground-based facilities as described in this volume will pave the way for coordinated observations of asteroidal families and Trojan asteroids - across Asia from Taiwan to Uzbekistan. Such international projects will serve as an important symbol of good will and peaceful cooperation among the key members of this group. Finally, I want to thank the Space Science Institute, Macao University of Science and Technology, for generous support, and its staff members

  8. The Small Carry-on Impactor (SCI) and the Hayabusa2 Impact Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saiki, T.; Imamura, H.; Arakawa, M.; Wada, K.; Takagi, Y.; Hayakawa, M.; Shirai, K.; Yano, H.; Okamoto, C.

    2017-07-01

    Hayabusa2 is a sample return mission of JAXA launched on 3 December 2014. Hayabusa2 is the successor of Hayabusa, which returned samples from the asteroid Itokawa to the Earth. Although the design of Hayabusa2 follows that of Hayabusa, the former is equipped with some new components. The small carry-on impactor (SCI) is one of those components. The SCI is a compact kinetic impactor designed to remove the asteroid surface regolith locally and create an artificial crater. One of the most important scientific objectives of Hayabusa2 is to investigate the chemical and physical properties of the internal materials and structures of the target body, asteroid Ryugu. Hayabusa2 will attempt to observe the resultant crater with some scientific instruments and to get samples from around the crater. High kinetic energy is required to create a meaningful crater, however, the impact system design needs to fit within strict constraints. Complicated functions, such as a guidance and control system, are not permitted. A special type of shaped charge is used for the acceleration of the impactor of the SCI in order to make system simpler. Using this explosion technique makes it possible to accelerate the impactor very quickly and to hit the asteroid without a guidance system. However, the impact operation will be complicated because the explosive is very powerful and it scatters high-speed debris at the detonation. This paper describes an overview of the SCI system, the results of the development testing and an outline of the impact experiment of the Hayabusa2 mission.

  9. Strategic Implications of Human Exploration of Near-Earth Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Bret G.

    2011-01-01

    The current United States Space Policy [1] as articulated by the White House and later confirmed by the Congress [2] calls for [t]he extension of the human presence from low-Earth orbit to other regions of space beyond low-Earth orbit will enable missions to the surface of the Moon and missions to deep space destinations such as near-Earth asteroids and Mars. Human exploration of the Moon and Mars has been the focus of numerous exhaustive studies and planning, but missions to Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs) has, by comparison, garnered relatively little attention in terms of mission and systems planning. This paper examines the strategic implications of human exploration of NEAs and how they can fit into the overall exploration strategy. This paper specifically addresses how accessible NEAs are in terms of mission duration, technologies required, and overall architecture construct. Example mission architectures utilizing different propulsion technologies such as chemical, nuclear thermal, and solar electric propulsion were formulated to determine resulting figures of merit including number of NEAs accessible, time of flight, mission mass, number of departure windows, and length of the launch windows. These data, in conjunction with what we currently know about these potential exploration targets (or need to know in the future), provide key insights necessary for future mission and strategic planning.

  10. The Nature of C Asteroid Regolith Revealed from the Jbilet Winselwan CM Chondrite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, Michael; Mikouchi, Takashi; Hagiya, Kenji; Ohsumi, Kazumasa; Komatsu, Mutsumi; Chan, Queenie H. S.; Le, Loan; Kring, David; Cato, Michael; Fagan, Amy L.

    2016-01-01

    C-class asteroids frequently exhibit reflectance spectra consistent with thermally metamorphosed carbonaceous chondrites, or a mixture of phyllosilicate-rich material along with regions where they are absent. One particularly important example appears to be asteroid 162173 Ryugu, the target of the Hayabusa 2 mission, although most spectra of Ryugu are featureless, suggesting a heterogeneous regolith. Here we explore an alternative cause of dehydration of regolith of C-class asteroids - impact shock melting. Impact shock melting has been proposed to ex-plain some mineralogical characteristics of CB chondrites, but has rarely been considered a major process for hydrous carbonaceous chondrites.

  11. Advances in Small Particle Handling of Astromaterials in Preparation for OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa2: Initial Developments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snead, C. J.; McCubbin, F. M.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Righter, K.

    2018-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation office at NASA Johnson Space Center has established an Advanced Curation program that is tasked with developing procedures, technologies, and data sets necessary for the curation of future astromaterials collections as envisioned by NASA exploration goals. One particular objective of the Advanced Curation program is the development of new methods for the collection, storage, handling and characterization of small (less than 100 micrometer) particles. Astromaterials Curation currently maintains four small particle collections: Cosmic Dust that has been collected in Earth's stratosphere by ER2 and WB-57 aircraft, Comet 81P/Wild 2 dust returned by NASA's Stardust spacecraft, interstellar dust that was returned by Stardust, and asteroid Itokawa particles that were returned by the JAXA's Hayabusa spacecraft. NASA Curation is currently preparing for the anticipated return of two new astromaterials collections - asteroid Ryugu regolith to be collected by Hayabusa2 spacecraft in 2021 (samples will be provided by JAXA as part of an international agreement), and asteroid Bennu regolith to be collected by the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft and returned in 2023. A substantial portion of these returned samples are expected to consist of small particle components, and mission requirements necessitate the development of new processing tools and methods in order to maximize the scientific yield from these valuable acquisitions. Here we describe initial progress towards the development of applicable sample handling methods for the successful curation of future small particle collections.

  12. A Method of Trajectory Design for Manned Asteroids Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gan, Q. B.; Zhang, Y.; Zhu, Z. F.; Han, W. H.; Dong, X.

    2014-11-01

    A trajectory optimization method of the nuclear propulsion manned asteroids exploration is presented. In the case of launching between 2035 and 2065, based on the Lambert transfer orbit, the phases of departure from and return to the Earth are searched at first. Then the optimal flight trajectory in the feasible regions is selected by pruning the flight sequences. Setting the nuclear propulsion flight plan as propel-coast-propel, and taking the minimal mass of aircraft departure as the index, the nuclear propulsion flight trajectory is separately optimized using a hybrid method. With the initial value of the optimized local parameters of each three phases, the global parameters are jointedly optimized. At last, the minimal departure mass trajectory design result is given.

  13. 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

  14. Recovery, Transportation and Acceptance to the Curation Facility of the Hayabusa Re-Entry Capsule

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abe, M.; Fujimura, A.; Yano, H.; Okamoto, C.; Okada, T.; Yada, T.; Ishibashi, Y.; Shirai, K.; Nakamura, T.; Noguchi, T.; hide

    2011-01-01

    The "Hayabusa" re-entry capsule was safely carried into the clean room of Sagamihara Planetary Sample Curation Facility in JAXA on June 18, 2010. After executing computed tomographic (CT) scanning, removal of heat shield, and surface cleaning of sample container, the sample container was enclosed into the clean chamber. After opening the sample container and residual gas sampling in the clean chamber, optical observation, sample recovery, sample separation for initial analysis will be performed. This curation work is continuing for several manths with some selected member of Hayabusa Asteroidal Sample Preliminary Examination Team (HASPET). We report here on the 'Hayabusa' capsule recovery operation, and transportation and acceptance at the curation facility of the Hayabusa re-entry capsule.

  15. THE ORIGIN OF ASTEROID 162173 (1999 JU3)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campins, Humberto; De León, Julia; Morbidelli, Alessandro; Gayon-Markt, Julie; Delbo, Marco; Michel, Patrick; Licandro, Javier

    2013-01-01

    Near-Earth asteroid (162173) 1999 JU 3 (henceforth JU 3 ) is a potentially hazardous asteroid and the target of the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency's Hayabusa-2 sample return mission. JU 3 is also a backup target for two other sample return missions: NASA's OSIRIS-REx and the European Space Agency's Marco Polo-R. We use dynamical information to identify an inner-belt, low-inclination origin through the ν 6 resonance, more specifically, the region with 2.15 AU 3 is 0.07 ± 0.01, and this inner-belt region contains four well-defined low-albedo asteroid families (Clarissa, Erigone, Polana, and Sulamitis), plus a recently identified background population of low-albedo asteroids outside these families. Only two of these five groups, the background and the Polana family, deliver JU 3 -sized asteroids to the ν 6 resonance, and the background delivers significantly more JU 3 -sized asteroids. The available spectral evidence is also diagnostic; the visible and near-infrared spectra of JU 3 indicate it is a C-type asteroid, which is compatible with members of the background, but not with the Polana family because it contains primarily B-type asteroids. Hence, this background population of low-albedo asteroids is the most likely source of JU 3

  16. Desert RATS 2011: Near-Earth Asteroid Human Exploration Operations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abercromby, Andrew; Gernhardt, Michael L.; Chappel, Steve

    2012-01-01

    The Desert Research and Technology Studies (D-RATS) 2011 field test involved the planning and execution of a series of exploration scenarios under operational conditions similar to those that would be expected during a human exploration mission to a near-Earth asteroid (NEA). The focus was on understanding the operations tempo during simulated NEA exploration and the implications of communications latency and limited data bandwidth. Anchoring technologies and sampling techniques were not evaluated due to the immaturity of those technologies and the inability to meaningfully test them at D-RATS. Reduced gravity analogs and simulations are being used to fully evaluate Multi-Mission Space Exploration Vehicle (MMSEV) and extravehicular (EVA) operations and interactions in near-weightlessness at a NEA as part of NASA s integrated analogs program. Hypotheses were tested by planning and performing a series of 1-day simulated exploration excursions comparing test conditions all of which involved a single Deep Space Habitat (DSH) and either zero, one, or two MMSEVs; three or four crewmembers; one of two different communications bandwidths; and a 100-second roundtrip communications latency between the field site and Houston. Excursions were executed at the Black Point Lava Flow test site with a Mission Control Center and Science Support Room at Johnson Space Center (JSC) being operated with 100-second roundtrip communication latency to the field. Crews were composed of astronauts and professional field geologists and teams of Mission Operations, Science, and Education & Public Outreach (EPO) experts also supported the mission simulations each day. Data were collected separately from the Crew, Mission Operations, Science, and EPO teams to assess the test conditions from multiple perspectives. For the operations tested, data indicates practically significant benefits may be realized by including at least one MMSEV and by including 4 versus 3 crewmembers in the NEA exploration

  17. Numerical simulations of surface package landing on a low-gravity granular surface: application to the landing of MASCOT onboard HAYABUSA 2

    OpenAIRE

    Thuillet, F.; Maurel, C.; Michel, P.; Biele, Jens; Ballouz, Ronald; Richardson, D. C.

    2017-01-01

    The asteroid sample return mission, Hayabusa2 JAXA) was launched on December 3rd, 2014. It will reach the C-type near-Earth asteroid (162173) Ryugu in 2018 and bring back samples from its surface to Earth in 2020. Hayabusa2 will release the European (DLR/CNES) lander MASCOT (Mobile Asteroid SCOuT) on the asteroid surface to perform in-situ measurements [1]. Ryugu’s surface is expected to be composed of a gran- ular layer (regolith), whose physical properties are currently unknown. MASCOT’s...

  18. Families of periodic orbits in Hill's problem with solar radiation pressure: application to Hayabusa 2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giancotti, Marco; Campagnola, Stefano; Tsuda, Yuichi; Kawaguchi, Jun'ichiro

    2014-11-01

    This work studies periodic solutions applicable, as an extended phase, to the JAXA asteroid rendezvous mission Hayabusa 2 when it is close to target asteroid 1999 JU3. The motion of a spacecraft close to a small asteroid can be approximated with the equations of Hill's problem modified to account for the strong solar radiation pressure. The identification of families of periodic solutions in such systems is just starting and the field is largely unexplored. We find several periodic orbits using a grid search, then apply numerical continuation and bifurcation theory to a subset of these to explore the changes in the orbit families when the orbital energy is varied. This analysis gives information on their stability and bifurcations. We then compare the various families on the basis of the restrictions and requirements of the specific mission considered, such as the pointing of the solar panels and instruments. We also use information about their resilience against parameter errors and their ground tracks to identify one particularly promising type of solution.

  19. Exploring the collisional evolution of the asteroid belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottke, W.; Broz, M.; O'Brien, D.; Campo Bagatin, A.; Morbidelli, A.

    2014-07-01

    The asteroid belt is a remnant of planet-formation processes. By modeling its collisional and dynamical history, and linking the results to constraints, we can probe how the planets and small bodies formed and evolved. Some key model constraints are: (i) The wavy shape of the main-belt size distribution (SFD), with inflection points near 100-km, 10--20-km, 1 to a few km, and ˜0.1-km diameter; (ii) The number of asteroid families created by the catastrophic breakup of large asteroid bodies over the last ˜ 4 Gy, with the number of disrupted D > 100 km bodies as small as ˜20 or as large as 60; (iii) the flux of small asteroids derived from the main belt that have struck the Moon over the last 3.5 Ga --- crater SFDs on lunar terrains with known ages suggest the D 100 km bodies have been significantly battered, but only a fraction have been catastrophically disrupted. Conversely, most small asteroids today are byproducts of fragmentation events. These results are consistent with growing evidence that most of the prominent meteorite classes were produced by young asteroid families. The big question is how to use what we know to determine the main belt's original size and state. This work is ongoing, but dynamical models hint at many possibilities, including both the late arrival and late removal of material from the main belt. In addition, no model has yet properly accounted for the bombardment of the primordial main belt by leftover planetesimals in the terrestrial planet region. It is also possible to use additional constraints, such as the apparent paucity of Vesta-like or V-type objects in the outer main belt, to argue that the primordial main belt at best only 3--4 its current mass at its start. In our talk, we will review what is known, what has been predicted, and some intriguing directions for the future.

  20. NASA's Asteroid Redirect Mission: The Boulder Capture Option

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Paul A.; Nuth, J.; Mazanek, D.; Merrill, R.; Reeves, D.; Naasz, B.

    2014-01-01

    NASA is examining two options for the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), which will return asteroid material to a Lunar Distant Retrograde Orbit (LDRO) using a robotic solar-electric-propulsion spacecraft, called the Asteroid Redirect Vehicle (ARV). Once the ARV places the asteroid material into the LDRO, a piloted mission will rendezvous and dock with the ARV. After docking, astronauts will conduct two extravehicular activities (EVAs) to inspect and sample the asteroid material before returning to Earth. One option involves capturing an entire small (approximately 4-10 m diameter) near-Earth asteroid (NEA) inside a large inflatable bag. However, NASA is examining another option that entails retrieving a boulder (approximately 1-5 m) via robotic manipulators from the surface of a larger (approximately 100+ m) pre-characterized NEA. This option can leverage robotic mission data to help ensure success by targeting previously (or soon to be) well-characterized NEAs. For example, the data from the Hayabusa mission has been utilized to develop detailed mission designs that assess options and risks associated with proximity and surface operations. Hayabusa's target NEA, Itokawa, has been identified as a valid target and is known to possess hundreds of appropriately sized boulders on its surface. Further robotic characterization of additional NEAs (e.g., Bennu and 1999 JU3) by NASA's OSIRIS REx and JAXA's Hayabusa 2 missions is planned to begin in 2018. The boulder option is an extremely large sample-return mission with the prospect of bringing back many tons of well-characterized asteroid material to the Earth-Moon system. The candidate boulder from the target NEA can be selected based on inputs from the world-wide science community, ensuring that the most scientifically interesting boulder be returned for subsequent sampling. This boulder option for NASA's ARM can leverage knowledge of previously characterized NEAs from prior robotic missions, which provides more

  1. Near-Earth Asteroids: Destinations for Human Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbee, Brent W.

    2014-01-01

    The Near-Earth Object Human Space Flight Accessible Targets Study (NHATS) is a system that monitors the near-Earth asteroid (NEA) population to identify NEAs whose orbital characteristics may make them potential destinations for future round-trip human space flight missions. To accomplish this monitoring, Brent Barbee (GSFC) developed and automated a system that applies specialized trajectory processing to the orbits of newly discovered NEAs, and those for which we have updated orbit knowledge, obtained from the JPL Small Bodies Database (SBDB). This automated process executes daily and the results are distributed to the general public and the astronomy community. This aids in prioritizing telescope radar time allocations for obtaining crucial follow-up observations of highly accessible NEAs during the critical, because it is often fleeting, time period surrounding the time at which the NEAs are initially discovered.

  2. ANTS/PAM: Future Exploration of the Asteroid Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Curtis, S. A.; Rilee, M. L.; Cheung, C. Y.

    2004-05-01

    The Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm (ANTS) is applied to the Prospecting Asteroid Mission (PAM) concept, as part of a NASA RASC study. The ANTS architecture is inspired by success of social insect colonies, based on the division of labor within the colonies: 1) within their specialties, individual specialists generally outperform general-ists, and 2) with sufficiently efficient social interaction and coordination, the group of specialists generally outper-forms the group of generalists. ANTS as applied to PAM involves a thousand individual specialist `sciencecraft', one subswarm per target, in an environment where detection and tracking of irregular, infrequent targets is a major chal-lenge. Workers, carry and operate eight to nine different scientific instruments, including spectrometers, ranging and radio science devices, imagers. The remaining specialists, Messenger/Rulers, provide communication and coordina-tion. The non-expendable propulsion system is based on autonomously deployable and configurable solar sails, a system suitable to a low gravity environment. The design of the neural basis function requires a minimum of 4 or 5 specialists for collective decision making. Allowing for ten instrument specialist teams and compensating for antici-pated high attrition, we calculate an initial minimum of 100 per subswarm should allow characterization of hundreds of asteroids. The difficulty in observing irregular, rapidly moving, poorly illuminated objects is largely overcome by the ANT sciencecraft capability to optimize conditions for each instrument. Components are composed of carbon nanotubules reversibly deployable from NEMS nodes, allowing 100 times decrease in packaging volume. 1000 smart 10 centimeter, 1 kg cubic boxes create a 1000 kg 1 meter cube.

  3. Human Health and Performance Considerations for Exploration of Near Earth Asteroids (NEA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kundrot, Craig E.; Charles, John B.; Steinberg, Susan L.

    2011-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews some of the health and performance issues for an manned exploration mission to some of the Near Earth Asteroids (NEA). The issues that NASA is reviewing are: 1. Radiation exposure 2. Inadequate food and nutrition 3. Challenges to behavioral health 4. Muscle, cardiovascular, bone atrophy 5. Dust and volatiles 6. Remote medical care 7. Decompression sickness.

  4. Crew Systems for Asteroid Exploration: Concepts for Lightweight & Low Volume EVA Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Rob; Calle, Carlos; Mantovani, James

    2013-01-01

    This RFI response is targeting Area 5. Crew Systems for Asteroid Exploration: concepts for lightweight and low volume robotic and extra-vehicular activity (EVA) systems, such as space suits, tools, translation aids, stowage containers, and other equipment. The NASA KSC Surface Systems Office, Granular Mechanics and Regolith Operations (GMRO) Lab and the Electrostatics & Surface Physics Lab (ESPL) are dedicated to developing technologies for operating in regolith environments on target body surfaces. We have identified two technologies in our current portfolio that are highly relevant and useful for crews that will visit a re-directed asteroid in Cis-Lunar Space. Both technologies are at a high TRL of 5/6 and could be rapidly implemented in time for an ARM mission in this decade.

  5. Modeling and experimental validation of sawing based lander anchoring and sampling methods for asteroid exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jun; Dong, Chengcheng; Zhang, Hui; Li, Song; Song, Aiguo

    2018-05-01

    This paper presents a novel lander anchoring system based on sawing method for asteroid exploration. The system is composed of three robotic arms, three cutting discs, and a control system. The discs mounted at the end of the arms are able to penetrate into the rock surface of asteroids. After the discs cut into the rock surface, the self-locking function of the arms provides forces to fix the lander on the surface. Modeling, trajectory planning, simulations, mechanism design, and prototype fabrication of the anchoring system are discussed, respectively. The performances of the system are tested on different kinds of rocks, at different sawing angles, locations, and speeds. Results show that the system can cut 15 mm deep into granite rock in 180 s at sawing angle of 60°, with the average power of 58.41 W, and the "weight on bit" (WOB) of 8.637 N. The 7.8 kg anchoring system is capable of providing omni-directional anchoring forces, at least 225 N normal and 157 N tangent to the surface of the rock. The system has the advantages of low-weight, low energy consumption and balance forces, high anchoring efficiency and reliability, and could enable the lander to move and sample or assist astronauts and robots in walking and sampling on asteroids.

  6. Concerning the Charging of an Exploration Craft on and near a Small Asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, T. L.; Zimmerman, M. I.; Farrell, W. M.

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: An object immersed in an airless plasma environment will experience a natural process of surface charging in order to acheieve current balance, or zero net electric current to the object. It has been shown in recent computer simulations that the small-body plasma environment is very complex [1], considering effects of photoemission, topography, and formation of a plasma wake. For this work we consider an exploration craft (or astronaut) immersed within a plasma environment near an asteroid, which exhibits widely varying solar wind and photoelectric particle fluxes and continuously evolving illumination conditions. Objective: We aim to determine how an explo-ration craft or astronaut suit accumulates charge while located in the "nightside" asteroid wake where the particle fluxes are reduced, and in the dayside near-surface photoelectron sheath, by combining an object charging model [2] with kinetic simulations of a near-asteroid plasma environment [1]. We consider an astronaut floating near the asteroid while not in contact with the surface, as well as an astronaut moving along the surface using their hands/gloves to crawl along. Results: The modeling results suggest that remediation of triboelectric charge via accumulation of plasma currents is an important factor to consider when designing future NEA mission infrastructure, especially if repeated and frequent contact with the surface is planned. In shadowed regions such as the location shown in Fig. 1a, the plasma currents are so low (and the effective charge-remediation timescale so long, e.g. minutes to hours) that repeated contact with the surface tribocharges the glove in an uncontrollable fashion, as shown for two representative electron temperatures in Fig. 2a. The resulting buildup of significant negative charge would eventually initiate some other "current of last resort" [4] such as transport of positively-charged dust, field-emission from the glove, or significant alteration of

  7. 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.

  8. Human Expeditions to Near-Earth Asteroids: Implications for Exploration, Resource Utilization, Science, and Planetary Defense

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Paul; Mazanek, Dan; Barbee, Brent; Landis, Rob; Johnson, Lindley; Yeomans, Don; Friedensen, Victoria

    2013-01-01

    Over the past several years, much attention has been focused on human exploration of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) and planetary defence. Two independent NASA studies examined the feasibility of sending piloted missions to NEAs, and in 2009, the Augustine Commission identified NEAs as high profile destinations for human exploration missions beyond the Earth-Moon system as part of the Flexible Path. More recently the current U.S. presidential administration directed NASA to include NEAs as destinations for future human exploration with the goal of sending astronauts to a NEA in the mid to late 2020s. This directive became part of the official National Space Policy of the United States of America as of June 28, 2010. With respect to planetary defence, in 2005 the U.S. Congress directed NASA to implement a survey program to detect, track, and characterize NEAs equal or greater than 140 m in diameter in order to access the threat from such objects to the Earth. The current goal of this survey is to achieve 90% completion of objects equal or greater than 140 m in diameter by 2020.

  9. Deriving global Olivine distribution on Hayabusa's target (25143) Itokawa using Near-Infrared Spectrometer data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nardi, L.; Palomba, E.; Longobardo, A.; Galiano, A.; Dirri, F.

    2017-09-01

    In 2005 Hayabusa spacecraft visited asteroid Itokawa, bringing back surface samples to Earth in 2010. Near-Infrared data taken by NIRS and samples analysis confirmed hypothesis made through ground-based observations, in particular the one that sees Itokawa as an LL-chondrite like asteroid processed by space weathering. In this work, we apply spectral indices for olivine detection. In particular, we define the BAR* and relate it to the olivine abundance, by means of calibration on laboratory data. We present the distribution of BAR* calculated for nearly 38.000 spectra taken from an altitude of 3.5-7 km, defined as Home Position, which was the longest mission observation phase. In addition, a plot of olivine normalized content versus BAR* for RELAB compounds is given.

  10. The MicrOmega Investigation Onboard Hayabusa2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bibring, J.-P.; Hamm, V.; Langevin, Y.; Pilorget, C.; Arondel, A.; Bouzit, M.; Chaigneau, M.; Crane, B.; Darié, A.; Evesque, C.; Hansotte, J.; Gardien, V.; Gonnod, L.; Leclech, J.-C.; Meslier, L.; Redon, T.; Tamiatto, C.; Tosti, S.; Thoores, N.

    2017-07-01

    MicrOmega is a near-IR hyperspectral microscope designed to characterize in situ the texture and composition of the surface materials of the Hayabusa2 target asteroid. MicrOmega is implemented within the MASCOT lander (Ho et al. in Space Sci. Rev., 2016, this issue, doi:10.1007/s11214-016-0251-6). The spectral range (0.99-3.65 μm) and the spectral sampling (20 cm^{-1}) of MicrOmega have been chosen to allow the identification of most potential constituent minerals, ices and organics, within each 25 μm pixel of the 3.2× 3.2 mm2 FOV. Such an unprecedented characterization will (1) enable the identification of most major and minor phases, including the potential organic phases, and ascribe their mineralogical context, as a critical set of clues to decipher the origin and evolution of this primitive body, and (2) provide the ground truth for the orbital measurements as well as a reference for the analyses later performed on returned samples.

  11. Human Health and Performance Considerations for Exploration of Near-Earth Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kundrot, Craig; Steinberg, Susan; Charles, John

    2010-01-01

    This presentation will describe the human health and performance issues that are anticipated for the human exploration of near-Earth asteroids (NEA). Humans are considered a system in the design of any such deep-space exploration mission, and exploration of NEA presents unique challenges for the human system. Key factors that define the mission are those that are strongly affected by distance and duration. The most critical of these is deep-space radiation exposure without even the temporary shielding of a nearby large planetary body. The current space radiation permissible exposure limits (PEL) restrict mission duration to 3-10 months depending on age and gender of crewmembers and stage of the solar cycle. Factors that affect mission architecture include medical capability; countermeasures for bone, muscle, and cardiovascular atrophy during continuous weightlessness; restricted food supplies; and limited habitable volume. The design of a habitat that can maintain the physical and psychological health of the crew and support mission operations with limited intervention from Earth will require an integrated research and development effort by NASA s Human Research Program, engineering, and human factors groups. Limited abort and return options for an NEA mission are anticipated to have important effects on crew psychology as well as influence medical supplies and training requirements of the crew. Other important factors are those related to isolation, confinement, communication delays, autonomous operations, task design, small crew size, and even the unchanging view outside the windows for most of the mission. Geological properties of the NEA will influence design of sample handling and containment, and extravehicular activity capabilities including suit ports and tools. A robotic precursor mission that collects basic information on NEA surface properties would reduce uncertainty about these aspects of the mission as well as aid in design of mission architecture and

  12. Analytical dual-energy microtomography: A new method for obtaining three-dimensional mineral phase images and its application to Hayabusa samples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsuchiyama, A.; Nakano, T.; Uesugi, K.; Uesugi, M.; Takeuchi, A.; Suzuki, Y.; Noguchi, R.; Matsumoto, T.; Matsuno, J.; Nagano, T.; Imai, Y.; Nakamura, T.; Ogami, T.; Noguchi, T.; Abe, M.; Yada, T.; Fujimura, A.

    2013-09-01

    We developed a novel technique called "analytical dual-energy microtomography" that uses the linear attenuation coefficients (LACs) of minerals at two different X-ray energies to nondestructively obtain three-dimensional (3D) images of mineral distribution in materials such as rock specimens. The two energies are above and below the absorption edge energy of an abundant element, which we call the "index element". The chemical compositions of minerals forming solid solution series can also be measured. The optimal size of a sample is of the order of the inverse of the LAC values at the X-ray energies used. We used synchrotron-based microtomography with an effective spatial resolution of >200 nm to apply this method to small particles (30-180 μm) collected from the surface of asteroid 25143 Itokawa by the Hayabusa mission of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). A 3D distribution of the minerals was successively obtained by imaging the samples at X-ray energies of 7 and 8 keV, using Fe as the index element (the K-absorption edge of Fe is 7.11 keV). The optimal sample size in this case is of the order of 50 μm. The chemical compositions of the minerals, including the Fe/Mg ratios of ferromagnesian minerals and the Na/Ca ratios of plagioclase, were measured. This new method is potentially applicable to other small samples such as cosmic dust, lunar regolith, cometary dust (recovered by the Stardust mission of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration [NASA]), and samples from extraterrestrial bodies (those from future sample return missions such as the JAXA Hayabusa2 mission and the NASA OSIRIS-REx mission), although limitations exist for unequilibrated samples. Further, this technique is generally suited for studying materials in multicomponent systems with multiple phases across several research fields.

  13. VNIR Reflectance and MIR Emissivity Spectra of Ordinary Chondrite Meteorites Under Simulated Asteroid Surface Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gemma, M.; Shirley, K.; Glotch, T. D.; Ebel, D. S. S.

    2017-12-01

    Recent missions have revealed much about the nature of many Near-Earth asteroids, including the NEAR-Shoemaker target 433 Eros and Hayabusa target 25142 Itokawa. Both asteroids appear to have mineralogy consistent with ordinary chondrite meteorites. Laboratory spectral analysis of well-constrained meteorite samples can be employed as a reference tool to characterize and constrain data from current and future asteroid studies. A sample set of ordinary chondrite meteorites was chosen from the collection at the American Museum of Natural History. Six meteorites, spanning groups H, L, and LL, were prepared at four different size fractions (25-63 μm, 63-90 μm, 90-125 μm, 125-250 μm) in an attempt to mimic regolith known to exist on asteroids such as 433 Eros and 25142 Itokawa. At the Center for Planetary Exploration at Stony Brook University, spectra of the ordinary chondrite material were measured under simulated asteroid surface conditions ( 10-6 mbar, 150 K chamber temperature, low intensity illumination). The samples were used in two experiments: one measuring visible and near-infrared (VNIR) reflectance spectra at a series of temperatures, and the other measuring mid-infrared (MIR) emissivity spectra. The emissivity measurements require accurate simulation of the thermal environment within asteroid regolith, achieved by inducing a thermal gradient within the sample that results in a surface brightness temperature around 323 K (similar to the surface of 25142 Itokawa). Mid-IR emissivity spectra were collected for each sample at a surface temperature of 323 K, and reflectance spectra were collected in increments of 10 K, over the range 283 K to 373 K. Preliminary VNIR spectra show spreads similar to those seen in Hinrichs and Lucey (2002). Preliminary MIR emissivity spectra suggest that under asteroid surface conditions, the position of the Christiansen feature shifts to shorter wavelengths and emissivity is lower in the Reststrahlen bands when compared to

  14. Asteroids IV

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    Asteroids are fascinating worlds. Considered the building blocks of our planets, many of the authors of this book have devoted their scientific careers to exploring them with the tools of our trade: ground- and spacebased observations, in situ space missions, and studies that run the gamut from theoretical modeling efforts to laboratory work. Like fossils for paleontologists, or DNA for geneticists, they allow us to construct a veritable time machine and provide us with tantalizing glimpses of the earliest nature of our solar system. By investigating them, we can probe what our home system was like before life or even the planets existed. The origin and evolution of life on our planet is also intertwined with asteroids in a different way. It is believed that impacts on the primordial Earth may have delivered the basic components for life, with biology favoring attributes that could more easily survive the aftermath of such energetic events. In this fashion, asteroids may have banished many probable avenues for life to relative obscurity. Similarly, they may have also prevented our biosphere from becoming more complex until more recent eras. The full tale of asteroid impacts on the history of our world, and how human life managed to emerge from myriad possibilities, has yet to be fully told. The hazard posed by asteroid impacts to our civilization is low but singular. The design of efficient mitigation strategies strongly relies on asteroid detection by our ground- and spacebased surveys as well as knowledge of their physical properties. A more positive motivation for asteroid discovery is that the proximity of some asteroids to Earth may allow future astronauts to harvest their water and rare mineral resources for use in exploration. A key goal of asteroid science is therefore to learn how humans and robotic probes can interact with asteroids (and extract their materials) in an efficient way. We expect that these adventures may be commonplace in the future

  15. Human Exploration Mission Capabilities to the Moon, Mars, and Near Earth Asteroids Using ''Bimodal'' NTR Propulsion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stanley K. Borowski; Leonard A. Dudzinski; Melissa L. McGuire

    2000-01-01

    The nuclear thermal rocket (NTR) is one of the leading propulsion options for future human exploration missions because of its high specific impulse (Isp ∼ 850 to 1000 s) and attractive engine thrust-to-weight ratio (∼ 3 to 10). Because only a minuscule amount of enriched 235 U fuel is consumed in an NRT during the primary propulsion maneuvers of a typical Mars mission, engines configured both for propulsive thrust and modest power generation (referred to as 'bimodal' operation) provide the basis for a robust, power-rich stage with efficient propulsive capture capability at the moon and near-earth asteroids (NEAs), where aerobraking cannot be utilized. A family of modular bimodal NTR (BNTR) space transfer vehicles utilize a common core stage powered by three ∼15-klb f engines that produce 50 kW(electric) of total electrical power for crew life support, high data rate communications with Earth, and an active refrigeration system for long-term, zero-boiloff liquid hydrogen (LH 2 ) storage. This paper describes details of BNTR engines and designs of vehicles using them for various missions

  16. 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.

  17. Hayabusa Re-Entry: Trajectory Analysis and Observation Mission Design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassell, Alan M.; Winter, Michael W.; Allen, Gary A.; Grinstead, Jay H.; Antimisiaris, Manny E.; Albers, James; Jenniskens, Peter

    2011-01-01

    On June 13th, 2010, the Hayabusa sample return capsule successfully re-entered Earth s atmosphere over the Woomera Prohibited Area in southern Australia in its quest to return fragments from the asteroid 1998 SF36 Itokawa . The sample return capsule entered at a super-orbital velocity of 12.04 km/sec (inertial), making it the second fastest human-made object to traverse the atmosphere. The NASA DC-8 airborne observatory was utilized as an instrument platform to record the luminous portion of the sample return capsule re-entry (60 sec) with a variety of on-board spectroscopic imaging instruments. The predicted sample return capsule s entry state information at 200 km altitude was propagated through the atmosphere to generate aerothermodynamic and trajectory data used for initial observation flight path design and planning. The DC- 8 flight path was designed by considering safety, optimal sample return capsule viewing geometry and aircraft capabilities in concert with key aerothermodynamic events along the predicted trajectory. Subsequent entry state vector updates provided by the Deep Space Network team at NASA s Jet Propulsion Laboratory were analyzed after the planned trajectory correction maneuvers to further refine the DC-8 observation flight path. Primary and alternate observation flight paths were generated during the mission planning phase which required coordination with Australian authorities for pre-mission approval. The final observation flight path was chosen based upon trade-offs between optimal viewing requirements, ground based observer locations (to facilitate post-flight trajectory reconstruction), predicted weather in the Woomera Prohibited Area and constraints imposed by flight path filing deadlines. To facilitate sample return capsule tracking by the instrument operators, a series of two racetrack flight path patterns were performed prior to the observation leg so the instruments could be pointed towards the region in the star background where

  18. Human Health and Performance Considerations for Exploration of Near-Earth Asteroids (NEA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinberg, Susan L.; Kundrot, Craig; Charles, John B.

    2011-01-01

    This poster paper reviews the Astronaut health and performance issues for a Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) mission. Risks and other considerations are grouped into four categories and they are characterized for criticality.

  19. 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

  20. Missions to Near-Earth Asteroids: Implications for Exploration, Science, Resource Utilization, and Planetary Defense

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, P. A.; Sanders, G. B.; Mazanek, D. D.; Barbee, B. W.; Mink, R. G.; Landis, R. R.; Adamo, D. R.; Johnson, L. N.; Yeomans, D. K.; Reeves, D. M.; Drake, B. G.; Friedensen, V. P.

    2012-12-01

    Introduction: In 2009 the Augustine Commission identified near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) as high profile destinations for human exploration missions beyond the Earth-Moon system as part of the Flexible Path. More recently the U.S. presidential administration directed NASA to include NEAs as destinations for future human exploration with the goal of sending astronauts to a NEA in the mid to late 2020s. This directive became part of the official National Space Policy of the United States of America as of June 28, 2010. NEA Space-Based Survey and Robotic Precursor Missions: The most suitable targets for human missions are NEAs in Earth-like orbits with long synodic periods. However, these mission candidates are often not observable from Earth until the timeframe of their most favorable human mission opportunities, which does not provide an appropriate amount of time for mission development. A space-based survey telescope could more efficiently find these targets in a timely, affordable manner. Such a system is not only able to discover new objects, but also track and characterize objects of interest for human space flight consideration. Those objects with characteristic signatures representative of volatile-rich or metallic materials will be considered as top candidates for further investigation due to their potential for resource utilization and scientific discovery. Once suitable candidates have been identified, precursor spacecraft are required to perform basic reconnaissance of a few NEAs under consideration for the human-led mission. Robotic spacecraft will assess targets for potential hazards that may pose a risk to the deep space transportation vehicle, its deployable assets, and the crew. Additionally, the information obtained about the NEA's basic physical characteristics will be crucial for planning operational activities, designing in-depth scientific/engineering investigations, and identifying sites on the NEA for sample collection. Human Exploration

  1. Human Expeditions to Near-Earth Asteroids: An Update on NASA's Status and Proposed Activities for Small Body Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Paul; Mazanek, Dan; Barbee, Brent; Landis, Rob; Johnson, Lindley; Yeomans, Don; Reeves, David; Drake, Bret; Friedensen, Victoria

    2013-01-01

    Over the past several years, much attention has been focused on the human exploration of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs). Two independent NASA studies examined the feasibility of sending piloted missions to NEAs, and in 2009, the Augustine Commission identified NEAs as high profile destinations for human exploration missions beyond the Earth- Moon system as part of the Flexible Path. More recently the current U.S. presidential administration directed NASA to include NEAs as destinations for future human exploration with the goal of sending astronauts to a NEA in the mid to late 2020s. This directive became part of the official National Space Policy of the United States of America as of June 28, 2010. The scientific and hazard mitigation benefits, along with the programmatic and operational benefits of a human venture beyond the Earth-Moon system, make a mission to a NEA using NASA s proposed exploration systems a compelling endeavor.

  2. Visible/Near-Infrared Spectral Properties of MUSES C Target Asteroid 25143 Itokawa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarvis, K. S.; Vilas, F.; Kelley, M. S.; Abell, P. A.

    2004-01-01

    The Japanese MUSES C mission launched the Hayabusa spacecraft last May 15, 2003, to encounter and study the near-Earth asteroid 25143 Itokawa. The spacecraft will obtain visible images through broadband filters similar to the ECAS filters, and near-infrared spectra from 0.85 - 2.1 microns. In preparation for this encounter, opportunities to study the asteroid with Earth-based telescopes have been fully leveraged. Visible and near-infrared spectral observations were made of asteroid 25143 Itokawa during several nights of March, 2001, around the last apparition. We report here on the results of extensive spectral observations made to address the questions of compositional variations across the surface of the asteroid (as determined by the rotational period and shape model); variations in phase angle (Sun-Itokawa-Earth angle) on spectral characteristics; and predictions of Itokawa observations by Hayabusa based on the spectral resolution and responsivity of the NIRS and AMICA instruments.

  3. Physical Properties of Asteroid (10302) 1989 ML, a Potential Spacecraft Target, from Spitzer Observations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mueller, Michael; Harris, A. W.

    2006-01-01

    We report on results from recent Spitzer observations of near-Earth asteroid (10302) 1989 ML, which is among the lowest-ranking objects in terms of the specific momentum Δv required to reach it from Earth. It was originally considered as a target for Hayabusa and is now under consideration as a

  4. Psyche's UV Reflectance Spectra: Exploring the origins of the largest exposed-core metallic asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, Tracy

    2016-10-01

    (16) Psyche is the largest of the M-class asteroids, and is presumed to be the exposed core of a differentiated asteroid stripped of its mantle through hit-and-run collisions. However, other origins for Psyche have been proposed, including that it formed from a highly-reduced, metal rich material in the inner solar system or that its surface is olivine that has been space weathered. If (16) Psyche is an exposed core, then studying its properties enhances our understanding of the cores of all terrestrial planets, including the Earth's. If it accreted in the inner part of the solar system and was later injected into the asteroid belt, then Psyche sheds light on the conditions and subsequent evolution of the early solar system. Lastly, if Psyche is weathered olivine, then olivine may be more abundant in the solar system than currently measured, rectifying the so-called Great Dunite Shortage. Our program to obtain high-resolution UV spectra of Psyche with the COS G140L mode and the STIS NUV MAMA G230L mode to measure spectral signatures between 90 - 315 nm is designed to distinguish between the 3 hypothesized cases. These observations will enable identification of absorption bands, especially Fe-O charge transfer bands and will be sensitive to spectral blueing that occurs at UV wavelengths for space-weathered objects. When combined, the presence of these UV features, or not, provides a novel test of Psyche formation theories.

  5. Thermal Imaging Performance of TIR Onboard the Hayabusa2 Spacecraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arai, Takehiko; Nakamura, Tomoki; Tanaka, Satoshi; Demura, Hirohide; Ogawa, Yoshiko; Sakatani, Naoya; Horikawa, Yamato; Senshu, Hiroki; Fukuhara, Tetsuya; Okada, Tatsuaki

    2017-07-01

    The thermal infrared imager (TIR) is a thermal infrared camera onboard the Hayabusa2 spacecraft. TIR will perform thermography of a C-type asteroid, 162173 Ryugu (1999 JU3), and estimate its surface physical properties, such as surface thermal emissivity ɛ , surface roughness, and thermal inertia Γ, through remote in-situ observations in 2018 and 2019. In prelaunch tests of TIR, detector calibrations and evaluations, along with imaging demonstrations, were performed. The present paper introduces the experimental results of a prelaunch test conducted using a large-aperture collimator in conjunction with TIR under atmospheric conditions. A blackbody source, controlled at constant temperature, was measured using TIR in order to construct a calibration curve for obtaining temperatures from observed digital data. As a known thermal emissivity target, a sandblasted black almite plate warmed from the back using a flexible heater was measured by TIR in order to evaluate the accuracy of the calibration curve. As an analog target of a C-type asteroid, carbonaceous chondrites (50 mm × 2 mm in thickness) were also warmed from the back and measured using TIR in order to clarify the imaging performance of TIR. The calibration curve, which was fitted by a specific model of the Planck function, allowed for conversion to the target temperature within an error of 1°C (3σ standard deviation) for the temperature range of 30 to 100°C. The observed temperature of the black almite plate was consistent with the temperature measured using K-type thermocouples, within the accuracy of temperature conversion using the calibration curve when the temperature variation exhibited a random error of 0.3 °C (1σ ) for each pixel at a target temperature of 50°C. TIR can resolve the fine surface structure of meteorites, including cracks and pits with the specified field of view of 0.051°C (328 × 248 pixels). There were spatial distributions with a temperature variation of 3°C at the setting

  6. Human Missions to Near-Earth Asteroids: An Update on NASA's Current Status and Proposed Activities for Small Body Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, P. A.; Mazanek, D. D.; Barbee, B. W.; Mink, R. G.; Landis, R. R.; Adamo, D. R.; Johnson, L. N.; Yeomans, D. K.; Reeves, D. M.; Larman, K. T.; hide

    2012-01-01

    Over the past several years, much attention has been focused on the human exploration of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs). Two independent NASA studies examined the feasibility of sending piloted missions to NEAs, and in 2009, the Augustine Commission identified NEAs as high profile destinations for human exploration missions beyond the Earth-Moon system as part of the Flexible Path. More recently the current U.S. presidential administration directed NASA to include NEAs as destinations for future human exploration with the goal of sending astronauts to a NEA in the mid to late 2020s. This directive became part of the official National Space Policy of the United States of America as of June 28, 2010.

  7. Optical properties of (162173) 1999 JU3: in preparation for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission

    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); Hasegawa, Sunao; Abe, Masanao; Yoshikawa, Makoto [Institute of Space and Astronautical Science, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5210 (Japan); Kim, Myung-Jin [Department of Astronomy, Yonsei University, 50 Yonsei-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-749 (Korea, Republic of); Choi, Young-Jun [Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute, 776 Daedeokdae-ro, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-348 (Korea, Republic of); Moskovitz, Nicholas [Lowell Observatory, 1400 W. Mars Hill Road, Flagstaff, AZ 86001 (United States); Abe, Shinsuke [Department of Aerospace Engineering, Nihon University, 7-24-1 Narashinodai Funabashi, Chiba 274-8501 (Japan); Pan, Kang-Sian [Institute of Astronomy, National Central University, 300 Jhongda Road, Jhongli, Taoyuan 32001, Taiwan (China); Takahashi, Jun; Takagi, Yuhei; Arai, Akira [Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory, Center for Astronomy, University of Hyogo, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5313 (Japan); Tokimasa, Noritaka [Sayo Town Office, 2611-1 Sayo, Sayo-cho, Sayo, Hyogo 679-5380 (Japan); Hsieh, Henry H. [Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Roosevelt Road, Taipei 10617, Taiwan (China); Thomas-Osip, Joanna E.; Osip, David J. [The Observatories of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, Las Campanas Observatory, Colina El Pino, Casilla 601, La Serena (Chile); Urakawa, Seitaro [Bisei Spaceguard Center, Japan Spaceguard Association, 1716-3 Okura, Bisei-cho, Ibara, Okayama 714-1411 (Japan); Hanayama, Hidekazu [Ishigakijima Astronomical Observatory, National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, 1024-1 Arakawa, Ishigaki, Okinawa 907-0024 (Japan); Sekiguchi, Tomohiko [Department of Teacher Training, Hokkaido University of Education, 9 Hokumon, Asahikawa 070-8621 (Japan); and others

    2014-09-01

    We investigated the magnitude-phase relation of (162173) 1999 JU3, a target asteroid for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission. We initially employed the International Astronomical Union's H-G formalism but found that it fits less well using a single set of parameters. To improve the inadequate fit, we employed two photometric functions: the Shevchenko and Hapke functions. With the Shevchenko function, we found that the magnitude-phase relation exhibits linear behavior in a wide phase angle range (α = 5°-75°) and shows weak nonlinear opposition brightening at α < 5°, providing a more reliable absolute magnitude of H {sub V} = 19.25 ± 0.03. The phase slope (0.039 ± 0.001 mag deg{sup –1}) and opposition effect amplitude (parameterized by the ratio of intensity at α = 0.°3 to that at α = 5°, I(0.°3)/I(5°) = 1.31 ± 0.05) are consistent with those of typical C-type asteroids. We also attempted to determine the parameters for the Hapke model, which are applicable for constructing the surface reflectance map with the Hayabusa 2 onboard cameras. Although we could not constrain the full set of Hapke parameters, we obtained possible values, w = 0.041, g = –0.38, B {sub 0} = 1.43, and h = 0.050, assuming a surface roughness parameter θ-bar = 20°. By combining our photometric study with a thermal model of the asteroid, we obtained a geometric albedo of p {sub v} = 0.047 ± 0.003, phase integral q = 0.32 ± 0.03, and Bond albedo A {sub B} = 0.014 ± 0.002, which are commensurate with the values for common C-type asteroids.

  8. Optical properties of (162173) 1999 JU3: in preparation for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ishiguro, Masateru; Kuroda, Daisuke; Hasegawa, Sunao; Abe, Masanao; Yoshikawa, Makoto; Kim, Myung-Jin; Choi, Young-Jun; Moskovitz, Nicholas; Abe, Shinsuke; Pan, Kang-Sian; Takahashi, Jun; Takagi, Yuhei; Arai, Akira; Tokimasa, Noritaka; Hsieh, Henry H.; Thomas-Osip, Joanna E.; Osip, David J.; Urakawa, Seitaro; Hanayama, Hidekazu; Sekiguchi, Tomohiko

    2014-01-01

    We investigated the magnitude-phase relation of (162173) 1999 JU3, a target asteroid for the JAXA Hayabusa 2 sample return mission. We initially employed the International Astronomical Union's H-G formalism but found that it fits less well using a single set of parameters. To improve the inadequate fit, we employed two photometric functions: the Shevchenko and Hapke functions. With the Shevchenko function, we found that the magnitude-phase relation exhibits linear behavior in a wide phase angle range (α = 5°-75°) and shows weak nonlinear opposition brightening at α < 5°, providing a more reliable absolute magnitude of H V = 19.25 ± 0.03. The phase slope (0.039 ± 0.001 mag deg –1 ) and opposition effect amplitude (parameterized by the ratio of intensity at α = 0.°3 to that at α = 5°, I(0.°3)/I(5°) = 1.31 ± 0.05) are consistent with those of typical C-type asteroids. We also attempted to determine the parameters for the Hapke model, which are applicable for constructing the surface reflectance map with the Hayabusa 2 onboard cameras. Although we could not constrain the full set of Hapke parameters, we obtained possible values, w = 0.041, g = –0.38, B 0 = 1.43, and h = 0.050, assuming a surface roughness parameter θ-bar = 20°. By combining our photometric study with a thermal model of the asteroid, we obtained a geometric albedo of p v = 0.047 ± 0.003, phase integral q = 0.32 ± 0.03, and Bond albedo A B = 0.014 ± 0.002, which are commensurate with the values for common C-type asteroids.

  9. Driven by Affect to Explore Asteroids, the Moon, and Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dingatantrige Perera, Jude Viranga

    Affect is a domain of psychology that includes attitudes, emotions, interests, and values. My own affect influenced the choice of topics for my dissertation. After examining asteroid interiors and the Moon's thermal evolution, I discuss the role of affect in online science education. I begin with asteroids, which are collections of smaller objects held together by gravity and possibly cohesion. These "rubble-pile" objects may experience the Brazil Nut Effect (BNE). When a collection of particles of similar densities, but of different sizes, is shaken, smaller particles will move parallel to the local gravity vector while larger objects will do the opposite. Thus, when asteroids are shaken by impacts, they may experience the BNE as possibly evidenced by large boulders seen on their surfaces. I found while the BNE is plausible on asteroids, it is confined to only the outer layers. The Moon, which formed with a Lunar Magma Ocean (LMO), is the next topic of this work. The LMO is due to the Moon forming rapidly after a giant impact between the proto-Earth and another planetary body. The first 80% of the LMO solidified rapidly at which point a floatation crust formed and slowed solidification of the remaining LMO. Impact bombardment during this cooling process, while an important component, has not been studied in detail. Impacts considered here are from debris generated during the formation of the Moon. I developed a thermal model that incorporates impacts and find that impacts may have either expedited or delayed LMO solidification. Finally, I return to affect to consider the differences in attitudes towards science between students enrolled in fully-online degree programs and those enrolled in traditional, in-person degree programs. I analyzed pre- and post-course survey data from the online astrobiology course Habitable Worlds. Unlike their traditional program counterparts, students enrolled in online programs started the course with better attitudes towards science

  10. Visible-IR and Raman micro-spectroscopic investigation of three Itokawa particles collected by Hayabusa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunetto, R.; Bonal, L.; Beck, P.; Dartois, E.; Dionnet, Z.; Djouadi, Z.; Füri, E.; Kakazu, Y.; Oudayer, P.; Quirico, E.; Engrand, C.

    2014-07-01

    HAYABUSA grains offer a unique perspective to better understand the link between asteroids and cosmomaterials available in the laboratory and to get an insight on the early stages of surface space weathering. The scientific objectives of our consortium are threefold: (i) the characterization of asteroidal surface processes (e.g., space weathering alteration); (ii) the assessment of parent-body alteration processes; (iii) the search for a possible association between S-type asteroids and micrometeorites. To this aim, our strategy is based on a combination of analytical techniques. Here we report a first series of results obtained through Visible-Infrared and Raman spectroscopy of three Itokawa particles (RA-QD02-0163, -0174, and -0213) collected by the Hayabusa spacecraft and provided by JAXA for our consortium. In a first step, our main objective was to collect maximum information without altering the particles. Reported results were thus obtained on the raw particles, both (i) in their original containers, and (ii) deposited on diamond windows. Raman and IR confocal spectra were acquired at the SMIS beamline of the French national synchrotron facility SOLEIL and at the Lyon Raman national facility using spots of 2 μ m for the Raman, and 10--20 μ m for the IR analyses. Point analyses and automatic mapping were performed. Analytical parameters (e.g., laser power on the sample) were optimized to prevent any damage. Diffuse reflectance spectra (i=45°, e=0°) in the visible and near-IR wavelengths were obtained with an IAS-CSNSM in-home system coupling a fiber spectrometer to an optical microscope, providing a 20-μ m spot on sample. In the case of particle -0163, Raman and IR results reveal a heterogeneous mixing of minerals, mostly olivine (Fo76), and Ca-rich (En50, Wo50) and Ca-poor (En85) pyroxenes. The modal distribution of these minerals is determined based on the spectral maps. The mineral compositions of -0163 are consistent with those previously reported on

  11. Robotic exploration of the solar system

    CERN Document Server

    Ulivi, Paolo

    In Robotic Exploration of the Solar System, Paolo Ulivi and David Harland provide a comprehensive account of the design and managment of deep-space missions, the spacecraft involved - some flown, others not - their instruments, and their scientific results. This third volume in the series covers launches in the period 1997 to 2003 and features: - a chapter entirely devoted to the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn; - coverage of planetary missions of the period, including the Deep Space 1 mission and the Stardust and Hayabusa sample returns from comets and asteroids; - extensive coverage of Mars exploration, the failed 1999 missions, Mars Odyssey, Mars Express, and the twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity. The story will continue in Part 4.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. Optical Mining of Asteroids, Moons, and Planets to Enable Sustainable Human Exploration and Space Industrialization

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — PROBLEM, DEEP SPACE HUMAN EXPLORATION IS UNAFFORDABLE: In 2014 the NASA Advisory Council issued a finding that “The mismatch between NASA’s aspirations for human...

  15. Finding Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) Destinations for Human Exploration: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Rob; Abell, Paul; Barbee, Brent; Johnson, Lindley

    2012-01-01

    The current number of known potential NEA targets for HSF is limited to those objects whose orbital characteristics are similar to that of the Earth. This is due to the projected capabilities of the exploration systems currently under consideration and development at NASA. However, NEAs with such orbital characteristics often have viewing geometries that place them at low solar elongations and thus are difficult to detect from the vicinity of Earth. While ongoing ground-based surveys and data archives maintained by the NEO Program Observation Program Office and the Minor Planet Center (MPC) have provided a solid basis upon which to build, a more complete catalog of the NEO population is required to inform a robust and sustainable HSF exploration program. Since all the present NEO observing assets are currently confined to the vicinity of the Earth, additional effort must be made to provide capabilities for detection of additional HSF targets via assets beyond Earth orbit. A space-based NEO survey telescope located beyond the vicinity of the Earth, has considerable implications for planetary science and astrobiology. Such a telescope will provide foundational knowledge of our Solar System small body population and detect targets of interest for both the HSF and scientific communities. Data from this asset will yield basic characterization data on the NEOs observed (i.e., albedo, size determination, potential for volatiles and organics, etc.) and help down select targets for future HSF missions. Ideally, the most attractive targets from both HSF and astrobiology perspectives are those NEAs that may contain organic and volatile materials, and which could be effectively sampled at a variety of locations and depths. Presented here is an overview of four space-based survey concepts; any one of which after just a few years of operation will discover many highly accessible NEO targets suitable for robotic and human exploration. Such a space-based survey mission will reveal

  16. Ion Irradiation Experiments on the Murchison CM2 Carbonaceous Chondrite: Simulating Space Weathering of Primitive Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, L. P.; Christoffersen, R.; Dukes, C. A.; Baragiola, R. A.; Rahman, Z.

    2015-01-01

    Remote sensing observations show that space weathering processes affect all airless bodies in the Solar System to some degree. Sample analyses and lab experiments provide insights into the chemical, spectroscopic and mineralogic effects of space weathering and aid in the interpretation of remote- sensing data. For example, analyses of particles returned from the S-type asteroid Itokawa by the Hayabusa mission revealed that space-weathering on that body was dominated by interactions with the solar wind acting on LL ordinary chondrite-like materials [1, 2]. Understanding and predicting how the surface regoliths of primitive carbonaceous asteroids respond to space weathering processes is important for future sample return missions (Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS-REx) that are targeting objects of this type. Here, we report the results of our preliminary ion irradiation experiments on a hydrated carbonaceous chondrite with emphasis on microstructural and infrared spectral changes.

  17. ExploreNEOs. III. PHYSICAL CHARACTERIZATION OF 65 POTENTIAL SPACECRAFT TARGET ASTEROIDS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mueller, Michael; Delbo', M.; Hora, J. L.; Fazio, G.; Smith, H. A.; Spahr, T. B.; Trilling, D. E.; Thomas, C. A.; Bhattacharya, B.; Bottke, W. F.; Chesley, S.; Mainzer, A.; Emery, J. P.; Harris, A. W.; Mommert, M.; Penprase, B.; Stansberry, J. A.

    2011-01-01

    Space missions to near-Earth objects (NEOs) are being planned at all major space agencies, and recently a manned mission to an NEO was announced as a NASA goal. Efforts to find and select suitable targets (plus backup targets) are severely hampered by our lack of knowledge of the physical properties of dynamically favorable NEOs. In particular, current mission scenarios tend to favor primitive low-albedo objects. For the vast majority of NEOs, the albedo is unknown. Here we report new constraints on the size and albedo of 65 NEOs with rendezvous Δv -1 . Our results are based on thermal-IR flux data obtained in the framework of our ongoing (2009-2011) ExploreNEOs survey using NASA's 'Warm-Spitzer' space telescope. As of 2010 July 14, we have results for 293 objects in hand (including the 65 low-Δv NEOs presented here); before the end of 2011, we expect to have measured the size and albedo of ∼700 NEOs (including probably ∼160 low-Δv NEOs). While there are reasons to believe that primitive volatile-rich materials are universally low in albedo, the converse need not be true: the orbital evolution of some dark objects likely has caused them to lose their volatiles by coming too close to the Sun. For all our targets, we give the closest perihelion distance they are likely to have reached (using orbital integrations from Marchi et al. 2009) and corresponding upper limits on the past surface temperature. Low-Δv objects for which both albedo and thermal history may suggest a primitive composition include (162998) 2001 SK162, (68372) 2001 PM9, and (100085) 1992 UY4.

  18. Exploration of faint absorption bands in the reflectance spectra of the asteroids by method of optimal smoothing: Vestoids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shestopalov, D. I.; McFadden, L. A.; Golubeva, L. F.

    2007-04-01

    An optimization method of smoothing noisy spectra was developed to investigate faint absorption bands in the visual spectral region of reflectance spectra of asteroids and the compositional information derived from their analysis. The smoothing algorithm is called "optimal" because the algorithm determines the best running box size to separate weak absorption bands from the noise. The method is tested for its sensitivity to identifying false features in the smoothed spectrum, and its correctness of forecasting real absorption bands was tested with artificial spectra simulating asteroid reflectance spectra. After validating the method we optimally smoothed 22 vestoid spectra from SMASS1 [Xu, Sh., Binzel, R.P., Burbine, T.H., Bus, S.J., 1995. Icarus 115, 1-35]. We show that the resulting bands are not telluric features. Interpretation of the absorption bands in the asteroid spectra was based on the spectral properties of both terrestrial and meteorite pyroxenes. The bands located near 480, 505, 530, and 550 nm we assigned to spin-forbidden crystal field bands of ferrous iron, whereas the bands near 570, 600, and 650 nm are attributed to the crystal field bands of trivalent chromium and/or ferric iron in low-calcium pyroxenes on the asteroids' surface. While not measured by microprobe analysis, Fe 3+ site occupancy can be measured with Mössbauer spectroscopy, and is seen in trace amounts in pyroxenes. We believe that trace amounts of Fe 3+ on vestoid surfaces may be due to oxidation from impacts by icy bodies. If that is the case, they should be ubiquitous in the asteroid belt wherever pyroxene absorptions are found. Pyroxene composition of four asteroids of our set is determined from the band position of absorptions at 505 and 1000 nm, implying that there can be orthopyroxenes in all range of ferruginosity on the vestoid surfaces. For the present we cannot unambiguously interpret of the faint absorption bands that are seen in the spectra of 4005 Dyagilev, 4038

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Ground-Based VIS/NIR Reflectance Spectra of 25143 Itokawa: What Hayabusa will See and How Ground-Based Data can Augment Analyses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilas, Faith; Abell, P. A.; Jarvis, K. S.

    2004-01-01

    Planning for the arrival of the Hayabusa spacecraft at asteroid 25143 Itokawa includes consideration of the expected spectral information to be obtained using the AMICA and NIRS instruments. The rotationally-resolved spatial coverage the asteroid we have obtained with ground-based telescopic spectrophotometry in the visible and near-infrared can be utilized here to address expected spacecraft data. We use spectrophotometry to simulate the types of data that Hayabusa will receive with the NIRS and AMICA instruments, and will demonstrate them here. The NIRS will cover a wavelength range from 0.85 m, and have a dispersion per element of 250 Angstroms. Thus, we are limited in coverage of the 1.0 micrometer and 2.0 micrometer mafic silicate absorption features. The ground-based reflectance spectra of Itokawa show a large component of olivine in its surface material, and the 2.0 micrometer feature is shallow. Determining the olivine to pyroxene abundance ratio is critically dependent on the attributes of the 1.0- and 2.0 micrometer features. With a cut-off near 2,1 micrometer the longer edge of the 2.0- feature will not be obtained by NIRS. Reflectance spectra obtained using ground-based telescopes can be used to determine the regional composition around space-based spectral observations, and possibly augment the longer wavelength spectral attributes. Similarly, the shorter wavelength end of the 1.0 micrometer absorption feature will be partially lost to the NIRS. The AMICA filters mimic the ECAS filters, and have wavelength coverage overlapping with the NIRS spectral range. We demonstrate how merging photometry from AMICA will extend the spectral coverage of the NIRS. Lessons learned from earlier spacecraft to asteroids should be considered.

  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. 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

  4. 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.

  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. Navigation of Chang'E-2 asteroid exploration mission and the minimum distance estimation during its fly-by of Toutatis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Jianfeng; Liu, Yong; Hu, Songjie; Liu, Lei; Tang, Geshi; Huang, Yong; Li, Peijia

    2015-01-01

    China's space probe Chang'E-2 began its asteroid exploration mission on April 15, 2012 and had been in space for 243 days before its encounter with Toutatis. With no onboard navigation equipment available, the navigation of CE-2 during its fly-by of the asteroid relied totally on ground-based Unified S-Band (USB) and Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) tracking data. The orbit determination of Toutatis was achieved by using a combination of optical measurements and radar ranging. On November 30, 2012, CE-2 was targeted at a destination that was 15 km away from the asteroid as it performed its third trajectory correction maneuver. Later orbit determination analysis showed that a correction residual was still present, which necessitated another maneuver on December 12. During the two maneuvers, ground-based navigation faced a challenge in terms of the orbit determination accuracy. With the optimization of our strategy, an accuracy of better than 15 km was finally achieved for the post-maneuver orbit solution. On December 13, CE-2 successfully passed by Toutatis and conducted continuous photographing of Toutatis during the entire process. An analysis of the images that were taken from the solar panel monitoring camera and the satellite attitude information demonstrates that the closest distance obtained between CE-2 and Toutatis (Toutatis's surface) was 1.9 km, which is considerably better than the 30 km fly-by distance that we originally hoped based on the accuracies that we can obtain on the satellite and Toutatis' orbits.

  7. System Configuration and Operation Plan of Hayabusa2 DCAM3-D Camera System for Scientific Observation During SCI Impact Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogawa, Kazunori; Shirai, Kei; Sawada, Hirotaka; Arakawa, Masahiko; Honda, Rie; Wada, Koji; Ishibashi, Ko; Iijima, Yu-ichi; Sakatani, Naoya; Nakazawa, Satoru; Hayakawa, Hajime

    2017-07-01

    An artificial impact experiment is scheduled for 2018-2019 in which an impactor will collide with asteroid 162137 Ryugu (1999 JU3) during the asteroid rendezvous phase of the Hayabusa2 spacecraft. The small carry-on impactor (SCI) will shoot a 2-kg projectile at 2 km/s to create a crater 1-10 m in diameter with an expected subsequent ejecta curtain of a 100-m scale on an ideal sandy surface. A miniaturized deployable camera (DCAM3) unit will separate from the spacecraft at about 1 km from impact, and simultaneously conduct optical observations of the experiment. We designed and developed a camera system (DCAM3-D) in the DCAM3, specialized for scientific observations of impact phenomenon, in order to clarify the subsurface structure, construct theories of impact applicable in a microgravity environment, and identify the impact point on the asteroid. The DCAM3-D system consists of a miniaturized camera with a wide-angle and high-focusing performance, high-speed radio communication devices, and control units with large data storage on both the DCAM3 unit and the spacecraft. These components were successfully developed under severe constraints of size, mass and power, and the whole DCAM3-D system has passed all tests verifying functions, performance, and environmental tolerance. Results indicated sufficient potential to conduct the scientific observations during the SCI impact experiment. An operation plan was carefully considered along with the configuration and a time schedule of the impact experiment, and pre-programed into the control unit before the launch. In this paper, we describe details of the system design concept, specifications, and the operating plan of the DCAM3-D system, focusing on the feasibility of scientific observations.

  8. 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

  9. The origins of Asteroidal rock disaggregation: Interplay of thermal fatigue and microstructure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazeli, Kavan; El Mir, Charles; Papanikolaou, Stefanos; Delbo, Marco; Ramesh, K. T.

    2018-04-01

    The distributions of size and chemical composition in regolith on airless bodies provide clues to the evolution of the solar system. Recently, the regolith on asteroid (25143) Itokawa, visited by the JAXA Hayabusa spacecraft, was observed to contain millimeter to centimeter sized particles. Itokawa boulders commonly display well-rounded profiles and surface textures that appear inconsistent with mechanical fragmentation during meteorite impact; the rounded profiles have been hypothesized to arise from rolling and movement on the surface as a consequence of seismic shaking. This investigation provides a possible explanation of these observations by exploring the primary crack propagation mechanism during thermal fatigue of a chondrite. Herein, we present the evolution of the full-field strains on the surface as a function of temperature and microstructure, and examine the crack growth during thermal cycling. Our experimental results demonstrate that thermal-fatigue-driven fracture occurs under these conditions. The results suggest that the primary fatigue crack path preferentially follows the interfaces between monominerals, leaving the minerals themselves intact after fragmentation. These observations are explained through a microstructure-based finite element model that is quantitatively compared with our experimental results. These results on the interactions of thermal fatigue cracking with the microstructure may ultimately allow us to distinguish between thermally induced fragments and impact products.

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.)

  13. Preflight Calibration Test Results for Optical Navigation Camera Telescope (ONC-T) Onboard the Hayabusa2 Spacecraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kameda, S.; Suzuki, H.; Takamatsu, T.; Cho, Y.; Yasuda, T.; Yamada, M.; Sawada, H.; Honda, R.; Morota, T.; Honda, C.; Sato, M.; Okumura, Y.; Shibasaki, K.; Ikezawa, S.; Sugita, S.

    2017-07-01

    The optical navigation camera telescope (ONC-T) is a telescopic framing camera with seven colors onboard the Hayabusa2 spacecraft launched on December 3, 2014. The main objectives of this instrument are to optically navigate the spacecraft to asteroid Ryugu and to conduct multi-band mapping the asteroid. We conducted performance tests of the instrument before its installation on the spacecraft. We evaluated the dark current and bias level, obtained data on the dependency of the dark current on the temperature of the charge-coupled device (CCD). The bias level depends strongly on the temperature of the electronics package but only weakly on the CCD temperature. The dark-reference data, which is obtained simultaneously with observation data, can be used for estimation of the dark current and bias level. A long front hood is used for ONC-T to reduce the stray light at the expense of flatness in the peripheral area of the field of view (FOV). The central area in FOV has a flat sensitivity, and the limb darkening has been measured with an integrating sphere. The ONC-T has a wheel with seven bandpass filters and a panchromatic glass window. We measured the spectral sensitivity using an integrating sphere and obtained the sensitivity of all the pixels. We also measured the point-spread function using a star simulator. Measurement results indicate that the full width at half maximum is less than two pixels for all the bandpass filters and in the temperature range expected in the mission phase except for short periods of time during touchdowns.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. New candidates for active asteroids: Main-belt (145) Adeona, (704) Interamnia, (779) Nina, (1474) Beira, and near-Earth (162,173) Ryugu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busarev, Vladimir V.; Makalkin, Andrei B.; Vilas, Faith; Barabanov, Sergey I.; Scherbina, Marina P.

    2018-04-01

    For the first time, spectral signs of subtle coma activity were observed for four main-belt primitive asteroids (145) Adeona, (704) Interamnia, (779) Nina, and (1474) Beira around their perihelion distances in September 2012, which were interpreted as manifestations of the sublimation of H2O ice in/under the surface matter (Busarev et al., 2015a, 2015b). We confirm the phenomenon for Nina when it approached perihelion in September 2016. At the same time, based on results of spectral observations of near-Earth asteroid (162,173) Ryugu (Vilas, 2008) being a target of Japan's Hayabusa 2 space mission, we suspected a periodic similar transient activity on the Cg-type asteroid. However, unlike the main-belt primitive asteroids demonstrating sublimation of ices close to their perihelion distances, the effect on Ryugu was apparently registered near aphelion. To explain the difference, we calculated the subsolar temperature depending on heliocentric distance of the asteroids, considered qualitative models of internal structure of main-belt and near-Earth primitive asteroids including ice and performed some analytical estimations. Presumed temporal sublimation/degassing activity of Ryugu is a sign of a residual frozen core in its interior. This could be an indication of a relatively recent transition of the asteroid from the main asteroid belt to the near-Earth area.

  20. Cratering efficiency on coarse-grain targets: Implications for the dynamical evolution of asteroid 25143 Itokawa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tatsumi, Eri; Sugita, Seiji

    2018-01-01

    Remote sensing observations made by the spacecraft Hayabusa provided the first direct evidence of a rubble-pile asteroid: 25143 Itokawa. Itokawa was found to have a surface structure very different from other explored asteroids; covered with coarse pebbles and boulders ranging at least from cm to meter size. The cumulative size distribution of small circular depressions on Itokawa, most of which may be of impact origin, has a significantly shallower slope than that on the Moon; small craters are highly depleted on Itokawa compared to the Moon. This deficiency of small circular depressions and other features, such as clustered fragments and pits on boulders, suggest that the boulders on Itokawa might behave like armor, preventing crater formation: the ;armoring effect;. This might contribute to the low number density of small crater candidates. In this study, the cratering efficiency reduction due to coarse-grained targets was investigated based on impact experiments at velocities ranging from ∼ 70 m/s to ∼ 6 km/s using two vertical gas gun ranges. We propose a scaling law extended for cratering on coarse-grained targets (i.e., target grain size ≳ projectile size). We have found that the crater efficiency reduction is caused by energy dissipation at the collision site where momentum is transferred from the impactor to the first-contact target grain, and that the armoring effect can be classified into three regimes: (1) gravity scaled regime, (2) reduced size crater regime, or (3) no apparent crater regime, depending on the ratio of the impactor size to the target grain size and the ratio of the impactor kinetic energy to the disruption energy of a target grain. We found that the shallow slope of the circular depressions on Itokawa cannot be accounted for by this new scaling law, suggesting that obliteration processes, such as regolith convection and migration, play a greater role in the depletion of circular depressions on Itokawa. Based on the new extended

  1. Example Solar Electric Propulsion System asteroid tours using variational calculus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burrows, R. R.

    1985-01-01

    Exploration of the asteroid belt with a vehicle utilizing a Solar Electric Propulsion System has been proposed in past studies. Some of those studies illustrated multiple asteroid rendezvous with trajectories obtained using approximate methods. Most of the inadequacies of those approximations are overcome in this paper, which uses the calculus of variations to calculate the trajectories and associated payloads of four asteroid tours. The modeling, equations, and solution techniques are discussed, followed by a presentation of the results.

  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. 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

  4. CM and CO chondrites: A common parent body or asteroidal neighbors? Insights from chondrule silicates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrader, Devin L.; Davidson, Jemma

    2017-10-01

    By investigating the petrology and chemical composition of type II (FeO-rich) chondrules in the Mighei-like carbonaceous (CM) chondrites we constrain their thermal histories and relationship to the Ornans-like carbonaceous (CO) chondrites. We identified FeO-rich relict grains in type II chondrules by their Fe/Mn ratios; their presence indicates chondrule recycling among type II chondrules. The majority of relict grains in type II chondrules are FeO-poor olivine grains. Consistent with previous studies, chemical similarities between CM and CO chondrite chondrules indicate that they had similar formation conditions and that their parent bodies probably formed in a common region within the protoplanetary disk. However, important differences such as mean chondrule size and the lower abundance of FeO-poor relicts in CM chondrite type II chondrules than in CO chondrites suggest CM and CO chondrules did not form together and they likely originate from distinct parent asteroids. Despite being aqueously altered, many CM chondrites contain pre-accretionary anhydrous minerals (i.e., olivine) that are among the least thermally metamorphosed materials in chondrites according to the Cr2O3 content of their ferroan olivine. The presence of these minimally altered pre-accretionary chondrule silicates suggests that samples to be returned from aqueously altered asteroids by the Hayabusa2 and OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return missions, even highly hydrated, may contain silicates that can provide information about the pre-accretionary histories and conditions of asteroids Ryugu and Bennu, respectively.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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...

  12. 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...

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. Update on an Interstellar Asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2018-01-01

    Lowell Observatorys 4.3-m Discovery Channel Telescope. The data indicate that the asteroids period is at least 3 hours in length,and most likely more than 5 hours. Assuming the light curves variation is caused by the tumbling asteroids changing cross-section, Oumuamuamust be a minimum of3 times as long as it is wide. Knight and collaborators seeno signs in their images of a coma or tail emitted from Oumuamua, suggesting there isno volatile material sublimating from its surface under the heat of the Sun.No coma is visible around Oumuamua. [Knight et al. 2017]A study of the asteroids photometry, led by Michele Bannister (Queens University Belfast, UK), usedthe Gemini-North telescope in Hawaii and the William Herschel Telescope in Spainto explore the asteroids shape and color. Bannister and collaborators refined the estimate of the asteroids shape to be at least 5.3 times as long as it is wide, which requiresthis body to have significant internal cohesion to hold together as it tumbles. Their measured color for Oumuamua is largely neutral.What Does This Visitor Imply?Masses and semimajor axes of known exoplanets. Colors correspond to the ratio of escape velocity to circular velocity. The presence of Oumuamua implies a vast and cool, stillundetected population of planets. [Laughlin Batygin, 2017]Gregory Laughlinof Yale University and Konstantin Batyginof Caltech(andPlanet Nine fame) explore some of the consequences of Oumuamuas parameters. They arguethat its current passage, if its not a fluke, suggests the presence ofan enormous number (1027) ofsuch objects in our galaxy alone enough to account for two Earth-masses of material for every star in the galaxy. Flinging asteroids like Oumuamuaout into interstellar space isnteasy, though; the necessary multi-body interaction requires the system to containa giant and long-period planet like our Neptune or Jupiter. Taken together, this information suggests that every star in the galaxy may host a Neptune-like planet at a Neptune

  17. Rock legends the asteroids and their discoverers

    CERN Document Server

    Murdin, Paul

    2016-01-01

    This book relates the history of asteroid discoveries and christenings, from those of the early pioneering giants of Hersehel and Piazzi to modern-day amateurs. Moving from history and anecdotal information to science, the book's structure is provided by the names of the asteroids, including one named after the author. Free from a need to conform to scientific naming conventions, the names evidence hero-worship, sycophancy, avarice, vanity, whimsy, erudition and wit, revealing the human side of astronomers, especially where controversy has followed the christening. Murdin draws from extensive historical records to explore the debate over these names. Each age reveals its own biases and preferences in the naming process. < Originally regarded as “vermin of the skies,” asteroids are minor planets, rocky scraps left over from the formation of the larger planets, or broken fragments of worlds that have collided. Their scientific classification as “minor” planets makes them seem unimportant, but over th...

  18. Space weathering trends on carbonaceous asteroids: A possible explanation for Bennu's blue slope?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lantz, C.; Binzel, R. P.; DeMeo, F. E.

    2018-03-01

    We compare primitive near-Earth asteroid spectral properties to the irradiated carbonaceous chondrite samples of Lantz et al. (2017) in order to assess how space weathering processes might influence taxonomic classification. Using the same eigenvectors from the asteroid taxonomy by DeMeo et al. (2009), we calculate the principal components for fresh and irradiated meteorites and find that change in spectral slope (blueing or reddening) causes a corresponding shift in the two first principal components along the same line that the C- and X-complexes track. Using a sample of B-, C-, X-, and D-type NEOs with visible and near-infrared spectral data, we further investigated the correlation between prinicipal components and the spectral curvature for the primitive asteroids. We find that space weathering effects are not just slope and albedo, but also include spectral curvature. We show how, through space weathering, surfaces having an original "C-type" reflectance can thus turn into a redder P-type or a bluer B-type, and that space weathering can also decrease (and disguise) the D-type population. Finally we take a look at the case of OSIRIS-REx target (101955) Bennu and propose an explanation for the blue and possibly red spectra that were previously observed on different locations of its surface: parts of Bennu's surface could have become blue due to space weathering, while fresher areas are redder. No clear prediction can be made on Hayabusa-2 target (162173) Ryugu.

  19. 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...

  20. BAOBAB (Big And Outrageously Bold Asteroid Belt) Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcfadden, L. A.; Thomas, C. A; Englander, J. A.; Ruesch, O.; Hosseini, S.; Goossens, S. J.; Mazarico, E. M.; Schmerr, N.

    2017-01-01

    One of the intriguing results of NASA's Dawn mission is the composition and structure of the Main Asteroid Belt's only known dwarf planet, Ceres [1]. It has a top layer of dehydrated clays and salts [2] and an icy-rocky mantle [3,4]. It is widely known that the asteroid belt failed to accrete as a planet by resonances between the Sun and Jupiter. About 20-30 asteroids >100 km diameter are probably differentiated protoplanets [5]. 1) how many more and which ones are fragments of protoplanets? 2) How many and which ones are primordial rubble piles left over from condensation of the solar nebula? 3) How would we go about gaining better and more complete characterization of the mass, interior structure and composition of the Main Belt asteroid population? 4) What is the relationship between asteroids and ocean worlds? Bulk parameters such as the mass, density, and porosity, are important to characterize the structure of any celestial body, and for asteroids in particular, they can shed light on the conditions in the early solar system. Asteroid density estimates exist but currently they are often based on assumed properties of taxonomic classes, or through astronomical survey data where interactions with asteroids are weak at best resulting in large measurement uncertainty. We only have direct density estimates from spacecraft encounters for a few asteroids at this time. Knowledge of the asteroids is significant not only to understand their role in solar system workings, but also to assess their potential as space resources, as impact hazards on Earth, or even as harboring life forms. And for the distant future, we want to know if the idea put forth in a contest sponsored by Physics Today, to surface the asteroids into highly reflecting, polished surfaces and use them as a massively segmented mirror for astrophysical exploration [6], is feasible.

  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. 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.

  3. 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...

  4. 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 ...

  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. 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.

  7. Generalized Calibration of the Polarimetric Albedo Scale of Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupishko, D. F.

    2018-03-01

    Six different calibrations of the polarimetric albedo scale of asteroids have been published so far. Each of them contains its particular random and systematic errors and yields its values of geometric albedo. On the one hand, this complicates their analysis and comparison; on the other hand, it becomes more and more difficult to decide which of the proposed calibrations should be used. Moreover, in recent years, new databases on the albedo of asteroids obtained from the radiometric surveys of the sky with the orbital space facilities (the InfraRed Astronomical Satellite (IRAS), the Japanese astronomical satellite AKARI (which means "light"), the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), and the Near-Earth Object Wide-field Survey Explorer (NEOWISE)) have appeared; and the database on the diameters and albedos of asteroids obtained from their occultations of stars has substantially increased. Here, we critically review the currently available calibrations and propose a new generalized calibration derived from the interrelations between the slope h and the albedo and between P min and the albedo. This calibration is based on all of the available series of the asteroid albedos and the most complete data on the polarization parameters of asteroids. The generalized calibration yields the values of the polarimetric albedo of asteroids in the system unified with the radiometric albedos and the albedos obtained from occultations of stars by asteroids. This, in turn, removes the difficulties in their comparison, joint analysis, etc.

  8. NEOWISE REACTIVATION MISSION YEAR ONE: PRELIMINARY ASTEROID DIAMETERS AND ALBEDOS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nugent, C. R.; Cutri, R. M. [Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J.; Kramer, E.; Sonnett, S.; Stevenson, R. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Grav, T. [Planetary Science Institute, Tucson, AZ (United States); Wright, E. L., E-mail: cnugent@ipac.caltech.edu [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095 (United States)

    2015-12-01

    We present preliminary diameters and albedos for 7956 asteroids detected in the first year of the NEOWISE Reactivation mission. Of those, 201 are near-Earth asteroids and 7755 are Main Belt or Mars-crossing asteroids. 17% of these objects have not been previously characterized using the Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or “NEOWISE” thermal measurements. Diameters are determined to an accuracy of ∼20% or better. If good-quality H magnitudes are available, albedos can be determined to within ∼40% or better.

  9. 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

  10. Catastrophic Disruption of Asteroids: First Simulations with Explicit Formation of Spinning Rigid and Semi-rigid Aggregates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Patrick; Richardson, D. C.

    2007-10-01

    We have made major improvements in simulations of asteroid disruption by computing explicitly aggregate formations during the gravitational reaccumulation of small fragments, allowing us to obtain information on their spin and shape. First results will be presented taking as examples asteroid families that we reproduced successfully with previous less sophisticated simulations. In the last years, we have simulated successfully the formation of asteroid families using a SPH hydrocode to compute the fragmentation following the impact of a projectile on the parent body, and the N-body code pkdgrav to compute the mutual interactions of the fragments. We found that fragments generated by the disruption of a km-size asteroid can have large enough masses to be attracted by each other during their ejection. Consequently, many reaccumulations take place. Eventually most large fragments correspond to gravitational aggregates formed by reaccumulation of smaller ones. Moreover, formation of satellites occurs around the largest and other big remnants. In these previous simulations, when fragments reaccumulate, they merge into a single sphere whose mass is the sum of their masses. Thus, no information is obtained on the actual shape of the aggregates, their spin, ... For the first time, we have now simulated the disruption of a family parent body by computing explicitly the formation of aggregates, along with the above-mentioned properties. Once formed these aggregates can interact and/or collide with each other and break up during their evolution. We will present these first simulations and their possible implications on properties of asteroids generated by disruption. Results can for instance be compared with data provided by the Japanese space mission Hayabusa of the asteroid Itokawa, a body now understood to be a reaccumulated fragment from a larger parent body. Acknowledgments: PM and DCR acknowledge supports from the French Programme National de Planétologie and grants

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. Multi-color lightcurve observation of the asteroid (163249) 2002 GT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oshima, M.; Abe, S.

    2014-07-01

    NASA's Deep Impact/EPOXI spacecraft plans to encounter the asteroid (163249) 2002 GT, classified as a PHA (Potentially Hazardous Asteroid), on January 4, 2020. However, the taxonomic type and spin state of 2002 GT remain to be determined. We have carried out ground-based multi-color (B-V-R-I) lightcurve observations taking advantage of the 2002 GT Characterization Campaign by NASA. Multi-color lightcurve measurements allow us to estimate the rotation period and obtain strong constraints on the shape and pole orientation. Here we found that the rotation period of 2002 GT is estimated to be 3.7248 ± 0.1664 h. In mid-2013, 2002 GT passed at 0.015 au from the Earth, resulting an exceptional opportunity for ground-based characterization. Using the 0.81-m telescope of the Tenagra Observatory (110°52'44.8''W, +31°27'44.4''N, 1312 m) in Arizona, USA, and the Johnson-Cousins BVRI filters, we have found lightcurves of 2002 GT (Figure). The Tenagra II 0.81-m telescope is used for research of the Hayabusa2 target Asteroid (162173) 1999 JU_3. The lightcurves (relative magnitude) show that the rotation period of 2002 GT, the target of NASA's Deep Impact/EPOXI spacecraft, is estimated to be 3.7248 ± 0.1664 hr. On June 9, 2013, we had 7 hours of ground-based observations on 2002 GT from 4:00 to 11:00 UTC. The number of comparison stars for differential photometry was 34. Because of tracking the fast-moving asteroid, it was necessary to have the same comparison star among the fields of vision. We have also obtained absolute photometry of 2002 GT on June 13, 2013.

  14. 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.

  15. Geophysical Evolution of Ch Asteroids and Testable Hypotheses for Future Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo, J. C.

    2017-12-01

    The main population of asteroids related to meteorites in the collections remains to be explored in situ. Ch asteroids are the only midsized asteroids that display a signature of hydration (besides Pallas) and the spectral connection between Ch asteroids and CM chondrites suggests that the former represent potential parent bodies for the latter. This class of asteroids is particularly interesting because it hosts many objects 100-200 km in size, which are believed to belong to a primordial population of planetesimals. This presentation will explore multiple evolution pathways for Ch-asteroids leading to possible hypotheses on the geological, petrological, and geophysical properties that a disrupted parent body would present to a future mission. This work is being carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract to NASA.

  16. 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

  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. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Physical characterization of asteroid surfaces from photometric analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Helfenstein, P.; Veverka, J.

    1989-01-01

    Rigorous photometric models, like Hapke's equation, can be applied to the analysis of disk-integrated phase curves in order to estimate a variety of regolith physical properties (average particle single-scattering albedo, particle transparency, soil compaction and large-scale roughness). Unfortunately, unambiguous interpretation is difficult due to uncertainties introduced by the irregular shapes of many asteroids and because Earth-based observations are often restricted to small phase angles (<30 degrees). In this chapter, the authors explore in detail how incomplete phase-angle coverage and nonsphericity of asteroids limits the reliable determination of Hapke's photometric parameters from asteroid phase curves. From obtainable Earth-based observations, it is possible to derive useful relative comparisons of single-scattering albedos, opposition-surge amplitudes, and regolith compaction states for different asteroids

  2. 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

  3. Physical Properties of Asteroid (10302) 1989 ML, a Potential Spacecraft Target, from Spitzer Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Michael; Harris, A. W.

    2006-09-01

    We report on results from recent Spitzer observations of near-Earth asteroid (10302) 1989 ML, which is among the lowest-ranking objects in terms of the specific momentum Δv required to reach it from Earth. It was originally considered as a target for Hayabusa and is now under consideration as a target of the planned ESA mission Don Quijote. Unfortunately, little is known about the physical properties of 1989 ML, in particular its size and albedo are unknown. Its exhibits an X type reflection spectrum, so depending on its albedo, 1989 ML may be an E, M, or P type asteroid. Provisional results from thermal-infrared observations carried out with Spitzer indicate that the albedo of 1989 ML is compatible with an M- or E-type classification. We will discuss our results and their implications for the physical properties and the rotation period of 1989 ML, and its importance as a potential spacecraft target. This work is based on observations made with the Spitzer Space Telescope, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under a contract with NASA.

  4. 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.

  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. Asteroids from a Martian Mega Impact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2018-04-01

    capable of producing enough ejecta and with the appropriate compositions and orbits to explain the Mars trojans and the A-type asteroids we observe. Tackling this problem, researchers Ryuki Hyodo and Hidenori Genda have performed numerical simulations to explore the ejecta from such a collision.Distributing DebrisHyodo and Genda examine the outcomes of a Mars mega impact using smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulations. They test different impactor masses, impactor speeds, angles of impact, and more to determine how these properties affect the properties of the Martian ejecta that result.Debris ejected in a Mars mega impact, at 20 hours post-impact. Blue particles are from the impactor, red particles are from Mars, yellow particles are clumps of 10 particles. [Hyodo Genda 2018]The authors find that a large amount of debris can be ejected from Mars during such an impact and distributed between 0.53 AU in the solar system. Roughly 2% of this debris could originate from Marss olivine-rich, unmelted upper mantle which could indeed be the source of the olivine-rich Mars Trojan asteroids and rare A-type asteroids.How can we further explorethis picture? Debris from a Mars mega impact would not justhave been the source of new asteroids; the debris likely also collided with pre-existing asteroids or even transferred to early Earth. Signatures of a Mars mega impact may therefore be recorded in main-belt asteroids or in meteorites found on Earth, providing tantalizing targets for future studies in the effort to map out Marss past.CitationRyuki Hyodo and Hidenori Genda 2018 ApJL 856 L36. doi:10.3847/2041-8213/aab7f0

  7. Osiris-Rex and Hayabusa2 Sample Cleanroom Design and Construction Planning at NASA-JSC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Righter, Kevin; Pace, Lisa F.; Messenger, Keiko

    2018-01-01

    Final Paper and not the abstract is attached. The OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission launched to asteroid Bennu September 8, 2016. The spacecraft will arrive at Bennu in late 2019, orbit and map the asteroid, and perform a touch and go (TAG) sampling maneuver in July 2020. After confirma-tion of successful sample stowage, the spacecraft will return to Earth, and the sample return capsule (SRC) will land in Utah in September 2023. Samples will be recovered from Utah and then transported and stored in a new sample cleanroom at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. All curation-specific ex-amination and documentation activities related to Ben-nu samples will be conducted in the dedicated OSIRIS-REx sample cleanroom to be built at NASA-JSC.

  8. 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

  9. Processes to Open the Container and the Sample Catcher of the Hayabusa Returned Capsule in the Planetary Material Sample Curation Facility of JAXA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujimura, A.; Abe, M.; Yada, T.; Nakamura, T.; Noguchi, T.; Okazaki, R.; Ishibashi, Y.; Shirai, K.; Okada, T.; Yano, H.; hide

    2011-01-01

    Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa, which returned from near-Earth-asteroid Itokawa, successfully returned its reentry capsule to the Earth, the Woomera Prohibited Area in Australia in Jun 13th, 2010, as detailed in another paper [1]. The capsule introduced into the Planetary Material Sample Curation Facility in the Sagamihara campus of JAXA in the early morning of June 18th. Hereafter, we describe a series of processes for the returned capsule and the container to recover gas and materials in there. A transportation box of the recovered capsule was cleaned up on its outer surface beforehand and introduced into the class 10,000 clean room of the facility. Then, the capsule was extracted from the box and its plastic bag was opened and checked and photographed the outer surface of the capsule. The capsule was composed of the container, a backside ablator, a side ablator, an electronic box and a supporting frame. The container consists of an outer lid, an inner lid, a frame for latches, a container and a sample catcher, which is composed of room A and B and a rotational cylinder. After the first check, the capsule was packed in a plastic bag with N2 again, and transferred to the Chofu campus in JAXA, where the X-ray CT instrument is situated. The first X-ray CT analysis was performed on the whole returned capsule for confirming the conditions of latches and O-ring seal of the container. The analysis showed that the latches of the container should have worked normally, and that the double Orings of the container seemed to be sealed its sample catcher with no problem. After the first X-ray CT, the capsule was sent back to Sagamihara and introduced in the clean room to exclude the electronic box and the side ablator from the container by hand tools. Then the container with the backside ablator was set firmly to special jigs to fix the lid of container tightly to the container and set to a milling machine. The backside ablator was drilled by the machine to expose heads of bolts

  10. 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.

  11. Bulk Densities of Binary Asteroids from the Warm Spitzer NEO Survey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kistler, John; Trilling, D. E.; Mueller, M.; Hora, J. L.; Harris, A. W.; Bhattacharya, B.; Bottke, W. F.; Chesley, S.; Emery, J. P.; Fazo, G.; Mainzer, A.; Penprase, B.; Smith, H. A.; Spahr, T. B.; Stansberry, J. A.; Thomas, C. A.

    2010-01-01

    The Warm Spitzer NEO survey, ExploreNEOs, will observe approximately 700 Near Earth Asteroids. Several of these objects are known to be binary asteroid systems. Binary systems are interesting due to the unique opportunity they present for determining the masses and densities of their constituent

  12. Applications of granular-dynamics numerical simulations to asteroid surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, D. C.; Michel, P.; Schwartz, S. R.; Yu, Y.; Ballouz, R.-L.; Matsumura, S.

    2014-07-01

    Spacecraft images and indirect observations including thermal inertia measurements indicate most small bodies have surface regolith. Evidence of granular flow is also apparent in the images. This material motion occurs in very low gravity, therefore in a totally different gravitational environment than on the Earth. Upcoming sample-return missions to small bodies, and possible future manned missions, will involve interaction with the surface regolith, so it is important to develop tools to predict the surface response. We have added new capabilities to the N-body gravity tree code pkdgrav [1,2] that permit the simulation of granular dynamics, including multi-contact physics and friction forces, using the soft-sphere discrete-element method [3]. The numerical approach has been validated through comparison with laboratory experiments (e.g., [3,4]). (1) We carried out impacts into granular materials using different projectile shapes under Earth's gravity [5] and compared the results to laboratory experiments [6] in support of JAXA's Hayabusa 2 asteroid sample-return mission. We tested different projectile shapes and confirmed that the 90-degree cone was the most efficient at excavating mass when impacting 5-mm-diameter glass beads. Results are sensitive to the normal coefficient of restitution and the coefficient of static friction. Preliminary experiments in micro-gravity for similar impact conditions show both the amount of ejected mass and the timescale of the impact process increase, as expected. (2) It has been found (e.g., [7,8]) that ''fresh'' (unreddened) Q-class asteroids have a high probability of recent planetary encounters (˜1 Myr; also see [9]), suggesting that surface refreshening may have occurred due to tidal effects. As an application of the potential effect of tidal interactions, we carried out simulations of Apophis' predicted 2029 encounter with the Earth to see whether regolith motion might occur, using a range of plausible material parameters

  13. 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

  14. Formation and Evolution of Binary Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, K. J.; Jacobson, S. A.

    Satellites of asteroids have been discovered in nearly every known small-body population, and a remarkable aspect of the known satellites is the diversity of their properties. They tell a story of vast differences in formation and evolution mechanisms that act as a function of size, distance from the Sun, and the properties of their nebular environment at the beginning of solar system history and their dynamical environment over the next 4.5 G.y. The mere existence of these systems provides a laboratory to study numerous types of physical processes acting on asteroids, and their dynamics provide a valuable probe of their physical properties otherwise possible only with spacecraft. Advances in understanding the formation and evolution of binary systems have been assisted by (1) the growing catalog of known systems, increasing from 33 to ~250 between the Merline et al. (2002) chapter in Asteroids III and now; (2) the detailed study and long-term monitoring of individual systems such as 1999 KW4 and 1996 FG3, (3) the discovery of new binary system morphologies and triple systems, (4) and the discovery of unbound systems that appear to be end-states of binary dynamical evolutionary paths. Specifically for small bodies (diameter smaller than 10 km), these observations and discoveries have motivated theoretical work finding that thermal forces can efficiently drive the rotational disruption of small asteroids. Long-term monitoring has allowed studies to constrain the system's dynamical evolution by the combination of tides, thermal forces, and rigid-body physics. The outliers and split pairs have pushed the theoretical work to explore a wide range of evolutionary end-states.

  15. 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.

  16. Near Earth Asteroid redirect missions based on gravity assist maneuver

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledkov, Anton; Shustov, Boris M.; Eismont, Natan; Boyarsky, Michael; Nazirov, Ravil; Fedyaev, Konstantin

    gravity assist maneuver near Earth resulted by following impact with dangerous asteroid. As example of the last one the Apophis was chosen. The required delta-V pulse to be applied to the candidate projectile asteroid to fulfill mentioned change of initial trajectory was confirmed to be comparatively small: not exceeding 10 m/s, and the smallest is about 2 m/s. To fulfilled this maneuver it is necessary to land and to mount on the surface of the asteroid projectile the spacecraft with sufficient amount of propellant onboard. The possible trajectories and demanded maneuvers were explored and it was confirmed that for contemporary space technology it is doable for the small asteroids belonging to the determined by our studies list of candidates supposing some reservations, namely the mass of the found asteroids. This was not considered as decisive obstacle because up to now only about 1% of small enough asteroids are included in catalogue so the list of the appropriate ones is far from to be closed. The studies have been fulfilled aimed to develop the methods to reached required accuracies of asteroid projectile trajectory parameters determination. With existing methods used for the usual spacecraft the limits of achievable accuracies demand the corrections delta-V maneuvers which may exceed the nominal ones. As a result the proposed conception of hazardous asteroids deflection becomes problematic. To overcome this obstacle in the paper new method of trajectory parameters determination is proposed and explored. Practically it is radio interferometer method when one transponder is placed on the asteroid target and two others together with the asteroid projectile form tetrahedron. This system begins to operate in vicinity of target asteroid in autonomous regime and expected to allow reaching the demanded low enough correction maneuver values. Paper gives the estimations of the accuracy of these three bodies relative motion parameters and expected limit values of correction

  17. OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission Image Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chevres Fernandez, Lee Roger; Bos, Brent

    2018-01-01

    NASA’s Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission constitutes the “first-of-its-kind” project to thoroughly characterize a near-Earth asteroid. The selected asteroid is (101955) 1999 RQ36 (a.k.a. Bennu). The mission launched in September 2016, and the spacecraft will reach its asteroid target in 2018 and return a sample to Earth in 2023. The spacecraft that will travel to, and collect a sample from, Bennu has five integrated instruments from national and international partners. NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission spacecraft includes the Touch-And-Go Camera System (TAGCAMS) three camera-head instrument. The purpose of TAGCAMS is to provide imagery during the mission to facilitate navigation to the target asteroid, confirm acquisition of the asteroid sample and document asteroid sample stowage. Two of the TAGCAMS cameras, NavCam 1 and NavCam 2, serve as fully redundant navigation cameras to support optical navigation and natural feature tracking. The third TAGCAMS camera, StowCam, provides imagery to assist with and confirm proper stowage of the asteroid sample. Analysis of spacecraft imagery acquired by the TAGCAMS during cruise to the target asteroid Bennu was performed using custom codes developed in MATLAB. Assessment of the TAGCAMS in-flight performance using flight imagery was done to characterize camera performance. One specific area of investigation that was targeted was bad pixel mapping. A recent phase of the mission, known as the Earth Gravity Assist (EGA) maneuver, provided images that were used for the detection and confirmation of “questionable” pixels, possibly under responsive, using image segmentation analysis. Ongoing work on point spread function morphology and camera linearity and responsivity will also be used for calibration purposes and further analysis in preparation for proximity operations around Bennu. Said analyses will provide a broader understanding

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. UV Reflectance of Jupiter's Moon Europa and Asteroid (16) Psyche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becker, T. M.; Retherford, K. D.; Roth, L.; Hendrix, A.; McGrath, M. A.; Cunningham, N.; Feaga, L. M.; Saur, J.; Elkins-Tanton, L. T.; Walhund, J. E.; Molyneux, P.

    2017-12-01

    Surface reflectance observations of solar system objects in the UV are not only complimentary to longer wavelength observations for identifying surface composition, but can also reveal new and meaningful information about the surfaces of those bodies. On Europa, far-UV (FUV) spectral observations made by the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) show that the surface lacks a strong water ice absorption edge near 165 nm, which is intriguing because such a band has been detected on most icy satellites. This may suggest that radiolytic processing by Jupiter's magnetosphere has altered the surface, causing absorption at wavelengths longward of the H2O edge, masking this feature. Additionally, the FUV spectra are blue (increasing albedo with shorter wavelengths), and regions that are observed to be dark in the visible appear bright in the FUV. This spectral inversion, also observed on the Moon and some asteroids, may provide insight into the properties of the surface material and how they are processed.We also explore the UV reflectance spectra of the main belt asteroid (16) Psyche. This asteroid is believed to be the metallic remnant core of a differentiated asteroid, stripped of its mantle through collisions. However, there is speculation that the asteroid could have formed as-is from highly reduced metal-rich material near the Sun early in the formation of the solar system. Further, spectral observations in the infrared have revealed pyroxene and hydroxyl on the asteroid's surface, complicating the interpretation that (16) Psyche is a pure metallic object. Laboratory studies indicate that there are diagnostic spectral features in the UV that could be useful for determining the surface composition. We obtained HST observations of Psyche from 160 - 300 nm. Preliminary results show a featureless, red-sloped spectrum, inconsistent with significant amounts of pyroxene on the surface. We will present the spectra of Europa and the asteroid (16) Psyche and discuss the unique details

  2. 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.

  3. 78 FR 64253 - NASA Asteroid Initiative Idea Synthesis Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-28

    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice: 13-124] NASA Asteroid Initiative Idea.... SUMMARY: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration announces that the agency will resume the NASA... INFORMATION CONTACT: Michele Gates, Senior Technical Advisor, NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission...

  4. 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...

  5. Dust arcs in the region of Jupiter's Trojan asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaodong; Schmidt, Jürgen

    2018-01-01

    Aims: The surfaces of the Trojan asteroids are steadily bombarded by interplanetary micrometeoroids, which releases ejecta of small dust particles. These particles form the faint dust arcs that are associated with asteroid clouds. Here we analyze the particle dynamics and structure of the arc in the region of the L4 Trojan asteroids. Methods: We calculate the total cross section of the L4 Trojan asteroids and the production rate of dust particles. The motion of the particles is perturbed by a variety of forces. We simulate the dynamical evolution of the dust particles, and explore the overall features of the Trojan dust arc. Results: The simulations show that the arc is mainly composed of grains in the size range 4-10 microns. Compared to the L4 Trojan asteroids, the dust arc is distributed more widely in the azimuthal direction, extending to a range of [30, 120] degrees relative to Jupiter. The peak number density does not develop at L4. There exist two peaks that are azimuthally displaced from L4.

  6. Identification, Calculation Of The Three Dimensional Orbit, And Flux Of Asteroid 2007 TD14

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Vincent; Martin, E.; Millan, J.

    2012-01-01

    In recent years the rate of discovery of asteroids has improved dramatically and has far outstripped efforts to physically characterize them. In this work, we took part in the International Astronomical Search Campaign and confirmed the discovery of asteroid 2007 TD14. We then calculated the two and three dimensional orbit of the asteroid around the sun, given its six elements of orbit. Once the heliocentric and geocentric distances are known, and the visual magnitude of the asteroid obtained through photometry, its diameter can be calculated assuming a suitable value for the albedo. The diameter was 0.718 km and the albedo was 0.039. Using the Standard Thermal Model we calculated the temperature distribution on the surface of the asteroid and the flux of the asteroid in the thermal infrared (1.095 mJy at 22 microns on March 19, 2010). To the best of our knowledge there have been no previous reports of the diameter and flux of the asteroid. Our ultimate goal is to compare our flux values with newly released data from NASA Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer Mission and thus obtain better estimates of the asteroid diameter and albedo.

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. 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...

  10. Discovery of a Satellite around a Near-Earth Asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-07-01

    In the course of the major observational programme of asteroids by the Institute of Planetary Exploration of the German Aerospace Research Establishment (DLR) [1] in Berlin, two of the staff astronomers, Stefano Mottola and Gerhard Hahn , have discovered a small satellite (moon) orbiting the asteroid (3671) Dionysus. The new measurements were obtained with the DLR CCD Camera attached at the 60-cm Bochum telescope at the ESO La Silla Observatory in Chile. This is only the second known case of an asteroid with a moon. Moons and planets Until recently, natural satellites were only known around the major planets . The Moon orbits the Earth, there are two tiny moons around Mars, each of the giant planets Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune has many more, and even the smallest and outermost, Pluto, is accompanied by one [2]. However, the new discovery now strengthens the belief of many astronomers that some, perhaps even a substantial number of the many thousands of minor planets (asteroids) in the solar system may also possess their own moons. The first discovery of a satellite orbiting an asteroid was made by the NASA Galileo spacecraft, whose imagery, obtained during a fly-by of asteroid (253) Ida in August 1993, unveiled a small moon that has since been given the name Dactyl. (3671) Dionysus: an Earth-crossing asteroid In the framework of the DLR asteroid monitoring programme, image sequences are acquired to measure an asteroid's brightness variations caused by the changing amount of sunlight reflected from the asteroid's illuminated surface as it spins, due to its irregular shape. The brightness variations may be used to derive the asteroid's rotational properties, such as speed of rotation and spin axis orientation. Asteroid Dionysus [3] was put on the observing list because it belongs to a special class of asteroids, the members of which occasionally come very close to the Earth and have a small, but non-negligible chance of colliding with our planet. Most of

  11. Laboratory Study of Aliphatic Organic Spectral Signatures and Applications to Ceres and Primitive Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaplan, H. H.; Milliken, R.

    2017-12-01

    Aliphatic organics were recently discovered on the surface of Ceres with Dawn's Visible and InfraRed (VIR) mapping spectrometer, which has implications for prebiotic chemistry of Ceres and other asteroids. An absorption in the spectrum at 3.4 µm was used to identify and provide initial estimates of the amount of organic material. We have studied the 3.4 µm absorption in reflectance spectra of bulk rock and meteorite powders and isolated organic materials in the NASA RELAB facility at Brown University to determine how organic composition and abundance affects absorption strength. Reflectance spectra of insoluble organic matter (IOM) extracted from carbonaceous chondrites were measured from 0.35 - 25 µm. These IOM have known elemental (H, C, N, O) and isotopic compositions that were compared with spectral properties. Bulk meteorites were measured as chips and particulates over the same wavelength range. Despite overall low reflectance values (albedo IOM samples, specifically those with a H/C ratio greater than 0.4. The absorption strength (band depth) increases with increasing H/C ratio, which corroborates similar findings in our previous study of sedimentary rocks and isolated kerogens. The absorption strength in the bulk meteorites reflects both H/C of the IOM and the concentration of IOM in the inorganic (mineral) matrix. Overlapping absorptions from carbonates and phyllosilicates (OH/H2O) can also influence the aliphatic organic bands in bulk rocks and meteorites. This laboratory work provides a foundation that can be used to constrain the composition of Ceres' aliphatic organic matter using band depth as a proxy for H/C. Reflectance spectra collected for this work will also be used to model the Dawn VIR data and obtain abundance and H/C estimates assuming that the organic material on Ceres' surface is similar to carbonaceous chondrite IOM. These spectra and findings can aid interpretation of reflectance data from Ceres and other asteroid missions, such as

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Distant retrograde orbits and the asteroid hazard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perozzi, Ettore; Ceccaroni, Marta; Valsecchi, Giovanni B.; Rossi, Alessandro

    2017-08-01

    Distant Retrograde Orbits (DROs) gained a novel wave of fame in space mission design because of their numerous advantages within the framework of the US plans for bringing a large asteroid sample in the vicinity of the Earth as the next target for human exploration. DROs are stable solutions of the three-body problem that can be used whenever an object, whether of natural or artificial nature, is required to remain in the neighborhood of a celestial body without being gravitationally captured by it. As such, they represent an alternative option to Halo orbits around the collinear Lagrangian points L1 and L2. Also known under other names ( e.g., quasi-satellite orbits, cis-lunar orbits, family- f orbits) these orbital configurations found interesting applications in several mission profiles, like that of a spacecraft orbiting around the small irregularly shaped satellite of Mars Phobos or the large Jovian moon Europa. In this paper a basic explanation of the DRO dynamics is presented in order to clarify some geometrical properties that characterize them. Their accessibility is then discussed from the point of view of mission analysis under different assumptions. Finally, their relevance within the framework of the present asteroid hazard protection programs is shown, stressing the significant increase in warning time they would provide in the prediction of impactors coming from the direction of the Sun.

  17. 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.

  18. 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).

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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)).

  4. Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission: Robotic Boulder Capture Option Overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazanek, Daniel D.; Merrill, Raymond G.; Belbin, Scott P.; Reeves, David M.; Earle, Kevin D.; Naasz, Bo J.; Abell, Paul A.

    2014-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is currently studying an option for the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM) that would capture a multi-ton boulder (typically 2-4 meters in size) from the surface of a large (is approximately 100+ meter) Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) and return it to cislunar space for subsequent human and robotic exploration. This alternative mission approach, designated the Robotic Boulder Capture Option (Option B), has been investigated to determine the mission feasibility and identify potential differences from the initial ARRM concept of capturing an entire small NEA (4-10 meters in size), which has been designated the Small Asteroid Capture Option (Option A). Compared to the initial ARRM concept, Option B allows for centimeter-level characterization over an entire large NEA, the certainty of target NEA composition type, the ability to select the boulder that is captured, numerous opportunities for mission enhancements to support science objectives, additional experience operating at a low-gravity planetary body including extended surface contact, and the ability to demonstrate future planetary defense strategies on a hazardous-size NEA. Option B can leverage precursor missions and existing Agency capabilities to help ensure mission success by targeting wellcharacterized asteroids and can accommodate uncertain programmatic schedules by tailoring the return mass.

  5. Logistics Needs for Potential Deep Space Mission Scenarios Post Asteroid Crewed Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Pedro, Jr.

    2015-01-01

    A deep-space mission has been proposed to identify and redirect an asteroid to a distant retrograde orbit around the moon, and explore it by sending a crew using the Space Launch System and the Orion spacecraft. The Asteroid Redirect Crewed Mission (ARCM), which represents the third segment of the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), could be performed on EM-3 or EM-4 depending on asteroid return date. Recent NASA studies have raised questions on how we could progress from current Human Space Flight (HSF) efforts to longer term human exploration of Mars. This paper will describe the benefits of execution of the ARM as the initial stepping stone towards Mars exploration, and how the capabilities required to send humans to Mars could be built upon those developed for the asteroid mission. A series of potential interim missions aimed at developing such capabilities will be described, and the feasibility of such mission manifest will be discussed. Options for the asteroid crewed mission will also be addressed, including crew size and mission duration.

  6. 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.)

  7. Exploration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lohrenz, J.

    1992-01-01

    Oil and gas exploration is a unique kind of business. Businesses providing a vast and ever-changing panoply of products to markets are a focus of several disciplines' energetic study and analysis. The product inventory problem is robust, pertinent, and meaningful, and it merits the voluminous and protracted attention received from keen business practitioners. Prototypical business practitioners, be they trained by years of business hurly-burly, or sophisticated MBAs with arrays of mathematical algorithms and computers, are not normally prepared, however, to recognize the unique nature of exploration's inventories. Put together such a business practitioner with an explorationist and misunderstandings, hidden and open, are inevitable and predictably rife. The first purpose of this paper is to articulate the inherited inventory handling paradigms of business practitioners in relation to exploration's inventories. To do so, standard pedagogy in business administration is used and a case study of an exploration venture is presented. A second purpose is to show the burdens that the misunderstandings create. The result is not just business plans that go awry, but public policies that have effects opposite from those intended

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Radar Observations of Asteroid 101955 Bennu and the OSIRIS-REx Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nolan, M. C.; Benner, L.; Giorgini, J. D.; Howell, E. S.; Kerr, R.; Lauretta, D. S.; Magri, C.; Margot, J. L.; Scheeres, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    On September 24, 2023, the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft will return a sample of asteroid (101955) Bennu to the Earth. We chose the target of this mission in part because of the work we did over more than a decade using the Arecibo and Goldstone planetary radars to observe this asteroid. We observed Bennu (then known as 1999 RQ36) at Arecibo and Goldstone in 1999 and 2005, and at Arecibo in 2011. Radar imaging from the first two observing epochs provided a shape and size for Bennu, which greatly simplified mission planning. We know that the spacecraft will encounter a roundish asteroid 500 m in diameter with a distinct equatorial ridge [Nolan et al., 2013]. Bennu does not have the dramatic concavities seen in Itokawa and comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, the Hayabusa and Rosetta mission targets, respectively, which would have been obvious in radar imaging. Further radar ranging in 2011 provided a detection of the Yarkovsky effect, allowing us to constrain Bennu's mass and bulk density from radar measurement of non-gravitational forces acting on its orbit [Chesley et al., 2014]. The 2011 observations were particularly challenging, occurring during a management transition at the Arecibo Observatory, and would not have been possible without significant extra cooperation between the old and new managing organizations. As a result, we can predict Bennu's position to within a few km over the next 100 years, until its close encounter with the Earth in 2135. We know its shape to within ± 10 m (1σ) on the long and intermediate axes and ± 52 m on the polar diameter, and its pole orientation to within 5 degrees. The bulk density is 1260 ± 70 kg/m3 and the rotation is retrograde with a 4.297 ± 0.002 h period The OSIRIS-REx team is using these constraints to preplan the initial stages of proximity operations and dramatically reduce risk. The Figure shows the model and Arecibo radar images from 1999 (left), 2005 (center), and 2011 (right). Bennu is the faint dot near the center of

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  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. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Routing the asteroid surface vehicle with detailed mechanics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Yang; Baoyin, He-Xi

    2014-06-01

    The motion of a surface vehicle on/above an irregular object is investigated for a potential interest in the insitu explorations to asteroids of the solar system. A global valid numeric method, including detailed gravity and geomorphology, is developed to mimic the behaviors of the test particles governed by the orbital equations and surface coupling effects. A general discussion on the surface mechanical environment of a specified asteroid, 1620 Geographos, is presented to make a global evaluation of the surface vehicle's working conditions. We show the connections between the natural trajectories near the ground and differential features of the asteroid surface, which describes both the good and bad of typical terrains from the viewpoint of vehicles' dynamic performances. Monte Carlo simulations are performed to take a further look at the trajectories of particles initializing near the surface. The simulations reveal consistent conclusions with the analysis, i.e., the open-field flat ground and slightly concave basins/valleys are the best choices for the vehicles' dynamical security. The dependence of decending trajectories on the releasing height is studied as an application; the results show that the pole direction (where the centrifugal force is zero) is the most stable direction in which the shift of a natural trajectory will be well limited after landing. We present this work as an example for pre-analysis that provides guidance to engineering design of the exploration site and routing the surface vehicles.

  19. NEOWISE REACTIVATION MISSION YEAR TWO: ASTEROID DIAMETERS AND ALBEDOS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nugent, C. R.; Cutri, R. M. [Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Mainzer, A.; Bauer, J.; Kramer, E. A.; Masiero, J.; Sonnett, S. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Grav, T. [Planetary Science Institute, Tucson, AZ (United States); Wright, E. L., E-mail: cnugent@ipac.caltech.edu [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095 (United States)

    2016-09-01

    The Near-Earth Object Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) mission continues to detect, track, and characterize minor planets. We present diameters and albedos calculated from observations taken during the second year since the spacecraft was reactivated in late 2013. These include 207 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) and 8885 other asteroids. Of the NEAs, 84% NEAs did not have previously measured diameters and albedos by the NEOWISE mission. Comparison of sizes and albedos calculated from NEOWISE measurements with those measured by occultations, spacecraft, and radar-derived shapes shows accuracy consistent with previous NEOWISE publications. Diameters and albedos fall within ±∼20% and ±∼40%, 1-sigma, respectively, of those measured by these alternate techniques. NEOWISE continues to preferentially discover near-Earth objects which are large (>100 m), and have low albedos.

  20. The Ion Propulsion System for the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, Daniel A.; Santiago, Walter; Kamhawi, Hani; Polk, James E.; Snyder, John Steven; Hofer, Richard; Sekerak, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission is a Solar Electric Propulsion Technology Demonstration Mission (ARRM) whose main objectives are to develop and demonstrate a high-power solar electric propulsion capability for the Agency and return an asteroidal mass for rendezvous and characterization in a companion human-crewed mission. This high-power solar electric propulsion capability, or an extensible derivative of it, has been identified as a critical part of NASA's future beyond-low-Earth-orbit, human-crewed exploration plans. This presentation presents the conceptual design of the ARRM ion propulsion system, the status of the NASA in-house thruster and power processing development activities, the status of the planned technology maturation for the mission through flight hardware delivery, and the status of the mission formulation and spacecraft acquisition.

  1. OSIRIS-REx: Sample Return from Asteroid (101955) Bennu

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauretta, D. S.; Balram-Knutson, S. S.; Beshore, E.; Boynton, W. V.; Drouet d'Aubigny, C.; DellaGiustina, D. N.; Enos, H. L.; Golish, D. R.; Hergenrother, C. W.; Howell, E. S.; Bennett, C. A.; Morton, E. T.; Nolan, M. C.; Rizk, B.; Roper, H. L.; Bartels, A. E.; Bos, B. J.; Dworkin, J. P.; Highsmith, D. E.; Lorenz, D. A.; Lim, L. F.; Mink, R.; Moreau, M. C.; Nuth, J. A.; Reuter, D. C.; Simon, A. A.; Bierhaus, E. B.; Bryan, B. H.; Ballouz, R.; Barnouin, O. S.; Binzel, R. P.; Bottke, W. F.; Hamilton, V. E.; Walsh, K. J.; Chesley, S. R.; Christensen, P. R.; Clark, B. E.; Connolly, H. C.; Crombie, M. K.; Daly, M. G.; Emery, J. P.; McCoy, T. J.; McMahon, J. W.; Scheeres, D. J.; Messenger, S.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Righter, K.; Sandford, S. A.

    2017-10-01

    In May of 2011, NASA selected the Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security- Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) asteroid sample return mission as the third mission in the New Frontiers program. The other two New Frontiers missions are New Horizons, which explored Pluto during a flyby in July 2015 and is on its way for a flyby of Kuiper Belt object 2014 MU69 on January 1, 2019, and Juno, an orbiting mission that is studying the origin, evolution, and internal structure of Jupiter. The spacecraft departed for near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu aboard an United Launch Alliance Atlas V 411 evolved expendable launch vehicle at 7:05 p.m. EDT on September 8, 2016, on a seven-year journey to return samples from Bennu. The spacecraft is on an outbound-cruise trajectory that will result in a rendezvous with Bennu in November 2018. The science instruments on the spacecraft will survey Bennu to measure its physical, geological, and chemical properties, and the team will use these data to select a site on the surface to collect at least 60 g of asteroid regolith. The team will also analyze the remote-sensing data to perform a detailed study of the sample site for context, assess Bennu's resource potential, refine estimates of its impact probability with Earth, and provide ground-truth data for the extensive astronomical data set collected on this asteroid. The spacecraft will leave Bennu in 2021 and return the sample to the Utah Test and Training Range (UTTR) on September 24, 2023.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Stability Limits for Rubble Pile Asteroid Shapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheeres, Daniel

    2018-04-01

    The stability of rubble pile asteroids are explored analytically, using simple models for their constituent components. Specifically, we look at the stability of spherical components resting and potentially rolling on each other as a function of their relative sizes, configuration and number. This talk will present some recent results in this problem. Of specific interest is a 5:1 limit on the elongation of a rubble pile body for stability, which is interestingly the same extreme elongation found for the first interstellar object. This limit is for a rubble pile consisting of stacked spheres, resting on each other in a straight line. If there are 5 or less bodies resting on each other in this configuration, there is an interval of spin rates for which the configuration is stable. If there are 6 or more bodies stacked as such, the spin rate for it to stabilize is beyond the spin rate at which it fissions. The talk will also explore additional results for different configurations of bodies resting on each other.

  9. Automated Design of Propellant-Optimal, End-to-End, Low-Thrust Trajectories for Trojan Asteroid Tours

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuart, Jeffrey; Howell, Kathleen; Wilson, Roby

    2013-01-01

    The Sun-Jupiter Trojan asteroids are celestial bodies of great scientific interest as well as potential resources offering water and other mineral resources for longterm human exploration of the solar system. Previous investigations under this project have addressed the automated design of tours within the asteroid swarm. This investigation expands the current automation scheme by incorporating options for a complete trajectory design approach to the Trojan asteroids. Computational aspects of the design procedure are automated such that end-to-end trajectories are generated with a minimum of human interaction after key elements and constraints associated with a proposed mission concept are specified.

  10. 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.

  11. Sensitivity to Uncertainty in Asteroid Impact Risk Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathias, D.; Wheeler, L.; Prabhu, D. K.; Aftosmis, M.; Dotson, J.; Robertson, D. K.

    2015-12-01

    The Engineering Risk Assessment (ERA) team at NASA Ames Research Center is developing a physics-based impact risk model for probabilistically assessing threats from potential asteroid impacts on Earth. The model integrates probabilistic sampling of asteroid parameter ranges with physics-based analyses of entry, breakup, and impact to estimate damage areas and casualties from various impact scenarios. Assessing these threats is a highly coupled, dynamic problem involving significant uncertainties in the range of expected asteroid characteristics, how those characteristics may affect the level of damage, and the fidelity of various modeling approaches and assumptions. The presented model is used to explore the sensitivity of impact risk estimates to these uncertainties in order to gain insight into what additional data or modeling refinements are most important for producing effective, meaningful risk assessments. In the extreme cases of very small or very large impacts, the results are generally insensitive to many of the characterization and modeling assumptions. However, the nature of the sensitivity can change across moderate-sized impacts. Results will focus on the value of additional information in this critical, mid-size range, and how this additional data can support more robust mitigation decisions.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. The Main-belt Asteroid and NEO Tour with Imaging and Spectroscopy (MANTIS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivkin, A.; Cohen, B. A.; Barnouin, O. S.; Chabot, N. L.; Ernst, C. M.; Klima, R. L.; Helbert, J.; Sternovsky, Z.

    2015-12-01

    The asteroids preserve information from the earliest times in solar system history, with compositions in the population reflecting the material in the solar nebula and experiencing a wide range of temperatures. Today they experience ongoing processes, some of which are shared with larger bodies but some of which are unique to their size regime. They are critical to humanity's future as potential threats, resource sites, and targets for human visitation. However, over twenty years since the first spacecraft encounters with asteroids, they remain poorly understood. The mission we propose here, the Main-belt Asteroid and NEO Tour with Imaging and Spectroscopy (MANTIS), explores the diversity of asteroids to understand our solar system's past history, its present processes, and future opportunities and hazards. MANTIS addresses many of NASA's highest priorities as laid out in its 2014 Science Plan and provides additional benefit to the Planetary Defense and Human Exploration communities via a low-risk, cost-effective tour of the near-Earth and inner asteroid belt. MANTIS visits the materials that witnessed solar system formation and its earliest history, addressing the NASA goal of exploring and observing the objects in the solar system to understand how they formed and evolve. MANTIS measures OH, water, and organic materials via several complementary techniques, visiting and sampling objects known to have hydrated minerals and addressing the NASA goal of improving our understanding of the origin and evolution of life on Earth. MANTIS studies the geology and geophysics of nine diverse asteroids, with compositions ranging from water-rich to metallic, representatives of both binary and non-binary asteroids, and sizes covering over two orders of magnitude, providing unique information about the chemical and physical processes shaping the asteroids, addressing the NASA goal of advancing the understanding of how the chemical and physical processes in our solar system

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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...

  7. 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 ...

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. Asteroid family dynamics in the inner main belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dykhuis, Melissa Joy

    The inner main asteroid belt is an important source of near-Earth objects and terrestrial planet impactors; however, the dynamics and history of this region are challenging to understand, due to its high population density and the presence of multiple orbital resonances. This dissertation explores the properties of two of the most populous inner main belt family groups --- the Flora family and the Nysa-Polana complex --- investigating their memberships, ages, spin properties, collision dynamics, and range in orbital and reflectance parameters. Though diffuse, the family associated with asteroid (8) Flora dominates the inner main belt in terms of the extent of its members in orbital parameter space, resulting in its significant overlap with multiple neighboring families. This dissertation introduces a new method for membership determination (the core sample method) which enables the distinction of the Flora family from the background, permitting its further analysis. The Flora family is shown to have a signature in plots of semimajor axis vs. size consistent with that expected for a collisional family dispersed as a result of the Yarkovsky radiation effect. The family's age is determined from the Yarkovsky dispersion to be 950 My. Furthermore, a survey of the spin sense of 21 Flora-region asteroids, accomplished via a time-efficient modification of the epoch method for spin sense determination, confirms the single-collision Yarkovsky-dispersed model for the family's origin. The neighboring Nysa-Polana complex is the likely source region for many of the carbonaceous near-Earth asteroids, several of which are important targets for spacecraft reconnaissance and sample return missions. Family identification in the Nysa-Polana complex via the core sample method reveals two families associated with asteroid (135) Hertha, both with distinct age and reflectance properties. The larger of these two families demonstrates a correlation in semimajor axis and eccentricity

  16. Thermal Intertias of Main-Belt Asteroids from Wise Thermal Infrared Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanus, Josef; Delbo', Marco; Durech, Josef; Alí-Lagoa, Victor

    2014-11-01

    By means of a modified thermophysical model (TPM) that takes into account asteroid shape and pole uncertainties, we analyze the thermal infrared data acquired by the NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) of about 300 asteroids with derived convex shape models. We adopt convex shape models from the DAMIT database (Durech et al., 2010, A&A 513, A46) and present new determinations based on optical disk-integrated photometry and the lightcurve inversion method (Kaasalainen & Torppa, 2001, Icarus 153, 37). This work more than double the number of asteroids with determined thermophysical properties. We also discuss cases in which shape uncertainties prevent the determination of reliable thermophysical properties. This is per-se a novel result, as the effect of shape has been often neglected in thermophysical modeling of asteroids.We also present the main results of the statistical study of derived thermophysical parameters within the whole population of MBAs and within few asteroid families. The thermal inertia increases with decreasing size, but a large range of thermal inertia values is observed within the similar size ranges between 10-100 km. Surprisingly, we derive low (10 km, indicating a very fine and mature regolith on these small bodies. The work of JH and MD was carried under the contract 11-BS56-008 (SHOCKS) of the French Agence National de la Recherche (ANR), and JD has been supported by the grant GACR P209/10/0537 of the Czech Science Foundation.

  17. Regolith X-Ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) Aboard the OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Sample Return Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masterson, R. A.; Chodas, M.; Bayley, L.; Allen, B.; Hong, J.; Biswas, P.; McMenamin, C.; Stout, K.; Bokhour, E.; Bralower, H.; Carte, D.; Chen, S.; Jones, M.; Kissel, S.; Schmidt, F.; Smith, M.; Sondecker, G.; Lim, L. F.; Lauretta, D. S.; Grindlay, J. E.; Binzel, R. P.

    2018-02-01

    The Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) is the student collaboration experiment proposed and built by an MIT-Harvard team, launched aboard NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission. REXIS complements the scientific investigations of other OSIRIS-REx instruments by determining the relative abundances of key elements present on the asteroid's surface by measuring the X-ray fluorescence spectrum (stimulated by the natural solar X-ray flux) over the range of energies 0.5 to 7 keV. REXIS consists of two components: a main imaging spectrometer with a coded aperture mask and a separate solar X-ray monitor to account for the Sun's variability. In addition to element abundance ratios (relative to Si) pinpointing the asteroid's most likely meteorite association, REXIS also maps elemental abundance variability across the asteroid's surface using the asteroid's rotation as well as the spacecraft's orbital motion. Image reconstruction at the highest resolution is facilitated by the coded aperture mask. Through this operation, REXIS will be the first application of X-ray coded aperture imaging to planetary surface mapping, making this student-built instrument a pathfinder toward future planetary exploration. To date, 60 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels have been involved with the REXIS project, with the hands-on experience translating to a dozen Master's and Ph.D. theses and other student publications.

  18. The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivkin, A.; Cheng, A. F.; Stickle, A. M.; Richardson, D. C.; Barnouin, O. S.; Thomas, C.; Fahnestock, E.

    2017-12-01

    The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) will be the first space experiment to demonstrate asteroid impact hazard mitigation by using a kinetic impactor. DART is currently in Preliminary Design Phase ("Phase B"), and is part of the Asteroid Impact and Deflection Assessment (AIDA), a joint ESA-NASA cooperative project. The AIDA target is the near-Earth binary asteroid 65803 Didymos, an S-class system that will make a close approach to Earth in fall 2022. The DART spacecraft is designed to impact the Didymos secondary at 6 km/s and demonstrate the ability to modify its trajectory through momentum transfer. The primary goals of AIDA are (1) perform a full-scale demonstration of the spacecraft kinetic impact technique for deflection of an asteroid; (2) measure the resulting asteroid deflection, by targeting the secondary member of a binary NEO and measuring the resulting changes of the binary orbit; and (3) study hyper-velocity collision effects on an asteroid, validating models for momentum transfer in asteroid impacts. The DART impact on the Didymos secondary will change the orbital period of the binary by several minutes, which can be measured by Earth-based optical and radar observations. The baseline DART mission launches in late 2020 to impact the Didymos secondary in 2022 near the time of its close pass of Earth, which enables an array of ground- and space-based observatories to participate in gathering data. The AIDA project will provide the first measurements of momentum transfer efficiency from hyper-velocity kinetic impact at full scale on an asteroid, where the impact conditions of the projectile are known, and physical properties and internal structures of the target asteroid are characterized or constrained. The DART kinetic impact is predicted to make a crater of 6 to 17 meters diameter, depending on target physical properties, but will also release a large volume of particulate ejecta that may be directly observable from Earth or even resolvable as a

  19. Integrated science and engineering for the OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauretta, D.

    2014-07-01

    Introduction: The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security-Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) asteroid sample return mission will survey near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu to understand its physical, mineralogical, and chemical properties, assess its resource potential, refine the impact hazard, and return a sample of this body to the Earth [1]. This mission is scheduled for launch in 2016 and will rendezvous with the asteroid in 2018. Sample return to the Earth follows in 2023. The OSIRIS-REx mission has the challenge of visiting asteroid Bennu, characterizing it at global and local scales, then selecting the best site on the asteroid surface to acquire a sample for return to the Earth. Minimizing the risk of exploring an unknown world requires a tight integration of science and engineering to inform flight system and mission design. Defining the Asteroid Environment: We have performed an extensive astronomical campaign in support of OSIRIS-REx. Lightcurve and phase function observations were obtained with UA Observatories telescopes located in southeastern Arizona during the 2005--2006 and 2011--2012 apparitions [2]. We observed Bennu using the 12.6-cm radar at the Arecibo Observatory in 1999, 2005, and 2011 and the 3.5-cm radar at the Goldstone tracking station in 1999 and 2005 [3]. We conducted near-infrared measurements using the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility at the Mauna Kea Observatory in Hawaii in September 2005 [4]. Additional spectral observations were obtained in July 2011 and May 2012 with the Magellan 6.5-m telescope [5]. We used the Spitzer space telescope to observe Bennu in May 2007 [6]. The extensive knowledge gained as a result of our telescopic characterization of Bennu was critical in the selection of this object as the OSIRIS-REx mission target. In addition, we use these data, combined with models of the asteroid, to constrain over 100 different asteroid parameters covering orbital, bulk, rotational, radar

  20. Sensitivity of Asteroid Impact Risk to Uncertainty in Asteroid Properties and Entry Parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wheeler, Lorien; Mathias, Donovan; Dotson, Jessie L.; NASA Asteroid Threat Assessment Project

    2017-10-01

    A central challenge in assessing the threat posed by asteroids striking Earth is the large amount of uncertainty inherent throughout all aspects of the problem. Many asteroid properties are not well characterized and can range widely from strong, dense, monolithic irons to loosely bound, highly porous rubble piles. Even for an object of known properties, the specific entry velocity, angle, and impact location can swing the potential consequence from no damage to causing millions of casualties. Due to the extreme rarity of large asteroid strikes, there are also large uncertainties in how different types of asteroids will interact with the atmosphere during entry, how readily they may break up or ablate, and how much surface damage will be caused by the resulting airbursts or impacts.In this work, we use our Probabilistic Asteroid Impact Risk (PAIR) model to investigate the sensitivity of asteroid impact damage to uncertainties in key asteroid properties, entry parameters, or modeling assumptions. The PAIR model combines physics-based analytic models of asteroid entry and damage in a probabilistic Monte Carlo framework to assess the risk posed by a wide range of potential impacts. The model samples from uncertainty distributions of asteroid properties and entry parameters to generate millions of specific impact cases, and models the atmospheric entry and damage for each case, including blast overpressure, thermal radiation, tsunami inundation, and global effects. To assess the risk sensitivity, we alternately fix and vary the different input parameters and compare the effect on the resulting range of damage produced. The goal of these studies is to help guide future efforts in asteroid characterization and model refinement by determining which properties most significantly affect the potential risk.

  1. Seismo-Acoustic Numerical Investigation of Land Impacts, Water Impacts, or Air Bursts of Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ezzedine, S. M.; Dearborn, D. S.; Miller, P. L.

    2017-12-01

    The annual probability of an asteroid impact is low, but over time, such catastrophic events are inevitable. Interest in assessing the impact consequences has led us to develop a physics-based framework to seamlessly simulate the event from entry to impact, including air, water and ground shock propagation and wave generation. The non-linear effects are simulated using the hydrodynamics code GEODYN. As effects propagate outward, they become a wave source for the linear-elastic-wave propagation code and simulated using SAW or SWWP, depends on whether the asteroid impacts the land or the ocean, respectively. The GEODYN-SAW-SWWP coupling is based on the structured adaptive-mesh-refinement infrastructure, SAMRAI, and has been used in FEMA table-top exercises conducted in 2013 and 2014, and more recently, the 2015 Planetary Defense Conference exercise. Moreover, during atmospheric entry, asteroids create an acoustic trace that could be used to infer several physical characteristics of asteroid itself. Using SAW we explore the physical space parameters in order to rank the most important characteristics; Results from these simulations provide an estimate of onshore and offshore effects and can inform more sophisticated inundation and structural models. The capabilities of this methodology are illustrated by providing results for different impact locations, and an exploration of asteroid size on the waves arriving at the shoreline of area cities. We constructed the maximum and minimum envelops of water-wave heights or acceleration spectra given the size of the asteroid and the location of the impact along the risk corridor. Such profiles can inform emergency response and disaster-mitigation efforts. This work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344.

  2. Preliminary design of an asteroid hopping mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheppa, Michael D.

    In 2010, NASA announced that its new vision is to support private space launch operations. It is anticipated that this new direction will create the need for new and innovative ideas that push the current boundaries of space exploration and contain the promise of substantial gain, both in research and capital. The purpose of the study is to plan and estimate the feasibility of a mission to visit a number of near Earth asteroids (NEAs). The mission would take place before the end of the 21st century, and would only use commercially available technology. Throughout the mission design process, while holding astronaut safety paramount, it was the goal to maximize the return while keeping the cost to a minimum. A mission of the nature would appeal to the private space industry because it could be easily adapted and set into motion. The mission design was divided into three main parts; mission timeline, vehicle design and power sources, with emphasis on nuclear and solar electric power, were investigated. The timeline and associated trajectories were initially selected using a numerical estimation and then optimized using Satellite Tool Kit (STK) 9.s's Design Explorer Optimizer [1]. Next, the spacecraft was design using commercially available parts that would support the mission requirements. The Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket (VASIMR) was and instrumental piece in maximizing the number of NEAs visited. Once the spacecraft was designed, acceptable power supply options were investigated. The VASIMR VX-200 requires 200 kilowatts of power to maintain thrust. This creates the need for a substantial power supply that consists of either a nuclear reactor of massive solar arrays. STK 9.1's Design Explorer Optimizer was able to create a mission time line that allowed for the exploration of seven NEAs in under two years, while keeping the total mission DeltaV under 71 kilometers per second. Based on these initial findings, it is determined that a mission of this

  3. Asteroid mass estimation using Markov-chain Monte Carlo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siltala, Lauri; Granvik, Mikael

    2017-11-01

    Estimates for asteroid masses are based on their gravitational perturbations on the orbits of other objects such as Mars, spacecraft, or other asteroids and/or their satellites. In the case of asteroid-asteroid perturbations, this leads to an inverse problem in at least 13 dimensions where the aim is to derive the mass of the perturbing asteroid(s) and six orbital elements for both the perturbing asteroid(s) and the test asteroid(s) based on astrometric observations. We have developed and implemented three different mass estimation algorithms utilizing asteroid-asteroid perturbations: the very rough 'marching' approximation, in which the asteroids' orbital elements are not fitted, thereby reducing the problem to a one-dimensional estimation of the mass, an implementation of the Nelder-Mead simplex method, and most significantly, a Markov-chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) approach. We describe each of these algorithms with particular focus on the MCMC algorithm, and present example results using both synthetic and real data. Our results agree with the published mass estimates, but suggest that the published uncertainties may be misleading as a consequence of using linearized mass-estimation methods. Finally, we discuss remaining challenges with the algorithms as well as future plans.

  4. Comparison of three filters in asteroid-based autonomous navigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cui Wen; Zhu Kai-Jian

    2014-01-01

    At present, optical autonomous navigation has become a key technology in deep space exploration programs. Recent studies focus on the problem of orbit determination using autonomous navigation, and the choice of filter is one of the main issues. To prepare for a possible exploration mission to Mars, the primary emphasis of this paper is to evaluate the capability of three filters, the extended Kalman filter (EKF), unscented Kalman filter (UKF) and weighted least-squares (WLS) algorithm, which have different initial states during the cruise phase. One initial state is assumed to have high accuracy with the support of ground tracking when autonomous navigation is operating; for the other state, errors are set to be large without this support. In addition, the method of selecting asteroids that can be used for navigation from known lists of asteroids to form a sequence is also presented in this study. The simulation results show that WLS and UKF should be the first choice for optical autonomous navigation during the cruise phase to Mars

  5. Binaries and triples among asteroid pairs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pravec, Petr; Scheirich, Peter; Kušnirák, Peter; Hornoch, Kamil; Galád, Adrián

    2015-08-01

    Despite major achievements obtained during the past two decades, our knowledge of the population and properties of small binary and multiple asteroid systems is still far from advanced. There is a numerous indirect evidence for that most small asteroid systems were formed by rotational fission of cohesionless parent asteroids that were spun up to the critical frequency presumably by YORP, but details of the process are lacking. Furthermore, as we proceed with observations of more and more binary and paired asteroids, we reveal new facts that substantially refine and sometimes change our understanding of the asteroid systems. One significant new finding we have recently obtained is that primaries of many asteroid pairs are actually binary or triple systems. The first such case found is (3749) Balam (Vokrouhlický, ApJL 706, L37, 2009). We have found 9 more binary systems among asteroid pairs within our ongoing NEOSource photometric project since October 2012. They are (6369) 1983 UC, (8306) Shoko, (9783) Tensho-kan, (10123) Fideoja, (21436) Chaoyichi, (43008) 1999 UD31, (44620) 1999 RS43, (46829) 1998 OS14 and (80218) 1999 VO123. We will review their characteristics. These paired binaries as we call them are mostly similar to binaries in the general ("background") population (of unpaired asteroids), but there are a few trends. The paired binaries tend to have larger secondaries with D_2/D_1 = 0.3 to 0.5 and they also tend to be wider systems with 8 of the 10 having orbital periods between 30 and 81 hours, than average among binaries in the general population. There may be also a larger fraction of triples; (3749) Balam is a confirmed triple, having a larger close and a smaller distant satellite, and (8306) Shoko and (10123) Fideoja are suspect triples as they show additional rotational lightcurve components with periods of 61 and 38.8 h that differ from the orbital period of 36.2 and 56.5 h, respectively. The unbound secondaries tend to be of the same size or

  6. THERMAL TOMOGRAPHY OF ASTEROID SURFACE STRUCTURE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harris, Alan W.; Drube, Line, E-mail: alan.harris@dlr.de [German Aerospace Center (DLR) Institute of Planetary Research, Rutherfordstrasse 2, D-12489 Berlin (Germany)

    2016-12-01

    Knowledge of the surface thermal inertia of an asteroid can provide insight into its surface structure: porous material has a lower thermal inertia than rock. We develop a means to estimate thermal inertia values of asteroids and use it to show that thermal inertia appears to increase with spin period in the case of main-belt asteroids (MBAs). Similar behavior is found on the basis of thermophysical modeling for near-Earth objects (NEOs). We interpret our results in terms of rapidly increasing material density and thermal conductivity with depth, and provide evidence that thermal inertia increases by factors of 10 (MBAs) to 20 (NEOs) within a depth of just 10 cm. Our results are consistent with a very general picture of rapidly changing material properties in the topmost regolith layers of asteroids and have important implications for calculations of the Yarkovsky effect, including its perturbation of the orbits of potentially hazardous objects and those of asteroid family members after the break-up event. Evidence of a rapid increase of thermal inertia with depth is also an important result for studies of the ejecta-enhanced momentum transfer of impacting vehicles (“kinetic impactors”) in planetary defense.

  7. Matched Filter Processing for Asteroid Detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gural, Peter S.; Larsen, Jeffrey A.; Gleason, Arianna E.

    2005-10-01

    Matched filter (MF) processing has been shown to provide significant performance gains when processing stellar imagery used for asteroid detection, recovery, and tracking. This includes extending detection ranges to fainter magnitudes at the noise limit of the imagery and operating in dense cluttered star fields as encountered at low Galactic latitudes. The MF software has been shown to detect 40% more asteroids in high-quality Spacewatch imagery relative to the currently implemented approaches, which are based on moving target indicator (MTI) algorithms. In addition, MF detections were made in dense star fields and in situations in which the asteroid was collocated with a star in an image frame, cases in which the MTI algorithms failed. Thus, using legacy sensors and optics, improved detection sensitivity is achievable by simply upgrading the image-processing stream. This in turn permits surveys of the near-Earth asteroid (NEA) population farther from opposition, for smaller sizes, and in directions previously inaccessible to current NEA search programs. A software package has been developed and made available on the NASA data services Web site that can be used for asteroid detection and recovery operations utilizing the enhanced performance capabilities of MF processing.

  8. Spectroscopy and Photometry of CAI-rich asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanga, P.; Devogele, M.; Bendjoya, Ph.; Cellino, A.; Surdej, J.

    2017-09-01

    Asteroids with an anomalous amount of primitive elements, formed in ancient times in the solar nebula, exist. Our study confirms their nature and provides hints to the interpretation of the ancient evolution of asteroids.

  9. SMALL MAIN-BELT ASTEROID SPECTROSCOPIC SURVEY, PHASE II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains visible-wavelength (0.435-0.925 micron) spectra for 1341 main-belt asteroids observed during the second phase of the Small Main-belt Asteroid...

  10. Stability Analysis of Spacecraft Motion in the Vicinity of Asteroids

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The objective of my proposal is to determine the stability of a spacecraft when in the vicinity of an asteroid. Orbiting an asteroid is a difficult task. The unique...

  11. Ultraviolet Spectroscopy of Asteroid(4) Vesta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jian-Yang; Bodewits, Dennis; Feaga, Lori M.; Landsman, Wayne; A'Hearn, Michael F.; Mutchler, Max J.; Russell, Christopher T.; McFadden, Lucy A.; Raymond, Carol A.

    2011-01-01

    We report a comprehensive review of the UV-visible spectrum and rotational lightcurve of Vesta combining new observations by Hubble Space Telescope and Swift with archival International Ultraviolet Explorer observations. The geometric albedos of Vesta from 220 nm to 953 nm arc derived by carefully comparing these observations from various instruments at different times and observing geometries. Vesta has a rotationally averaged geometric albedo of 0.09 at 250 nm, 0.14 at 300 nm, 0.26 at 373 nm, 0.38 at 673 nm, and 0.30 at 950 nm. The linear spectral slope in the ultraviolet displays a sharp minimum ncar sub-Earth longitude of 20deg, and maximum in the eastern hemisphere. This is completely consistent with the distribution of the spectral slope in the visible wavelength. The uncertainty of the measurement in the ultraviolet is approx.20%, and in the visible wavelengths better than 10%. The amplitude of Vesta's rotational lightcurves is approx.10% throughout the range of wavelengths we observed, but is smaller at 950 nm (approx.6%) ncar the 1-micron mafic band center. Contrary to earlier reports, we found no evidence for any difference between the phasing of the ultraviolet and visible/ncar-infrared lightcurves with respect to sub-Earth longitude. Vesta's average spectrum between 220 and 950 nm can well be described by measured reflectance spectra of fine particle howardite-like materials of basaltic achondrite meteorites. Combining this with the in-phase behavior of the ultraviolet, visible. and ncar-infrared lightcurves, and the spectral slopes with respect to the rotational phase, we conclude that there is no global ultraviolet/visible reversal on Vesta. Consequently, this implies lack of global space weathering on Vesta. Keyword,: Asteroid Vesta; Spectrophotometry; Spectroscopy; Ultraviolet observations; Hubble Space Telescope observations

  12. 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.

  13. The DLR AsteroidFinder for NEOs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mottola, Stefano; Kuehrt, Ekkehard; Michaelis, Harald; Hoffmann, Harald; Spietz, Peter; Jansen, Frank; Thimo Grundmann, Jan; Hahn, Gerhard; Montenegro, Sergio; Findlay, Ross; Boerner, Anko; Messina, Gabriele; Behnke, Thomas; Tschentscher, Matthias; Scheibe, Karsten; Mertens, Volker; Heidecke, Ansgar

    Potential Earth-impacting asteroids that spend most of their time interior to Earth's orbit are extremely difficult to be observed from the ground and remain largely undetected. Firstly, they are mostly located at small solar elongations, where the sky brightness and their faintness due to the large phase angle prevents their discovery. Secondly, these objects tend to have very long synodic orbital periods, which makes observation opportunities rare and impact warning times short. Because of these limitations, even the advent of next generation ground-based asteroid surveys is not likely to radically improve the situation (Veres et al. Icarus 203, p472, 2009). On the other hand, a small satellite with a suitable design can observe close to the Sun and detect these objects efficiently against a dark sky background. For this reason, DLR, the German Aerospace Center, has selected AsteroidFinder as the first experiment to be launched under its new compact satellite national program. The primary goal of the mission is to detect and characterize Near Earth Objects (NEOs), with a particular focus on the population of objects completely contained within Earth's orbit (IEOs or Inner Earth Objects). Current dynamical models predict the existence of more than 1000 such objects down to a size of 100m, of which, due to the abovementioned observation difficulties, only 10 have been discovered to date. Benefitting from the vantage point of a Low Earth Orbit (LEO), AsteroidFinder makes use of a small optical telescope to scan those regions of the sky that are close to the Sun, and therefore beyond the reach of ground based observatories. By estimating the population, the size and the orbital distribution of IEOs, AsteroidFinder will contribute to our knowledge of the inner Solar System, and to the assessment of the impact hazard for the Earth. A secondary goal of the mission is to demonstrate techniques that enable the space-based detection of space debris in the cm size range

  14. 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

  15. Asteroid families - Physical properties and evolution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chapman, C.R.; Paolicchi, P.; Zappala, V.; Binzel, R.P.; Bell, J.F.

    1989-01-01

    Asteroid families are considered to be fragments from collisional destruction of precursor bodies. However, results available on the inferred mineralogy, size distributions, and spins of family members do not confirm the expectations of the traditional model. Only a handful of nearly 100 proposed families, most of them populous, have distributions of inferred mineralogies consistent with simple cosmochemical models for parent bodies. It is suggested that most catastrophic collisions may not result in observable families, but rather in a spray of smaller particles, thus accounting for the small number of confirmed and consistent families, despite evidence for extensive collisional evolution of asteroids. 52 refs

  16. Veritas Asteroid Family Still Holds Secrets?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, B.

    2012-12-01

    Veritas asteroid family has been studied for about two decades. These studies have revealed many secrets, and a respectable knowledge about this family had been collected. Here I will present many of these results and review the current knowledge about the family. However, despite being extensively studied, Veritas family is still a mystery. This will be illustrated through the presentation of the most interesting open problems. Was there a secondary collision within this family? Does asteroid (490) Veritas belong to the family named after it? How large was the parent body of the family? Finally, some possible directions for future studies that aims to address these questions are discussed as well.

  17. Capturing near-Earth asteroids around Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasnain, Zaki; Lamb, Christopher A.; Ross, Shane D.

    2012-12-01

    The list of detected near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) is constantly growing. NEAs are likely targets for resources to support space industrialization, as they may be the least expensive source of certain needed raw materials. The limited supply of precious metals and semiconducting elements on Earth may be supplemented or even replaced by the reserves floating in the form of asteroids around the solar system. Precious metals make up a significant fraction NEAs by mass, and even one metallic asteroid of ˜1km size and fair enrichment in platinum-group metals would contain twice the tonnage of such metals already harvested on Earth. There are ˜1000 NEAs with a diameter of greater than 1 km. Capturing these asteroids around the Earth would expand the mining industry into an entirely new dimension. Having such resources within easy reach in Earth's orbit could provide an off-world environmentally friendly remedy for impending terrestrial shortages, especially given the need for raw materials in developing nations. In this paper, we develop and implement a conceptually simple algorithm to determine trajectory characteristics necessary to move NEAs into capture orbits around the Earth. Altered trajectories of asteroids are calculated using an ephemeris model. Only asteroids of eccentricity less than 0.1 have been studied and the model is restricted to the ecliptic plane for simplicity. We constrain the time of retrieval to be 10 years or less, based on considerations of the time to return on investment. For the heliocentric phase, constant acceleration is assumed. The acceleration required for transporting these asteroids from their undisturbed orbits to the sphere of influence of the Earth is the primary output, along with the impulse or acceleration necessary to effect capture to a bound orbit once the Earth's sphere of influence is reached. The initial guess for the constant acceleration is provided by a new estimation method, similar in spirit to Edelbaum's. Based on the

  18. Spectral reflectance "deconstruction" of the Murchison CM2 carbonaceous chondrite and implications for spectroscopic investigations of dark asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloutis, Edward A.; Pietrasz, Valerie B.; Kiddell, Cain; Izawa, Matthew R. M.; Vernazza, Pierre; Burbine, Thomas H.; DeMeo, Francesca; Tait, Kimberly T.; Bell, James F.; Mann, Paul; Applin, Daniel M.; Reddy, Vishnu

    2018-05-01

    Carbonaceous chondrites (CCs) are important materials for understanding the early evolution of the solar system and delivery of volatiles and organic material to the early Earth. Presumed CC-like asteroids are also the targets of two current sample return missions: OSIRIS-REx to asteroid Bennu and Hayabusa-2 to asteroid Ryugu, and the Dawn orbital mission at asteroid Ceres. To improve our ability to identify and characterize CM2 CC-type parent bodies, we have examined how factors such as particle size, particle packing, and viewing geometry affect reflectance spectra of the Murchison CM2 CC. The derived relationships have implications for disc-resolved examinations of dark asteroids and sampleability. It has been found that reflectance spectra of slabs are more blue-sloped (reflectance decreasing toward longer wavelengths as measured by the 1.8/0.6 μm reflectance ratio), and generally darker, than powdered sample spectra. Decreasing the maximum grain size of a powdered sample results in progressively brighter and more red-sloped spectra. Decreasing the average grain size of a powdered sample results in a decrease in diagnostic absorption band depths, and redder and brighter spectra. Decreasing porosity of powders and variations in surface texture result in spectral changes that may be different as a function of viewing geometry. Increasing thickness of loose dust on a denser powdered substrate leads to a decrease in absorption band depths. Changes in viewing geometry lead to different changes in spectral metrics depending on whether the spectra are acquired in backscatter or forward-scatter geometries. In backscattered geometry, increasing phase angle leads to an initial increase and then decrease in spectral slope, and a general decrease in visible region reflectance and absorption band depths, and frequent decreases in absorption band minima positions. In forward scattering geometry, increasing phase angle leads to small non-systematic changes in spectral slope

  19. Formulation Assessment and Support Team (FAST) for the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazanek, Daniel D.; Abell, Paul; Reeves, David M.; NASA Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) Formulation Assessment and Support Team (FAST)

    2016-10-01

    The Formulation Assessment and Support Team (FAST) for the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) was a two-month effort, chartered by NASA, to provide timely inputs for mission requirement formulation in support of the Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM) Requirements Closure Technical Interchange Meeting held December 15-16, 2015. Additionally, the FAST was tasked with developing an initial list of potential mission investigations and providing input on potential hosted payloads and partnerships. The FAST explored several aspects of potential science benefits and knowledge gain from the ARM. Expertise from the science, engineering, and technology communities was represented in exploring lines of inquiry related to key characteristics of the ARRM reference target asteroid (2008 EV5) for engineering design purposes. Specific areas of interest included target origin, spatial distribution and size of boulders, surface geotechnical properties, boulder physical properties, and considerations for boulder handling, crew safety, and containment. In order to increase knowledge gain potential from the mission, opportunities for partnerships and accompanying payloads that could be provided by domestic and international partners were also investigated. The ARM FAST final report was publicly released on February 18, 2016 and represents the FAST's final product. The report and associated public comments are being used to support mission requirements formulation and serve as an initial inquiry to the science and engineering communities relating to the characteristics of the ARRM reference target asteroid. This report also provides a suggested list of potential investigations sorted and grouped based on their likely benefit to ARM and potential relevance to NASA science and exploration goals. These potential investigations could be conducted to reduce mission risks and increase knowledge return in the areas of science, planetary defense, asteroid resources and in-situ resource

  20. A Novel Hybrid Ultramicrotomy/FIB-SEM Technique: Preparation of Serial Electron-Transparent Thin Sections of a Hayabusa Grain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Eve L.; Keller, Lindsay P.

    2014-01-01

    The Japanese space agency's (JAXA) Hayabusa mission returned the first particulate samples (typically grain surfaces and interiors. Using this method, we increase the number of FIB-prepared sections that can be recovered from a particle with dimensions on the order of tens of microns. These sections can be subsequently analyzed using a variety of analytical techniques. Particle RA-QD02-0211 is a approx. 40×40×20 micron particle from Itokawa containing olivine and Fe sulfides. It was embedded in low viscosity epoxy and partly sectioned to a depth of approx 10 micron; sections are placed on Cu grids with thin amorphous films for transmission electron microscope (TEM) analyses. With the sample surface partly exposed, the epoxy bullet is trimmed to a height of approx. 5mm to accommodate the allowable dimensions for FIB work (FEI Quanta 600 3D dual beam FIB-SEM). Using a diamond trim knife, the epoxy surrounding the grain is removed on 3 sides (to within a few microns of the grain); the depth of material removed extends well below the bottom of the particle. The sample is attached to an SEM pin mount, the epoxy coated with conductive paint, and the entire assembly coated with approx. 40nm of carbon to eliminate sample charging during FIB work. A protective carbon cap is placed according to the plan for the 15 FIB sections. The central 'spine' of the cap runs perpendicular to the front of the sample, and the 'ribs' protruding from either side run parallel. Each rib indicates the location of a planned FIB section, and the spine contains the final two planned sections. We use a cap with a 4 micron-wide spine and 2micron-wide ribs that have ?3.5 micron of space between them (narrower cuts result in too much re-deposition of material inside the trenches). Using a 30kV, 3nA ion-beam we expose the front surface of the grain and commence milling trenches between sections. Rather than using the typical C-cut to prepare the sample for lift-out, an L-cut is used instead, leaving

  1. Hungaria asteroid region telescopic spectral survey (HARTSS) I: Stony asteroids abundant in the Hungaria background population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Michael P.; Emery, Joshua P.; Pinilla-Alonso, Noemi; Lindsay, Sean S.; Lorenzi, Vania

    2017-07-01

    The Hungaria asteroids remain as survivors of late giant planet migration that destabilized a now extinct inner portion of the primordial asteroid belt and left in its wake the current resonance structure of the Main Belt. In this scenario, the Hungaria region represents a ;purgatory; for the closest, preserved samples of the asteroidal material from which the terrestrial planets accreted. Deciphering the surface composition of these unique samples may provide constraints on the nature of the primordial building blocks of the terrestrial planets. We have undertaken an observational campaign entitled the Hungaria Asteroid Region Telescopic Spectral Survey (HARTSS) to record near-infrared (NIR) reflectance spectra in order to characterize their taxonomy, surface mineralogy, and potential meteorite analogs. The overall objective of HARTSS is to evaluate the compositional diversity of asteroids located throughout the Hungaria region. This region harbors a collisional family of Xe-type asteroids, which are situated among a background (i.e., non-family) of predominantly S-complex asteroids. In order to assess the compositional diversity of the Hungaria region, we have targeted background objects during Phase I of HARTSS. Collisional family members likely reflect the composition of one original homogeneous parent body, so we have largely avoided them in this phase. We have employed NIR instruments at two ground-based telescope facilities: the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF), and the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG). Our data set includes the NIR spectra of 42 Hungaria asteroids (36 background; 6 family). We find that stony S-complex asteroids dominate the Hungaria background population (29/36 objects; ∼80%). C-complex asteroids are uncommon (2/42; ∼5%) within the Hungaria region. Background S-complex objects exhibit considerable spectral diversity as band parameter measurements of diagnostic absorption features near 1- and 2-μm indicate that several

  2. Guided asteroid deflection by kinetic impact: Mapping keyholes to an asteroid's surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesley, S.; Farnocchia, D.

    2014-07-01

    The kinetic impactor deflection approach is likely to be the optimal deflection strategy in most real-world cases, given the likelihood of decades of warning time provided by asteroid search programs and the probable small size of the next confirmed asteroid impact that would require deflection. However, despite its straightforward implementation, the kinetic impactor approach can have its effectiveness limited by the astrodynamics that govern the impactor spacecraft trajectory. First, the deflection from an impact is maximized when the asteroid is at perihelion, while an impact near perihelion can in some cases be energetically difficult to implement. Additionally, the asteroid change in velocity Δ V should aligned with the target's heliocentric velocity vector in order to maximize the deflection at a potential impact some years in the future. Thus the relative velocity should be aligned with or against the heliocentric velocity, which implies that the impactor and asteroid orbits should be tangent at the point of impact. However, for natural bodies such as meteorites colliding with the Earth, the relative velocity vectors tend to cluster near the sunward or anti- sunward directions, far from the desired direction. This is because there is generally a significant crossing angle between the orbits of the impactor and target and an impact at tangency is unusual. The point is that hitting the asteroid is not enough, but rather we desire to hit the asteroid at a point when the asteroid and spacecraft orbits are nearly tangent and when the asteroid is near perihelion. However, complicating the analysis is the fact that the impact of a spacecraft on an asteroid would create an ejecta plume that is roughly normal to the surface at the point of impact. This escaping ejecta provides additional momentum transfer that generally adds to the effectiveness of a kinetic deflection. The ratio β between the ejecta momentum and the total momentum (ejecta plus spacecraft) can

  3. 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...

  4. Photometry of the bright and dark terrains of Vesta and Lutetia with comparison to other asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longobardo, A.; Palomba, E.; Capaccioni, F.; De Sanctis, M.; Tosi, F.; Schroder, S.; Li, J.; Capria, M.; Ammannito, E.; Raymond, C.; Russell, C.

    2014-07-01

    The reflectance of a planetary surface as measured at different phase angles can provide useful information about several properties, both optical (importance of multiple and single scattering, regolith shadowing) and physical (roughness and regolith grain size). In particular, disk-resolved observations allow one to monitor photometric properties variations across a planetary surface. In this work, we retrieved disk-resolved phase functions of asteroids Vesta and Lutetia, by means of hyperspectral images returned by the Visible and InfraRed (VIR) mapping spectrometer onboard NASA's Dawn spacecraft, and the Visible, InfraRed, and Thermal Imaging Spectrometer (VIRTIS), onboard ESA's Rosetta spacecraft, respectively. Then we compared their photometric properties with those obtained of other asteroids closely explored by space missions (Gaspra, Ida, Eros, Annefrank, Steins, Mathilde). The trend of reflectance as a function of phase angle has been obtained by undertaking a statistical analysis, based on the empirical definition of reflectance families. For each family, the relation between reflectance and phase has been then calculated. On Vesta, we find steeper phase functions in dark material units, which become flatter with increasing albedo. This has been ascribed to a relevant role of multiple scattering in bright regions. As opposed to Vesta, Lutetia is a more homogeneous body. Hence we can consider a unique phase function for the whole asteroid surface. We chose two parameters useful to describe the photometric behavior of these asteroids: the reflectance which would be observed at a 30° phase, tagged R30, and the ''phase slope'' or the reflectance percent decrease between 20° and 60° phase, tagged PS. These two parameters have been calculated also on disk-resolved phase functions of other asteroids available in literature. We find that all S-type asteroids place in the same region of the R30-PS scatterplot, due to their similar photometric properties. C

  5. Hungaria Asteroid Region Telescopic Spectral Survey (HARTSS): Stony Asteroids Abundant in the Background and Family Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Michael P.; Emery, Joshua P.; Pinilla-Alonso, Noemi; Lindsay, Sean S.; Lorenzi, Vania

    2016-10-01

    The Hungaria region represents a "purgatory" for the closest, preserved samples of the material from which the terrestrial planets accreted. The Hungaria region harbors a collisional family of Xe-type asteroids, which are situated among a background of predominantly S-complex asteroids. Deciphering their surface composition may provide constraints on the nature of the primordial building blocks of the terrestrial planets. We hypothesize that planetesimals in the inner part of the primordial asteroid belt experienced partial- to full-melting and differentiation, the Hungaria region should retain any petrologically-evolved material that formed there.We have undertaken an observational campaign entitled the Hungaria Asteroid Region Telescopic Spectral Survey (HARTSS) to record near-infrared (NIR) spectra to characterize taxonomy, surface mineralogy, and potential meteorite analogs. We used NIR instruments at two ground-based facilities (NASA IRTF; TNG). Our data set includes spectra of 82 Hungaria asteroids (61 background; 21 family), 65 were observed during HARTSS. We compare S-complex background asteroids to calibrations developed via laboratory analyses of ordinary chondrites, and to our analyses (EPMA, XRD, VIS+NIR spectra) of 11 primitive achondrite (acapulcoite-lodranite clan) meteorites.We find that stony S-complex asteroids dominate the Hungaria background population (~80%). Background objects exhibit considerable spectral diversity, when quantified by spectral band parameter measurements, translates to a variety of surface compositions. Two main meteorite groups are represented within the Hungaria background: unmelted, nebular L chondrites (and/or L chondrites), and partially-melted primitive achondrites. H-chondrite mineralogies appear to be absent from the Hungaria background. Xe-type Hungaria family members exhibit spectral homogeneity, consistent with the hypothesis that the family was derived from the disruption of a parent body analogous to an enstatite

  6. Twenty-one Asteroid Lightcurves at Asteroids Observers (OBAS) - MPPD: Nov 2016 - May 2017

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mas, Vicente; Fornas, G.; Lozano, Juan; Rodrigo, Onofre; Fornas, A.; Carreño, A.; Arce, Enrique; Brines, Pedro; Herrero, David

    2018-01-01

    We report on the analysis of photometric observations of 21 main-belt asteroids (MBA) done by Asteroids Observers (OBAS). This work is part of the Minor Planet Photometric Database task that was initiated by a group of Spanish amateur astronomers. We have managed to obtain a number of accurate and complete lightcurves as well as some additional incomplete lightcurves to help analysis at future oppositions.

  7. Asteroid-Generated Tsunami and Impact Risk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boslough, M.; Aftosmis, M.; Berger, M. J.; Ezzedine, S. M.; Gisler, G.; Jennings, B.; LeVeque, R. J.; Mathias, D.; McCoy, C.; Robertson, D.; Titov, V. V.; Wheeler, L.

    2016-12-01

    The justification for planetary defense comes from a cost/benefit analysis, which includes risk assessment. The contribution from ocean impacts and airbursts is difficult to quantify and represents a significant uncertainty in our assessment of the overall risk. Our group is currently working toward improved understanding of impact scenarios that can generate dangerous tsunami. The importance of asteroid-generated tsunami research has increased because a new Science Definition Team, at the behest of NASA's Planetary Defense Coordinating Office, is now updating the results of a 2003 study on which our current planetary defense policy is based Our group was formed to address this question on many fronts, including asteroid entry modeling, tsunami generation and propagation simulations, modeling of coastal run-ups, inundation, and consequences, infrastructure damage estimates, and physics-based probabilistic impact risk assessment. We also organized the Second International Workshop on Asteroid Threat Assessment, focused on asteroid-generated tsunami and associated risk (Aug. 23-24, 2016). We will summarize our progress and present the highlights of our workshop, emphasizing its relevance to earth and planetary science. Sandia is a multiprogram laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a Lockheed Martin Company, for the United States Department of Energy under Contract DE-AC04-94AL85000.

  8. The infrared spectrum of asteroid 433 Eros

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, H. P.; Fink, U.; Treffers, R. R.; Gautier, T. N., III

    1976-01-01

    The mineralogical composition of asteroid Eros has been determined from its infrared spectrum (0.9-2.7 micrometers; 28/cm resolution). Major minerals include metallic Ni-Fe and pyroxene; no spectroscopic evidence for olivine or plagioclase feldspar was found. The IR spectrum of Eros is most consistent with a stony-iron composition.

  9. Direct Detection of the Asteroidal YORP Effect

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Lowry, S.C.; Fitzsimmons, A.; Pravec, Petr; Vokrouhlický, D.; Boehnhardt, H.; Taylor, P.A.; Margot, J. L.; Galád, Adrián; Irwin, M.; Irwin, J.; Kušnirák, Peter

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 316, č. 5822 (2007), s. 272-274 ISSN 0036-8075 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003204 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids rotation * near- Earth objects Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 26.372, year: 2007

  10. Photometric survey of asynchronous binary asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Scheirich, Peter; Kušnirák, Peter; Kotková, Lenka; Mottola, S.; Hahn, G.; Brown, P.; Esquerdo, G.; Kaiser, K.; Krzeminski, Z.; Pray, D. P.; Warner, B. D.; Harris, A. W.; Nolan, M. C.; Howell, E. S.; Benner, L. A. M.; Margot, J. L.; Galád, Adrián; Holliday, W.; Hicks, M. D.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Tholen, D.; Whiteley, R.; Marchis, F.; DeGraff, D. R.; Grauer, A.; Larson, S. M.; Velichko, F. P.; Cooney, W.R.; Stephens, R.; Zhu, J.; Kirsch, K.; Dyvig, R.; Snyder, L.; Reddy, V.; Moore, S.; Gajdoš, Š.; Világi, J.; Masi, G.; Higgins, D.; Funkhouser, G. M.; Knight, B.; Slivan, S. M.; Behrend, R.; Grenon, M.; Burki, G.; Roy, R.; Demeautis, C.; Matter, D.; Waelchli, N.; Revaz, Y.; Klotz, A.; Rieugné, M.; Thieri, P.; Cotrez, V.; Brunetto, L.; Kober, G.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 181, č. 1 (2006), s. 63-93 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/05/0604; GA AV ČR IAA3003204 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * binary * photometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.151, year: 2006

  11. Slowly rotating asteroid 1999 GU3

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Kotková, Lenka; Benner, L. A. M.; Ostro, S. J.; Hicks, M. D.; Jurgens, R. F.; Giorgini, I. D.; Slade, M. A.; Yeomans, D. K.; Rabinowitz, D. L.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Wolf, M.

    2000-01-01

    Roč. 148, č. 1 (2000), s. 589-593 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003708; GA ČR GA205/99/0255 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : asteroids * rotation * photometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.651, year: 2000

  12. Asteroids Dynamic Site-AstDyS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knezevic, Zoran; Milani, Andrea

    2012-08-01

    The AstDyS online information service (http://hamilton.dm.unipi.it/astdys/) contains data on numbered and multi - opposition asteroids, including orbital elements, their uncertainty, proper elements, ephemerides with uncertainty, and more. AstDyS also provides additional scientific output computed from the raw observational data. This value added currently includes: more accurate orbits computed with advanced dynamical and observational error model s; their uncertainty, as expressed by the covariance matrix formalism; ephemerides computed on request for each observer, with uncertainty; mean and proper orbital elements (for this output, AstDyS is the primary source worldwide); statistical quality control, providing a rigorous observational error model. All this is available with a sophisticated web interface, providing multiple search functions and online computations as well as complete orbital and residual files. There are several ways in which the A stDyS service could be expanded and improved in the next future, like the explicit classification of asteroids into asteroid families, the classification of resonant asteroids, and an updated self - consistent population model (to be used, e.g., for survey simulations). The IAU Division I endorsed the proposal for AstDyS to become an IAU (permanent) service, which would include the IAU supervision of the AstDyS system, keeping under control the quality of the work and the continuous update under conditions of scientific competition.

  13. Exogenous origin of hydration on asteroid (16) Psyche: the role of hydrated asteroid families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avdellidou, C.; Delbo', M.; Fienga, A.

    2018-04-01

    Asteroid (16) Psyche, which for a long time was the largest M-type with no detection of hydration features in its spectrum, was recently discovered to have a weak 3-μm band and thus it was eventually added to the group of hydrated asteroids. Its relatively high density, in combination with the high radar albedo, led researchers to classify the asteroid as a metallic object. It is believed that it is possibly a core of a differentiated body, a remnant of `hit-and-run' collisions. The detection of hydration is, in principle, inconsistent with a pure metallic origin for this body. Here, we consider the scenario in which the hydration on its surface is exogenous and was delivered by hydrated impactors. We show that impacting asteroids that belong to families whose members have the 3-μm band can deliver hydrated material to Psyche. We developed a collisional model with which we test all dark carbonaceous asteroid families, which contain hydrated members. We find that the major source of hydrated impactors is the family of Themis, with a total implanted mass on Psyche of the order of ˜1014 kg. However, the hydrated fraction could be only a few per cent of the implanted mass, as the water content in carbonaceous chondrite meteorites, the best analogue for the Themis asteroid family, is typically a few per cent of their mass.

  14. 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

  15. Study of the Asteroid 2009 DL46

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vodniza, Alberto Quijano

    2017-06-01

    2009 DL46 was discovered by the Catalina Sky Survey on 2009-February 28. This asteroid has a diameter of about 194 meters (119 to 268 meters) [1], and Brian Warner has obtained a rotation period of at least 10 hours [2]. The asteroid 2009 DL46 flew past Earth on May 24/2016 at a distance of about 6.2 lunar distances (0.0158293668567628 A.U) [3]. The NEOWISE mission had a great likelihood to observing this asteroid in early May. Radiotelescopes of Goldstone and Arecibo had planned to make observations of 2009 DL46. “Using the Goldstone facility, we had planned to make radar observations of 2009 DL46” said Landis, Rob R. (HQ-DG000). This asteroid is on list for possible human mission targets. 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 and data of the asteroid were captured with the following equipment: CGE PRO 1400 CELESTRON (f/11 Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope) and STL-1001 SBIG camera.. Astrometry was carried out, and we calculated the orbital elements. Summary and conclusions: We obtained the following orbital parameters: eccentricity = 0.30731 +/- 0.00025, semi-major axis = 1.460279 +/- 0.000532 A.U, orbital inclination = 7.9503 +/- 0.0048 deg, longitude of the ascending node = 63.45053 +/- 0.00034 deg, argument of perihelion = 159.8804 +/- 0.0024 deg, mean motion = 0.558535 +/- 0.000305 deg/d, perihelion distance = 1.01151363 +/- 3.39e-6 A.U, aphelion distance = 1.90904 +/- 0.00106 A.U, absolute magnitude = 22.5. The parameters were calculated based on 83 observations. Dates: 2016 May: 18 to 21 with mean residual = 0.29 arcseconds. The asteroid has an orbital period of 1.76 years (644.53 days).[1] http://newton.dm.unipi.it/neodys/index.php?pc=1.1.9&n=2009DL46.[2] http://echo.jpl.nasa.gov/asteroids/2009DL46/2009DL46_planning.html[3] http

  16. 3-µm Spectroscopy of Asteroid 16 Psyche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takir, Driss; Reddy, Vishnu; Sanchez, Juan; Shepard, Michael K.

    2016-10-01

    Asteroid 16 Psyche, an M-type asteroid, is thought to be one of the most massive exposed iron metal object in the asteroid belt. The high radar albedos of Psyche suggest that this differentiated asteroid is dominantly composed of metal. Psyche was previously found to be featureless in the 3-µm spectral region. However, in our study we found that this asteroid exhibits a 3-µm absorption feature, possibly indicating the presence of hydrated silicates.We have observed Psyche in the 3-µm spectral region, using the long-wavelength cross-dispersed (LXD:1.9-4.2 µm) mode of the SpeX spectrograph/imager at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF). For data reduction, we used the IDL (Interactive Data Language)-based spectral reduction tool Spextool (v4.1). Psyche was observed over the course of three nights with an apparent visual magnitude of ~9.50: 8 December 2015 (3 sets), 9 December 2015 (1 set), and 10 March 2016 (1 set). These observations have revealed that Psyche may exhibit a 3-µm absorption feature, similar to the sharp group in the 2.9-3.3-µm spectral range. Psyche also exhibits an absorption feature similar to the one in Ceres and Ceres-like group in the spectral 3.3-4.0-µm range. These 3-µm observational results revealed that Psyche may not be as featureless as once thought in the 3-µm spectral region.Evidence for the 3-µm band was found on the surfaces of many M-type asteroids and a number of plausible alternative interpretations for the presence of this 3-µm band were previously suggested. These interpretations include the presence of anhydrous silicates containing structural OH, the presence of fluid inclusions, the presence of xenolithic hydrous meteorite components on asteroid surfaces from impacts, solar wind-implanted H, or the presence of troilite. The detection of the Ceres-like feature in the 3.3-4.0-µm spectral range, however, would rule out some of these alternative interpretations, especially the solar wind-implanted H.

  17. Geologic History of Asteroid 4 Vesta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mittlefehldt, David W.

    2014-01-01

    Some types of meteorites - most irons, stony irons, some achondrites - hail from asteroids that were heated to the point where magmatism occurred within a very few million years of the formation of the earliest solids in the solar system. The largest clan of achondrites, the howardite, eucrite and diogenite (HED) meteorites, represent the crust of their parent asteroid]. Diogenites are cumulate harzburgites and orthopyroxenites from the lower crust whilst eucrites are basalts, diabases and cumulate gabbros from the upper crust. Howardites are impact-engendered breccias mostly of diogenites and eucrites. There remains only one large asteroid with a basaltic crust, 4 Vesta, which is thought to be the source of the HED clan. Differentiation models for Vesta are based on HED compositions. Proto-Vesta consisted of chondritic materials containing Al-26, a potent, short-lived heat source. Inferences from compositional data are that Vesta was melted to high degree (=50%) allowing homogenization of the silicate phase and separation of a metallic core. Convection of the silicate magma ocean allowed equilibrium crystallization, forming a harzburgitic mantle. After convective lockup occurred, melt collected between the mantle and the cool thermal boundary layer and underwent fractional crystallization forming an orthopyroxene-rich (diogenite) lower crust. The initial thermal boundary layer of chondritic material was replaced by a mafic upper crust through impact disruption and foundering. The mafic crust thickened over time as additional residual magma intrudes and penetrates the mafic crust forming plutons, dikes, sills and flows of cumulate and basaltic eucrite composition. This magmatic history may have taken only 2-3 Myr. This magma ocean scenario is at odds with a model of heat and magma transport that indicates that small degrees of melt would be rapidly expelled from source regions, precluding development of a magma ocean. Constraints from radiogenic Mg-26 distibutions

  18. Asteroid families from cratering: Detection and models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milani, A.; Cellino, A.; Knežević, Z.; Novaković, B.; Spoto, F.; Paolicchi, P.

    2014-07-01

    A new asteroid families classification, more efficient in the inclusion of smaller family members, shows how relevant the cratering impacts are on large asteroids. These do not disrupt the target, but just form families with the ejecta from large craters. Of the 12 largest asteroids, 8 have cratering families: number (2), (4), (5), (10), (87), (15), (3), and (31). At least another 7 cratering families can be identified. Of the cratering families identified so far, 7 have >1000 members. This imposes a remarkable change from the focus on fragmentation families of previous classifications. Such a large dataset of asteroids believed to be crater ejecta opens a new challenge: to model the crater and family forming event(s) generating them. The first problem is to identify which cratering families, found by the similarity of proper elements, can be formed at once, with a single collision. We have identified as a likely outcome of multiple collisions the families of (4), (10), (15), and (20). Of the ejecta generated by cratering, only a fraction reaches the escape velocity from the surviving parent body. The distribution of velocities at infinity, giving to the resulting family an initial position and shape in the proper elements space, is highly asymmetric with respect to the parent body. This shape is deformed by the Yarkovsky effect and by the interaction with resonances. All the largest asteroids have been subjected to large cratering events, thus the lack of a family needs to be interpreted. The most interesting case is (1) Ceres, which is not the parent body of the nearby family of (93). Two possible interpretations of the low family forming efficiency are based on either the composition of Ceres with a significant fraction of ice, protected by a thin crust, or with the larger escape velocity of ~500 m/s.

  19. On the concept of material strength and first simulations of asteroid disruption with explicit formation of spinning aggregates in the gravity regime

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, P.; Richardson, D. C.

    2007-08-01

    During their evolutions, the small bodies of our Solar System are affected by several mechanisms which can modify their properties. While dynamical mechanisms are at the origin of their orbital variations, there are other mechanisms which can change their shape, spin, and even their size when their strength threshold is reached, resulting in their disruption. Such mechanisms have been identified and studied, both by analytical and numerical tools. The main mechanisms that can result in the disruption of a small body are collisional events, tidal perturbations, and spin-ups. However, the efficiency of these mechanisms depends on the strength of the material constituing the small body, which also plays a role in its possible equilibrium shape. We will present several important aspects of material strength that are believed to be adapted to Solar System small bodies and briefly review the most recent studies of the different mechanisms that can be at the origin of the disruption of these bodies. In particular, we have recently made a major improvement in the simulations of asteroid disruption by computing explicitly the formation of aggregates during the gravitational reaccumulation of small fragments, allowing us to obtain information on their spin, the number of boulders composing them or lying on their surface, and their shape.We will present the first and preliminary results of this process taking as examples some asteroid families that we reproduced successfully with our previous simulations (Michel et al. 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004a,b), and their possible implications on the properties of asteroids generated by a disruption. Such information can for instance be compared with data provided by the Japanese space mission Hayabusa of the asteroid Itokawa, a body now understood to be a fragment of a larger parent body. It is also clear that future space missions to small bodies devoted to precise in-situ analysis and sample return will allow us to improve our

  20. Carbide-metal assemblages in a sample returned from asteroid 25143 Itokawa: Evidence for methane-rich fluids during metamorphism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harries, Dennis; Langenhorst, Falko

    2018-02-01

    We found that the particle RA-QD02-0115 returned by the Hayabusa spacecraft from near-Earth asteroid 25143 Itokawa contains the iron carbide haxonite (Fe21.9-22.7Co0.2-0.3Ni0.2-0.8)C6 and several Fe,Ni alloys, including multi-domain tetrataenite and spinodally decomposed taenite. Ellipsoidal to nearly spherical voids occur throughout the particle and suggest the presence of a fluid phase during textural and chemical equilibration of the host rock within the parent asteroid of 25143 Itokawa. The calculated solubility of carbon in Fe,Ni metal indicates that the carbide formed at temperatures larger than 600 °C during thermal metamorphism of the LL-chondritic mineral assemblage. Haxonite formed metastably with respect to graphite and cohenite, probably due to its high degree of lattice match with neighboring taenite, a low cooling rate at peak metamorphic temperatures, and the hindered nucleation of graphite. Thermodynamic equilibrium calculations indicate that the fluid present was dry (H2O-poor) and dominated by methane. The reactive fluid most plausibly had an atomic H/C ratio of 4-5 and was derived from the reduction of macromolecular, insoluble organic matter (IOM) that initially co-accreted with water ice. The initial presence of water is a necessary assumption to provide sufficient hydrogen for the formation of methane from hydrolyzed IOM. Metallic iron was in turn partially oxidized and incorporated into the ferromagnesian silicates during the high-temperature stage of metamorphism. An exemplary bulk reaction from unequilibrated material on the left to an equilibrated assemblage on the right may be written as: 330 CH0.8O0.2(IOM) + 500 H2O(ice/g) + 681 Fe(in alloy) + 566 FeSiO3(in Opx) → 300 CH4(g) + 32 H2(g) + 5 Fe23C6(in Hx) + 566 Fe2SiO4(in Ol) (Opx = orthopyroxene, Hx = haxonite, Ol = olivine, g = fluid species). The best estimate of the fluid/rock ratio in the region of the LL parent body where RA-QD02-0115 formed is about 3 × 10-3 and corresponds to

  1. A Delta-V map of the known Main Belt Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Anthony; McDowell, Jonathan C.; Elvis, Martin

    2018-05-01

    With the lowered costs of rocket technology and the commercialization of the space industry, asteroid mining is becoming both feasible and potentially profitable. Although the first targets for mining will be the most accessible near Earth objects (NEOs), the Main Belt contains 106 times more material by mass. The large scale expansion of this new asteroid mining industry is contingent on being able to rendezvous with Main Belt asteroids (MBAs), and so on the velocity change required of mining spacecraft (delta-v). This paper develops two different flight burn schemes, both starting from Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and ending with a successful MBA rendezvous. These methods are then applied to the ∼700,000 asteroids in the Minor Planet Center (MPC) database with well-determined orbits to find low delta-v mining targets among the MBAs. There are 3986 potential MBA targets with a delta-v < 8 km s-1 , but the distribution is steep and reduces to just 4 with delta-v < 7 km s-1. The two burn methods are compared and the orbital parameters of low delta-v MBAs are explored.

  2. Detailed Pictures of Multiple Asteroid Systems in the Main-Belt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchis, F.; Emery, J. P.; Enriquez, J. E.; Descamps, P.; Berthier, J.; Vachier, F.; Durech, J.

    2011-12-01

    Since their discovery less than 10 years ago, ~200 known multiple asteroid systems have been studied with a combination of observing techniques, including adaptive optics, lightcurve photometry, and mid-infrared spectrophotometry. Those observations show that ~15 large (D>100km) asteroids that are known to possess km-sized satellite(s) (22 Kalliope, 45 Eugenia, 87 Sylvia, 93 Minerva, 216 Kleopatra, ...) share common orbital characteristics, implying a common formation scenario: e.g. catastrophic disruption or ejection after an oblique impact. More than 70 smaller (10-15km) binary asteroid systems have been detected through anomalies in their lightcurves and are believed to have formed by fission due to the YORP effect. By comparison with meteorite analog densities, mid-IR data reveal that these systems have a significant porosity (larger than 30%) implying a rubble-pile interior. We will review these key results and discuss their implications for the interior of asteroids in the light of recent space mission results. Future explorations using new ground-based facilities and space mission concepts will be also discussed. This work is supported by the NSF grant AAG-0807468 and NASA grant NNX11AD62G

  3. 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.

  4. The MASCOT Magnetometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herčík, David; Auster, Hans-Ulrich; Blum, Jürgen; Fornaçon, Karl-Heinz; Fujimoto, Masaki; Gebauer, Kathrin; Güttler, Carsten; Hillenmaier, Olaf; Hördt, Andreas; Liebert, Evelyn; Matsuoka, Ayako; Nomura, Reiko; Richter, Ingo; Stoll, Bernd; Weiss, Benjamin P.; Glassmeier, Karl-Heinz

    2017-07-01

    The Mobile Asteroid Scout (MASCOT) is a small lander on board the Hayabusa2 mission of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency to the asteroid 162173 Ryugu. Among the instruments on MASCOT is a fluxgate magnetometer, the MASCOT Magnetometer (MasMag). The magnetometer is a lightweight (˜280 g) and low power (˜0.5 W) triaxial fluxgate magnetometer. Magnetic field measurements during the landing period and during the surface operational phase shall provide information about any intrinsic magnetic field of the asteroid and its remanent magnetization. This could provide important constraints on planet formation and the thermal and aqueous evolution of primitive asteroids.

  5. Asteroid Impacts and Modern Civilization: Can We Prevent a Catastrophe?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, A. W.; Boslough, M.; Chapman, C. R.; Drube, L.; Michel, P.; Harris, A. W.

    We are now approaching the level of technical expertise necessary to deflect a near-Earth asteroid (NEA) capable of destroying a large urban area, if not a small country. The current level of activity in the field, including search programs, physical characterization, and international initiatives to assess mitigation strategies, is unprecedented. However, we have only just started to explore the relevant properties of the small end of the NEA population (diameter threat to life and property. Political awareness and international response efforts are still at a very primitive stage. For a global guarantee of protection, advances in scientific and technical competence must be matched by improvements in international coordination, as well as preparedness at the political level.

  6. 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.

  7. Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous: mission overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, A. F.; Santo, A. G.; Heeres, K. J.; Landshof, J. A.; Farquhar, R. W.; Gold, R. E.; Lee, S. C.

    1997-10-01

    The Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission, the first launch of NASA's Discovery Program, will be the first mission to orbit an asteroid. NEAR will make the first comprehensive scientific measurements of an asteroid's surface composition, geology, physical properties, and internal structure. NEAR launched successfully on February 17, 1996, aboard a Delta II-7925. It will orbit the 20-km-diameter near-Earth asteroid 433 Eros for about 1 year, at a minimum orbit radius of about 35 km from the center of the asteroid. The NEAR is a solar-powered, three-axis stabilized spacecraft with a launch mass including propellant of 805 kg. NEAR uses X band telemetry to the NASA Deep Space Network, with the data rates at Eros up to 8.8 kbits/s using a 34-m High Efficiency (HEF) dish, and up to 26.5 kbits/s using a 70-m dish. A solid-state recorder is accommodated with a memory capacity of 1.8 Gbytes. Attitude control is to 1.7 mrad, line-of-sight pointing stability is within 50 μrad over 1 s, and post processing attitude knowledge is within 50 μrad. NEAR accommodates 56 kg of instruments and provides them with 84 W. The instruments are a multispectral imager (MSI), a near-infrared spectrograph (NIS), an X ray/gamma ray spectrometer (XRS/GRS), a magnetometer (MAG), and a laser rangefinder (NLR), while a radio science (RS) investigation uses the coherent X band transponder. NEAR will make a flyby of the C-type asteroid 253 Mathilde in June 1997 and will rendezvous with 433 Eros in February 1999. It will execute an initial slow flyby of Eros, with a flyby speed of 5 m/s and a closest approach distance of 500 km. Subsequently, its orbit will be lowered to 35 km. The NEAR Mission Operations Center and the Science Data Center are at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory. The Science Data Center will maintain the entire NEAR data set on-line, and data from all instruments can be accessed by every member of the NEAR Science Team. Data, including images, are released over

  8. Tracing meteorite source regions through asteroid spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Cristina Ana

    By virtue of their landing on Earth, meteorites reside in near-Earth object (NEO) orbits prior to their arrival. Thus the population of observable NEOs, in principle, gives the best representation of meteorite source bodies. By linking meteorites to NEOs, and linking NEOs to their most likely main-belt source locations, we seek to gain insight into the original solar system formation locations for different meteorite classes. To forge the first link between meteorites and NEOs, we have developed a three dimensional method for quantitative comparisons between laboratory measurements of meteorites and telescopic measurements of near-Earth objects. We utilize meteorite spectra from the Reflectance Experiment Laboratory (RELAB) database and NEO data from the SpeX instrument on the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF). Using the Modified Gaussian Model (MGM) as a mathematical tool, we treat asteroid and meteorite spectra identically in the calculation of 1-micron and 2-micron geometric band centers and their band area ratios (BARs). Using these identical numerical parameters we quantitatively compare the spectral properties of S-, Sq-, Q- and V-type NEOs with the spectral properties of the meteorites in the H, L, LL and HED meteorite classes. For each NEO spectrum, we assign a set of probabilities for it being related to each of these meteorite classes. Our NEO- meteorite correlation probabilities are then convolved with NEO-source region probabilities to yield a final set of meteorite-source region correlations. An apparent (significant at the 2.1-sigma level) source region signature is found for the H chondrites to be preferentially delivered to the inner solar system through the 3:1 mean motion resonance. A 3:1 resonance H chondrite source region is consistent with the short cosmic ray exposure ages known for H chondrites. The spectroscopy of asteroids is subject to several sources of inherent error. The source region model used a variety of S-type spectra without

  9. Investigating Trojan Asteroids at the L4/L5 Sun-Earth Lagrange Points

    Science.gov (United States)

    John, K. K.; Graham, L. D.; Abell, P. A.

    2015-01-01

    Investigations of Earth's Trojan asteroids will have benefits for science, exploration, and resource utilization. By sending a small spacecraft to the Sun-Earth L4 or L5 Lagrange points to investigate near-Earth objects, Earth's Trojan population can be better understood. This could lead to future missions for larger precursor spacecraft as well as human missions. The presence of objects in the Sun-Earth L4 and L5 Lagrange points has long been suspected, and in 2010 NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) detected a 300 m object. To investigate these Earth Trojan asteroid objects, it is both essential and feasible to send spacecraft to these regions. By exploring a wide field area, a small spacecraft equipped with an IR camera could hunt for Trojan asteroids and other Earth co-orbiting objects at the L4 or L5 Lagrange points in the near-term. By surveying the region, a zeroth-order approximation of the number of objects could be obtained with some rough constraints on their diameters, which may lead to the identification of potential candidates for further study. This would serve as a precursor for additional future robotic and human exploration targets. Depending on the inclination of these potential objects, they could be used as proving areas for future missions in the sense that the delta-V's to get to these targets are relatively low as compared to other rendezvous missions. They can serve as platforms for extended operations in deep space while interacting with a natural object in microgravity. Theoretically, such low inclination Earth Trojan asteroids exist. By sending a spacecraft to L4 or L5, these likely and potentially accessible targets could be identified.

  10. Reverse Asteroids: Searching for an Effective Tool to Combat Asteroid Belt Misconceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Summers, F.; Eisenhamer, B.

    2014-12-01

    The public 'knows' that asteroid belts are densely packed and dangerous for spaceships to cross. Visuals from "Star Wars" to, unfortunately, the recent "Cosmos" TV series have firmly established this astronomical misconception. However, even scientifically correct graphics, such as the Minor Planet Center's plot of the inner solar system, reinforces that view. Each pixel in the image is more than a million kilometers in width, making an accurate representation of the object density impossible.To address this widespread misconception, we are investigating an educational exercise built around a computer interactive that we call "Reverse Asteroids". In the arcade classic video game, the asteroids came to the player's spaceship. For our reverse implementation, we consider an inquiry-based activity in which the spaceship must go hunting for the asteroids, using a database of real objects in our solar system. Both 3D data visualization and basic statistical analysis play crucial roles in bringing out the true space density within the asteroid belt, and perhaps a reconciliation between imagination and reality. We also emphasize that a partnership of scientists and educators is fundamental to the success of such projects.

  11. Revolutionizing Remote Exploration with ANTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Rilee, M. L.; Curtis, S.; Truszkowski, W.

    2002-05-01

    We are developing the Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm (ANTS) architecture based on an insect colony analogue for the cost-effective, efficient, systematic survey of remote or inaccessible areas with multiple object targets, including planetary surface, marine, airborne, and space environments. The mission context is the exploration in the 2020s of the most compelling remaining targets in the solar system: main belt asteroids. Main belt asteroids harbor important clues to Solar System origins and evolution which are central to NASA's goals in Space Science. Asteroids are smaller than planets, but their number is far greater, and their combined surface area likely dwarfs the Earth's. An asteroid survey will dramatically increase our understanding of the local resources available for the Human Exploration and Development of Space. During the mission composition, shape, gravity, and orbit parameters could be returned to Earth for perhaps several thousand asteroids. A survey of this area will rival the great explorations that encircled this globe, opened up the New World, and laid the groundwork for the progress and challenges of the last centuries. The ANTS architecture for a main belt survey consists of a swarm of as many as a thousand or more highly specialized pico-spacecraft that form teams to survey as many as one hundred asteroids a month. Multi-level autonomy is critical for ANTS and the objective of the proposed study is to work through the implications and constraints this entails. ANTS couples biologically inspired autonomic control for basic functions to higher level artificial intelligence that together enable individual spacecraft to operate as specialized, cooperative, social agents. This revolutionary approach postulates highly advanced, but familiar, components integrated and operated in a way that uniquely transcends any evolutionary extrapolation of existing trends and enables thousand-spacecraft missions.

  12. Cratering statistics on asteroids: Methods and perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, C.

    2014-07-01

    Crater size-frequency distributions (SFDs) on the surfaces of solid-surfaced bodies in the solar system have provided valuable insights about planetary surface processes and about impactor populations since the first spacecraft images were obtained in the 1960s. They can be used to determine relative age differences between surficial units, to obtain absolute model ages if the impactor flux and scaling laws are understood, to assess various endogenic planetary or asteroidal processes that degrade craters or resurface units, as well as assess changes in impactor populations across the solar system and/or with time. The first asteroid SFDs were measured from Galileo images of Gaspra and Ida (cf., Chapman 2002). Despite the superficial simplicity of these studies, they are fraught with many difficulties, including confusion by secondary and/or endogenic cratering and poorly understood aspects of varying target properties (including regoliths, ejecta blankets, and nearly-zero-g rubble piles), widely varying attributes of impactors, and a host of methodological problems including recognizability of degraded craters, which is affected by illumination angle and by the ''personal equations'' of analysts. Indeed, controlled studies (Robbins et al. 2014) demonstrate crater-density differences of a factor of two or more between experienced crater counters. These inherent difficulties have been especially apparent in divergent results for Vesta from different members of the Dawn Science Team (cf. Russell et al. 2013). Indeed, they have been exacerbated by misuse of a widely available tool (Craterstats: hrscview.fu- berlin.de/craterstats.html), which incorrectly computes error bars for proper interpretation of cumulative SFDs, resulting in derived model ages specified to three significant figures and interpretations of statistically insignificant kinks. They are further exacerbated, and for other small-body crater SFDs analyzed by the Berlin group, by stubbornly adopting

  13. Application of photometric models to asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bowell, E.; Dominque, D.; Hapke, B.

    1989-01-01

    The way an asteroid or other atmosphereless solar system body varies in brightness in response to changing illumination and viewing geometry depends in a very complicated way on the physical and optical properties of its surface and on its overall shape. The authors summarize the formulation and application of recent photometric models by Hapke and by Lumme and Bowell. In both models, the brightness of a rough and porous surface is parametrized in terms of the optical properties of individual particles, by shadowing between particles, and by the way in which light scattered among collections of particles. Both models succeed in their goal of fitting the observed photometric behavior of a wide variety of bodies, but neither has led to a very complete understanding of the properties of asteroid regoliths, primarily because in most cases the parameters in the present models cannot be adequately constrained by observations of integral brightness alone over a restricted range of phase angles

  14. The Bering small vehicle asteroid mission concept

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Michelsen, Rene; Andersen, Anja; Haack, Henning

    2004-01-01

    targets. The dilemma obviously being the resolution versus distance and the statistics versus DeltaV requirements. Using advanced instrumentation and onboard autonomy, we have developed a space mission concept whose goal is to map the flux, size, and taxonomy distributions of asteroids. The main focus....... Although the telescope based research offers precise orbital information, it is limited to the brighter, larger objects, and taxonomy as well as morphology resolution is limited. Conversely, dedicated missions offer detailed surface mapping in radar, visual, and prompt gamma, but only for a few selected......The study of asteroids is traditionally performed by means of large Earth based telescopes, by means of which orbital elements and spectral properties are acquired. Space borne research, has so far been limited to a few occasional flybys and a couple of dedicated flights to a single selected target...

  15. Computation of Asteroid Proper Elements: Recent Advances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knežević, Z.

    2017-12-01

    The recent advances in computation of asteroid proper elements are briefly reviewed. Although not representing real breakthroughs in computation and stability assessment of proper elements, these advances can still be considered as important improvements offering solutions to some practical problems encountered in the past. The problem of getting unrealistic values of perihelion frequency for very low eccentricity orbits is solved by computing frequencies using the frequency-modified Fourier transform. The synthetic resonant proper elements adjusted to a given secular resonance helped to prove the existence of Astraea asteroid family. The preliminary assessment of stability with time of proper elements computed by means of the analytical theory provides a good indication of their poorer performance with respect to their synthetic counterparts, and advocates in favor of ceasing their regular maintenance; the final decision should, however, be taken on the basis of more comprehensive and reliable direct estimate of their individual and sample average deviations from constancy.

  16. Asteroids - the modern challenge of celestial dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dikova, Smiliana

    2002-11-01

    Among the most powerful statements in Science are those that mark absolute limits to knowledge. For example, Relativity and Quantum Theory touched the limits of speed and accuracy. Deterministic Chaos - the new scientific paradigma of our days, also falls in this class theories. Chaos means complexity in space and unpredictability in time. It shows the limit of our basic counting system and leads to a limited predictability of the long time dynamical evolution. Perhaps for that reason, in 1986 Sir James Lighthill remarked for all physicists: "We collectively wish to apologize for having misled the general educated public by spreading ideas about the determinism of systems satisfying Newton's laws of motion that, after 1960, were proved incorrect." Our main thesis is that Asteroid Dynamics is the arena where the drama Chaos versus predictability is initiated and developed. The aim of the present research is to show the way in which Deterministic Chaos restricts the long term dynamical predictability of asteroid motions.

  17. Consequences of Predicted or Actual Asteroid Impacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, C. R.

    2003-12-01

    Earth impact by an asteroid could have enormous physical and environmental consequences. Impactors larger than 2 km diameter could be so destructive as to threaten civilization. Since such events greatly exceed any other natural or man-made catastrophe, much extrapolation is necessary just to understand environmental implications (e.g. sudden global cooling, tsunami magnitude, toxic effects). Responses of vital elements of the ecosystem (e.g. agriculture) and of human society to such an impact are conjectural. For instance, response to the Blackout of 2003 was restrained, but response to 9/11 terrorism was arguably exaggerated and dysfunctional; would society be fragile or robust in the face of global catastrophe? Even small impacts, or predictions of impacts (accurate or faulty), could generate disproportionate responses, especially if news media reports are hyped or inaccurate or if responsible entities (e.g. military organizations in regions of conflict) are inadequately aware of the phenomenology of small impacts. Asteroid impact is the one geophysical hazard of high potential consequence with which we, fortunately, have essentially no historical experience. It is thus important that decision makers familiarize themselves with the hazard and that society (perhaps using a formal procedure, like a National Academy of Sciences study) evaluate the priority of addressing the hazard by (a) further telescopic searches for dangerous but still-undiscovered asteroids and (b) development of mitigation strategies (including deflection of an oncoming asteroid and on- Earth civil defense). I exemplify these issues by discussing several representative cases that span the range of parameters. Many of the specific physical consequences of impact involve effects like those of other geophysical disasters (flood, fire, earthquake, etc.), but the psychological and sociological aspects of predicted and actual impacts are distinctive. Standard economic cost/benefit analyses may not

  18. Formation of asteroid pairs by rotational fission

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Vokrouhlický, D.; Polishook, D.; Scheeres, D.J.; Harris, A. W.; Galád, Adrián; Vaduvescu, O.; Pozo, F.; Barr, A.; Longa, P.; Vachier, F.; Colas, F.; Pray, D. P.; Pollock, J.; Reichart, D. E.; Ivarsen, K.M.; Haislip, J.B.; LaCluyze, A.; Kušnirák, Peter; Henych, Tomáš; Marchis, F.; Macomber, B.; Jacobson, S.A.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Sergeev, A.V.; Leroy, A.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 466, č. 7310 (2010), s. 1085-1088 ISSN 0028-0836 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/09/1107; GA ČR GD205/08/H005 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : full 2-body problem * binary asteroids * stability Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 36.101, year: 2010

  19. Dynamical portrait of the Hoffmeister asteroid family

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, Bojan; Maurel, Clara; Tsirvoulis, Georgios; Knezevic, Zoran; Radovic, Viktor

    2015-08-01

    The (1726) Hoffmeister asteroid family is located in the middle of the Main Belt, between 2.75 and 2.82 AU. It draws our attention due to its unusual shape when projected to the semi-major axis vs. inclination plane. Actually, the distribution of family members as seen in this plane clearly suggests different dynamical evolution for the two parts of the family delimited in terms of semi-major axis.Therefore, we investigate here the dynamics of the family members aiming primarily to explain the observed unusual shape, but we also reconstruct the evolution of the whole family in time, and estimated its age.The Hoffmeister family is close to the fourth degree secular resonance z1=g-g6+s-s6, and in the neighborhood of the most massive asteroid (1) Ceres, each of these possibly being responsible for the strange shape of the family. To identify which ones, if any, among the different possible dynamical mechanisms are actually at work here, we performed a set of numerical integrations. We integrate the orbits of test particles over 300 Myr, as the age of the Hoffmeister family was previously roughly estimated to be 300 ± 200 Myr. Moreover, in order to identify and isolate the main perturber(s), we repeat four times the integrations using each time a different dynamical model, taking or not into account the Yarkovsky effect and dwarf planet Ceres as a perturbing body.Our results reveal the significant role of a so far overlooked dynamical aspect, namely a secular resonance between the dwarf planet Ceres and other asteroids. In particular, we show that the post-impact evolution of the Hoffmeister asteroid family is a direct consequence of the nodal secular resonance with Ceres.

  20. Alien Asteroid Belt Compared to our Own

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Figure 1: Band of Light Comparison This artist's concept illustrates what the night sky might look like from a hypothetical alien planet in a star system with an asteroid belt 25 times as massive as the one in our own solar system (alien system above, ours below; see Figure 1). NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found evidence for such a belt around the nearby star called HD 69830, when its infrared eyes spotted dust, presumably from asteroids banging together. The telescope did not find any evidence for a planet in the system, but astronomers speculate one or more may be present. The movie begins at dusk on the imaginary world, when HD 69830, like our Sun, has begun to set over the horizon. Time is sped up to show the onset of night and the appearance of a brilliant band of light. This light comes from dust in a massive asteroid belt, which scatters sunlight. In our solar system, anybody observing the skies on a moonless night far from city lights can see the sunlight that is scattered by dust in our asteroid belt. Called zodiacal light and sometimes the 'false dawn,' this light appears as a dim band stretching up from the horizon when the Sun is about to rise or set. The light is faint enough that the disk of our Milky Way galaxy remains the most prominent feature in the sky. (The Milky Way disk is shown perpendicular to the zodiacal light in both pictures.) In contrast, the zodiacal light in the HD 69830 system would be 1,000 times brighter than our own, outshining even the Milky Way.

  1. Is the Eureka cluster a collisional family of Mars Trojan asteroids?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christou, Apostolos A.; Borisov, Galin; Dell'Oro, Aldo; Cellino, Alberto; Bagnulo, Stefano

    2017-09-01

    We explore the hypothesis that the Eureka family of sub-km asteroids in the L5 region of Mars could have formed in a collision. We estimate the size distribution index from available information on family members; model the orbital dispersion of collisional fragments; and carry out a formal calculation of the collisional lifetime as a function of size. We find that, as initially conjectured by Rivkin et al. (2003), the collisional lifetime of objects the size of (5261) Eureka is at least a few Gyr, significantly longer than for similar-sized Main Belt asteroids. In contrast, the observed degree of orbital compactness is inconsistent with all but the least energetic family-forming collisions. Therefore, the family asteroids may be ejecta from a cratering event sometime in the past ∼ 1 Gyr if the orbits are gradually dispersed by gravitational diffusion and the Yarkovsky effect (Ćuk et al., 2015). The comparable sizes of the largest family members require either negligible target strength or a particular impact geometry under this scenario (Durda et al., 2007; Benavidez et al., 2012). Alternatively, the family may have formed by a series of YORP-induced fission events (Pravec et al., 2010). The shallow size distribution of the family is similar to that of small MBAs (Gladman et al., 2009) interpreted as due to the dominance of this mechanism for Eureka-family-sized asteroids (Jacobson et al., 2014). However, our population index estimate is likely a lower limit due to the small available number of family asteroids and observational incompleteness. Future searches for fainter family members, further observational characterisation of the known Trojans' physical properties as well as orbital and rotational evolution modelling will help distinguish between different formation models.

  2. ASTEROID SIZING BY RADIOGALAXY OCCULTATION AT 5 GHZ

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lehtinen, K.; Muinonen, K.; Poutanen, M. [Finnish Geospatial Research Institute FGI, Geodeetinrinne 2, FI-02430 Masala (Finland); Bach, U. [Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie, Radioobservatorium Effelsberg, Max-Planck-Str. 28, D-53902 Bad Münstereifel-Effelsberg (Germany); Petrov, L., E-mail: kimmo.lehtinen@nls.fi [Astrogeo Center, Falls Church, VA 22043 (United States)

    2016-05-10

    Stellar occultations by asteroids observed at visual wavelengths have been an important tool for studying the size and shape of asteroids and for revising the orbital parameters of asteroids. At radio frequencies, a shadow of an asteroid on the Earth is dominated by diffraction effects. Here, we show, for the first time, that a single observation of an occultation of a compact radio source at a frequency of 5 GHz can be used to derive the effective size of the occulting object and to derive the distance between the observer and the center of the occultation path on the Earth. The derived diameter of the occulting object, asteroid (115) Thyra, is 75 ± 6 km. The observed occultation profile shows features that cannot be explained by diffraction of a single asteroid.

  3. Progress in clinical research of asteroid hyalosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiao-Xue Liu

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Asteroid Hyalosis(AHis a common clinical disease, which has been considered a benign disorder as it rarely impairs visual acuity. It was often discovered when the patient was treated for other eye diseases. The mechanism was unclear. Its characteristic B-ultrasound property makes the B-ultrasound a very helpful diagnostic technique. In the case of the patients with other fundus diseases associated with AH, optical coherence tomography(OCTand fluorescein angiography(FAmay be used to reduce the interference from asteroid bodies, therefore improve the fundus visibility. Recent studies have shown that AH can incorporate with many other eye diseases. For example, in patients with cataracts, asteroid hyalosis can cause surface calcification of silicone plate intraocular lenses, which in most cases may lead to the need for explantation of the calcified intraocular lenses. The efficacy of pars plana vitrectomy(PPV, the removal of some, or all, of the eye's vitreous humor for AH remains controversial. In this paper, we provide a review of the recent literature on AH disease: the etiology, diagnosis and treatment. We hope to thus improve the awareness and outcomes of AH disease.

  4. A Probabilistic Asteroid Impact Risk Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathias, Donovan L.; Wheeler, Lorien F.; Dotson, Jessie L.

    2016-01-01

    Asteroid threat assessment requires the quantification of both the impact likelihood and resulting consequence across the range of possible events. This paper presents a probabilistic asteroid impact risk (PAIR) assessment model developed for this purpose. The model incorporates published impact frequency rates with state-of-the-art consequence assessment tools, applied within a Monte Carlo framework that generates sets of impact scenarios from uncertain parameter distributions. Explicit treatment of atmospheric entry is included to produce energy deposition rates that account for the effects of thermal ablation and object fragmentation. These energy deposition rates are used to model the resulting ground damage, and affected populations are computed for the sampled impact locations. The results for each scenario are aggregated into a distribution of potential outcomes that reflect the range of uncertain impact parameters, population densities, and strike probabilities. As an illustration of the utility of the PAIR model, the results are used to address the question of what minimum size asteroid constitutes a threat to the population. To answer this question, complete distributions of results are combined with a hypothetical risk tolerance posture to provide the minimum size, given sets of initial assumptions. Model outputs demonstrate how such questions can be answered and provide a means for interpreting the effect that input assumptions and uncertainty can have on final risk-based decisions. Model results can be used to prioritize investments to gain knowledge in critical areas or, conversely, to identify areas where additional data has little effect on the metrics of interest.

  5. Asteroids in the High Cadence Transient Survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peña, J.; Fuentes, C.; Förster, F.; Maureira, J. C.; San Martín, J.; Littín, J.; Huijse, P.; Cabrera-Vives, G.; Estévez, P. A.; Galbany, L.; González-Gaitán, S.; Martínez, J.; de Jaeger, Th.; Hamuy, M.

    2018-03-01

    We report on the serendipitous observations of solar system objects imaged during the High cadence Transient Survey 2014 observation campaign. Data from this high-cadence wide-field survey was originally analyzed for finding variable static sources using machine learning to select the most-likely candidates. In this work, we search for moving transients consistent with solar system objects and derive their orbital parameters. We use a simple, custom motion detection algorithm to link trajectories and assume Keplerian motion to derive the asteroid’s orbital parameters. We use known asteroids from the Minor Planet Center database to assess the detection efficiency of the survey and our search algorithm. Trajectories have an average of nine detections spread over two days, and our fit yields typical errors of {σ }a∼ 0.07 {au}, σ e ∼ 0.07 and σ i ∼ 0.°5 in semimajor axis, eccentricity, and inclination, respectively, for known asteroids in our sample. We extract 7700 orbits from our trajectories, identifying 19 near-Earth objects, 6687 asteroids, 14 Centaurs, and 15 trans-Neptunian objects. This highlights the complementarity of supernova wide-field surveys for solar system research and the significance of machine learning to clean data of false detections. It is a good example of the data-driven science that Large Synoptic Survey Telescope will deliver.

  6. 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.

  7. Naming asteroids for the popularisation of astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naranjo, O. A.

    2008-06-01

    We give a detailed description of how the naming of asteroids was used as a prize in competitions run by educational institutions and museums. There were two events, one in Venezuela and one in Brazil, which used this as an attractive alternative method for the popularisation of astronomy. The first competition, named Bautizo Espacial (Space Baptism), consisted of scientific stories written by high school students. The second, called Grande Desafio (Big Challenge), was a competition where teams of students were challenged to design and build prototype equipment to fight forest fires. Nationally, both events received wide publicity through newspapers, radio, TV and web pages, reaching many people in both countries. As part of both the events, several activities promoting the public knowledge of astronomy were held. The asteroids that were named in these competitions are just some of the many discovered in a search programme developed by the Group of Theoretical Astrophysics of University of Los Andes in Mérida, Venezuela (Grupo de Astrofisica Teórica de la Universidad de Los Andes) as a mainstream research programme. Finally, Asteroids for the Popularisation of Astronomy has been formally proposed to the IAU as a worldwide programme during the celebration of the International Year of Astronomy in 2009 (IYA2009).

  8. Asteroid Lightcurves from Xingming Observatory: 2017 - 2017 June

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Hanjie; Yeh, Tingshuo; Li, Bin; Gao, Xing

    2018-01-01

    The lightcurves of main-belt asteroids 963, 1025, 2019, and 17814 and near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) 459872, 2014 JO25, and 2017 BS32 were obtained using Xingming Observatory (Code C42) from 2016 March to 2017 March. The absolute magnitudes of these asteroids range from H = 11.6 to 27.3, corresponding to a diameter range of 14 m to 14 km. The derived synodic rotation periods range between 0.1 to 10 h.

  9. Methods of determination of periods in the motion of asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bien, R.; Schubart, J.

    Numerical techniques for the analysis of fundamental periods in asteroidal motion are evaluated. The specific techniques evaluated were: the periodogram analysis procedure of Wundt (1980); Stumpff's (1937) system of algebraic transformations; and Labrouste's procedure. It is shown that the Labrouste procedure permitted sufficient isolation of single oscillations from the quasi-periodic process of asteroidal motion. The procedure was applied to the analysis of resonance in the motion of Trojan-type and Hilda-type asteroids, and some preliminary results are discussed.

  10. Antimatter applied for Earth protection from asteroid collision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Satori, Shin; Kuninaka, Hitoshi; Kuriki, Kyoichi

    1990-01-01

    An Earth protection system against asteroids and meteorites in colliding orbit is proposed. The system consists of detection and deorbiting systems. Analyses are given for the resolution of microwave optics, the detectability of radar, the orbital plan of intercepting operation, and the antimatter mass require for totally or partially blasting the asteroid. Antimatter of 1 kg is required for deorbiting an asteroid 200 m in diameter. An experimental simulation of antimatter cooling and storage is planned. The facility under construction is discussed.

  11. Robotic In-Situ Surface Exploration System (RISES)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA's Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) is a pivotal and daring approach that will mature multiple technologies for future deep space exploration. ARM seeks to...

  12. Exploration of Extreme Terrain Using a Polyhedral Rover

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Exploring celestial bodies with extreme terrains in our solar system, like Mars, Europa, Enceladus, and asteroids, are of great importance to NASA because these...

  13. Anchoring a lander on an asteroid using foam stabilization, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA has proposed several missions to land a craft on an asteroid and potentially to return samples from it. While large asteroids in the asteroid belt can exhibit a...

  14. SUBMILLIMETER LIGHTCURVES OF ASTEROIDS V1.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Submillimeter lightcurves of large asteroids Ceres, Davida, Io, Juno, Pallas, Vesta, and Victoria, observed at the Heinrich-Hertz Submillimeter Telescope from...

  15. Photometric geodesy of main-belt asteroids. III. Additional lightcurves

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weidenschilling, S.J.; Chapman, C.R.; Davis, D.R.; Greenberg, R.; Levy, D.H.

    1990-01-01

    A total of 107 complete or partial lightcurves are presented for 59 different asteroids over the 1982-1989 period. Unusual lightcurves with unequal minima and maxima at large amplitudes are preferentially seen for M-type asteroids. Some asteroids, such as 16 Psyche and 201 Penelope, exhibit lightcurves combining large amplitude with very unequal brightness for both maxima and both minima, even at small phase angles. An M-type asteroid is believed to consist of a metal core of a differentiated parent body that has had its rocky mantle completely removed by one or more large impacts. 39 refs

  16. Capturing asteroids into bound orbits around the earth: Massive early return on an asteroid terminal defense system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hills, J.G.

    1992-01-01

    Nuclear explosives may be used to capture small asteroids (e.g., 20--50 meters in diameter) into bound orbits around the earth. The captured objects could be used for construction material for manned and unmanned activity in Earth orbit. Asteroids with small approach velocities, which are the ones most likely to have close approaches to the Earth, require the least energy for capture. They are particularly easy to capture if they pass within one Earth radius of the surface of the Earth. They could be intercepted with intercontinental missiles if the latter were retrofit with a more flexible guiding and homing capability. This asteroid capture-defense system could be implemented in a few years at low cost by using decommissioned ICMs. The economic value of even one captured asteroid is many times the initial investment. The asteroid capture system would be an essential part of the learning curve for dealing with larger asteroids that can hit the earth

  17. Asteroid mass estimation with Markov-chain Monte Carlo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siltala, Lauri; Granvik, Mikael

    2017-10-01

    Estimates for asteroid masses are based on their gravitational perturbations on the orbits of other objects such as Mars, spacecraft, or other asteroids and/or their satellites. In the case of asteroid-asteroid perturbations, this leads to a 13-dimensional inverse problem at minimum where the aim is to derive the mass of the perturbing asteroid and six orbital elements for both the perturbing asteroid and the test asteroid by fitting their trajectories to their observed positions. The fitting has typically been carried out with linearized methods such as the least-squares method. These methods need to make certain assumptions regarding the shape of the probability distributions of the model parameters. This is problematic as these assumptions have not been validated. We have developed a new Markov-chain Monte Carlo method for mass estimation which does not require an assumption regarding the shape of the parameter distribution. Recently, we have implemented several upgrades to our MCMC method including improved schemes for handling observational errors and outlier data alongside the option to consider multiple perturbers and/or test asteroids simultaneously. These upgrades promise significantly improved results: based on two separate results for (19) Fortuna with different test asteroids we previously hypothesized that simultaneous use of both test asteroids would lead to an improved result similar to the average literature value for (19) Fortuna with substantially reduced uncertainties. Our upgraded algorithm indeed finds a result essentially equal to the literature value for this asteroid, confirming our previous hypothesis. Here we show these new results for (19) Fortuna and other example cases, and compare our results to previous estimates. Finally, we discuss our plans to improve our algorithm further, particularly in connection with Gaia.

  18. Resurfacing asteroids from YORP spin-up and failure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Kevin J.; Minton, David A.; Hirabayashi, Masatoshi; DeMeo, Francesca E.; Carry, Benoit

    2018-04-01

    The spectral properties of S and Q-type asteroids can change over time due to interaction with the solar wind and micrometeorite impacts in a process known as 'space weathering.' Space weathering raises the spectral slope and decreases the 1 μm absorption band depth in the spectra of S and Q-type asteroids. Over time, Q-type asteroids, which have very similar spectra to ordinary chondrite meteorites, will change into S-type asteroids. Because there are a significant number of Q-type asteroids, there must be some process which is resurfacing S-type asteroids into Q-types. In this study, we use asteroid data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey to show a trend between the slope through the g‧, r‧, and i‧ filters, called the gri-slope, and size that holds for all populations of S and Q-type asteroids in the inner solar system, regardless of orbit. We model the evolution of a suite of asteroids in a Monte Carlo YORP rotational evolution and space weathering model. We show that spin-up and failure from YORP is one of the key resurfacing mechanisms that creates the observed weathering trends with size. By varying the non-dimensional YORP coefficient and running time of the present model over the range 475-1425 Myr, we find a range of values for the space weathering timescale, τSW ≈ 19-80 Myr at 2.2 AU. We also estimate the time to weather a newly resurfaced Q-type asteroid into an S-complex asteroid at 1 AU, τQ → S(1AU) ≈ 2-7 Myr.

  19. Bayesian modeling of the mass and density of asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Jessie L.; Mathias, Donovan

    2017-10-01

    Mass and density are two of the fundamental properties of any object. In the case of near earth asteroids, knowledge about the mass of an asteroid is essential for estimating the risk due to (potential) impact and planning possible mitigation options. The density of an asteroid can illuminate the structure of the asteroid. A low density can be indicative of a rubble pile structure whereas a higher density can imply a monolith and/or higher metal content. The damage resulting from an impact of an asteroid with Earth depends on its interior structure in addition to its total mass, and as a result, density is a key parameter to understanding the risk of asteroid impact. Unfortunately, measuring the mass and density of asteroids is challenging and often results in measurements with large uncertainties. In the absence of mass / density measurements for a specific object, understanding the range and distribution of likely values can facilitate probabilistic assessments of structure and impact risk. Hierarchical Bayesian models have recently been developed to investigate the mass - radius relationship of exoplanets (Wolfgang, Rogers & Ford 2016) and to probabilistically forecast the mass of bodies large enough to establish hydrostatic equilibrium over a range of 9 orders of magnitude in mass (from planemos to main sequence stars; Chen & Kipping 2017). Here, we extend this approach to investigate the mass and densities of asteroids. Several candidate Bayesian models are presented, and their performance is assessed relative to a synthetic asteroid population. In addition, a preliminary Bayesian model for probablistically forecasting masses and densities of asteroids is presented. The forecasting model is conditioned on existing asteroid data and includes observational errors, hyper-parameter uncertainties and intrinsic scatter.

  20. An efficient algorithm for global periodic orbits generation near irregular-shaped asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Haibin; Wu, Xiaoyu; Ren, Yuan; Shan, Jinjun

    2017-07-01

    Periodic orbits (POs) play an important role in understanding dynamical behaviors around natural celestial bodies. In this study, an efficient algorithm was presented to generate the global POs around irregular-shaped uniformly rotating asteroids. The algorithm was performed in three steps, namely global search, local refinement, and model continuation. First, a mascon model with a low number of particles and optimized mass distribution was constructed to remodel the exterior gravitational potential of the asteroid. Using this model, a multi-start differential evolution enhanced with a deflection strategy with strong global exploration and bypassing abilities was adopted. This algorithm can be regarded as a search engine to find multiple globally optimal regions in which potential POs were located. This was followed by applying a differential correction to locally refine global search solutions and generate the accurate POs in the mascon model in which an analytical Jacobian matrix was derived to improve convergence. Finally, the concept of numerical model continuation was introduced and used to convert the POs from the mascon model into a high-fidelity polyhedron model by sequentially correcting the initial states. The efficiency of the proposed algorithm was substantiated by computing the global POs around an elongated shoe-shaped asteroid 433 Eros. Various global POs with different topological structures in the configuration space were successfully located. Specifically, the proposed algorithm was generic and could be conveniently extended to explore periodic motions in other gravitational systems.

  1. Deep Interior: Radio Reflection Tomographic Imaging of Earth-Crossing Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asphaug, E.; Belton, M.; Safaeinili, A.; Klaasen, K.; Ostro, S.; Yeomans, D.; Plaut, J.

    2004-12-01

    Near-Earth Objects (NEOs) present an important scientific question and an intriguing space hazard. They are scrutinized by a number of large, dedicated groundbased telescopes, and their diverse compositions are represented by thousands of well-studied meteorites. A successful program of NEO spacecraft exploration has begun, and we are proposing Deep Interior as the next logical step. Our mission objective is to image the deep interior structure of two NEOs using radio reflection tomography (RRT), in order to explore the record of asteroid origin and impact evolution, and to test the fundamental hypothesis that these important members of the solar system are rubble piles rather than consolidated bodies. Asteroid Interiors. Our mission's RRT technique is like a CAT scan from orbit. Closely sampled radar echoes yield volumetric maps of mechanical and compositional boundaries, and measure interior material dielectric properties. Exteriors. We use color imaging to explore the surface expressions of unit boundaries, in order to relate interior radar imaging to what is observable from spacecraft imaging and from Earth. Gravity and high fidelity geodesy are used to explore how interior structure is expressed in shape, density, mass distribution and spin. Diversity. We first visit a common, primitive, S-type asteroid. We next visit an asteroid that was perhaps blasted from the surface of a differentiated asteroid. We attain an up-close and inside look at two taxonomic archetypes spanning an important range of NEO mass and spin rate. Scientific focus is achieved by keeping our payload simple: Radar. A 30-m (tip-to-tip) cross-dipole antenna system operates at 5 and 15-MHz, with electronics heritage from JPL's MARSIS contribution to Mars Express, and antenna heritage from IMAGE and LACE. The 5-MHz channel is designed to penetrate >1 km of basaltic rock, and 15-MHz penetrates a few 100 m or more. They bracket the diversity of solar system materials that we are likely to

  2. Seven Asteroids Studied from Modra Observatory in the Course of Binary Asteroid Photometric Campaign

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Galád, Adrián; Pravec, Petr; Kornoš, L.; Gajdoš, Š.; Világi, J.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 101, 1-2 (2007), s. 17-25 ISSN 0167-9295 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA205/05/0604 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * photometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.558, year: 2007

  3. Investigating the origin of the asteroids and early findings on Vesta historical studies in asteroid research

    CERN Document Server

    Cunningham, Clifford J

    2017-01-01

    This book assesses the origin of asteroids by analyzing the discovery of Vesta in 1807. Wilhelm Olbers, who discovered Vesta, suggested that the asteroids were the result of a primordial planet’s explosion. Cunningham studies that idea in detail through the writings of Sir David Brewster in Scotland, the era's most prolific writer about the asteroids. He also examines the link between meteorites and asteroids, revealing a synergy between Ernst Chladni, Romantic symbolism, and the music of the spheres. Vesta was a lightning rod for controversy throughout the nineteenth century with observers arguing over its size and color, and the astounding notion that it was self-luminous. It was also a major force for change, as new methods in the field of celestial mechanics were developed to study the orbital perturbations it is subject to. A large selection of private correspondence and scientific papers complete the first comprehensive historical study of Vesta ever published. With a synoptic look at the four astero...

  4. A SEARCH FOR ASTEROIDS, MOONS, AND RINGS ORBITING WHITE DWARFS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Di Stefano, Rosanne; Howell, Steve B.; Kawaler, Steven D.

    2010-01-01

    Do white dwarfs host asteroid systems? Although several lines of argument suggest that white dwarfs may be orbited by large populations of asteroids, transits would provide the most direct evidence. We demonstrate that the Kepler mission has the capability to detect transits of white dwarfs by asteroids. Because white-dwarf asteroid systems, if they exist, are likely to contain many asteroids orbiting in a spatially extended distribution, discoveries of asteroid transits can be made by monitoring only a small number of white dwarfs, compatible with Kepler's primary mission, which is to monitor stars with potentially habitable planets. Possible future missions that survey 10 times as many stars with similar sensitivity and minute-cadence monitoring can establish the characteristics of asteroid systems around white dwarfs, such as the distribution of asteroid sizes and semimajor axes. Transits by planets would be more dramatic, but the probability that they will occur is lower. Ensembles of planetary moons and/or the presence of rings around planets can also produce transits detectable by Kepler. The presence of moons and rings can significantly increase the probability that Kepler will discover planets orbiting white dwarfs, even while monitoring only a small number of them.

  5. Determination of pole orientations and shapes of asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Magnusson, P.; Barucci, M.A.; Drummond, J.D.; Lumme, K.; Surdej, J.

    1989-01-01

    The principles of asteroid lightcurve inversion and the information available from photometry are reviewed. General tools as well as specific techniques for shape and pole determinations are summarized and their advantages and shortcomings are discussed. The authors present the results obtained so far in this very active field and discuss their significance in the general context of asteroid research and planetary formation

  6. Capture orbits around asteroids by hitting zero-velocity curves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Wei; Yang, Hongwei; Zhang, Wei; Ma, Guangfu

    2017-12-01

    The problem of capturing a spacecraft from a heliocentric orbit into a high parking orbit around binary asteroids is investigated in the current study. To reduce the braking Δ V, a new capture strategy takes advantage of the three-body gravity of the binary asteroid to lower the inertial energy before applying the Δ V. The framework of the circular restricted three-body problem (CR3BP) is employed for the binary asteroid system. The proposed capture strategy is based on the mechanism by which inertial energy can be decreased sharply near zero-velocity curves (ZVCs). The strategy has two steps, namely, hitting the target ZVC and raising the periapsis by a small Δ V at the apoapsis. By hitting the target ZVC, the positive inertial energy decreases and becomes negative. Using a small Δ V, the spacecraft inserts into a bounded orbit around the asteroid. In addition, a rotating mass dipole model is employed for elongated asteroids, which leads to dynamics similar to that of the CR3BP. With this approach, the proposed capture strategy can be applied to elongated asteroids. Numerical simulations validate that the proposed capture strategy is applicable for the binary asteroid 90 Antiope and the elongated asteroid 216 Kleopatra.

  7. 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.

  8. Forging Asteroid-Meteorite Relationships Through Reflectance Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burbine, T. H.; Binzel, R. P.; Bus, S. J.; Buchanan, P. C.; Hinrichs, J. L.; Meibom, A.; Hiroi, T.; Sunshine, J. M.

    2000-01-01

    Near-infrared spectra were obtained for 196 asteroids as part of SMASSIR. SMASSIR focused on observing asteroids assumed to be one of the following: (1) olivine-rich, (2) objects with "Vesta-like spectra" (the "Vestoids"), and (3) postulated meteorite parent bodies.

  9. Modeling Asteroid Dynamics using AMUSE: First Test Cases

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Frantseva, Kateryna; Mueller, Michael; van der Tak, Floris; Helmich, Frank P.

    2015-01-01

    We are creating a dynamic model of the current asteroid population. The goal is to reproduce measured impact rates in the current Solar System, from which we'll derive delivery rates of water and organic material by tracing low-albedo C-class asteroids (using the measured albedo distribution from

  10. 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.

  11. Mothe-Diniz Asteroid Dynamical Families V1.0

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mothe-Diniz, T.; Roig, F.; Carvano, J. M.

    2006-03-01

    This dataset contains an updated compilation of asteroid families and clusters, resulting from the application of the Hierarchical Clustering Method (HCM) on a set of around 120,000 asteroids with available proper elements. Whenever available, the classification in the Bus taxonomy is provided for family members, based on spectra from the SMASS, SMASS2 and S3OS2 spectroscopic surveys.

  12. Spin rate distribution of small asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Harris, A. W.; Vokrouhlický, D.; Warner, B. D.; Kušnirák, Peter; Hornoch, Kamil; Pray, D. P.; Higgins, D.; Oey, J.; Galád, Adrián; Gajdoš, Š.; Kornoš, L.; Világi, J.; Husárik, M.; Krugly, Yu. N.; Shevchenko, V. G.; Chiorny, V. G.; Gaftonyuk, N. M.; Cooney jr., W. R.; Gross, J.; Terrell, D.; Stephens, R.; Dyvig, R.; Reddy, V.; Ries, J.G.; Colas, F.; Lecacheux, J.; Durkee, R.; Masi, G.; Koff, R.; Goncalves, R.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 197, č. 2 (2008), s. 497-504 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA205/05/0604 Grant - others: NASA (US) NAG5-13244; NASA (US) NNG06GI32G; VEGA(SK) 1/3074/06; VEGA(SK) 1/3067/06; VEGA(SK) 2/7009/27 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids rotation * photometry * near-Earth objects Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.268, year: 2008

  13. 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.

  14. Near-Earth asteroids: Metals occurrence, extraction, and fabrication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westfall, Richard

    Near-earth asteroids occur in three principle types of orbits: Amor, Apollo, and Aten. Amor asteroids make relatively close (within 0.3 AU) approaches to the earth's orbit, but do not actually overlap it. Apollo asteroids spend most of their time outside the earth's orbital path, but at some point of close approach to the sun, they cross the orbit of the earth. Aten asteroids are those whose orbits remain inside the earth's path for the majority of their time, with semi-major axes less than 0.1 AU. Near-earth orbit asteroids include: stones, stony-irons, irons, carbonaceous, and super-carbonaceous. Metals within these asteroids include: iron, nickel, cobalt, the platinum group, aluminum, titanium, and others. Focus is on the extraction of ferrous and platinum group metals from the stony-iron asteroids, and the iron asteroids. Extraction of the metal fraction can be accomplished through the use of tunnel-boring-machines (TBM) in the case of the stony-irons. The metals within the story-iron asteroids occur as dispersed granules, which can be separated from the stony fraction through magnetic and gaseous digestion separation techniques. The metal asteroids are processes by drilling and gaseous digestion or by gaseous digestion alone. Manufacturing of structures, housings, framing networks, pressure vessels, mirrors, and other products is accomplished through the chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of metal coating on advanced composites and on the inside of contour-defining inflatables (CDI). Metal coatings on advanced composites provide: resistance to degradation in the hostile environments of space; superior optical properties; superior heat dissipation; service as wear coatings; and service as evidential coatings. Metal coatings on the inside of CDI produce metal load-bearing products. Fibers such as graphite, kevlar, glass, ceramic, metal, etc., can be incorporated in the metal coatings on the inside of CDI producing metal matrix products which exhibit high strength

  15. Science case for the Asteroid Impact Mission (AIM): A component of the Asteroid Impact & Deflection Assessment (AIDA) mission

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Michel, P.; Cheng, A.; Kueppers, M.; Pravec, Petr; Blum, J.; Delbó, M.; Green, S.; Rosenblatt, P.; Tsiganis, K.; Vincent, J.B.; Biele, J.; Ciarletti, V.; Herique, A.; Ulamec, S.; Carnelli, I.; Galvez, A.; Benner, L. A. M.; Naidu, S.P.; Barnouin, O.; Richardson, D.C.; Rivkin, A. S.; Scheirich, Peter; Moskovitz, N.; Thirouin, A.; Schwartz, S.R.; Campo Bagatin, A.; Yu, Y.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 57, č. 12 (2016), s. 2529-2547 ISSN 0273-1177 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-07193S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : planetary defense * near- Earth asteroids * asteroid impact hazards Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 1.401, year: 2016

  16. Near Earth Asteroid Scout: NASA's Solar Sail Mission to a NEA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Les; Lockett, Tiffany

    2017-01-01

    NASA is developing a solar sail propulsion system for use on the Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) Scout reconnaissance mission and laying the groundwork for their use in future deep space science and exploration missions. Solar sails use sunlight to propel vehicles through space by reflecting solar photons from a large, mirror-like sail made of a lightweight, highly reflective material. This continuous photon pressure provides propellantless thrust, allowing for very high Delta V maneuvers on long-duration, deep space exploration. Since reflected light produces thrust, solar sails require no onboard propellant. The Near Earth Asteroid (NEA) Scout mission, funded by NASA's Advanced Exploration Systems Program and managed by NASA MSFC, will use the sail as primary propulsion allowing it to survey and image Asteroid 1991VG and, potentially, other NEA's of interest for possible future human exploration. NEA Scout uses a 6U cubesat (to be provided by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory), an 86 m(exp. 2) solar sail and will weigh less than 12 kilograms. NEA Scout will be launched on the first flight of the Space Launch System in 2018. The solar sail for NEA Scout will be based on the technology developed and flown by the NASA NanoSail-D and The Planetary Society's Lightsail-A. Four approximately 7 m stainless steel booms wrapped on two spools (two overlapping booms per spool) will be motor deployed and pull the sail from its stowed volume. The sail material is an aluminized polyimide approximately 2.5 microns thick. As the technology matures, solar sails will increasingly be used to enable science and exploration missions that are currently impossible or prohibitively expensive using traditional chemical and electric propulsion systems. This paper will summarize the status of the NEA Scout mission and solar sail technology in general.

  17. Can Asteroid Airbursts Cause Dangerous Tsunami?.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Boslough, Mark B. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-10-01

    I have performed a series of high-resolution hydrocode simulations to generate “source functions” for tsunami simulations as part of a proof-of-principle effort to determine whether or not the downward momentum from an asteroid airburst can couple energy into a dangerous tsunami in deep water. My new CTH simulations show enhanced momentum multiplication relative to a nuclear explosion of the same yield. Extensive sensitivity and convergence analyses demonstrate that results are robust and repeatable for simulations with sufficiently high resolution using adaptive mesh refinement. I have provided surface overpressure and wind velocity fields to tsunami modelers to use as time-dependent boundary conditions and to test the hypothesis that this mechanism can enhance the strength of the resulting shallow-water wave. The enhanced momentum result suggests that coupling from an over-water plume-forming airburst could be a more efficient tsunami source mechanism than a collapsing impact cavity or direct air blast alone, but not necessarily due to the originally-proposed mechanism. This result has significant implications for asteroid impact risk assessment and airburst-generated tsunami will be the focus of a NASA-sponsored workshop at the Ames Research Center next summer, with follow-on funding expected.

  18. Galileo photometry of asteroid 243 Ida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helfenstein, P.; Veverka, J.; Thomas, P.C.; Simonelli, D.P.; Klaasen, K.; Johnson, T.V.; Fanale, F.; Granahan, J.; McEwen, A.S.; Belton, M.; Chapman, C.

    1996-01-01

    Galileo imaging observations over phase angles 19.5?? to 109.8?? are combined with near-opposition Earth-based data to derive the photometric properties of Ida. To first order these properties are uniform over the surface and well modeled at ?? = 0.55 ??m by Hapke parameters ????0 = 0.22, h = 0.020, B0 = 1.5, g = -0.33, and ?? = 18?? with corresponding geometric albedo p = 0.21??0.030.01 and Bond albedo AB = 0.081??0.0170.008. Ida's photometric properties are more similar to those of "average S-asteroids" (P. Helfenstein and J. Veverka 1989, Asteroids II, Univ. of Arizona Press, Tucson) than are those of 951 Gaspra. Two primary color units are identified on Ida: Terrain A exhibits a spectrum with relatively shallower 1-??m absorption and a relatively steeper red spectral slope than average Ida, while Terrain B has a deeper 1-??m absorption and a less steep red slope. The average photometric properties of Ida and Terrain A are similar while those of Terrain B differ mostly in having a slightly higher value of ????0 (0.22 versus 0.21), suggesting that Terrain B consists of slightly brighter, more transparent regolith particles. Galileo observations of Ida's satellite Dactyl over phase angles 19.5?? to 47.6?? suggest photometric characteristics similar to those of Ida, the major difference being Dactyl's slightly lower albedo (0.20 compared to 0.21). ?? 1990 Academic Press, Inc.

  19. RGB Colors of the Jovian Trojan Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Haoyuan; Zhang, Xiaofei; University of Western Australia, Youth Astronomy Teachers' Link

    2017-10-01

    We use SPIRIT I&II telescopes which has 43cm diameter, to observe around 50 Jovian Trojan asteroids. Due to the limiting magnitude of our equipment, We only choose some bright asteriods as our targets.To testify the feasibility of using RGB Bayer filter system for research project, we use the RGB Bayer filter system instead of the Johnson-Cousins BVR filters system. Once proved, the photometry data will be significantly enlarged. More collected data can be used on scientific researches and more scholars can do relevant researches by using the RGB Bayer filter system. What we did is using a software called Astrometrica to measure the magnitude of the asteroids under RGB filter. Then we transform the RGB data to BVR data. Later on we calculate the color index by using those BVR data from our calculations. The final step to do the statistic work and make graphs, and compare it with the former research data. We are aim to find same result as the research before, or why there are differnt result.We are still in the process of handling the data, so the final result will be released at the conference. This project is based on data acquired using the SPIRIT robotic telescopes at The University of Western Australia. We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of Paul Luckas, SPIRIT Program Manager.The project is supported by The University of Western Australia, Youth Astronomy Teachers' Link.

  20. The Probable Ages of Asteroid Families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, A. W.

    1993-01-01

    There has been considerable debate recently over the ages of the Hirayama families, and in particular if some of the families are very oung(u) It is a straightforward task to estimate the characteristic time of a collision between a body of a given diameter, d_o, by another body of diameter greater of equal to d_1. What is less straightforward is to estimate the critical diameter ratio, d_1/d_o, above which catastrophic disruption occurs, from which one could infer probable ages of the Hirayama families, by knowing the diameter of the parent body, d_o. One can gain some insight into the probable value of d_1/d_o, and of the likely ages of existing families, from the plot below. I have computed the characteristic time between collisions in the asteroid belt of a size ratio greater of equal to d_1/d_o, for 4 sizes of target asteroids, d_o. The solid curves to the lower right are the characteristic times for a single object...

  1. An initial perspective of S-asteroid subtypes within asteroid families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, M. S.; Gaffey, M. J.

    1993-01-01

    Many main belt asteroids cluster around certain values of semi-major axis (a), inclination (i), and eccentricity (e). Hirayama was the first to notice these concentrations which he interpreted as evidence of disruptions of larger parent bodies. He called these clusters 'asteroid families'. The term 'families' is increasingly reserved for genetic associations to distinguish them from clusters of unknown or purely dynamical origin (e.g. the Phocaea cluster). Members of a genetic asteroid family represent fragments derived from various depths within the original parent planetesimal. Thus, family members offer the potential for direct examination of the interiors of parent bodies which have undergone metamorphism and differentiation similar to that occurring in the inaccessible interiors of terrestrial planets. The differentiation similar to that occurring in the inaccessible interiors of terrestrial planets. The condition that genetic family members represent the fragments of a parent object provides a critical test of whether an association (cluster in proper element space) is a genetic family. Compositions (types and relative abundances of materials) of family members must permit the reconstruction of a compositionally plausible parent body. The compositions of proposed family members can be utilized to test the genetic reality of the family and to determine the type and degree of internal differentiation within the parent planetesimal. The interpretation of the S-class mineralogy provides a preliminary evaluation of family memberships. Detailed mineralogical and petrological analysis was done based on the reflectance spectra of 39 S-type asteroids. The result is a division of the S-asteroid class into seven subtypes based on compositional differences. These subtypes, designated S(I) to S(VII), correspond to surface silicate assemblages ranging from monomineralic olivine (dunites) through olivine-pyroxene mixtures to pure pyroxene or pyroxene-feldspar mixtures

  2. OSIRIS-REx Touch-and-Go (TAG) Mission Design for Asteroid Sample Collection

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, Alexander; Sutter, Brian; Linn, Timothy; Bierhaus, Beau; Berry, Kevin; Mink, Ron

    2014-01-01

    The Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission is a NASA New Frontiers mission launching in September 2016 to rendezvous with the near-Earth asteroid Bennu in October 2018. After several months of proximity operations to characterize the asteroid, OSIRIS-REx flies a Touch-And-Go (TAG) trajectory to the asteroid's surface to collect at least 60 g of pristine regolith sample for Earth return. This paper provides mission and flight system overviews, with more details on the TAG mission design and key events that occur to safely and successfully collect the sample. An overview of the navigation performed relative to a chosen sample site, along with the maneuvers to reach the desired site is described. Safety monitoring during descent is performed with onboard sensors providing an option to abort, troubleshoot, and try again if necessary. Sample collection occurs using a collection device at the end of an articulating robotic arm during a brief five second contact period, while a constant force spring mechanism in the arm assists to rebound the spacecraft away from the surface. Finally, the sample is measured quantitatively utilizing the law of conservation of angular momentum, along with qualitative data from imagery of the sampling device. Upon sample mass verification, the arm places the sample into the Stardust-heritage Sample Return Capsule (SRC) for return to Earth in September 2023.

  3. 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.

  4. Tsunami Generation from Asteroid Airburst and Ocean Impact and Van Dorn Effect

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robertson, Darrel

    2016-01-01

    Airburst - In the simulations explored energy from the airburst couples very weakly with the water making tsunami dangerous over a shorter distance than the blast for asteroid sizes up to the maximum expected size that will still airburst (approx.250MT). Future areas of investigation: - Low entry angle airbursts create more cylindrical blasts and might couple more efficiently - Bursts very close to the ground will increase coupling - Inclusion of thermosphere (>80km altitude) may show some plume collapse effects over a large area although with much less pressure center dot Ocean Impact - Asteroid creates large cavity in ocean. Cavity backfills creating central jet. Oscillation between the cavity and jet sends out tsunami wave packet. - For deep ocean impact waves are deep water waves (Phase speed = 2x Group speed) - If the tsunami propagation and inundation calculations are correct for the small (impact deep ocean basins, the resulting tsunami is not a significant hazard unless particularly close to vulnerable communities. Future work: - Shallow ocean impact. - Effect of continental shelf and beach profiles - Tsunami vs. blast damage radii for impacts close to populated areas - Larger asteroids below presumed threshold of global effects (Ø200 - 800m).

  5. Tochilinite: A Sensitive Indicator of Alteration Conditions on the CM Asteroidal Parent Body

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browning, L. B.; Bourcier, W. L.

    1996-03-01

    Each CM chondrite experienced a different degree of aqueous alteration. As a group, then, these meteorites preserve tangible evidence of asteroidal reactions that were interrupted at many different stages of completion. Geochemical modeling of CM reaction progress should elucidate the nature of the accreted CM materials and the specific types of asteroidal processes and conditions that subsequently influenced them. However, most of the minerals in CM chondrites are stable under a wide range of environmental conditions, which hinders efforts to capitalize on the diverse degree of CM alteration. Petrologic evidence suggests that Fe-rich tochilinite, the widespread mineralic component of CM chondrites previously referred to as "poorly characterized phase (PCP)", may be the most sensitive indicator of the conditions of CM alteration. This possibility has not previously been explored because thermodynamic data for tochilinite are lacking. We have estimated the thermodynamic properties of tochilinite from mixing equations and then calculated its stability limits with associated non-silicate phases as a function of PS2, PO2, and PCO2. The resultant phase relations : a) are consistent with mineral association in CM chondrites, b) indicate that the CM fluids were S-depleted and extremely reducing, c) imply the possibility of H2 gas seeps on the CM parent body, and d) suggest that the alteration of CM materials occurred at significant asteroidal depths.

  6. Human health and performance considerations for near earth asteroids (NEA)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinberg, Susan; Kundrot, Craig; Charles, John

    2013-11-01

    Humans are considered as a system in the design of any deep space exploration mission. The addition of many potential near asteroid (NEA) destinations to the existing multiple mission architecture for Lunar and Mars missions increases the complexity of human health and performance issues that are anticipated for exploration of space. We suggest that risks to human health and performance be analyzed in terms of the 4 major parameters related to multiple mission architecture: destination, duration, distance and vehicle design. Geological properties of the NEA will influence design of exploration tasks related to sample handling and containment, and extravehicular activity (EVA) capabilities including suit ports and tools. A robotic precursor mission that collects basic information on NEA surface properties would reduce uncertainty about these aspects of the mission as well as aid in mission architecture and exploration task design. Key mission parameters are strongly impacted by duration and distance. The most critical of these is deep-space radiation exposure without even the temporary shielding of a nearby large planetary body. The current space radiation permissible exposure limits (PEL) limits mission duration to 3-10 months depending on age, gender and stage of the solar cycle. Duration also impacts mission architectures including countermeasures for bone, muscle, and cardiovascular atrophy during continuous weightlessness; and behavioral and psychological issues resulting from isolation and confinement. Distance affects communications and limits abort and return options for a NEA mission. These factors are anticipated to have important effects on crew function and autonomous operations, as well as influence medical capability, supplies and training requirements of the crew. The design of a habitat volume that can maintain the physical and psychological health of the crew and support mission operations with limited intervention from earth will require an

  7. Electric solar-wind sail for asteroid touring missions and planetary protection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janhunen, P.

    2014-07-01

    long time, moving from asteroid to asteroid in a bit similar way as, e.g., Mars rovers move from rock to rock on the planet's surface. After starting from the Earth, the mission would slowly spiral outward, making rendezvous with interesting asteroids along the way, as well as flybys or even a larger number of asteroids as opportunities arise. The spacecraft would do remote sensing of the bodies and perhaps also deploy small CubeSat-sized expendable landers on them (the mother spacecraft cannot land on an asteroid or else it would lose the E-sail tethers). The mission would first explore near-Earth objects, then pass through the main belt and end up with the Trojans, exploring asteroids in rendezvous and flyby modes all the time. Asteroids in roughly circular orbits and at low inclination would be the easiest and most likely targets for rendezvous mode encounters, while there would be less restrictions for flyby mode observations. Besides for pure asteroid science, the E-sail could also be used for planetary protection, either through direct propulsive deflection of a dangerous asteroid [4] or by accelerating a relatively lightweight impactor spacecraft to a retrograde orbit and in that way maximizing the available deflecting impact energy for given impactor mass. E-sails could take a number of such impactors to retrograde storage orbits from which they could be commanded to impact a dangerous asteroid with relatively short warning time. Such impactor fleet would not be dangerous to the Earth because the vehicles can be designed to burn completely in the atmosphere, in the unlikely event that due to some mishap one of them would collide with the Earth. The E-sail has potentially large applicability to asteroids as it promises ''free'' transportation in the solar system. As a next step, a solar-wind test mission is needed to demonstrate the technology in the authentic environment.

  8. BILLIARDS: Baseline Instrumented Lithology Lander, Inspector and Asteroid Redirection Demonstration System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcus, Matthew; Sloane, Joshua; Ortiz, Oliver; Barbee, Brent

    2015-01-01

    BILLIARDS Baseline Instrumented Lithology Lander, Inspector, and Asteroid Redirection Demonstration System Proposed demonstration mission for Billiard-Ball concept Select asteroid pair with natural close approach to minimize cost and complexity Primary Objectives Rendezvous with a small (10m), near Earth (alpha) asteroid Maneuver the alpha asteroid to a collision with a 100m (beta) asteroid Produce a detectable deflection or disruption of the beta asteroid Secondary objectives Contribute knowledge of asteroid composition and characteristics Contribute knowledge of small-body formation Opportunity for international collaboration

  9. Deep Interior Mission: Imaging the Interior of Near-Earth Asteroids Using Radio Reflection Tomography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safaeinili, A.; Asphaug, E.; Belton, M.; Klaasen, K.; Ostro, S.; Plaut, J.; Yeomans, D.

    2004-12-01

    Near-Earth asteroids are important exploration targets since they provide clues to the evolution of the solar system. They are also of interest since they present a clear danger to Earth in the future. Our mission objective is to image the internal structure of two NEOs using radio reflection tomography (RRT), in order to explore the record of asteroid origin and impact evolution, and to test the fundamental hypothesis that these important members of the solar system are rubble piles rather than consolidated bodies. Our mission's RRT technique is analogous to doing a ``CAT scan" of the asteroid from orbit. Closely sampled radar echoes are processed to yield volumetric maps of mechanical and compositional boundaries, and measure interior material dielectric properties. The RRT instrument is a radar that operates at 5 and 15 MHz with two 30-m (tip-to-tip) dipole antennas that are used in a cross-dipole configuration. The radar transmitter and receiver electronics have heritage from JPL's MARSIS contribution to Mars Express, and the antenna is similar to systems used in IMAGE and LACE missions. The 5-MHz channel is designed to penetrate >1 km of basaltic rock, and 15-MHz penetrates a few hundred meters or more. In addition to RRT volumetric imaging, we use a redundant color cameras to explore the surface expressions of unit boundaries, in order to relate interior radar imaging to what is observable from spacecraft imaging and from Earth. The camera also yields stereo color imaging for geology and RRT-related compositional analysis. Gravity and high fidelity geodesy are used to explore how interior structure is expressed in shape, density, mass distribution and spin. Deep interior has two targets (S-type 1999 ND43 and V-type Nyx ) whose composition bracket the diversity of solar system materials that we are likely to encounter, and are richly complementary.

  10. Size distributions of member asteroids in seven Hirayama families

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mikami, Takao; Ishida, Keiichi.

    1990-01-01

    The size distributions of asteroids in the seven Hirayama families are studied for newly assigned member asteroids in the diameter range of about 10 to 100 km. The size distributions for the different families are expressed by the power-law functions with distinctly different power-law indices. The power-law indices for families with small mean orbital inclinations are about 2.5 to 3.0. On the other hand, the power-law indices for families with large mean orbital inclinations are significantly smaller than 2.5. This indicates that the smaller asteroids were removed preferentially from these families after their formation. It is thought that the smaller asteroids left behind the families were dispersed into the main belt. It is consistent with the fact that the power-law index for the size distribution of asteroids with diameters smaller than 25 km in the main belt is larger than the power-law indices for the size distributions of asteroids in the families. This segregation due to the asteroid size can be caused by a drag force caused by the ambient matter deposited on the invariable place of the solar system during the early evolutionary stage. (author)

  11. Redox effects in ordinary chondrites and implications for asteroid spectrophotometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcsween, Harry Y., Jr.

    1992-01-01

    The sensitivity of reflectance spectra to mean ferrous iron content and olivine and pyroxene proportion enhancements in the course of metamorphic oxidation is presently used to examine whether metamorphically-induced ranges in mineralogy, and corresponding spectral parameters, may explain the observed variations in S-asteroid rotational spectra. The predicted spectral variations within any one chondrite class are, however, insufficient to account for S-asteroid rotational spectra, and predicted spectral-range slopes have a sign opposite to the rotational measurements. Metamorphic oxidation is found unable to account for S-asteroid rotational spectra.

  12. Reanalysis of Asteroid Families Structure Through Visible Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mothé-Diniz, T.; Carvano, J.; Roig, F.; Lazzaro, D.

    In this work we re-analyse the presence of interlopers in asteroid families based on a larger spectral database and on a family determination which makes use of a larger set of proper elements. The asteroid families were defined using the HCM method (Zappalà et al. 1995) on the set of proper elements for 110,000 asteroids available at the Asteroid Dynamic Site (AstDyS http://hamilton.dm.unipi.it/astdys )). The spectroscopic analysis is performed using spectra on the 0.44-0.92 μ m range observed by the SMASS Xu et al. 1995, SMASSII (Bus and Binzel, 2002) and 3OS2 (Lazzaro et al. 2002) surveys, which together total around 2140 asteroids with observed spectra. The asteroid taxonomy used is the Bus taxonomy (Bus et al. 2000). A total of 22 two families were analysed . The families of Vesta, Eunomia, Hoffmeister, Dora, Merxia, Agnia, and Koronis were found to be spectrally homogeneous, which confirms previous studies. The Veritas family, on the other hand, which is quoted in the literature as an heterogeneous family was found to be quite homogeneous in the present work. The Eos family is noteworthy for being at one time spectrally heterogeneous and quite different from the background population. References Bus, S. J., and R. P. Binzel 2002. Phase II of the Small Main-Belt Asteroid Spectroscopic Survey - The Observations. Icarus 158, 106-145. Bus, S. J., R. P. Binzel, and T. H. Burbine 2000. A New Generation of Asteroid Taxonomy. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, vol. 35, Supplement, p.A36 35, 36 +. Lazzaro, D., C. A. Angeli, T. Mothe-Diniz, J. M. Carvano, R. Duffard, and M. Florczak 2002. The superficial characterization of a large sample of asteroids: the S3OS2. Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society 34, 859 +. Xu, S., R. P. Binzel, T. H. Burbine, and S. J. Bus 1995. Small main-belt asteroid spectroscopic survey: Initial results. Icarus 115, 1-35. Zappala, V., P. Bendjoya, A. Cellino, P. Farinella, and C. Froeschle 1995. Asteroid families: Search of a 12

  13. Photometry and shape modeling of Mars crosser asteroid (1011 Laodamia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Apostolovska G.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available An analysis of photometric observations of Mars crosser asteroid 1011 Laodamia conducted at Bulgarian National Astronomical Observatory Rozhen over a twelve year interval (2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012 and 2013 is made. Based on the obtained lightcurves the spin vector, sense of rotation, and preliminary shape model of (1011 Laodamia have been determined using the lightcurve inversion method. The aim of this investigation is to increase the set of asteroids with known spin and shape parameters and to contribute in improving the model in combination with other techniques and sparse data produced by photometric asteroid surveys such as Pan-STARRS or GAIA.

  14. A deep space inventory tour of the main asteroid belt

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gibbings, Alison; Bowles, Neil; Snodgrass, Colin

    2016-01-01

    a key tracer to understanding the dynamic evolution of the solar system, offer an insight into its early history and the origins of life forming material. Furthermore, by combing visible, near-infrared and thermal spectroscopy, the mission will unlock information on the major rock forming minerals...... a Vega-C (or Ariane 6) launch vehicle. The mission and system design is currently being developed through an ongoing mission study. Analysis is performed by a consortium of OHB System AG, Cranfield University and an association of scientists from different institutes and organisations. Concurrent......, and more importantly, place the returned samples from the up-and-coming Hayabusa-2 (JAXA) and OSIRIS-REx (NASA) missions in a wider geological context. The mission will provide an accurate description of the present day MAB population, and further refinements of the origins and evolution models of Near...

  15. Identification of families among highly inclined asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil-Hutton, R.

    2006-07-01

    A dataset of 3652 high-inclination numbered asteroids was analyzed to search for dynamical families. A fully automated multivariate data analysis technique was applied to identify the groupings. Thirteen dynamical families and twenty-two clumps were found. When taxonomic information is available, the families show cosmochemical consistency and support an interpretation based on a common origin from a single parent body. Four families and three clumps found in this work show a size distribution which is compatible with a formation due to a cratering event on the largest member of the family, and also three families have B- or related taxonomic types members, which represents a 14% of the B-types classified by Bus and Binzel [2002. Icarus 158, 146-177].

  16. Asteroid orbital error analysis: Theory and application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muinonen, K.; Bowell, Edward

    1992-01-01

    We present a rigorous Bayesian theory for asteroid orbital error estimation in which the probability density of the orbital elements is derived from the noise statistics of the observations. For Gaussian noise in a linearized approximation the probability density is also Gaussian, and the errors of the orbital elements at a given epoch are fully described by the covariance matrix. The law of error propagation can then be applied to calculate past and future positional uncertainty ellipsoids (Cappellari et al. 1976, Yeomans et al. 1987, Whipple et al. 1991). To our knowledge, this is the first time a Bayesian approach has been formulated for orbital element estimation. In contrast to the classical Fisherian school of statistics, the Bayesian school allows a priori information to be formally present in the final estimation. However, Bayesian estimation does give the same results as Fisherian estimation when no priori information is assumed (Lehtinen 1988, and reference therein).

  17. Geographos asteroid flyby and autonomous navigation study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ng, L.C.; Pines, D.J. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab., CA (United States); Patz, B.J.; Perron, D.C. [Coleman Research Corp., Orlando, FL (United States)

    1993-02-22

    Deep Space Program Science Experiment (DSPSE), also known as Clementine, is a collection of science experiments conducted in near-earth with the goal of demonstrating Strategic Defense Initiative Office (SDIO) developed technologies. The 785 lb (fully fueled) spacecraft will be launched into low Earth orbit in February 1994 together with a Star 37 solid kick motor and interstage. After orbit circulation using Clementine`s 110 lb Delta-V thruster, the Star 37 will execute a trans-lunar injection burn that will send the spacecraft toward lunar obit. The 110-lb will then be used in a sequence of burns to insert Clementine into a trimmed, polar orbit around the moon. After a two month moon mapping mission, Clementine will execute burns to leave lunar orbit, sling-shot around Earth, and flyby the moon on a 9.4 million km journey toward the asteroid Geographos. After about three months in transit, Clementine will attempt a flyby with a closest point of approach of 100 km from the asteroid on August 31, 1994. During its approach to Geographos, Clementine will be tracked by the Deep Space Network (DSN) and receive guidance updates. The last update and correction burn will occur about one day out of the flyby. Multiple experiments will be performed at key events during the mission that utilize Clementine`s SDIO-derived resources, including its Star Trackers, UV/Vis camera, infrared sensors (NWIR and LWIR), and high resolution laser radar (HIRes/LIDAR). In addition to the evaluation of SDIO algorithms and sensors, high resolution imagery will be obtained while the spacecraft is in Earth orbit, lunar obit and during the Geographos flyby. This paper describes the results of a study on the precision guidance, navigation, and intercept strategy for the flyby mission.

  18. Compositional characterization of asteroid (16) Psyche

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Juan; Reddy, Vishnu; Shepard, Michael K.; Thomas, Cristina; Cloutis, Edward

    2016-10-01

    We present near-infrared spectra (0.7-2.5 microns) of asteroid (16) Psyche obtained with the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility. Rotationally-resolved spectra were obtained during three nights between December 2015 and February 2016. These data have been combined with three-dimensional shape models of Psyche generated with the SHAPE software package (Magri et al. 2007). From each spectrum, the band center, band depth and spectral slope were measured. We found that the band center varies from 0.92 to 0.94 microns with rotation phase, with an average value of 0.932±0.006 microns. The band depth was found to vary from 1.0 to 1.5±0.1%. Spectral slope values range from 0.25 to 0.35±0.01 microns-1, with rotation phase. We observed a possible anti-correlation between band depth and radar albedo. Using the band depth along with a new laboratory spectral calibration we estimated that Psyche has an average orthopyroxene abundance of 6±1%. The mass-deficit region of Psyche (longitudes ~ 0°-40°), characterized by having the highest radar albedo of the asteroid, also shows the highest value for the spectral slope and the minimum band depth, while the antipode of this region (longitudes ~ 180°-230°), where the radar albedo reaches its lowest value, shows a maximum in band depth and less steep spectral slopes. These results could suggest that the metal-poor antipode region has thicker regolith rich in pyroxene compared to the mass-deficit region.

  19. GRASPING THE NATURE OF POTENTIALLY HAZARDOUS ASTEROIDS

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perna, D.; Barucci, M. A.; Fornasier, S.; Deshapriya, J. D. P. [LESIA—Observatoire de Paris, PSL Research University, CNRS, Sorbonne Universités, UPMC Univ. Paris 06, Univ. Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité, 5 place Jules Janssen, F-92195 Meudon (France); Dotto, E.; Ieva, S.; Epifani, E. Mazzotta [INAF—Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, Via Frascati 33, I-00040 Monte Porzio Catone (Roma) (Italy); Bernardi, F. [SpaceDyS, via Mario Giuntini 63, I-56023 Cascina (Pisa) (Italy); Luise, F. De [INAF—Osservatorio Astronomico di Teramo, via Mentore Maggini snd, I-64100 Teramo (Italy); Perozzi, E. [Deimos Space, Strada Buchesti 75-77, Bucharest (Romania); Rossi, A. [IFAC—CNR, via Madonna del Piano 10, I-50019 Sesto Fiorentino (Firenze) (Italy); Micheli, M., E-mail: davide.perna@obspm.fr [ESA—NEOCC, ESRIN, via Galileo Galilei 64, I-00044 Frascati (Rome) (Italy)

    2016-01-15

    Through their delivery of water and organics, near-Earth objects (NEOs) played an important role in the emergence of life on our planet.  However, they also pose a hazard to the Earth, as asteroid impacts could significantly affect our civilization. Potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs) are those that, in principle, could possibly impact the Earth within the next century, producing major damage. About 1600 PHAs are currently known, from an estimated population of 4700 ± 1450. However, a comprehensive characterization of the PHA physical properties is still missing. Here we present spectroscopic observations of 14 PHAs, which we have used to derive their taxonomy, meteorite analogs, and mineralogy. Combining our results with the literature, we investigated how PHAs are distributed as a function of their dynamical and physical properties. In general, the “carbonaceous” PHAs seem to be particularly threatening, because of their high porosity (limiting the effectiveness of the main deflection techniques that could be used in space) and low inclination and minimum orbit intersection distance (MOID) with the Earth (favoring more frequent close approaches). V-type PHAs also present low MOID values, which can produce frequent close approaches (as confirmed by the recent discovery of a limited space weathering on their surfaces). We also identified those specific objects that deserve particular attention because of their extreme rotational properties, internal strength, or possible cometary nature. For PHAs and NEOs in general, we identified a possible anti-correlation between the elongation and the rotational period, in the range of P{sub rot} ≈ 5–80 hr. This would be compatible with the behavior of gravity-dominated aggregates in rotational equilibrium. For periods ≳80–90 hr, such a trend stops, possibly under the influence of the YORP effect and collisions. However, the statistics is very low, and further observational and theoretical work is required

  20. 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.

  1. Telerobotic Perception During Asteroid and Mars Regolith Operations Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaddis, Steven; Zeitlin, Nancy (Compiler); Mueller, Robert (Compiler)

    2015-01-01

    Current space telerobotic systems are constrained to only operating in bright light and dust-free conditions. This project will study the effects of difficult lighting and dust conditions on telerobotic perception systems to better assess and refine regolith operations on other neighboring celestial bodies. In partnership with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and Caterpillar, Inc., optical, LiDAR and RADAR sensing equipment will be used in performing the study. This project will create a known dust environment in the Swamp Works Granular Mechanics & Regolith Operations (GMRO) Laboratory regolith test bin to characterize the behavior of the sensing equipment in various calibrated lighting and dust conditions. It will also identify potential methods for mitigating the impacts of these undesirable conditions on the performance of the sensing equipment. Enhancing the capability of telerobotic perception systems will help improve life on earth for those working in dangerous, dusty mining conditions, as well as help advance the same technologies used for safer self-driving automobiles in various lighting and weather conditions. It will also prove to be a critical skill needed for advancing robotic and human exploration throughout our solar system, for activities such as mining on an asteroid or pioneering the first colony on Mars.

  2. Business analysis: The commercial mission of the International Asteroid Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    The mission of the International Asteroid Mission (IAM) is providing asteroidal resources to support activities in space. The short term goal is to initiate IAM by mining a near-Earth, hydrous carbonaceous chondrite asteroid to service the nearer-term market of providing cryogenic rocket fuel in low lunar orbit (LLO). The IAM will develop and contract for the building of the transportation vehicles and equipment necessary for this undertaking. The long-term goal is to expand operations by exploiting asteroids in other manners, as these options become commercially viable. The primary business issues are what revenue can be generated from the baseline mission, how much will the mission cost, and how funding for this mission can be raised. These issues are addressed.

  3. Calculating the momentum enhancement factor for asteroid deflection studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heberling, Tamra; Gisler, Galen; Plesko, Catherine; Weaver, Robert

    2017-01-01

    The possibility of kinetic-impact deflection of threatening near-Earth asteroids will be tested for the first time in the proposed AIDA (Asteroid Impact Deflection Assessment) mission, involving NASAs DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Test). The impact of the DART spacecraft onto the secondary of the binary asteroid 65803 Didymos at a speed of 5 to 7 km/s is expected to alter the mutual orbit by an observable amount. Furthermore, the velocity transferred to the secondary depends largely on the momentum enhancement factor, typically referred to as beta. Here, we use two hydrocodes developed at Los Alamos, RAGE and PAGOSA, to calculate an approximate value for beta in laboratory-scale benchmark experiments. Convergence studies comparing the two codes show the importance of mesh size in estimating this crucial parameter.

  4. An interstellar origin for Jupiter's retrograde co-orbital asteroid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Namouni, F.; Morais, M. H. M.

    2018-06-01

    Asteroid (514107) 2015 BZ509 was discovered recently in Jupiter's co-orbital region with a retrograde motion around the Sun. The known chaotic dynamics of the outer Solar system have so far precluded the identification of its origin. Here, we perform a high-resolution statistical search for stable orbits and show that asteroid (514107) 2015 BZ509 has been in its current orbital state since the formation of the Solar system. This result indicates that (514107) 2015 BZ509 was captured from the interstellar medium 4.5 billion years in the past as planet formation models cannot produce such a primordial large-inclination orbit with the planets on nearly coplanar orbits interacting with a coplanar debris disc that must produce the low-inclination small-body reservoirs of the Solar system such as the asteroid and Kuiper belts. This result also implies that more extrasolar asteroids are currently present in the Solar system on nearly polar orbits.

  5. Asteroid collisional history - Effects on sizes and spins

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Davis, D.R.; Weidenschilling, S.J.; Farinella, P.; Paolicchi, P.; Binzel, R.P.

    1989-01-01

    The effects of asteroid collisional history on sizes and spins of present-day objects are discussed. Collisional evolution studies indicate that collisions have altered the spin-rates of small bodies, but that the largest asteroids may have retained their primordial rotation rates. Most asteroids larger than 100 km diam have probably been shattered, but have gravitationally recaptured their fragments to form a rubble-pile structure. Large angular momentum asteroids appear to have Maclaurian spheroidal or Jacobi-ellipsoid-like shapes; some of them may have fissioned into binaries. An integrated size and spin collisional evolution model is presented, with two critical parameters: one which determines the spin rates for small fragments resulting from a shattering collision, and the other determines the fraction of impact angular momentum that is retained by the target. 36 refs

  6. NEAR EARTH ASTEROID TRACKING V1.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking (NEAT) project began as a collaborative effort with the United States Air Force (USAF) in December 1995. It concentrated on the...

  7. The principle of equivalence and the Trojan asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Orellana, R.; Vucetich, H.

    1986-05-01

    An analysis of the Trojan asteroids motion has been carried out in order to set limits to possible violations to the principle of equivalence. Preliminary results, in agreement with general relativity, are reported. (author)

  8. Task-Specific Asteroid Simulants for Ground Testing, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The project will produce at least four asteroid simulants at high fidelity for mineral content and particle size, created through standardized inputs and documented...

  9. Carbonaceous Asteroid Volatile Recovery (CAVoR) system, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Carbonaceous Asteroid Volatile Recovery (CAVoR) system produces water and hydrogen-rich syngas for propellant production, life support consumables, and...

  10. HARDERSEN IRTF ASTEROID NIR REFLECTANCE SPECTRA V1.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This dataset includes average near-infrared (NIR) reflectance spectra for 68 main-belt asteroids that were observed at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF),...

  11. EARTH ASTEROID DBP 24COLOR SURVEY V2.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Photometric spectra covering the range 0.32 - 1.08 micrometers for 285 numbered asteroids, as published in Chapman & Gaffey (1979b) and McFadden, et al. (1984).

  12. The CASLEO Polarimetric Survey of Main Belt Asteroids: Updated results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil-Hutton, R.; Cellino, A.; Cañada-Assandri, M.

    2011-10-01

    We present updated results of the polarimetric survey of main-belt asteroids at Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito (Casleo), San Juan, Argentina, using the 2.15 m telescope and the Torino and CASPROF polarimeters. The goals of this survey are to increase the database of asteroid polarimetry, to estimate diversity in polarimetric properties of asteroids belonging to different taxonomic classes, and to search for objects that exhibit anomalous polarimetric properties. The survey began in 2003, and data for a sample of more than 170 asteroids have been obtained, most of them having been polarimetrically observed for the first time. Using these data we find phase-polarization curves and polarimetric parameters for several taxonomic classes.

  13. 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).

  14. REDDY MAIN BELT ASTEROID SPECTRA V1.0

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains low-resolution (R~150) near-infrared (0.7-2.5 microns) spectra of 90 main belt asteroids observed with the SpeX instrument on the NASA...

  15. The size distribution of the earth-approaching asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabinowitz, D. L.

    1993-01-01

    The discovery circumstances of the first asteroids ever observed outside the earth's atmosphere but within the neighborhood of the earth-moon system are described. Four natural objects with diameters in the range 5-50 m were detected during a search for earth-approaching asteroids conducted each month at the 0.91-m Spacewatch Telescope at Kitt Peak. An additional 19 earth approachers with sizes in the range 50 m to 5 km were discovered. These obervations determine the cumulative flux of asteroids near earth as a function of absolute magnitude. For asteroids larger than about 100 m, a power-law dependence with exponent of about 0.9 is observed, consistent with their evolution from the main-belt population. At about 10 m, the flux is more than two orders of magnitude greater than this power-law extrapolation.

  16. Accretion timescales and style of asteroidal differentiation in an 26Al-poor protoplanetary disk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Kirsten Kolbjørn; Schiller, Martin; Bizzarro, Martin

    2016-01-01

    , intrinsically linked to the thermal evolution of early-formed planetesimals. In this paper, we explore the timing and style of asteroidal differentiation by combining high-precision Mg isotope measurements of meteorites with thermal evolution models for planetesimals. In detail, we report Mg isotope data...... the source rock. We propose that their parent planetesimals started forming within ~250,000years of solar system formation from a hot (>~500K) inner protoplanetary disk region characterized by a reduced initial (26Al/27Al)0 abundance (~1-2×10-5) relative to the (26Al/27Al)0 value in CAIs of 5...

  17. 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.

  18. A radar survey of M- and X-class asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Shepard, M.K.; Clark, B. E.; Nolan, M. C.; Howell, E. S.; Magri, C.; Giorgini, J. D.; Benner, L. A. M.; Ostro, S. J.; Harris, A. W.; Warner, B. D.; Pray, D. P.; Pravec, Petr; Fauerbach, M.; Bennett, T.; Klotz, A.; Behrend, R.; Correia, H.; Coloma, J.M.; Casulli, S.; Rivkin, A. S.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 195, č. 1 (2008), s. 184-205 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA205/05/0604 Grant - others:NSF(US) AST-0605903; NSF(US) AST-0606704; NSF(US) AST-0607505; NASA (US) NNG06GI32G Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * asteroids composition * surfaces Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.268, year: 2008

  19. On the maximum amplitude of harmonics of an asteroid lightcurve

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Harris, A. W.; Pravec, Petr; Galád, Adrián; Skiff, B.A.; Warner, B. D.; Világi, J.; Gajdoš, Š.; Carbognani, A.; Hornoch, Kamil; Kušnirák, Peter; Cooney jr., W. R.; Gross, J.; Terrell, D.; Higgins, D.; Bowell, E.; Koehn, B.W.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 235, June (2014), s. 55-59 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/0229 Grant - others:SAV(SK) Vega 1/0670/13; NASA (US) NNX13AP56G Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : asteroids * asteroids rotation * photometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.038, year: 2014

  20. Monoclonal antibodies to Nocardia asteroides and Nocardia brasiliensis antigens.

    OpenAIRE

    Jiménez, T; Díaz, A M; Zlotnik, H

    1990-01-01

    Nocardia asteroides and Nocardia brasiliensis whole-cell extracts were used as antigens to generate monoclonal antibodies (MAbs). Six stable hybrid cell lines secreting anti-Nocardia spp. MAbs were obtained. These were characterized by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, Western blot (immunoblot), and immunofluorescence assay. Although all the MAbs exhibited different degrees of cross-reactivity with N. asteroides and N. brasiliensis antigens as well as with culture-filtrate antigens from Myco...

  1. Linking the collisional history of the main asteroid belt to its dynamical excitation and depletion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottke, William F.; Durda, Daniel D.; Nesvorný, David; Jedicke, Robert; Morbidelli, Alessandro; Vokrouhlický, David; Levison, Harold F.

    2005-12-01

    The main belt is believed to have originally contained an Earth mass or more of material, enough to allow the asteroids to accrete on relatively short timescales. The present-day main belt, however, only contains ˜5×10 Earth masses. Numerical simulations suggest that this mass loss can be explained by the dynamical depletion of main belt material via gravitational perturbations from planetary embryos and a newly-formed Jupiter. To explore this scenario, we combined dynamical results from Petit et al. [Petit, J. Morbidelli, A., Chambers, J., 2001. The primordial excitation and clearing of the asteroid belt. Icarus 153, 338-347] with a collisional evolution code capable of tracking how the main belt undergoes comminution and dynamical depletion over 4.6 Gyr [Bottke, W.F., Durda, D., Nesvorny, D., Jedicke, R., Morbidelli, A., Vokrouhlický, D., Levison, H., 2005. The fossilized size distribution of the main asteroid belt. Icarus 175, 111-140]. Our results were constrained by the main belt's size-frequency distribution, the number of asteroid families produced by disruption events from diameter D>100 km parent bodies over the last 3-4 Gyr, the presence of a single large impact crater on Vesta's intact basaltic crust, and the relatively constant lunar and terrestrial impactor flux over the last 3 Gyr. We used our model to set limits on the initial size of the main belt as well as Jupiter's formation time. We find the most likely formation time for Jupiter was 3.3±2.6 Myr after the onset of fragmentation in the main belt. These results are consistent with the estimated mean disk lifetime of 3 Myr predicted by Haisch et al. [Haisch, K.E., Lada, E.A., Lada, C.J., 2001. Disk frequencies and lifetimes in young clusters. Astrophys. J. 553, L153-L156]. The post-accretion main belt population, in the form of diameter D≲1000 km planetesimals, was likely to have been 160±40 times the current main belt's mass. This corresponds to 0.06-0.1 Earth masses, only a small fraction

  2. LONG-TERM STABLE EQUILIBRIA FOR SYNCHRONOUS BINARY ASTEROIDS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jacobson, Seth A.; Scheeres, Daniel J.

    2011-01-01

    Synchronous binary asteroids may exist in a long-term stable equilibrium, where the opposing torques from mutual body tides and the binary YORP (BYORP) effect cancel. Interior of this equilibrium, mutual body tides are stronger than the BYORP effect and the mutual orbit semimajor axis expands to the equilibrium; outside of the equilibrium, the BYORP effect dominates the evolution and the system semimajor axis will contract to the equilibrium. If the observed population of small (0.1-10 km diameter) synchronous binaries are in static configurations that are no longer evolving, then this would be confirmed by a null result in the observational tests for the BYORP effect. The confirmed existence of this equilibrium combined with a shape model of the secondary of the system enables the direct study of asteroid geophysics through the tidal theory. The observed synchronous asteroid population cannot exist in this equilibrium if described by the canonical 'monolithic' geophysical model. The 'rubble pile' geophysical model proposed by Goldreich and Sari is sufficient, however it predicts a tidal Love number directly proportional to the radius of the asteroid, while the best fit to the data predicts a tidal Love number inversely proportional to the radius. This deviation from the canonical and Goldreich and Sari models motivates future study of asteroid geophysics. Ongoing BYORP detection campaigns will determine whether these systems are in an equilibrium, and future determination of secondary shapes will allow direct determination of asteroid geophysical parameters.

  3. Software Development for Asteroid and Variable Star Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweckard, Teaghen; Clason, Timothy; Kenney, Jessica; Wuerker, Wolfgang; Palser, Sage; Giles, Tucker; Linder, Tyler; Sanchez, Richard

    2018-01-01

    The process of collecting and analyzing light curves from variable stars and asteroids is almost identical. In 2016 a collaboration was created to develop a simple fundamental way to study both asteroids and variable stars using methods that would allow the process to be repeated by middle school and high school students.Using robotic telescopes at Cerro Tololo (Chile), Yerkes Observatory (US), and Stone Edge Observatory (US) data were collected on RV Del and three asteroids. It was discovered that the only available software program which could be easily installed on lab computers was MPO Canopus. However, after six months it was determined that MPO Canopus was not an acceptable option because of the steep learning curve, lack of documentation and technical support.Therefore, the project decided that the best option was to design our own python based software. Using python and python libraries we developed code that can be used for photometry and can be easily changed to the user's needs. We accomplished this by meeting with our mentor astronomer, Tyler Linder, and in the beginning wrote two different programs, one for asteroids and one for variable stars. In the end, though, we chose to combine codes so that the program would be capable of performing photometry for both moving and static objects.The software performs differential photometry by comparing the magnitude of known reference stars to the object being studied. For asteroids, the image timestamps are used to obtain ephemeris of the asteroid from JPL Horizons automatically.

  4. Constraints on Spin Axis and Thermal Properties of Asteroids in the WISE Catalog

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLennan, Eric M.; Emery, J. P.

    2013-10-01

    It has widely been accepted that dynamical state of asteroids can strongly be influenced by radiation forces (e.g., Yarkovsky and YORP). Determination of an object’s thermal properties and spin state are a critical step towards understanding the effects of these forces. In this respect, observations of thermal flux emitted from the surfaces of asteroids are a powerful tool. The emission of flux is determined by the temperature distribution which is controlled by the thermal inertia, rotation rate, and spin axis orientation. By gathering data at multiple viewing geometries, the temperature distribution can be modeled accurately enough to separate the effects attributed to (some of) these parameters. Over the length of its mission, the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) observed many asteroids in two epochs (i.e., on either side of opposition) such that data for both morning and afternoon times were gathered. We have begun a project that employs a Thermophysical Model (TPM) in order to analyze these multi-epoch thermal observations with the goal of deriving the thermal properties and spin axis of a large number of asteroids. Here, we first investigate the validity and limits of our method on objects with a previously determined spin axis. Asteroid (413) Edburga has a published spin axis of λ = 202o, β = - 45o (ecliptic longitude and latitude, respectively) using the lightcurve inversion method. With our technique, we estimate a solution consistent with the previous estimate. Applying our TPM to WISE multi-epoch thermal observations of (155) Scylla (no known spin axis estimate), we also place estimates for the ecliptic longitude and latitude of its spin axis. Analysis of multi-epoch thermal data enables determination of spin axis orientation without knowing the rotation period, in contrast to the lightcurve inversion method. This is due to the coupling of thermal inertia and rotation rate in determining the longitudinal distribution of temperature. Their

  5. Tidal Evolution of Asteroidal Binaries. Ruled by Viscosity. Ignorant of Rigidity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Efroimsky, Michael

    2015-10-01

    a tool to exploring the orbital history of asteroidal pairs, as well as of their final spin states.

  6. A Combined Study Investigating the Insoluble and Soluble Organic Compounds in Category 3 Carbonaceous Itokawa Particles Recovered by the Hayabusa Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Q. H. S.; Zolensky, M.; Burton, A.; Clemett, S.; Fries, M.; Kebukawa, Y.

    2015-01-01

    At the 3rd International Announcement of Opportunity (AO), we have been approved for five Category 3 carbonaceous Itokawa particles (RA-QD02-0012, RA-QD02-0078, RB-CV-0029, RB-CV-0080 and RB-QD04-0052) recovered by the first Hayabusa mission of JAXA. In this investigation, we aim to provide a comprehensive study to characterize and account for the presence of carbon-bearing phases as suggested by the initial Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) analysis carried out by JAXA at the curation facility, and to describe the mineralogical components of the particles. The insoluble organic content of Itokawa particle has been investigated with the use of micro-Raman spectroscopy by Kitajima and co-workers [1]. The Raman spectra of Itokawa particles show broad G- and D-bands typical of low temperature material which offers an interesting contrast to the high metamorphic grade (LL4-6) of the Itokawa parent body. Amino acid analysis has been conducted by Naraoka et al. [2] to study the soluble organic component of Itokawa particles, but since it was a preliminary study and thus did not have the opportunity to target on Category 3 carbonaceous particles, only terrestrial contaminants were identified. The investigation will be carried out in the following order prioritized according to the progressive damage the analytical techniques can induce: (1) micro-Raman spectrometry, (2) two-step laser mass spectrometry (micro-L2MS), (3) ultra-high performance liquid chromatography with fluorescence detection and time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC-FD/ToF-MS), and optimally if we can recover the particles after wet chemistry analysis, we will mount the samples and perform (4) electron beam microscopy (SEM, electron back-scattered diffraction [EBSD]) and (5) carbon X-ray absorption near edge structure spectroscopy (C-XANES). We will begin the analytical procedures upon receiving the samples in September/October. This work will provide us with an understanding of the variety and origins of

  7. AsteroidFinder - the space-borne telescope to search for NEO Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartl, M.; Mosebach, H.; Schubert, J.; Michaelis, H.; Mottola, S.; Kührt, E.; Schindler, K.

    2017-11-01

    This paper presents the mission profile as well as the optical configuration of the space-borne AsteroidFinder telescope. Its main objective is to retrieve asteroids with orbits interior to the earth's orbit. The instrument requires high sensitivity to detect asteroids with a limiting magnitude of equal or larger than 18.5mag (V-Band) and astrometric accuracy of 1arcsec (1σ). This requires a telescope aperture greater than 400cm2, high image stability, detector with high quantum efficiency (peak > 90%) and very low noise, which is only limited by zodiacal background. The telescope will observe the sky between 30° and 60° in solar elongation. The telescope optics is based on a Cook type TMA. An effective 2°×2° field of view (FOV) is achieved by a fast F/3.4 telescope with near diffraction-limited performance. The absence of centre obscuration or spiders in combination with an accessible intermediate field plane and exit pupil allow for efficient stray light mitigation. Design drivers for the telescope are the required point spread function (PSF) values, an extremely efficient stray light suppression (due to the magnitude requirement mentioned above), the detector performance, and the overall optical and mechanical stability for all orientations of the satellite. To accommodate the passive thermal stabilization scheme and the necessary structural stability, the materials selection for the telescope main structure and the mirrors are of vital importance. A focal plane with four EMCCD detectors is envisaged. The EMCCD technology features shorter integration times, which is in favor regarding the pointing performance of the satellite. The launch of the mission is foreseen for the year 2013 with a subsequent mission lifetime of at least 1 year.

  8. The Main Asteroid Belt: The Crossroads of the Solar System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Patrick

    2015-08-01

    Orbiting the Sun between Mars and Jupiter, main belt asteroids are leftover planetary building blocks that never accreted enough material to become planets. They are therefore keys to understanding how the Solar System formed and evolved. They may also provide clues to the origin of life, as similar bodies may have delivered organics and water to the early Earth.Strong associations between asteroids and meteorites emerged thanks to multi-technique observations, modeling, in situ and sample return analyses. Spacecraft images revolutionized our knowledge of these small worlds. Asteroids are stunning in their diversity in terms of physical properties. Their gravity varies by more orders of magnitude than its variation among the terrestrial planets, including the Moon. Each rendezvous with an asteroid thus turned our geological understanding on its head as each asteroid is affected in different ways by a variety of processes such as landslides, faulting, and impact cratering. Composition also varies, from ice-rich to lunar-like to chondritic.Nearly every asteroid we see today, whether of primitive or evolved compositions, is the product of a complex history involving accretion and one or more episodes of catastrophic disruption that sometimes resulted in families of smaller asteroids that have distinct and indicative petrogenic relationships. These families provide the best data to study the impact disruption process at scales far larger than those accessible in laboratory. Tens, perhaps hundreds, of early asteroids grew large enough to thermally differentiate. Their traces are scattered pieces of their metal-rich cores and, more rarely, their mantles and crusts.Asteroids represent stages on the rocky road to planet formation. They have great stories to tell about the formation and evolution of our Solar System as well as other planetary systems: asteroid belts seem common around Sun-like stars. We will review our current knowledge on their properties, their link to

  9. 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.

  10. HIGH ECLIPTIC LATITUDE SURVEY FOR SMALL MAIN-BELT ASTEROIDS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Terai, Tsuyoshi; Takahashi, Jun; Itoh, Yoichi

    2013-01-01

    Main-belt asteroids have been continuously colliding with one another since they were formed. Their size distribution is primarily determined by the size dependence of asteroid strength against catastrophic impacts. The strength scaling law as a function of body size could depend on collision velocity, but the relationship remains unknown, especially under hypervelocity collisions comparable to 10 km s –1 . We present a wide-field imaging survey at an ecliptic latitude of about 25° for investigating the size distribution of small main-belt asteroids that have highly inclined orbits. The analysis technique allowing for efficient asteroid detections and high-accuracy photometric measurements provides sufficient sample data to estimate the size distribution of sub-kilometer asteroids with inclinations larger than 14°. The best-fit power-law slopes of the cumulative size distribution are 1.25 ± 0.03 in the diameter range of 0.6-1.0 km and 1.84 ± 0.27 in 1.0-3.0 km. We provide a simple size distribution model that takes into consideration the oscillations of the power-law slope due to the transition from the gravity-scaled regime to the strength-scaled regime. We find that the high-inclination population has a shallow slope of the primary components of the size distribution compared to the low-inclination populations. The asteroid population exposed to hypervelocity impacts undergoes collisional processes where large bodies have a higher disruptive strength and longer lifespan relative to tiny bodies than the ecliptic asteroids

  11. Un asteroide proveniente de la Luna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tancredi, G.

    El descubrimiento de un débil objeto en movimiento por el telescopio Spacewatch (un instrumento dedicado a la búsqueda de Asteroides Cercanos a la Tierra) en 1991, ha generado una gran controversia en la comunidad planetaria. El objeto, denominado 1991 VG, tiene elementos orbitales llamativamente similares a los de la Tierra, lo que ha llevado a B. G. Marsden a aventurar:``El objeto podría ser una nave espacial en retorno (IAUC 5387)". Luego de analizar las características dinámicas de 1991 VG y las diferentes hipótesis sobre su origen, favorecemos la alternativa de que el objeto es un gran fragmento de material eyectado de la Luna durante un reciente impacto (en las últimas decenas de miles de años). El hallazgo en 1983 en la Antártida de meteoritos con composición tipo lunar, confirma la posibilidad de que material de la superficie del satélite puede ser eyectado a velocidades superiores a la de escape del sistema Tierra-Luna y alcance órbitas heliocéntricas. Los elementos orbitales de 1991 VG corresponden a los valores alcanzados por partículas que apenas escapan de la gravedad lunar y entran en órbitas heliocéntricas a través del punto Lagrangiano exterior del sistema Tierra-Sol.

  12. A Study Regarding the Possibility of True Polar Wander on the Asteroid Vesta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimi, M.; Dombard, A. J.

    2014-12-01

    The asteroid 4 Vesta, with an average diameter of ~525 km, is the second most massive asteroid in the solar system. Most of our knowledge about this differentiated asteroid comes from the Howardite-Eucrite-Diogenite class of meteorites that originated from Vesta, images provided by Hubble Space Telescope, and data from the Dawn spacecraft that orbited Vesta from July 2011 to September 2012. Notably, these close-range data confirmed what Hubble images suggested: a highly oblate shape in which the equatorial radius is ~60 km greater than the polar radius, a shape consistent with Vesta's short rotational period of ~5.3 hr. These images also revealed the presence of two large impact craters near the asteroid's south pole. Rheasilvia, the younger and larger crater at ~500 km in diameter, is superimposed over Veneneia, ~400 km in diameter. The occurrence of two large impacts near a pole, which possesses a relatively small area (less than 30% of the surface), is highly improbable. Thus, we investigate the possibility of True Polar Wander. We hypothesize that the integrated mass deficit of these two basins applied a torque to the lithosphere to reorient the surface relative to the spin axis and thereby placing these basins near the pole. In order for this phenomenon to occur, however, the lithosphere needs to be pliable enough to allow relaxation of the ancient rotational bulge and concurrent development of the current bulge. We have previously explored whether the lithosphere of Vesta could support the large-scale (~20 vertical km) topography of the basins (short answer: it can). Here, we explore whether this lithosphere could also permit True Polar Wander. We use the Finite Element Method and a viscoelastic rheology to simulate the relaxation of an oblate Vesta under a range of plausible thermal scenarios consistent with Vesta's expected budget of long-lived radiogenic nuclides. Our results indicate that under reasonable thermal conditions, the relaxation of the

  13. Polarimetric survey of main-belt asteroids. V. The unusual polarimetric behavior of V-type asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gil-Hutton, R.; López-Sisterna, C.; Calandra, M. F.

    2017-03-01

    Aims: We present the results of a polarimetric survey of main-belt asteroids at Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito (CASLEO), San Juan, Argentina. The aims of this survey are to increase the database of asteroid polarimetry, to estimate diversity in polarimetric properties of asteroids that belong to different taxonomic classes, and to search for objects that exhibit anomalous polarimetric properties. Methods: The data were obtained using the CASPROF and CASPOL polarimeters at the 2.15 m telescope. The CASPROF polarimeter is a two-hole aperture polarimeter with rapid modulation and CASPOL is a polarimeter based on a CCD detector, which allows us to observe fainter objects with better signal-to-noise ratio. Results: The survey began in 1995 and data on a large sample of asteroids were obtained until 2012. A second period began in 2013 using a polarimeter with a more sensitive detector in order to study small asteroids, families, and special taxonomic groups. We obtained 55 polarimetric measurements for 28 V-type main belt asteroids, all of them polarimetrically observed for the first time. The data obtained in this survey let us find polarimetric parameters for (1459) Magnya and for a group of 11 small V-type objects with similar polarimetric behavior. These polarization curves are unusual since they show a shallow minimum and a small inversion angle in comparison with (4) Vesta, although they have a steeper slope at α0. This polarimetric behavior could be explained by differences in the regoliths of these asteroids. The observations of (2579) Spartacus, and perhaps also (3944) Halliday, indicate a inversion angle larger than 24-25°. Based on observations carried out at the Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito, operated under agreement between the Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas de la República Argentina and the National Universities of La Plata, Córdoba, and San Juan.

  14. Automated Classification of Asteroids into Families at Work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knežević, Zoran; Milani, Andrea; Cellino, Alberto; Novaković, Bojan; Spoto, Federica; Paolicchi, Paolo

    2014-07-01

    We have recently proposed a new approach to the asteroid family classification by combining the classical HCM method with an automated procedure to add newly discovered members to existing families. This approach is specifically intended to cope with ever increasing asteroid data sets, and consists of several steps to segment the problem and handle the very large amount of data in an efficient and accurate manner. We briefly present all these steps and show the results from three subsequent updates making use of only the automated step of attributing the newly numbered asteroids to the known families. We describe the changes of the individual families membership, as well as the evolution of the classification due to the newly added intersections between the families, resolved candidate family mergers, and emergence of the new candidates for the mergers. We thus demonstrate how by the new approach the asteroid family classification becomes stable in general terms (converging towards a permanent list of confirmed families), and in the same time evolving in details (to account for the newly discovered asteroids) at each update.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Candidate Binary Trojan and Hilda Asteroids from Rotational Light Curves

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonnett, Sarah M.; Mainzer, Amy K.; Grav, Tommy; Masiero, Joseph R.; Bauer, James M.; Kramer, Emily A.

    2017-10-01

    Jovian Trojans (hereafter, Trojans) are asteroids in stable orbits at Jupiter's L4 and L5 Lagrange points, and Hilda asteroids are inwards of the Trojans in 3:2 mean-motion resonance with Jupiter. Due to their special dynamical properties, observationally constraining the formation location and dynamical histories of Trojans and HIldas offers key input for giant planet migration models. A fundamental parameter in assessing formation location is the bulk density - with low-density objects associated with an ice-rich formation environment in the outer solar system and high-density objects typically linked to the warmer inner solar system. Bulk density can only be directly measured during a close fly-by or by determining the mutual orbits of binary asteroid systems. With the aim of determining densities for a statistically significant sample of Trojans and Hildas, we are undertaking an observational campaign to confirm and characterize candidate binary asteroids published in Sonnett et al. (2015). These objects were flagged as binary candidates because their large NEOWISE brightness variations imply shapes so elongated that they are not likely explained by a singular equilibrium rubble pile and instead may be two elongated, gravitationally bound asteroids. We are obtaining densely sampled rotational light curves of these possible binaries to search for light curve features diagnostic of binarity and to determine the orbital properties of any confirmed binary systems by modeling the light curve. We compare the We present an update on this follow-up campaign and comment on future steps.

  18. Human spaceflight and an asteroid redirect mission: Why?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burchell, M. J.

    2014-08-01

    The planning of human spaceflight programmes is an exercise in careful rationing of a scarce and expensive resource. Current NASA plans are to develop the new capability for human-rated launch into space to replace the Space Transportation System (STS), more commonly known as the Space Shuttle, combined with a heavy lift capability, and followed by an eventual Mars mission. As an intermediate step towards Mars, NASA proposes to venture beyond Low Earth Orbit to cis-lunar space to visit a small asteroid which will be captured and moved to lunar orbit by a separate robotic mission. The rationale for this and how to garner support from the scientific community for such an asteroid mission are discussed. Key points that emerge are that a programme usually has greater legitimacy when it emerges from public debate, mostly via a Presidential Commission, a report by the National Research Council or a Decadal Review of science goals etc. Also, human spaceflight missions need to have support from a wide range of interested communities. Accordingly, an outline scientific case for a human visit to an asteroid is made. Further, it is argued here that the scientific interest in an asteroid mission needs to be included early in the planning stages, so that the appropriate capabilities (here the need for drilling cores and carrying equipment to, and returning samples from, the asteroid) can be included.

  19. Observing the variation of asteroid thermal inertia with heliocentric distance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rozitis, B.; Green, S. F.; MacLennan, E.; Emery, J. P.

    2018-06-01

    Thermal inertia is a useful property to characterize a planetary surface, since it can be used as a qualitative measure of the regolith grain size. It is expected to vary with heliocentric distance because of its dependence on temperature. However, no previous investigation has conclusively observed a change in thermal inertia for any given planetary body. We have addressed this by using NEOWISE data and the Advanced Thermophysical Model to study the thermophysical properties of the near-Earth asteroids (1036) Ganymed, (1580) Betulia, and (276 049) 2002 CE26 as they moved around their highly eccentric orbits. We confirm that the thermal inertia values of Ganymed and 2002 CE26 do vary with heliocentric distance, although the degree of variation observed depends on the spectral emissivity assumed in the thermophysical modelling. We also confirm that the thermal inertia of Betulia did not change for three different observations obtained at the same heliocentric distance. Depending on the spectral emissivity, the variations for Ganymed and 2002 CE26 are potentially more extreme than that implied by theoretical models of heat transfer within asteroidal regoliths, which might be explained by asteroids having thermal properties that also vary with depth. Accounting for this variation reduces a previously observed trend of decreasing asteroid thermal inertia with increasing size, and suggests that the surfaces of small and large asteroids could be much more similar than previously thought. Furthermore, this variation can affect Yarkovsky orbital drift predictions by a few tens of per cent.

  20. Asteroid Origins Satellite (AOSAT): Science in a CubeSat Centrifuge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perera, V.; Cotto-Figueroa, D.; Noviello, J.; Asphaug, E.; Morris, M.

    2015-01-01

    Both the study of primary accretion and the surface properties of asteroids are important for the field of planetary science. The Asteroid Origins Satellite (AOSAT) will help study these subjects by creating a long duration microgravity laboratory.

  1. 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.

  2. Rotational rates of very small asteroids - 123 Brunhild, 376 Geometria, 437 Rhodia and 1224 Fantasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barucci, M. A.; di Martino, M.

    1984-07-01

    This paper presents observations of four small main belt asteroids (D Geometria, an accurate rotational period was determined. For the other two asteroids, 437 Rhodia and 1224 Fantasia, only tentative periods are suggested.

  3. Sustained Manned Mars Presence Enabled by E-sail Technology and Asteroid Water Mining

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janhunen, Pekka; Merikallio, Sini; Toivanen, Petri; Envall, M. Jouni

    The Electric Solar Wind Sail (E-sail) can produce 0.5-1 N of inexhaustible and controllable propellantless thrust [1]. The E-sail is based on electrostatic Coulomb interaction between charged thin tethers and solar wind ions. It was invented in 2006, was developed to TRL 4-5 in 2011-2013 with ESAIL FP7 project (http://www.electric-sailing.fi/fp7) and a CubeSat small-scale flight test is in course (ESTCube-1). The E-sail provides a flexible and efficient way of moving 0-2 tonne sized cargo payloads in the solar system without consuming propellant. Given the E-sail, one could use it to make manned exploration of the solar system more affordable by combining it with asteroid water mining. One first sends a miner spacecraft to an asteroid or asteroids, either by E-sail or traditional means. Many asteroids are known to contain water and liberating it only requires heating the material one piece at a time in a leak tight container. About 2 tonne miner can produce 50 tonnes of water per year which is sufficient to sustain continuous manned traffic between Earth and Mars. If the ice-bearing asteroid resides roughly at Mars distance, it takes 3 years for a 0.7 N E-sailer to transport a 10 tonne water/ice payload to Mars orbit or Earth C3 orbit. Thus one needs a fleet of 15 E-sail transport spacecraft plus replacements to ferry 50 tonnes of water yearly to Earth C3 (1/3) and Mars orbit (2/3). The mass of one transporter is 300 kg [2]. One needs to launch max 1.5 tonne mass of new E-sail transporters per year and in practice much less since it is simple to reuse them. This infrastructure is enough to supply 17 tonnes of water yearly at Earth C3 and 33 tonnes in Mars orbit. Orbital water can be used by manned exploration in three ways: (1) for potable water and for making oxygen, (2) for radiation shielding, (3) for LH2/LOX propellant. Up to 75 % of the wet mass of the manned module could be water (50 % propellant and 25 % radiation shield water). On top of this the total mass

  4. Dynamical Investigation of Asteroid 66391 (1999 KW4)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheeres, Daniel J.; Fahnestock, E. G.; Ostro, S. J.; Margot, J. L.; Benner, L. A.; Broschart, S. B.; Bellerose, J.; Giorgini, J. D.; Nolan, M. C.; Magri, C.; Pravec, P.; Scheirich, P.; Rose, R.; Jurgens, R. F.; Suzuki, S.; DeJong, E. M.

    2006-09-01

    Radar imaging and simulation of the binary near-Earth asteroid 66391 (1999 KW4) reveals a system with highly unusual physical and dynamical properties (Ostro et al., DPS 2006). Classical treatments and previous analyses of binary-system dynamics have made assumptions about the component shapes that are not valid for the KW4 system. We have explored the full dynamics of the KW4 system via numerical simulations that solve the equations of motion for the coupled evolution of orbit and rotation, using radar-derived physical models, and using dynamical constraints from the observations to guide our initial conditions. Our simulations model the translational (or orbital) dynamics as the relative motion between the body centers of mass and model the rotational dynamics using the Euler equations and attitude kinematic equations for each body. All the equations are driven by the mutual gravitational potential, which is an explicit function of the relative position and attitude of the two bodies. Propagation of the system's dynamical evolution over time spans of months has been made tractable by using a novel variational integrator that requires only one evaluation per time step but conserves the symplectic properties of the dynamical system, and by implementing the evaluations on a parallel computer, using up to 256 processors. Our simulations use the component shapes, masses, and average orbit as initial conditions for integrations of the components' spins and mutual orbit, taking into consideration the actual gravitational potentials produced by the model shapes and the coupling between the components' motions. Our results reveal this NEA to have extraordinary physical and dynamical properties, which suggest intriguing possibilities for formation and evolution mechanisms.

  5. Priority Science Targets for Future Sample Return Missions within the Solar System Out to the Year 2050

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Allton, J. H.; Barnes, J. J.; Boyce, J. W.; Burton, A. S.; Draper, D. S.; Evans, C. A.; Fries, M. D.; Jones, J. H.; Keller, L. P.; hide

    2017-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. JSC presently curates 9 different astromaterials collections: (1) Apollo samples, (2) LUNA samples, (3) Antarctic meteorites, (4) Cosmic dust particles, (5) Microparticle Impact Collection [formerly called Space Exposed Hardware], (6) Genesis solar wind, (7) Star-dust comet Wild-2 particles, (8) Stardust interstellar particles, and (9) Hayabusa asteroid Itokawa particles. In addition, the next missions bringing carbonaceous asteroid samples to JSC are Hayabusa 2/ asteroid Ryugu and OSIRIS-Rex/ asteroid Bennu, in 2021 and 2023, respectively. The Hayabusa 2 samples are provided as part of an international agreement with JAXA. The NASA Curation Office plans for the requirements of future collections in an "Advanced Curation" program. Advanced Curation is tasked with developing procedures, technology, and data sets necessary for curating new types of collections as envisioned by NASA exploration goals. Here we review the science value and sample curation needs of some potential targets for sample return missions over the next 35 years.

  6. 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

  7. Biospheres and solar system exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paine, Thomas O.

    1990-01-01

    The implications of biosphere technology is briefly examined. The exploration status and prospects of each world in the solar system is briefly reviewed, including the asteroid belt, the moon, and comets. Five program elements are listed as particularly critical for future interplanetary operations during the coming extraterrestrial century. They include the following: (1) a highway to Space (earth orbits); (2) Orbital Spaceports to support spacecraft assembly, storage, repair, maintenance, refueling, launch, and recovery; (3) a Bridge Between Worlds to transport cargo and crews to the moon and beyond to Mars; (4) Prospecting and Resource Utilization Systems to map and characterize the resources of planets, moons, and asteroids; and (5) Closed Ecology Biospheres. The progress in these five field is reviewed.

  8. Trojan and Hilda asteroid lightcurves. I - Anomalously elongated shapes among Trojans (and Hildas?)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartmann, William K.; Binzel, Richard P.; Tholen, David J.; Cruikshank, Dale P.; Goguen, Jay

    1988-01-01

    A comparison of the available sample of lightcurves for 26 Trojan and Hilda asteroids with belt asteroid lightcurves shows the former to be distinguished by a higher incidence of high amplitudes rgan belt asteroids of comparable size, suggesting more elongated shapes; they currently have, moreover, only a few percent of the main-belt asteroids' collision frequency. A more modest collisional evolution that may have affected the relative degree of fragmentation of these bodies, and thus their shapes, is inferred.

  9. SURVEY SIMULATIONS OF A NEW NEAR-EARTH ASTEROID DETECTION SYSTEM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mainzer, A.; Bauer, J.; Giorgini, J.; Masiero, J.; Grav, T.; Conrow, T.; Cutri, R. M.; Dailey, J.; Fowler, J.; Jarrett, T.; Spahr, T.; Statler, T.; Wright, E. L.

    2015-01-01

    We have carried out simulations to predict the performance of a new space-based telescopic survey operating at thermal infrared wavelengths that seeks to discover and characterize a large fraction of the potentially hazardous near-Earth asteroid (NEA) population. Two potential architectures for the survey were considered: one located at the Earth–Sun L1 Lagrange point, and one in a Venus-trailing orbit. A sample cadence was formulated and tested, allowing for the self-follow-up necessary for objects discovered in the daytime sky on Earth. Synthetic populations of NEAs with sizes as small as 140 m in effective spherical diameter were simulated using recent determinations of their physical and orbital properties. Estimates of the instrumental sensitivity, integration times, and slew speeds were included for both architectures assuming the properties of newly developed large-format 10 μm HgCdTe detector arrays capable of operating at ∼35 K. Our simulation included the creation of a preliminary version of a moving object processing pipeline suitable for operating on the trial cadence. We tested this pipeline on a simulated sky populated with astrophysical sources such as stars and galaxies extrapolated from Spitzer Space Telescope and Wide-field Infrared Explorer data, the catalog of known minor planets (including Main Belt asteroids, comets, Jovian Trojans, planets, etc.), and the synthetic NEA model. Trial orbits were computed for simulated position-time pairs extracted from the synthetic surveys to verify that the tested cadence would result in orbits suitable for recovering objects at a later time. Our results indicate that the Earth–Sun L1 and Venus-trailing surveys achieve similar levels of integral completeness for potentially hazardous asteroids larger than 140 m; placing the telescope in an interior orbit does not yield an improvement in discovery rates. This work serves as a necessary first step for the detailed planning of a next-generation NEA survey

  10. 0.7–2.5 μ m Spectra of Hilda Asteroids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wong, Ian; Brown, Michael E.; Emery, Joshua P.

    2017-01-01

    The Hilda asteroids are primitive bodies in resonance with Jupiter whose origin and physical properties are not well understood. Current models posit that these asteroids formed in the outer solar system and were scattered along with the Jupiter Trojans into their present-day positions during a chaotic episode of dynamical restructuring. In order to explore the surface composition of these enigmatic objects in comparison with an analogous study of Trojans, we present new near-infrared spectra (0.7–2.5 μ m) of 25 Hilda asteroids. No discernible absorption features are apparent in the data. Synthesizing the bimodalities in optical color and infrared reflectivity reported in previous studies, we classify 26 of the 28 Hildas in our spectral sample into the so-called less-red and red sub-populations and find that the two sub-populations have distinct average spectral shapes. Combining our results with visible spectra, we find that Trojans and Hildas possess similar overall spectral shapes, suggesting that the two minor body populations share a common progenitor population. A more detailed examination reveals that while the red Trojans and Hildas have nearly identical spectra, less-red Hildas are systematically bluer in the visible and redder in the near-infrared than less-red Trojans, indicating a putative broad, shallow absorption feature between 0.5 and 1.0  μ m. We argue that the less-red and red objects found in both Hildas and Trojans represent two distinct surface chemistries and attribute the small discrepancy between less-red Hildas and Trojans to the difference in surface temperatures between the two regions.

  11. 0.7–2.5 μ m Spectra of Hilda Asteroids

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wong, Ian; Brown, Michael E. [Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Emery, Joshua P., E-mail: iwong@caltech.edu [Earth and Planetary Science Department and Planetary Geosciences Institute, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996 (United States)

    2017-09-01

    The Hilda asteroids are primitive bodies in resonance with Jupiter whose origin and physical properties are not well understood. Current models posit that these asteroids formed in the outer solar system and were scattered along with the Jupiter Trojans into their present-day positions during a chaotic episode of dynamical restructuring. In order to explore the surface composition of these enigmatic objects in comparison with an analogous study of Trojans, we present new near-infrared spectra (0.7–2.5 μ m) of 25 Hilda asteroids. No discernible absorption features are apparent in the data. Synthesizing the bimodalities in optical color and infrared reflectivity reported in previous studies, we classify 26 of the 28 Hildas in our spectral sample into the so-called less-red and red sub-populations and find that the two sub-populations have distinct average spectral shapes. Combining our results with visible spectra, we find that Trojans and Hildas possess similar overall spectral shapes, suggesting that the two minor body populations share a common progenitor population. A more detailed examination reveals that while the red Trojans and Hildas have nearly identical spectra, less-red Hildas are systematically bluer in the visible and redder in the near-infrared than less-red Trojans, indicating a putative broad, shallow absorption feature between 0.5 and 1.0  μ m. We argue that the less-red and red objects found in both Hildas and Trojans represent two distinct surface chemistries and attribute the small discrepancy between less-red Hildas and Trojans to the difference in surface temperatures between the two regions.

  12. Thermophysical characteristics of the large main-belt asteroid (349) Dembowska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Liang Liang; Yang, Bin; Ji, Jianghui; Ip, Wing-Huen

    2017-12-01

    (349) Dembowska is a large, bright main-belt asteroid that has a fast rotation and an oblique spin axis. It might have experienced partial melting and differentiation. We constrain Dembowska's thermophysical properties, such as thermal inertia, roughness fraction, geometric albedo and effective diameter within 3σ uncertainty of Γ =20^{+12}_{-7} Jm-2 s-0.5 K-1, f_r=0.25^{+0.60}_{-0.25}, p_v=0.309^{+0.026}_{-0.038} and D_eff=155.8^{+7.5}_{-6.2} km, by utilizing the advanced thermophysical model to analyse four sets of thermal infrared data obtained by the Infrared Astronomy Satellite (IRAS), AKARI, the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) and the Subaru/Cooled Mid-Infrared Camera and Spectrometer (COMICS) at different epochs. In addition, by modelling the thermal light curve observed by WISE, we obtain the rotational phases of each data set. These rotationally resolved data do not reveal significant variations of thermal inertia and roughness across the surface, indicating that the surface of Dembowska should be covered by a dusty regolith layer with few rocks or boulders. Besides, the low thermal inertia of Dembowska shows no significant difference with other asteroids larger than 100 km, which indicates that the dynamical lives of these large asteroids are long enough to make their surfaces have sufficiently low thermal inertia. Furthermore, based on the derived surface thermophysical properties, as well as the known orbital and rotational parameters, we can simulate Dembowska's surface and subsurface temperatures throughout its orbital period. The surface temperature varies from ∼40 to ∼220 K, showing significant seasonal variation, whereas the subsurface temperature achieves equilibrium temperature about 120-160 K below a depth of 30-50 cm.

  13. An Investigation of the Ranges of Validity of Asteroid Thermal Models for Near-Earth Asteroid Observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mommert, M.; Jedicke, R.; Trilling, D. E.

    2018-02-01

    The majority of known asteroid diameters are derived from thermal-infrared observations. Diameters are derived using asteroid thermal models that approximate their surface temperature distributions and compare the measured thermal-infrared flux with model-dependent predictions. The most commonly used thermal model is the Near-Earth Asteroid Thermal Model (NEATM), which is usually perceived as superior to other models like the Fast-Rotating Model (FRM). We investigate the applicability of the NEATM and the FRM to thermal-infrared observations of Near-Earth Objects using synthetic asteroids with properties based on the real Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) population. We find the NEATM to provide more accurate diameters and albedos than the FRM in most cases, with a few exceptions. The modeling results are barely affected by the physical properties of the objects, but we find a large impact of the solar phase angle on the modeling results. We conclude that the NEATM provides statistically more robust diameter estimates for NEAs observed at solar phase angles less than ∼65°, while the FRM provides more robust diameter estimates for solar phase angles greater than ∼65°. We estimate that <5% of all NEA diameters and albedos derived up to date are affected by systematic effects that are of the same order of magnitude as the typical thermal model uncertainties. We provide statistical correction functions for diameters and albedos derived using the NEATM and FRM as a function of solar phase angle.

  14. Results of the 2017 Mexican Asteroid Photometry Campaign - Part 1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sada, Pedro; Loera-Gonzalez, Pablo; Olguin, Lorenzo; Saucedo-Morales, Julio C.; Ayala-Gómez, Sandra A.; Garza, Jaime R.

    2018-04-01

    We report the results for the first semester of the 2017 Mexican Asteroid Photometry Campaign. Asteroid 1218 Aster (synodic period of 3.1581 ± 0.0002 h and amplitude of 0.35 mag) was well observed and showed slight variations of its lightcurve at the end of the seven week observing window. An uncertain, but long, period of 93.23 ± 0.02 h and amplitude of 0.36 mag were estimated for 2733 Hamina from sparse data. Asteroid 8443 Svecica was also well observed and yielded a period of 20.9905 ± 0.0015 h and amplitude of 0.65 mag. Observations of NEA (143404) 2003 BD44 also resulted in an uncertain and long period of 78.617 ± 0.009 h and amplitude of 0.66 mag with a sparsely covered lightcurve.

  15. Asteroid Observations with NCSFCT’s AZT-8 Telescope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kozhukhov, O.M.

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The asteroid observations of the small Solar System bodies were carried out with the AZT-8 telescope (D=0.7 m, f/4 of the National Center of Space Facilities Control and Testing (NCSFCT during 2010-2013. The telescope is located near Yevpatoria, the observatory code according IAU is B17. The observational program included perturbed main belt asteroids and NEO’s for the GAIA FUN-SSO Company. The MPC database contains more than 4500 asteroids positions and magnitudes obtained during this period at AZT-8 telescope. The article presents analysis of the positional accuracy of B17 observations obtained from the comparison with the JPL HORIZONS ephemeris, and data from AstDyS-2 and NEODyS-2 web services.

  16. A New Equilibrium State for Singly Synchronous Binary Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golubov, Oleksiy; Unukovych, Vladyslav; Scheeres, Daniel J.

    2018-04-01

    The evolution of rotation states of small asteroids is governed by the Yarkovsky–O’Keefe–Radzievskii–Paddack (YORP) effect, nonetheless some asteroids can stop their YORP evolution by attaining a stable equilibrium. The same is true for binary asteroids subjected to the binary YORP (BYORP) effect. Here we discuss a new type of equilibrium that combines these two, which is possible in a singly synchronous binary system. This equilibrium occurs when the normal YORP, the tangential YORP, and the BYORP compensate each other, and tidal torques distribute the angular momentum between the components of the system and dissipate energy. If unperturbed, such a system would remain singly synchronous in perpetuity with constant spin and orbit rates, as the tidal torques dissipate the incoming energy from impinging sunlight at the same rate. The probability of the existence of this kind of equilibrium in a binary system is found to be on the order of a few percent.

  17. Near-field effects of asteroid impacts in deep water

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gisler, Galen R [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Weaver, Robert P [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Gittings, Michael L [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-06-11

    Our previous work has shown that ocean impacts of asteroids below 500 m in diameter do not produce devastating long-distance tsunamis. Nevertheless, a significant portion of the ocean lies close enough to land that near-field effects may prove to be the greatest danger from asteroid impacts in the ocean. Crown splashes and central jets that rise up many kilometres into the atmosphere can produce, upon their collapse, highly non-linear breaking waves that could devastate shorelines within a hundred kilometres of the impact site. We present illustrative calculations, in two and three dimensions, of such impacts for a range of asteroid sizes and impact angles. We find that, as for land impacts, the greatest dangers from oceanic impacts are the short-term near-field, and long-term atmospheric effects.

  18. Asteroid body-fixed hovering using nonideal solar sails

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zeng, Xiang-Yuan; Jiang, Fang-Hua; Li, Jun-Feng

    2015-01-01

    The problem of body-fixed hovering over an asteroid using a compact form of nonideal solar sails with a controllable area is investigated. Nonlinear dynamic equations describing the hovering problem are constructed for a spherically symmetric asteroid. Numerical solutions of the feasible region for body-fixed hovering are obtained. Different sail models, including the cases of ideal, optical, parametric and solar photon thrust, on the feasible region is studied through numerical simulations. The influence of the asteroid spinning rate and the sail area-to-mass ratio on the feasible region is discussed. The required orientations for the sail and their corresponding variable lightness numbers are given for different hovering radii to identify the feasible region of the body-fixed hovering. An attractive scenario for a mission is introduced to take advantage of solar sail hovering. (paper)

  19. OBSERVED ASTEROID SURFACE AREA IN THE THERMAL INFRARED

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nugent, C. R. [Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J.; Kramer, E.; Sonnett, S. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Wright, E. L. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095 (United States); Grav, T. [Planetary Science Institute, Tucson, AZ (United States)

    2017-02-01

    The rapid accumulation of thermal infrared observations and shape models of asteroids has led to increased interest in thermophysical modeling. Most of these infrared observations are unresolved. We consider what fraction of an asteroid’s surface area contributes the bulk of the emitted thermal flux for two model asteroids of different shapes over a range of thermal parameters. The resulting observed surface in the infrared is generally more fragmented than the area observed in visible wavelengths, indicating high sensitivity to shape. For objects with low values of the thermal parameter, small fractions of the surface contribute the majority of thermally emitted flux. Calculating observed areas could enable the production of spatially resolved thermal inertia maps from non-resolved observations of asteroids.

  20. Samples of Asteroid Surface Ponded Deposits in Chondritic Meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zolensky, M. E.; Lee, R.; Le, L.

    2004-01-01

    One of the many unexpected observations of asteroid 433 Eros by the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission was the many ponds of fine-grained materials [1-3]. The ponds have smooth surfaces, and define equipotential surfaces up to 10's of meters in diameter [4]. The ponds have a uniformly sub-cm grain size and appear to be cohesive or indurated to some degree, as revealed by slumping. The ponds appear to be concentrated within 30 degrees of the equator of Eros, where gravity is lowest. There is some insight into the mineralogy and composition of the ponds surfaces from NEAR spectroscopy [2,4,5,6]. Compared to the bulk asteroid, ponds: (1) are distinctly bluer (high 550/760 nm ratio), (2) have a deeper 1um mafic band, (3) have reflectance elevated by 5%.

  1. A Cubesat Asteroid Mission: Propulsion Trade-offs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.; Oleson, Steven R.; McGuire, Melissa L.; Bur, Michael J.; Burke, Laura M.; Fittje, James E.; Kohout, Lisa L.; Fincannon, James; Packard, Thomas W.; Martini, Michael C.

    2014-01-01

    A conceptual design was performed for a 6-U cubesat for a technology demonstration to be launched on the NASA Space Launch System (SLS) test launch EM-1, to be launched into a free-return translunar trajectory. The mission purpose was to demonstrate use of electric propulsion systems on a small satellite platform. The candidate objective chosen was a mission to visit a Near-Earth asteroid. Both asteroid fly-by and asteroid rendezvous missions were analyzed. Propulsion systems analyzed included cold-gas thruster systems, Hall and ion thrusters, incorporating either Xenon or Iodine propellant, and an electrospray thruster. The mission takes advantage of the ability of the SLS launch to place it into an initial trajectory of C3=0.

  2. Lightcurve Analysis for Near-Earth Asteroid (143404) 2003 BD44

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polakis, Tom; Warner, Brian D.; Skiff, Brian A.

    2018-01-01

    The synodic rotation period has been determined for the near-Earth asteroid (NEA) (143404) 2003 BD44. The asteroid was observed during three intervals with a rotation period on the order of 79 h determined in each case. The lightcurve exhibited rapidly changing morphology as the asteroid approached. Data have submitted to the ALCDEF database.

  3. Thermal Inertia of near-Earth Asteroids and Strength of the Yarkovsky Effect

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Delbo, Marco; Dell'Oro, A.; Harris, A. W.; Mottola, S.; Mueller, M.

    2006-01-01

    Thermal inertia is the physical parameter that controls the temperature distribution over the surface of an asteroid. It affects the strength of the Yarkovsky effect, which causes orbital drift of km-sized asteroids and is invoked to explain the delivery of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) from the main

  4. Surface Properties of Asteroids from Mid-Infrared Observations and Thermophysical Modeling

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mueller, Michael

    The subject of this work is the physical characterization of asteroids, focusing on the thermal inertia of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs). Thermal inertia governs the Yarkovsky effect, a non-gravitational force which significantly alters the orbits of asteroids up to \\sim 20 km in diameter. Yet, very

  5. Asteroid retrieval missions enabled by invariant manifold dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sánchez, Joan Pau; García Yárnoz, Daniel

    2016-10-01

    Near Earth Asteroids are attractive targets for new space missions; firstly, because of their scientific importance, but also because of their impact threat and prospective resources. The asteroid retrieval mission concept has thus arisen as a synergistic approach to tackle these three facets of interest in one single mission. This paper reviews the methodology used by the authors (2013) in a previous search for objects that could be transported from accessible heliocentric orbits into the Earth's neighbourhood at affordable costs (or Easily Retrievable Objects, a.k.a. EROs). This methodology consisted of a heuristic pruning and an impulsive manoeuvre trajectory optimisation. Low thrust propulsion on the other hand clearly enables the transportation of much larger objects due to its higher specific impulse. Hence, in this paper, low thrust retrieval transfers are sought using impulsive trajectories as first guesses to solve the optimal control problem. GPOPS-II is used to transcribe the continuous-time optimal control problem to a nonlinear programming problem (NLP). The latter is solved by IPOPT, an open source software package for large-scale NLPs. Finally, a natural continuation procedure that increases the asteroid mass allows to find out the largest objects that could be retrieved from a given asteroid orbit. If this retrievable mass is larger than the actual mass of the asteroid, the asteroid retrieval mission for this particular object is said to be feasible. The paper concludes with an updated list of 17 EROs, as of April 2016, with their maximum retrievable masses by means of low thrust propulsion. This ranges from 2000 tons for the easiest object to be retrieved to 300 tons for the least accessible of them.

  6. Spin states of asteroids in the Eos collisional family

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanuš, J.; Delbo', M.; Alí-Lagoa, V.; Bolin, B.; Jedicke, R.; Ďurech, J.; Cibulková, H.; Pravec, P.; Kušnirák, P.; Behrend, R.; Marchis, F.; Antonini, P.; Arnold, L.; Audejean, M.; Bachschmidt, M.; Bernasconi, L.; Brunetto, L.; Casulli, S.; Dymock, R.; Esseiva, N.; Esteban, M.; Gerteis, O.; de Groot, H.; Gully, H.; Hamanowa, Hiroko; Hamanowa, Hiromi; Krafft, P.; Lehký, M.; Manzini, F.; Michelet, J.; Morelle, E.; Oey, J.; Pilcher, F.; Reignier, F.; Roy, R.; Salom, P. A.; Warner, B. D.

    2018-01-01

    Eos family was created during a catastrophic impact about 1.3 Gyr ago. Rotation states of individual family members contain information about the history of the whole population. We aim to increase the number of asteroid shape models and rotation states within the Eos collision family, as well as to revise previously published shape models from the literature. Such results can be used to constrain theoretical collisional and evolution models of the family, or to estimate other physical parameters by a thermophysical modeling of the thermal infrared data. We use all available disk-integrated optical data (i.e., classical dense-in-time photometry obtained from public databases and through a large collaboration network as well as sparse-in-time individual measurements from a few sky surveys) as input for the convex inversion method, and derive 3D shape models of asteroids together with their rotation periods and orientations of rotation axes. We present updated shape models for 15 asteroids and new shape model determinations for 16 asteroids. Together with the already published models from the publicly available DAMIT database, we compiled a sample of 56 Eos family members with known shape models that we used in our analysis of physical properties within the family. Rotation states of asteroids smaller than ∼ 20 km are heavily influenced by the YORP effect, whilst the large objects more or less retained their rotation state properties since the family creation. Moreover, we also present a shape model and bulk density of asteroid (423) Diotima, an interloper in the Eos family, based on the disk-resolved data obtained by the Near InfraRed Camera (Nirc2) mounted on the W.M. Keck II telescope.

  7. EVIDENCE FOR GAS FROM A DISINTEGRATING EXTRASOLAR ASTEROID

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu, S.; Jura, M.; Zuckerman, B.; Dufour, P.

    2016-01-01

    We report high-resolution spectroscopic observations of WD 1145+017—a white dwarf that was recently found to be transitted by multiple asteroid-sized objects within its tidal radius. We discovered numerous circumstellar absorption lines with linewidths of ∼300 km s −1 from Mg, Ca, Ti, Cr, Mn, Fe, and Ni, possibly from several gas streams produced by collisions among the actively disintegrating objects. The atmosphere of WD 1145+017 is polluted with 11 heavy elements, including O, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, Ti, V:, Cr, Mn, Fe, and Ni. Evidently, we are witnessing the active disintegration and subsequent accretion of an extrasolar asteroid

  8. Volume and mass distribution in selected families of asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wlodarczyk, I.; Leliwa-Kopystynski, J.

    2014-07-01

    Members of five asteroid families (Vesta, Eos, Eunomia, Koronis, and Themis) were identified using the Hierarchical Clustering Method (HCM) for a data set containing 292,003 numbered asteroids. The influence of the choice of the best value of the parameter v_{cut} that controls the distances of asteroids in the proper elements space a, e, i was investigated with a step as small as 1 m/s. Results are given in a set of figures showing the families on the planes (a, e), (a, i), (e, i). Another form for the presentation of results is related to the secular resonances in the asteroids' motion with the giant planets, mostly with Saturn. Relations among asteroid radius, albedo, and absolute magnitude allow us to calculate the volumes of individual members of an asteroid family. After summation, the volumes of the parent bodies of the families were found. This paper presents the possibility and the first results of using a combined method for asteroid family identifications based on the following items: (i) Parameter v_{cut} is established with precision as high as 1 m/s; (ii) the albedo (if available) of the potential members is considered for approving or rejecting the family membership; (iii) a color classification is used for the same purpose as well. Searching for the most reliable parameter values for the family populations was performed by means of a consecutive application of the HCM with increasing parameter v_{cut}. The results are illustrated in the figure. Increasing v_{cut} in steps as small as 1 m/s allowed to observe the computational strength of the HCM: the critical value of the parameter v_{cut} (see the breaking-points of the plots in the figure) separates the assemblage of potential family members from 'an ocean' of background asteroids that are not related to the family. The critical values of v_{cut} vary from 57 m/s for the Vesta family to 92 m/s for the Eos family. If the parameter v_{cut} surpasses its critical value, the number of HCM

  9. EVIDENCE FOR GAS FROM A DISINTEGRATING EXTRASOLAR ASTEROID

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu, S. [European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Straße 2, D-85748 Garching (Germany); Jura, M.; Zuckerman, B. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of California, Los Angeles CA 90095-1562 (United States); Dufour, P., E-mail: sxu@eso.org, E-mail: jura@astro.ucla.edu, E-mail: ben@astro.ucla.edu, E-mail: dufourpa@astro.umontreal.ca [Institut de Recherche sur les Exoplanètes (iREx), Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC H3C 3J7 (Canada)

    2016-01-10

    We report high-resolution spectroscopic observations of WD 1145+017—a white dwarf that was recently found to be transitted by multiple asteroid-sized objects within its tidal radius. We discovered numerous circumstellar absorption lines with linewidths of ∼300 km s{sup −1} from Mg, Ca, Ti, Cr, Mn, Fe, and Ni, possibly from several gas streams produced by collisions among the actively disintegrating objects. The atmosphere of WD 1145+017 is polluted with 11 heavy elements, including O, Mg, Al, Si, Ca, Ti, V:, Cr, Mn, Fe, and Ni. Evidently, we are witnessing the active disintegration and subsequent accretion of an extrasolar asteroid.

  10. Trojan, Hilda, and Cybele asteroids - New lightcurve observations and analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binzel, Richard P.; Sauter, Linda M.

    1992-01-01

    Lightcurve observations of 23 Trojan, Hilda, and Cybele asteroids are presently subjected to a correction procedure for multiple-aspect lightcurves, followed by a quantitative, bias-corrected analysis of lightcurve amplitude distributions for all published data on these asteroids. While the largest Trojans are found to have a higher mean-lightcurve amplitude than their low-albedo, main-belt counterparts, the smaller Trojans and all Hildas and Cybeles display lightcurve properties resembling main-belt objects. Only the largest Trojans have retained their initial forms after subsequent collisional evolution; 90 km may accordingly represent a transitional magnitude between primordial objects and collision fragments.

  11. 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

  12. The AKARI IRC asteroid flux catalogue: updated diameters and albedos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alí-Lagoa, V.; Müller, T. G.; Usui, F.; Hasegawa, S.

    2018-05-01

    The AKARI IRC all-sky survey provided more than twenty thousand thermal infrared observations of over five thousand asteroids. Diameters and albedos were obtained by fitting an empirically calibrated version of the standard thermal model to these data. After the publication of the flux catalogue in October 2016, our aim here is to present the AKARI IRC all-sky survey data and discuss valuable scientific applications in the field of small body physical properties studies. As an example, we update the catalogue of asteroid diameters and albedos based on AKARI using the near-Earth asteroid thermal model (NEATM). We fit the NEATM to derive asteroid diameters and, whenever possible, infrared beaming parameters. We fit groups of observations taken for the same object at different epochs of the survey separately, so we compute more than one diameter for approximately half of the catalogue. We obtained a total of 8097 diameters and albedos for 5170 asteroids, and we fitted the beaming parameter for almost two thousand of them. When it was not possible to fit the beaming parameter, we used a straight line fit to our sample's beaming parameter-versus-phase angle plot to set the default value for each fit individually instead of using a single average value. Our diameters agree with stellar-occultation-based diameters well within the accuracy expected for the model. They also match the previous AKARI-based catalogue at phase angles lower than 50°, but we find a systematic deviation at higher phase angles, at which near-Earth and Mars-crossing asteroids were observed. The AKARI IRC All-sky survey is an essential source of information about asteroids, especially the large ones, since, it provides observations at different observation geometries, rotational coverages and aspect angles. For example, by comparing in more detail a few asteroids for which dimensions were derived from occultations, we discuss how the multiple observations per object may already provide three

  13. Intrepid: Exploring the NEA population with a Fleet of Highly Autonomous SmallSat explorers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blacksberg, Jordana; Chesley, Steven R.; Ehlmann, Bethany; Raymond, Carol Anne

    2017-10-01

    The Intrepid mission concept calls for phased deployment of a fleet of small highly autonomous rendezvous spacecraft designed to characterize the evolution, structure and composition of dozens of Near-Earth Asteroids (NEAs). Intrepid represents a marked departure from conventional solar system exploration projects, where a single unique and complex spacecraft is typically directed to explore a single target body. In contrast, Intrepid relies on the deployment of a large number of autonomous spacecraft to provide redundancy and ensure that the project goals are achieved at a small fraction of the cost of typical missions.The Intrepid science goals are threefold: (1) to understand the evolutionary processes that govern asteroid physical, chemical and dynamical histories and relate these results to solar system origins and evolution; (2) to facilitate impactor deflection scenarios for planetary defense by statistically characterizing relevant asteroid physical properties; (3) to quantify the presence and extractability of potentially useful resources on a large sample of asteroids. To achieve these goals, the baseline architecture includes multiple modular instruments including cameras, spectrometers, radar sounders, and projectiles that could interact with the target asteroid. Key questions to be addressed are: what is the total quantity of water in each object? How is the water incorporated? Are organics present? What is the asteroid physical structure? How would the object respond to impact/deflection?We have begun development of a miniature infrared point spectrometer, a cornerstone of the Intrepid payload, covering both shortwave infrared (SWIR) and mid-infrared (MIR) spectral bands. The spectrometer is designed with a compact 2U form-factor, making it both relevant to Intrepid and implementable on a CubeSat. The combination of SWIR and MIR in a single integrated instrument would enable robust compositional interpretations from a single dataset combining both

  14. NASA's Human Mission to a Near-Earth Asteroid: Landing on a Moving Target

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Jeffrey H.; Lincoln, William P.; Weisbin, Charles R.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes a Bayesian approach for comparing the productivity and cost-risk tradeoffs of sending versus not sending one or more robotic surveyor missions prior to a human mission to land on an asteroid. The expected value of sample information based on productivity combined with parametric variations in the prior probability an asteroid might be found suitable for landing were used to assess the optimal number of spacecraft and asteroids to survey. The analysis supports the value of surveyor missions to asteroids and indicates one launch with two spacecraft going simultaneously to two independent asteroids appears optimal.

  15. PHYSICAL PARAMETERS OF ASTEROIDS ESTIMATED FROM THE WISE 3-BAND DATA AND NEOWISE POST-CRYOGENIC SURVEY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J. [Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States); Grav, T. [Planetary Science Institute, Tucson, AZ 85719 (United States); Cutri, R. M. [Infrared Processing and Analysis Center, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States); McMillan, R. S. [Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, 1629 East University Boulevard, Tucson, AZ 85721-0092 (United States); Nugent, C. R. [Department of Earth and Space Sciences, UCLA, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Box 951567, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States); Tholen, D. [Institute for Astronomy, University of Hawaii, 2680 Woodlawn Drive, Honolulu, HI 96822 (United States); Walker, R. [Monterey Institute for Research in Astronomy, Monterey, CA 93933 (United States); Wright, E. L., E-mail: amainzer@jpl.nasa.gov [Department of Physics and Astronomy, UCLA, P.O. Box 91547, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1547 (United States)

    2012-11-20

    Enhancements to the science data processing pipeline of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission, collectively known as NEOWISE, resulted in the detection of >158,000 minor planets in four infrared wavelengths during the fully cryogenic portion of the mission. Following the depletion of its cryogen, NASA's Planetary Science Directorate funded a four-month extension to complete the survey of the inner edge of the Main Asteroid Belt and to detect and discover near-Earth objects (NEOs). This extended survey phase, known as the NEOWISE Post-Cryogenic Survey, resulted in the detection of {approx}6500 large Main Belt asteroids and 86 NEOs in its 3.4 and 4.6 {mu}m channels. During the Post-Cryogenic Survey, NEOWISE discovered and detected a number of asteroids co-orbital with the Earth and Mars, including the first known Earth Trojan. We present preliminary thermal fits for these and other NEOs detected during the 3-Band Cryogenic and Post-Cryogenic Surveys.

  16. Gravity Defied From Potato Asteroids to Magnetised Neutron Stars

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Gravity Defied. From Potato Asteroids to Magnetised Neutron Stars. 2. ... objects that just missed being stars in this particular install- ment. 1. .... However, the total energy that can be made .... trial metals in which the electrons form a degenerate Fermi gas. ... In deuterium fusion, a deuterium nucleus and a proton combine to.

  17. Asteroid proper elements from an analytical second order theory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Knezevic, Z.; Milani, A.

    1989-01-01

    The authors have computed by a fully analytical method a new set of proper elements for 3322 numbered main-belt asteroids. They are presented in the following format: asteroid number, proper semimajor axis (AU), proper eccentricity, sine of proper inclination and quality code (see below). This new set is significantly more accurate than all the previous ones at low to moderate eccentricities and inclinations, and especially near the main mean-motion resonances (e.g., the Themis region). This is because the short periodic perturbations are rigorously removed, and the main effects of the second-order (containing the square of the ratio [the mass of Jupiter/mass of the Sun]) are accounted for. Effects arising from the terms in the Hamiltonian of degree up to four in the eccentricity and inclination of both the asteroid and Jupiter are taken into account, and the fundamental frequencies g (for the perihelion) and s(for the node) of the asteroid are computed with a interative algorithm consistent with the basic results of modern dynamics (e.g., Kolmogorov-Arnold-Moser theory)

  18. The Cool Surfaces of Binaries Near-Earth Asteroids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Delbo, Marco; Walsh, K.; Mueller, M.

    2008-01-01

    We present results from thermal-infrared observations of binary near-Earth asteroids (NEAs). These objects, in general, have surface temperatures cooler than the average values for non-binary NEAs. We discuss how this may be evidence of higher-than-average surface thermal inertia. The comparison of

  19. FIRST VLTI-MIDI DIRECT DETERMINATIONS OF ASTEROID SIZES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Delbo, M.; Ligori, S.; Cellino, A.; Matter, A.; Berthier, J.

    2009-01-01

    We have obtained the first successful interferometric measurements of asteroid sizes and shapes by means of the Very Large Telescope Interferometer-Mid-Infrared Interferometric Instrument (VLTI-MIDI). The VLTI can spatially resolve asteroids in a range of sizes and heliocentric distances that are not accessible to other techniques such as adaptive optics and radar. We have observed, as a typical bench mark, the asteroid (951) Gaspra, visited in the past by the Galileo space probe, and we derive a size in good agreement with the ground truth coming from the in situ measurements by the Galileo mission. Moreover, we have also observed the asteroid (234) Barbara, known to exhibit unusual polarimetric properties, and we found evidence of a potential binary nature. In particular, our data are best fit by a system of two bodies of 37 and 21 km in diameter, separated by a center-to-center distance of ∼24 km (projected along the direction of the baseline at the epoch of our observations).

  20. Photometry and models of eight near-Earth asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kaasalainen, M.; Pravec, Petr; Krugly, Yu. N.; Kotková, Lenka; Torppa, J.; Virtanen, J.; Kaasalainen, S.; Erikson, A.; Nathues, A.; Ďurech, J.; Wolf, M.; Lagerros, J. S. V.; Lindgren, M.; Lagerkvist, C.-I.; Koff, R.; Davies, J.; Mann, R.; Kušnirák, Peter; Gaftonyuk, N. M.; Shevchenko, V. G.; Chiorny, V. G.; Belskaya, I. N.

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 167, č. 1 (2004), s. 178-196 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA3003204; GA ČR GA205/99/0255 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z1003909 Keywords : asteroids * rotation * photometry Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.074, year: 2004

  1. Disaggregation of small, cohesive rubble pile asteroids due to YORP

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheeres, D. J.

    2018-04-01

    The implication of small amounts of cohesion within relatively small rubble pile asteroids is investigated with regard to their evolution under the persistent presence of the YORP effect. We find that below a characteristic size, which is a function of cohesive strength, density and other properties, rubble pile asteroids can enter a "disaggregation phase" in which they are subject to repeated fissions after which the formation of a stabilizing binary system is not possible. Once this threshold is passed rubble pile asteroids may be disaggregated into their constituent components within a finite time span. These constituent components will have their own spin limits - albeit potentially at a much higher spin rate due to the greater strength of a monolithic body. The implications of this prediction are discussed and include modification of size distributions, prevalence of monolithic bodies among meteoroids and the lifetime of small rubble pile bodies in the solar system. The theory is then used to place constraints on the strength of binary asteroids characterized as a function of their type.

  2. Post mitigation impact risk analysis for asteroid deflection demonstration missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eggl, Siegfried; Hestroffer, Daniel; Thuillot, William; Bancelin, David; Cano, Juan L.; Cichocki, Filippo

    2015-08-01

    Even though mankind believes to have the capabilities to avert potentially disastrous asteroid impacts, only the realization of mitigation demonstration missions can validate this claim. Such a deflection demonstration attempt has to be cost effective, easy to validate, and safe in the sense that harmless asteroids must not be turned into potentially hazardous objects. Uncertainties in an asteroid's orbital and physical parameters as well as those additionally introduced during a mitigation attempt necessitate an in depth analysis of deflection mission designs in order to dispel planetary safety concerns. We present a post mitigation impact risk analysis of a list of potential kinetic impactor based deflection demonstration missions proposed in the framework of the NEOShield project. Our results confirm that mitigation induced uncertainties have a significant influence on the deflection outcome. Those cannot be neglected in post deflection impact risk studies. We show, furthermore, that deflection missions have to be assessed on an individual basis in order to ensure that asteroids are not inadvertently transported closer to the Earth at a later date. Finally, we present viable targets and mission designs for a kinetic impactor test to be launched between the years 2025 and 2032.

  3. A Martian origin for the Mars Trojan asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polishook, D.; Jacobson, S. A.; Morbidelli, A.; Aharonson, O.

    2017-08-01

    Seven of the nine known Mars Trojan asteroids belong to an orbital cluster1,2 named after its largest member, (5261) Eureka. Eureka is probably the progenitor of the whole cluster, which formed at least 1 Gyr ago3. It has been suggested3 that the thermal YORP (Yarkovsky-O'Keefe-Radzievskii-Paddack) effect spun up Eureka, resulting in fragments being ejected by the rotational-fission mechanism. Eureka's spectrum exhibits a broad and deep absorption band around 1 μm, indicating an olivine-rich composition4. Here we show evidence that the Trojan Eureka cluster progenitor could have originated as impact debris excavated from the Martian mantle. We present new near-infrared observations of two Trojans ((311999) 2007 NS2 and (385250) 2001 DH47) and find that both exhibit an olivine-rich reflectance spectrum similar to Eureka's. These measurements confirm that the progenitor of the cluster has an achondritic composition4. Olivine-rich reflectance spectra are rare amongst asteroids5 but are seen around the largest basins on Mars6. They are also consistent with some Martian meteorites (for example, Chassigny7) and with the material comprising much of the Martian mantle8,9. Using numerical simulations, we show that the Mars Trojans are more likely to be impact ejecta from Mars than captured olivine-rich asteroids transported from the main belt. This result directly links specific asteroids to debris from the forming planets.

  4. Multi-wavelength observations of Asteroid 2100 Ra-Shalom

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Shepard, M.K.; Clark, B. E.; Nolan, M. C.; Benner, L. A. M.; Ostro, S. J.; Giorgini, J. D.; Vilas, F.; Jarvis, K.; Lederer, S.; Lim, L.F.; McConnochie, T.; Bell, J.; Margot, J. L.; Rivkin, A. S.; Magrik, C.; Scheeres, D.J.; Pravec, Petr

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 193, č. 1 (2008), s. 20-38 ISSN 0019-1035 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids composition * radar observations Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.268, year: 2008

  5. Physical modeling of near-Earth Asteroid (29075) 1950 DA

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Busch, M.W.; Giorgini, J. D.; Ostro, S. J.; Benner, L. A. M.; Jurgens, R. F.; Rose, R.; Hicks, M. D.; Pravec, Petr; Kušnirák, Peter; Ireland, M.J.; Scheeres, D.J.; Broschart, S.B.; Magri, C.; Nolan, M. C.; Hine, A. A.; Margot, J. L.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 190, č. 2 (2007), s. 608-621 ISSN 0019-1035 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA208/99/0255 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * composition * dynamics * rotation Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.869, year: 2007

  6. Thermal infrared observations of asteroid (99942) Apophis with Herschel

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Müller, T. G.; Kiss, C.; Scheirich, Peter; Pravec, Petr; O'Rourke, L.; Vilenius, E.; Altieri, B.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 566, June (2014), A22/1-A22/10 ISSN 0004-6361 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/0229; GA MŠk LG12001 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : minor planets * asteroids: individual * radiation mechanisms Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 4.378, year: 2014

  7. Photometric observations of Earth-impacting asteroid 2008 TC(3)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kozubal, M.; Gasdia, F.W.; Dantowitz, R.; Scheirich, Peter; Harris, A. W.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 46, č. 4 (2011), s. 534-542 ISSN 1086-9379 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroid * photometric observations Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.719, year: 2011

  8. New findings on asteroid spin-vector distributions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kryszczynska, A.; La Spina, A.; Paolicchi, P.; Harris, A. W.; Breiter, S.; Pravec, Petr

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 192, č. 1 (2007), s. 223-237 ISSN 0019-1035 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : asteroids * rotation Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.869, year: 2007

  9. 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.

  10. Binary asteroid population. 3. Secondary rotations and elongations

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pravec, Petr; Scheirich, Peter; Kušnirák, Peter; Hornoch, Kamil; Galád, Adrián; Naidu, S.P.; Pray, D. P.; Világi, J.; Gajdoš, Š.; Kornoš, L.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 267, March (2016), s. 267-295 ISSN 0019-1035 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/0229; GA ČR GA15-07193S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : asteroids * rotation * dynamics Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 3.131, year: 2016

  11. 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.

  12. Very low strengths of interplanetary meteoroids and small asteroids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Popova, O. P.; Borovička, Jiří; Hartman, W.K.; Spurný, Pavel; Gnos, E.; Nemtchinov, I. V.; Trigo-Rodríguez, J.M.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 46, č. 10 (2011), s. 1525-1550 ISSN 1086-9379 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : meteoroids * small asteroids * photographic observations Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 2.719, year: 2011

  13. B612 plans asteroid hunt with fleet of small satellites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Adam

    2018-05-01

    Last week, an asteroid the size of Egypt's Great Pyramid of Giza whizzed by Earth, missing it by half the distance to the moon. The concern that we may one day not be so lucky has long preoccupied the B612 Foundation, a private organization in Mill Valley, California, dedicated to finding asteroids that cross Earth's orbit and could devastate humanity. B612 itself had a near-death experience 3 years ago, when its bold plans for an asteroid-hunting space telescope fell apart. But now, its ambitions are rising again with a new technique for finding menacing objects. On 10 May, B612 announced a partnership with York Space Systems to investigate building a fleet of small asteroid hunters. For many years, B612 aimed to build and launch a much larger craft, Sentinel, a $450 million space telescope with a 50-centimeter mirror. But fundraising stalled and, in 2015, NASA ended an agreement to help B612 because it wasn't meeting mileposts, essentially killing the telescope. Now, B612 has developed a new technique, called synthetic tracking, that can produce similar results at a far lower cost with small space telescopes. Ed Lu, B612 co-founder and CEO, expects the first telescope to cost about $10 million and believes a full constellation "would be a factor of many, many cheaper" than Sentinel.

  14. Radar Observations of Main-Belt M-class Asteroids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shepard, Michael K.; Clark, B. E.; Ockert-Bell, M.; Nolan, M. C.; Howell, E. S.; Magri, C.; Giorgini, J. D.; Benner, L. A. M.; Ostro, S. J.; Harris, A. W.; Warner, B. D.; Stephens, R. D.; Mueller, M.

    2009-01-01

    Using the S-band radar at Arecibo Observatory, we have observed 19 Tholen M-class asteroids. The mean radar albedo for all our targets is 0.28 ± 0.13, considerably higher than the mean radar albedo of every other class (Magri et al. 2007, Icarus 186, 126-151). We find approximately one-third (six)

  15. Lightcurve Analysis for Four Near-Earth Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birtwhistle, Peter

    2018-04-01

    Lightcurves are reported for four near-Earth asteroids observed from Great Shefford Observatory during close approaches between 2010 January and 2017 November: 2000 RE52, 2008 YZ32, 2017 UK8, and 2017 VD. 2008 YZ32 is a large superfast rotator.

  16. Assessment of the Gaussian Covariance Approximation over an Earth-Asteroid Encounter Period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattern, Daniel W.

    2017-01-01

    In assessing the risk an asteroid may pose to the Earth, the asteroids state is often predicted for many years, often decades. Only by accounting for the asteroids initial state uncertainty can a measure of the risk be calculated. With the asteroids state uncertainty growing as a function of the initial velocity uncertainty, orbit velocity at the last state update, and the time from the last update to the epoch of interest, the asteroids position uncertainties can grow to many times the size of the Earth when propagated to the encounter risk corridor. This paper examines the merits of propagating the asteroids state covariance as an analytical matrix. The results of this study help to bound the efficacy of applying different metrics for assessing the risk an asteroid poses to the Earth. Additionally, this work identifies a criterion for when different covariance propagation methods are needed to continue predictions after an Earth-encounter period.

  17. Moving an asteroid with electric solar wind sail

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merikallio, S.; Janhunen, P.

    2010-12-01

    The electric solar wind sail (E-Sail) is a new propulsion method for interplanetary travel which was invented in 2006 and is currently under development. The E-Sail uses charged tethers to extract momentum from the solar wind particles to obtain propulsive thrust. According to current estimates, the E-Sail is 2-3 orders of magnitude better than traditional propulsion methods (chemical rockets and ion engines) in terms of produced lifetime-integrated impulse per propulsion system mass. Here we analyze the problem of using the E-Sail for directly deflecting an Earth-threatening asteroid. The problem then culminates into how to attach the E-Sail device to the asteroid. We assess alternative attachment strategies, namely straightforward direct towing with a cable and the gravity tractor method which works for a wider variety of situations. We also consider possible techniques to scale up the E-Sail force beyond the baseline one Newton level to deal with more imminent or larger asteroid or cometary threats. As a baseline case we consider an asteroid of effective diameter of 140 m and mass of 3 million tons, which can be deflected with a baseline 1 N E-Sail within 10 years. With a 5 N E-Sail the deflection could be achieved in 5 years. Once developed, the E-Sail would appear to provide a safe and reasonably low-cost way of deflecting dangerous asteroids and other heavenly bodies in cases where the collision threat becomes known several years in advance.

  18. Observations of Near-Earth Asteroids in Polarized Light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Afanasiev, V. L.; Ipatov, A. V.

    2018-04-01

    We report the results of position, photometric, and polarimetric observations of two near-Earth asteroids made with the 6-m telescope of the Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences. 1.2-hour measurements of the photometric variations of the asteroid 2009 DL46 made onMarch 8, 2016 (approximately 20m at a distance of about 0.23 AU from the Earth) showed a 0.m2-amplitude flash with a duration of about 20 minutes. During this time the polarization degree increased from the average level of 2-3% to 14%. The angle of the polarization plane and the phase angle were equal to 113° ± 1° and 43°, respectively. Our result indicates that the surface of the rotating asteroid (the rotation period of about 2.5 hours) must be non-uniformly rough. Observations of another asteroid—1994 UG—whose brightness was of about 17m and which was located at a geocentric distance of 0.077 AU, were carried out during the night of March 6/7, 2016 in two modes: photometric and spectropolarimetric. According to the results of photometric observations in Johnson's B-, V-, and R-band filters, over one hour the brightness of the asteroid remained unchanged within the measurement errors (about 0.m02). Spectropolarimetric observations in the 420-800 nm wavelength interval showed the polarization degree to decrease from 8% in the blue part of the spectrum to 2% in the red part with the phase angle equal to 44°, which is typical for S-type near-Earth asteroids.

  19. New Heating Mechanism of Asteroids in Protoplanetary Disks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menzel, Raymond L.; Roberge, W. G.

    2013-10-01

    Heating of asteroids in the early solar system has been mainly attributed to two mechanisms: the decay of short-lived radionuclides and the unipolar induction mechanism originally proposed in a classic series of papers by Sonett and collaborators. As originally conceived, unipolar induction heating is the result of the dissipation of current inside the body driven by a “motional electric field”, which appears in the asteroid’s reference frame when it is immersed in a fully-ionized, magnetized T-Tauri solar wind. However we point out a subtle conceptual error in the way that the electric field is calculated. Strictly speaking, the motional electric field used by Sonett et al. is the electric field in the free-streaming plasma far from the asteroid. For realistic assumptions about the plasma density in protoplanetary disks, the interaction between the plasma and asteroid cause the formation of a shear layer, in which the motional electric field decreases and even vanishes at the asteroid surface. We reexamine and improve the induction heating mechanism by: (1) correcting this conceptual error by using non-ideal multifluid MHD to self consistently calculate the velocity, magnetic, and electric fields in and around the shear layer; and (2) considering more realistic environments and scenarios that are consistent with current theories about protoplanetary disks. We present solutions for two highly idealized flows, which demonstrate that the electric field inside the asteroid is actually produced by magnetic field gradients in the shear layer, and can either vanish or be comparable to the fields predicted by Sonett et al. depending on the flow geometry. We term this new mechanism “electrodynamic heating”, calculate its possible upper limits, and compare them to heating generated by the decay of short-lived radionuclides.

  20. Silicate Phases on the Surfaces of Trojan Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Audrey; Emery, Joshua P.; Lindsay, Sean S.

    2017-10-01

    Determining the origin of asteroids provides an effective means of constraining the solar system’s dynamic past. Jupiter Trojan asteroids (hereafter Trojans) may help in determining the amount of radial mixing that occurred during giant planet migration. Previous studies aimed at characterizing surface composition show that Trojans have low albedo surfaces and are spectrally featureless in the near infrared. The thermal infrared (TIR) wavelength range has advantages for detecting silicates on low albedo asteroids such as Trojans. The 10 μm region exhibits strong features due to the Si-O fundamental molecular vibrations. Silicates that formed in the inner solar system likely underwent thermal annealing, and thus are crystalline, whereas silicates that accreted in the outer solar system experienced less thermal processing, and therefore are more likely to have remained in an amorphous phase. We hypothesize that the Trojans formed in the outer solar system (i.e., the Kuiper Belt), and therefore will have a more dominant amorphous spectral silicate component. With TIR spectra from the Spitzer Space Telescope, we identify mineralogical features from the surface of 11 Trojan asteroids. Fine-grain mixtures of crystalline pyroxene and olivine exhibit a 10 μm feature with sharp cutoffs between about 9 μm and 12 μm, which create a broad flat plateau. Amorphous phases, when present, smooth the sharp emission features, resulting in a dome-like shape. Preliminary results indicate that the surfaces of analyzed Trojans contain primarily amorphous silicates. Emissivity spectra of asteroids 1986 WD and 4709 Ennomos include small peaks in the 10 μm region, diagnostic of small amounts of crystalline olivine. One explanation is that Trojans formed in the same region as Kuiper Belt objects, and when giant planet migration ensued, they were swept into Jupiter’s stable Lagrange points where they are found today. As such, it is possible that an ancestral group of Kuiper Belt

  1. Spectral properties of eight near-Earth asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popescu, M.; Birlan, M.; Binzel, R.; Vernazza, P.; Barucci, A.; Nedelcu, D. A.; DeMeo, F.; Fulchignoni, M.

    2011-11-01

    Context. Near-Earth objects are among the most accessible bodies in the solar system in terms of the spacecraft propulsion requirements to reach them. The choice of targets and the planning of space missions are based on high quality ground-based science. Aims: The knowledge of the ensemble of physical parameters for these objects, including their composition, is a critical point in defining any mission scientific objectives. Determining the physical properties of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) is also possible from the ground by analyzing spectroscopy at both visible and infrared wavelengths. Methods: We present spectra of eight NEAs (1917, 8567, 16960, 164400, 188452, 2001 SG286, and 2010 TD54) obtained using the NASA telescope IRTF equipped with the spectro-imager SpeX. The observations were performed in the 0.8-2.5 μm spectral region using the low resolution mode of the spectrograph. We completed the taxonomic classification using the Bus-DeMeo taxonomy. We analyzed the spectra by comparing them to meteorite spectra from the Relab database using a χ2 approach. For the S-type asteroids of our sample, the band centers and BAR were calculated. We also attempted to interpret our data using a space-weathering model. Results: The taxonomic classification of five objects was reviewed and we assigned a corresponding type to the other three asteroids that were not classified before. We found that (1917) Cuyo, (8567) 1996 HW1, (16960) 1998 QS52, (188452) 2004 HE62, and 2010 TD54 are in the S-complex. We achieved a good matching of our S-type asteroids with the spectra of ordinary chondrites meteorites. The asteroid (5620) Jasonwheeler was found to have a NIR spectrum similar to carbonaceous chondrite meteorites. Thus, our results confirm its primitive properties obtained in several other spectral intervals. Appendices A and B are available in electronic form at http://www.aanda.org

  2. The Formation of Jupiter, the Jovian Early Bombardment and the Delivery of Water to the Asteroid Belt: The Case of (4) Vesta

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turrini, Diego; Svetsov, Vladimir

    2014-01-01

    The asteroid (4) Vesta, parent body of the Howardite-Eucrite-Diogenite meteorites, is one of the first bodies that formed, mostly from volatile-depleted material, in the Solar System. The Dawn mission recently provided evidence that hydrated material was delivered to Vesta, possibly in a continuous way, over the last 4 Ga, while the study of the eucritic meteorites revealed a few samples that crystallized in presence of water and volatile elements. The formation of Jupiter and probably its migration occurred in the period when eucrites crystallized, and triggered a phase of bombardment that caused icy planetesimals to cross the asteroid belt. In this work, we study the flux of icy planetesimals on Vesta during the Jovian Early Bombardment and, using hydrodynamic simulations, the outcome of their collisions with the asteroid. We explore how the migration of the giant planet would affect the delivery of water and volatile materials to the asteroid and we discuss our results in the context of the geophysical and collisional evolution of Vesta. In particular, we argue that the observational data are best reproduced if the bulk of the impactors was represented by 1–2 km wide planetesimals and if Jupiter underwent a limited (a fraction of au) displacement. PMID:25370027

  3. The Formation of Jupiter, the Jovian Early Bombardment and the Delivery of Water to the Asteroid Belt: The Case of (4 Vesta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diego Turrini

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The asteroid (4 Vesta, parent body of the Howardite-Eucrite-Diogenite meteorites, is one of the first bodies that formed, mostly from volatile-depleted material, in the Solar System. The Dawn mission recently provided evidence that hydrated material was delivered to Vesta, possibly in a continuous way, over the last 4 Ga, while the study of the eucritic meteorites revealed a few samples that crystallized in presence of water and volatile elements. The formation of Jupiter and probably its migration occurred in the period when eucrites crystallized, and triggered a phase of bombardment that caused icy planetesimals to cross the asteroid belt. In this work, we study the flux of icy planetesimals on Vesta during the Jovian Early Bombardment and, using hydrodynamic simulations, the outcome of their collisions with the asteroid. We explore how the migration of the giant planet would affect the delivery of water and volatile materials to the asteroid and we discuss our results in the context of the geophysical and collisional evolution of Vesta. In particular, we argue that the observational data are best reproduced if the bulk of the impactors was represented by 1–2 km wide planetesimals and if Jupiter underwent a limited (a fraction of au displacement.

  4. Discovery of the first asteroid, Ceres historical studies in asteroid research

    CERN Document Server

    Cunningham, Clifford

    2016-01-01

    Based on extensive primary sources, many never previously translated into English, this is the definitive account of the origins of Ceres as it went from being classified as a new planet to reclassification as the first of a previously unknown group of celestial objects. Cunningham opens this critical moment of astronomical discovery to full modern analysis for the first time. This book includes all the voluminous correspondence, translated into English, between the astronomers of Europe about the startling discovery of Ceres by Piazzi in 1801. It covers the period up to March 1802, at which time Pallas was discovered. Also included are Piazzi's two monographs about Ceres, and the sections of two books dealing with Ceres, one by Johann Bode, the other by Johann Schroeter. The origin of the word 'asteroid' is explained, along with several chapters on the antecedents of the story going back to ancient Greek times. The formulation of Bode's Law is given, as are the details on the efforts of Baron von Zach to org...

  5. Temperature-Driven Shape Changes of the Near Earth Asteroid Scout Solar Sail

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohlman, Olive R.; Loper, Erik R.; Lockett, Tiffany E.

    2017-01-01

    Near Earth Asteroid Scout (NEA Scout) is a NASA deep space Cubesat, scheduled to launch on the Exploration Mission 1 flight of the Space Launch System. NEA Scout will use a deployable solar sail as its primary propulsion system. The sail is a square membrane supported by rigid metallic tapespring booms, and analysis predicts that these booms will experience substantial thermal warping if they are exposed to direct sunlight in the space environment. NASA has conducted sunspot chamber experiments to confirm the thermal distortion of this class of booms, demonstrating tip displacement of between 20 and 50 centimeters in a 4-meter boom. The distortion behavior of the boom is complex and demonstrates an application for advanced thermal-structural analysis. The needs of the NEA Scout project were supported by changing the solar sail design to keep the booms shaded during use of the solar sail, and an additional experiment in the sunspot chamber is presented in support of this solution.

  6. M-class Asteroids: Soft Rock, Heavy Metal, Or None Of That Jazz?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivkin, Andrew S.

    2008-09-01

    M-class asteroids in the Tholen taxonomy have featureless spectra in the 0.3-1.0 micrometer region and moderate albedos. Taxonomic studies using reflectance spectra have long associated M-class asteroids with iron meteorites. Dozens of parent bodies are required by cosmochemists in order to generate the diversity seen in the iron meteorite population, representing both the disrupted cores of differentiated parent bodies as well as objects with more exotic histories. Unfortunately, the featureless spectrum of iron-nickel metal in the visible and near-IR can be matched by other mineralogies unrelated to iron meteorites. For instance, the primitive enstatite chondrites are also matches to M asteroids (Burbine et al. 2002). The past 20 years have led to increased recognition that the M asteroid class includes a diverse set of objects. Polarimetric, spectral, and radar observations in the 1980s and 1990s showed that at least some M asteroids were not iron-meteorite-like. In particular, observations by Jones et al. (1990), Rivkin et al. (1995), and Rivkin et al. (2000) found several M asteroids with absorptions near 3 micrometers, interpreted as hydrated minerals. This led to the proposal to separate those asteroids with bands into a new W class. Since 2000, new observations have been made by various workers in the near and mid-IR from the ground and with Spitzer. An increase in the sample size of radar-detected asteroids has provided additional insight into M and W asteroids. New meteorite classes have been delimited and characterized, some of which are of direct relevance to the M asteroid population. Discoveries of binary M-class asteroids have allowed densities to be measured Finally, the Rosetta spacecraft will fly by the M (W) asteroid 21 Lutetia in 2010. I will discuss the M/W asteroid class in the context of all of these new data. Thanks to the NASA PAST and PGG programs.

  7. Recent disruption of an asteroid from the Eos family

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novaković, B.; Tsirvoulis, G.

    2014-07-01

    A key difficulty with searching for partially differentiated asteroids arises from the fact that a crust covers the exterior of the body, and, consequently, should hide the melted interior. This motivates an alternative approach of examining members of asteroid families, i.e., fragments of single large bodies, many of which were in the size regime capable of igneous differentiation, that have been disrupted by catastrophic collisions. Such families could provide a stratigraphic cross section across the interior of the parent asteroid [1]. With more than 10,000 known members, the Eos dynamical family is one of the most numerous and earliest recognized asteroid families [2]. Interestingly, the estimated ˜220-km-diameter parent body [3] is well within the size range capable of differentiation. Thus, existing family members should contain fragments of the deep interior. The Eos family has the highest diversity of taxonomic classes than any other known family [4]. Many members are of K spectral type, which is uncommon outside the family, and is similar to the spectra of CV, CK, CO, and CR carbonaceous chondrites [5]. This diversity leads to the suggestion that the Eos parent body was partially differentiated [4,6]. Thus, the Eos family may not only be a remnant of a partially differentiated parent body, but it could be the source of the CV-CK meteorite group. Here we report the discovery of a young subfamily of the Eos asteroid family. It may help understanding the mineralogical nature of the Eos asteroid family and of its parent body. By applying the hierarchical clustering method [7], we find an extremely compact 16-body cluster within the borders of the Eos family. We name the cluster (6733) 1992 EF, after its largest member. The statistical significance of this new cluster is estimated to be above 99%, indicating that its members share a common origin. All members of the cluster are found to be dynamically stable over long timescales. Backward numerical orbital

  8. A direct observation the asteroid's structure from deep interior to regolith: why and how do it?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herique, A.; Kofman, W. W.

    2013-12-01

    The internal structure of asteroids is still poorly known and has never been measured directly. Our knowledge is relying entirely on inferences from remote sensing observations of the surface, and theoretical modeling. Is the body a monolithic piece of rock or a rubble-pile, an aggregate of boulders held together by gravity and how much porosity it contains, both in the form of micro-scale or macro-scale porosity? What is the typical size of the constituent blocs? Are these blocs homogeneous or heterogeneous? Is the body a defunct or dormant comet and such MBC can become active? The body is covered by a regolith from whose properties remains largely unknown in term of depth, size distribution and spatial variation. Is resulting from fine particles re-accretion or from thermal fracturing? What are its coherent forces? How to model is thermal conductivity while this parameter is so important to estimate Yarkowsky and Yorp effects? Knowing asteroid deep interior and regolith structure is a key point for a better understanding of the asteroid accretion and dynamical evolution. There is no way to determine this from ground-based observation. Radar operating from a spacecraft is the only technique capable of achieving this science objective of characterizing the internal structure and heterogeneity from submetric to global scale for the science benefit as well as for the planetary defence and human exploration. The deep interior structure tomography requires low-frequency radar to penetrate throughout the complete body. The radar wave propagation delay and the received power are related to the complex dielectric permittivity (i.e to the composition and microporosity) and the small scale heterogeneities (scattering losses) while the spatial variation of the signal and the multiple paths provide information on the presence of heterogeneities (variations in composition or porosity), layers, ice lens. A partial coverage will provide "cuts" of the body when a dense coverage

  9. Solar system exploration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Briggs, G.A.; Quaide, W.L.

    1986-01-01

    Two fundamental goals lie at the heart of U.S. solar system exploration efforts: first, to characterize the evolution of the solar system; second, to understand the processes which produced life. Progress in planetary science is traced from Newton's definition of the principles of gravitation through a variety of NASA planetary probes in orbit, on other planets and traveling beyond the solar system. It is noted that most of the planetary data collected by space probes are always eventually applied to improving the understanding of the earth, moon, Venus and Mars, the planets of greatest interest to humans. Significant data gathered by the Mariner, Viking, Apollo, Pioneer, and Voyager spacecraft are summarized, along with the required mission support capabilities and mission profiles. Proposed and planned future missions to Jupiter, Saturn, Titan, the asteroids and for a comet rendzvous are described

  10. 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

  11. El cuerpo asteroide de la esporotricosis. Especificad y diferenciación de otras formas de asteroides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerzaín Rodríguez Toro

    1985-06-01

    Full Text Available El análisis de 86 biopsias de esporotricosis y de biopsias de otras enfermedades granulomatosas, así como los conceptos de la literatura, permiten concluir que hay dos tipos de cuerpos asteroides: 1. lntracitoplasmáticos, situados dentro de una vacuola, en células gigantes multinucleadas de diversas enfermedades granulomatosas. Son eosinófilos y constan de radiaciones aciculares, estelares, que parten de un centro amorfo. Los ilustramos en casos de lepra lepromatosa, sarcoidosis, paracoccidioidomicosis, labomicosis y granulomas a cuerpos extraños. Son morfológicamente idénticos, inespecíficos, no ayudan a ningún diagnóstico y se originan por fagocitosis de colágeno (59 o por modificaciones del citocentro (60. 2. Cuerpos asteroides resultantes del fenómeno de Splendore-Hoeppli, que es una reacción antígeno-anticuerpo (38-40. 44 el más conspicuo de los cuales es el cuerpo asteroide esporotricósico (CAE, extracelular, situado en el centro del granuloma supurado y que consiste en una levadura central rodeada de espículas intensamente eosinófilas. Es pues específico, morfológicamente característico, permite el diagnóstico concluyente de la enfermedad y en nuestros casos lo observamos en el 20% de las biopsias. La referencia al CAE como una estructura inespecífica (47.58.61 no tiene en cuenta la morfología y la patogenia involucradas en la formación de los cuerpos asteroides. En algunas micosis como aspergilosis, candidiasis sistémica. paracoccidioidomicosis lobomicosis. granuloma tricofítico, se pueden ver imágenes asteroides alrededor de una levadura, pero la morfología general del cuadro histológico no guarda parecido alguno con la esporotricosis. Es posible ver en una biopsia cuerpos asteroides de ambos tipos y el patólogo debe ser capaz de darles el significado apropiado.

  12. Overview of NASA Finesse (Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration) Science and Exploration Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heldmann, J. L.; Lim, D.S.S.; Hughes, S.; Nawotniak, S. Kobs; Garry, B.; Sears, D.; Neish, C.; Osinski, G. R.; Hodges, K.; Downs, M.; hide

    2016-01-01

    NASA's FINESSE (Field Investigations to Enable Solar System Science and Exploration) project was selected as a research team by NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI). SSERVI is a joint Institute supported by NASA's Science Mission Directorate (SMD) and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD). As such, FINESSE is focused on a science and exploration field-based research program to generate strategic knowledge in preparation for human and robotic exploration of other planetary bodies including our Moon, Mars moons Phobos and Deimos, and near-Earth asteroids. FINESSE embodies the philosophy that "science enables exploration and exploration enables science".

  13. The Mission Accessibility of Near-Earth Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbee, Brent W.; Abell, P. A.; Adamo, D. R.; Mazanek, D. D.; Johnson, L. N.; Yeomans, D. K.; Chodas, P. W.; Chamberlin, A. B.; Benner, L. A. M.; Taylor, P.; hide

    2015-01-01

    The population of near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) that may be accessible for human space flight missions is defined by the Near-Earth Object Human Space Flight Accessible Targets Study (NHATS). The NHATS is an automated system designed to monitor the accessibility of, and particular mission opportunities offered by, the NEA population. This is analogous to systems that automatically monitor the impact risk posed to Earth by the NEA population. The NHATS system identifies NEAs that are potentially accessible for future round-trip human space flight missions and provides rapid notification to asteroid observers so that crucial follow-up observations can be obtained following discovery of accessible NEAs. The NHATS was developed in 2010 and was automated by early 2012. NHATS data are provided via an interactive web-site, and daily NHATS notification emails are transmitted to a mailing list; both resources are available to the public.

  14. A Possible Massive Asteroid Belt Around $\\zeta$ Lep

    CERN Document Server

    Chen Chuan Hung

    2001-01-01

    We have used the Keck I telescope to image at 11.7 microns and 17.9 microns the dust emission around zeta Lep, a main sequence A-type star at 21.5 pc from the Sun with an infrared excess. The excess is at most marginally resolved at 17.9 microns. The dust distance from the star is probably less than or equal to 6 AU, although some dust may extend to 9 AU. The mass of observed dust is \\~10^22 g. Since the lifetime of dust particles is about 10,000 years because of the Poytning-Robertson effect, we robustly estimate at least 4 10^26 g must reside in parent bodies which may be asteroids if the system is in a steady state and has an age of ~300 Myr. This mass is approximately 200 times that contained within the main asteroid belt in our solar system.

  15. EXTREME AO OBSERVATIONS OF TWO TRIPLE ASTEROID SYSTEMS WITH SPHERE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang, B.; Wahhaj, Z.; Dumas, C.; Marsset, M.; Beauvalet, L.; Marchis, F.; Nielsen, E. L.; Vachier, F.

    2016-01-01

    We present the discovery of a new satellite of asteroid (130) Elektra—S/2014 (130) 1—in differential imaging and in integral field spectroscopy data over multiple epochs obtained with Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet Research/Very Large Telescope. This new (second) moonlet of Elektra is about 2 km across, on an eccentric orbit, and about 500 km away from the primary. For a comparative study, we also observed another triple asteroid system, (93) Minerva. For both systems, component-resolved reflectance spectra of the satellites and primary were obtained simultaneously. No significant spectral difference was observed between the satellites and the primary for either triple system. We find that the moonlets in both systems are more likely to have been created by sub-disruptive impacts as opposed to having been captured

  16. EXTREME AO OBSERVATIONS OF TWO TRIPLE ASTEROID SYSTEMS WITH SPHERE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, B.; Wahhaj, Z.; Dumas, C.; Marsset, M. [European Southern Observatory, Santiago (Chile); Beauvalet, L. [National Observatory, Rio de Janeiro (Brazil); Marchis, F.; Nielsen, E. L. [Carl Sagan Center at the SETI Institute, Mountain View, CA (United States); Vachier, F., E-mail: byang@eso.org [Institut de Mécanique Céleste et de Calcul des Éphémérides, Paris (France)

    2016-04-01

    We present the discovery of a new satellite of asteroid (130) Elektra—S/2014 (130) 1—in differential imaging and in integral field spectroscopy data over multiple epochs obtained with Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet Research/Very Large Telescope. This new (second) moonlet of Elektra is about 2 km across, on an eccentric orbit, and about 500 km away from the primary. For a comparative study, we also observed another triple asteroid system, (93) Minerva. For both systems, component-resolved reflectance spectra of the satellites and primary were obtained simultaneously. No significant spectral difference was observed between the satellites and the primary for either triple system. We find that the moonlets in both systems are more likely to have been created by sub-disruptive impacts as opposed to having been captured.

  17. Radiation Recoil Effects on the Dynamical Evolution of Asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotto-Figueroa, Desiree

    The Yarkovsky effect is a radiation recoil force that results in a semimajor axis drift in the orbit that can cause Main Belt asteroids to be delivered to powerful resonances from which they could be transported to Earth-crossing orbits. This force depends on the spin state of the object, which is modified by the YORP effect, a variation of the Yarkovsky effect that results in a torque that changes the spin rate and the obliquity. Extensive analyses of the basic behavior of the YORP effect have been previously conducted in the context of the classical spin state evolution of rigid bodies (YORP cycle). However, the YORP effect has an extreme sensitivity to the topography of the asteroids and a minor change in the shape of an aggregate asteroid can stochastically change the YORP torques. Here we present the results of the first simulations that self-consistently model the YORP effect on the spin states of dynamically evolving aggregates. For these simulations we have developed several algorithms and combined them with two codes, TACO and pkdgrav. TACO is a thermophysical asteroid code that models the surface of an asteroid using a triangular facet representation and which can compute the YORP torques. The code pkdgrav is a cosmological N-body tree code modified to simulate the dynamical evolution of asteroids represented as aggregates of spheres using gravity and collisions. The continuous changes in the shape of an aggregate result in a different evolution of the YORP torques and therefore aggregates do not evolve through the YORP cycle as a rigid body would. Instead of having a spin evolution ruled by long periods of rotational acceleration and deceleration as predicted by the classical YORP cycle, the YORP effect is self-limiting and stochastic on aggregate asteroids. We provide a statistical description of the spin state evolution which lays out the foundation for new simulations of a coupled Yarkovsky/YORP evolution. Both self-limiting YORP and to a lesser

  18. Lorre cluster: an outcome of recent asteroid collision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novakovic, B.; Dell'Oro, A.; Cellino, A.; Knezevic, Z.

    2012-09-01

    Here we show an example of a young asteroid cluster located in a dynamically stable region, which was produced by partial disruption of a primitive body about 30 km in size. According to our estimation it is only 1.9±0.3 Myr old, thus its post-impact evolution is very limited. The parent body had a large orbital inclination, and was subject to collisions with typical impact speeds higher by a factor of 2 than in the most common situations encountered in the main belt. For the first time we have at disposal the observable outcome of a very recent event to study high-speed collisions involving primitive asteroids.

  19. Asteroids and Dwarf Planets and How to Observe Them

    CERN Document Server

    Dymock, Roger

    2010-01-01

    ASTRONOMERS’ OBSERVING GUIDES provide up-to-date information for amateur astronomers who want to know all about what it is they are observing. This is the basis of the first part of the book. The second part details observing techniques for practical astronomers, working with a range of different instruments. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ We live in a violent universe. The media constantly remind us of the possibility of an object suddenly appearing and hitting Earth. A hit by an asteroid is believed to have spelled the end of the dinosaurs. Such a collision by an object from space could cause another extinction event, if the object were large enough. And such objects are definitely out there. Often called “the vermin of the sky,” asteroids roam our Solar System often unseen. Many have been tracked, and their orbits calculated. But there are still many to be discovered and assessed. Many amateur astronomers are helping in this effo...

  20. Near-Earth Asteroid Physical Observations: 1993-1995

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skiff, B. A.; Buie, M. W.; Bowell, E.

    1996-09-01

    In September 1993, we initiated a regular program of photometric observations of Near-Earth objects. Since that time we have been allocated 5-7 nights per month at the 42'' Hall telescope at Anderson Mesa. There are three goals of our observing program for each asteroid: (1) to obtain an accurate rotation period and characterization of the lightcurve, (2) to obtain the surface color, and (3) to measure the photometric parameters, H and G. All of the lightcurve observations are made in Kron-Cousins R and we always obtain a V-R color. Limited ECAS colors are also obtained when the objects are bright enough. We have secured periods for 9 asteroids, 1864 Daedalus, 1866 Sisyphus, 3200 Phaethon, 4954 Eric, 5693 (1993 EA), 5836 (1993 MF), 6489 (1991 JX), 1993 QP, and 1993 WD. Some of these periods are a confimation of an earlier result but most are new. We obtained colors for all these objects as well as four additional asteroids, 5407 (1992 AX), 1993 UC, 1993 VW, and 1994 LW. We have additional (as yet unreduced) observations of 2062 Aten, 2212 Hephaistos, 3752 Camillo, 5143 Heracles, 5863 (1983 RB), 6053 (1993 BW3), 7025 (1993 QA), 7092 (1992 LC), 1989 VA, 1992 TC, 1994 RC, and 1995 YA3. The fastest rotation period we find is 2.402 hours for 1866 Sisyphus and the slowest is 93QP at ~ 24 hours. The colors for these objects range from V-R=0.34 for 3200 Phaethon to V-R=0.49 for 1866 Sisyphus and 4954 Eric. Most colors fall near V-R=0.43. These observations should help to provide a more complete understanding of the surface properties and rotational states of the Near-Earth asteroids. This work was supported by NASA Grant NAGW-1470.

  1. Synodic periods of asteroids 333, 402, 481, and 800

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denchev, P.; Shkodrov, V.; Ivanova, V.

    2000-08-01

    The asteroids 333 Badenia, 402 Chloe, 481 Emita and 800 Kressmannia have been observed using photoelectric photometry during their 1997 apparations. The obtained synodic periods are: 333 Badenia - 9.96 h; 402 Chloe - 7.111 h; 481 Emita - 14.35 h and 800 Kressmannia - 4.457 h. There are no published periods so far for the first three. We obtained the phase parameters of 402 Chloe, they are H=8.86 and G=0.11.

  2. The mineralogy of ordinary chondrites and implications for asteroid spectrophotometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcsween, Harry Y., Jr.; Bennett, Marvin E., III; Jarosewich, Eugene

    1991-01-01

    Published data from bulk chemical analyses of 94 ordinary chondrites are compiled in a table of normative mineralogy and discussed in detail. Significant variations in olivine, pyroxene, and metal abundance ratios are found within each chondrite class and attributed to redox processes superimposed on initial differences in metal/silicate ratios. The use of the diagrams constructed here to predict the mineralogic characteristics of asteroids on the basis of spectrophotometric observations is suggested.

  3. The young Datura asteroid family Spins, shapes, and population estimate

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vokrouhlický, D.; Pravec, Petr; Ďurech, J.; Bolin, B.; Jedicke, R.; Kušnirák, Peter; Galád, Adrián; Hornoch, Kamil; Kryszczynska, A.; Colas, F.; Moskovitz, N.; Thirouin, A.; Nesvorný, D.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 598, February (2017), A91/1-A91/19 E-ISSN 1432-0746 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP209/12/0229 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA13-01308S Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : celestial mechanics * minor planets * asteroids Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics OBOR OECD: Astronomy (including astrophysics,space science) Impact factor: 5.014, year: 2016

  4. Asteroid Shapes Are Always Close To Fluid Equilibrium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanga, Paolo; Comito, C.; Hestroffer, D.; Richardson, D. C.

    2010-10-01

    The simple evidence that asteroid are composed by solid rocks suggests that their shape can be rather far from the theoretical equilibrium for rotating fluid bodies. The possible fragmented ("rubble-pile") nature of most of them has suggested interpretations based on elasto-plastic models (such as the Mohr-Coulomb theory) that take into account the static behavior of a granular structure. However, these approaches did not incorporate explicitly the possible evolution of shapes in time due to external factors such as crater forming impacts or tidal deformations. We revisited the theory of equilibrium shapes for fluids, quantitatively evaluating - by appropriate metrics - the distance of the observed shapes from fluid equilibrium. This distance turns out to be much smaller than previously expected. On the basis of this evidence, we simulated numerically the evolution of gravitational aggregates having a small degree of internal friction, consistent with the theoretical findings. Our results offer a global scenario for the evolution of asteroid shapes under the action of gradual stresses due to minor impacts, tidal forces and seismic shaking. We show that actual asteroid shapes are consistent with the evolution of aggregates tending towards minimum free energy states. We are able to explain the samples of observed shapes obtained by different techniques. Our findings strongly support a highly porous and fragmented nature for most asteroids, at least in an external layer. Reference: Tanga et al. 2009: ApJ Letters, 706, 1, L197-L202 Acknowledgments: PT and CC have been supported by the "Programme Nationale de Planetologie" of France; DCR acknowledges support by the NASA (grant no. NNX08AM39G issued through the Office of Space Science) and by the NSF (grant no. AST0708110).

  5. On relative velocity in very young asteroid families

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosaev, A.; Plávalová, E.

    2018-04-01

    Asteroid families are groups of minor planets that have a common origin in catastrophic breakup events. The very young compact asteroid clusters are a natural laboratory in which to study impact processes and the dynamics of asteroid orbits. In the first part of the paper, we define the term very young asteroid families (VYF), that is to say, younger than 1.6 Myrs, and explain why we have defined this group as being separate from young families (younger than 100 Myr), due to specific characteristics, in particularly, non-gravitational forces which have a very small effect (which could be negligible) on their dynamics and the role of the initial conditions in VYFs as being more significant. Due to these facts, the way we study VYFs may be different relative to young families. For the most part, the calculation of VYFs' normal component of relative velocity using backward numerical integration, exhibited a clear, deep minimum, which was close to the breakup epoch. The age estimations found while employing this method were in excellent agreement with the established age estimations used by other authors. We confirmed our results with the established age estimation of the Hobson family (365 ± 67 kyrs). Concerning the Emilkowalsky family, we confirmed the results of Nesvorný and Vokrouhlický (2006) (220 ± 30 kyrs), obtaining a far clearer result using the relative velocity method rather than single-orbital element convergence. The case of the Datura family is more complex to study, mainly due to its 9:16 resonance with Mars. We have exemplified that the z-component of relative velocity may prove to be a powerful and useful criterion for VYF age estimations. The studied value of relative velocity may contain information about the ejection velocity. As an additional outcome of this paper, we have introduced two new members of two different VYFs; one new member of the Emilkowalsky family and one of the Hobson family.

  6. 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)

  7. ASPECT CubeSat mission to a binary asteroid

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kohout, Tomáš; Näsilä, A.; Tikka, T.; Muinonen, K.; Penttilä, A.; Kestilä, A.; Kallio, E.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 88, Special volume (2016), s. 283-283 ISSN 0367-5211. [ Nordic Geological Winter Meeting /32./. 13.01.2016-15.01.2016, Helsinki] Institutional support: RVO:67985831 Keywords : CubeSat * asteroid * AIDA * reflectance spectra ASPECT Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy http://www.geologinenseura.fi/bulletin/Special_Volume_1_2016/BGSF-NGWM2016_Abstract_Volume.pdf

  8. Logistics Needs for Potential Deep Space Mission Scenarios Post Asteroid Redirect Crewed Mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Pedro, Jr.; Shultz, Eric; Mattfeld, Bryan; Stromgren, Chel; Goodliff, Kandyce

    2015-01-01

    The Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) is currently being explored as the next step towards deep space human exploration, with the ultimate goal of reaching Mars. NASA is currently investigating a number of potential human exploration missions, which will progressively increase the distance and duration that humans spend away from Earth. Missions include extended human exploration in cis-lunar space which, as conceived, would involve durations of around 60 days, and human missions to Mars, which are anticipated to be as long as 1000 days. The amount of logistics required to keep the crew alive and healthy for these missions is significant. It is therefore important that the design and planning for these missions include accurate estimates of logistics requirements. This paper provides a description of a process and calculations used to estimate mass and volume requirements for crew logistics, including consumables, such as food, personal items, gasses, and liquids. Determination of logistics requirements is based on crew size, mission duration, and the degree of closure of the environmental control life support system (ECLSS). Details are provided on the consumption rates for different types of logistics and how those rates were established. Results for potential mission scenarios are presented, including a breakdown of mass and volume drivers. Opportunities for mass and volume reduction are identified, along with potential threats that could possibly increase requirements.

  9. On the construction of the Kolmogorov normal form for the Trojan asteroids

    CERN Document Server

    Gabern, F; Locatelli, U

    2004-01-01

    In this paper we focus on the stability of the Trojan asteroids for the planar Restricted Three-Body Problem (RTBP), by extending the usual techniques for the neighbourhood of an elliptic point to derive results in a larger vicinity. Our approach is based on the numerical determination of the frequencies of the asteroid and the effective computation of the Kolmogorov normal form for the corresponding torus. This procedure has been applied to the first 34 Trojan asteroids of the IAU Asteroid Catalog, and it has worked successfully for 23 of them. The construction of this normal form allows for computer-assisted proofs of stability. To show it, we have implemented a proof of existence of families of invariant tori close to a given asteroid, for a high order expansion of the Hamiltonian. This proof has been successfully applied to three Trojan asteroids.

  10. Main-belt Asteroids in the K2 Uranus Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnár, L.; Pál, A.; Sárneczky, K.; Szabó, R.; Vinkó, J.; Szabó, Gy. M.; Kiss, Cs.; Hanyecz, O.; Marton, G.; Kiss, L. L.

    2018-02-01

    We present the K2 light curves of a large sample of untargeted main-belt asteroids (MBAs) detected with the Kepler Space Telescope. The asteroids were observed within the Uranus superstamp, a relatively large, continuous field with a low stellar background designed to cover the planet Uranus and its moons during Campaign 8 of the K2 mission. The superstamp offered the possibility of obtaining precise, uninterrupted light curves of a large number of MBAs and thus determining unambiguous rotation rates for them. We obtained photometry for 608 MBAs, and were able to determine or estimate rotation rates for 90 targets, of which 86 had no known values before. In an additional 16 targets we detected incomplete cycles and/or eclipse-like events. We found the median rotation rate to be significantly longer than that of the ground-based observations, indicating that the latter are biased toward shorter rotation rates. Our study highlights the need and benefits of further continuous photometry of asteroids.

  11. Asteroid Rendezvous Mission Design Using Multiobjective Particle Swarm Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ya-zhong Luo

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A new preliminary trajectory design method for asteroid rendezvous mission using multiobjective optimization techniques is proposed. This method can overcome the disadvantages of the widely employed Pork-Chop method. The multiobjective integrated launch window and multi-impulse transfer trajectory design model is formulated, which employes minimum-fuel cost and minimum-time transfer as two objective functions. The multiobjective particle swarm optimization (MOPSO is employed to locate the Pareto solution. The optimization results of two different asteroid mission designs show that the proposed approach can effectively and efficiently demonstrate the relations among the mission characteristic parameters such as launch time, transfer time, propellant cost, and number of maneuvers, which will provide very useful reference for practical asteroid mission design. Compared with the PCP method, the proposed approach is demonstrated to be able to provide much more easily used results, obtain better propellant-optimal solutions, and have much better efficiency. The MOPSO shows a very competitive performance with respect to the NSGA-II and the SPEA-II; besides a proposed boundary constraint optimization strategy is testified to be able to improve its performance.

  12. 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).

  13. Machine learning and next-generation asteroid surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nugent, Carrie R.; Dailey, John; Cutri, Roc M.; Masci, Frank J.; Mainzer, Amy K.

    2017-10-01

    Next-generation surveys such as NEOCam (Mainzer et al., 2016) will sift through tens of millions of point source detections daily to detect and discover asteroids. This requires new, more efficient techniques to distinguish between solar system objects, background stars and galaxies, and artifacts such as cosmic rays, scattered light and diffraction spikes.Supervised machine learning is a set of algorithms that allows computers to classify data on a training set, and then apply that classification to make predictions on new datasets. It has been employed by a broad range of fields, including computer vision, medical diagnoses, economics, and natural language processing. It has also been applied to astronomical datasets, including transient identification in the Palomar Transient Factory pipeline (Masci et al., 2016), and in the Pan-STARRS1 difference imaging (D. E. Wright et al., 2015).As part of the NEOCam extended phase A work we apply machine learning techniques to the problem of asteroid detection. Asteroid detection is an ideal application of supervised learning, as there is a wealth of metrics associated with each extracted source, and suitable training sets are easily created. Using the vetted NEOWISE dataset (E. L. Wright et al., 2010, Mainzer et al., 2011) as a proof-of-concept of this technique, we applied the python package sklearn. We report on reliability, feature set selection, and the suitability of various algorithms.

  14. Characterization of Near-Earth Asteroids Using KMTNET-SAAO

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Erasmus, N.; Trilling, D. E.; Sickafoose, A. A.; Van Gend, C. [South African Astronomical Observatory, Cape Town, 7925 (South Africa); Mommert, M. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ 86001 (United States); Hora, J. L., E-mail: nerasmus@saao.ac.za [Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA 02138-1516 (United States)

    2017-10-01

    We present here VRI spectrophotometry of 39 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) observed with the Sutherland, South Africa, node of the Korea Microlensing Telescope Network (KMTNet). Of the 39 NEAs, 19 were targeted, but because of KMTNet’s large 2° × 2° field of view, 20 serendipitous NEAs were also captured in the observing fields. Targeted observations were performed within 44 days (median: 16 days, min: 4 days) of each NEA’s discovery date. Our broadband spectrophotometry is reliable enough to distinguish among four asteroid taxonomies and we were able to confidently categorize 31 of the 39 observed targets as either an S-, C-, X-, or D-type asteroid by means of a Machine Learning algorithm approach. Our data suggest that the ratio between “stony” S-type NEAs and “not-stony” (C+X+D)-type NEAs, with H magnitudes between 15 and 25, is roughly 1:1. Additionally, we report ∼1 hr light curve data for each NEA, and of the 39 targets, we were able to resolve the complete rotation period and amplitude for six targets and report lower limits for the remaining targets.

  15. The role of "asteroid taxis" at mastering of Solar system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steklov, A. F.; Vidmachenko, A. P.

    2018-05-01

    At the present time, two main tendencies can be considered for the solar system to be habitable: 1) to do something with the objects of the solar system in order to make them suitable for life; and 2), it is necessary to make it so that the interplanetary space of the solar system also becomes suitable for life. We believe that it is better to combine these two trends. To this end, we must develop a methodology for constructing special settlements at asteroids and cometary nuclei. And then, it is necessary to build settlements - the "technospheres" - on the most diverse bodies in the Solar system: asteroids, cometary nuclei, satellites of planets and even on some planets. And, first of all, it is highly desirable to use the own resources of the listed objects. Such "technospheres" should be long-term settlements in interplanetary space and at planetoids. To save energy resources, it is necessary to use near-Earth asteroids enriched with water ice. To successfully implement these concepts, it is necessary at least by two orders of magnitude reduce the cost of such settlements.

  16. Characterization of Near-Earth Asteroids Using KMTNET-SAAO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erasmus, N.; Mommert, M.; Trilling, D. E.; Sickafoose, A. A.; van Gend, C.; Hora, J. L.

    2017-10-01

    We present here VRI spectrophotometry of 39 near-Earth asteroids (NEAs) observed with the Sutherland, South Africa, node of the Korea Microlensing Telescope Network (KMTNet). Of the 39 NEAs, 19 were targeted, but because of KMTNet’s large 2° × 2° field of view, 20 serendipitous NEAs were also captured in the observing fields. Targeted observations were performed within 44 days (median: 16 days, min: 4 days) of each NEA’s discovery date. Our broadband spectrophotometry is reliable enough to distinguish among four asteroid taxonomies and we were able to confidently categorize 31 of the 39 observed targets as either an S-, C-, X-, or D-type asteroid by means of a Machine Learning algorithm approach. Our data suggest that the ratio between “stony” S-type NEAs and “not-stony” (C+X+D)-type NEAs, with H magnitudes between 15 and 25, is roughly 1:1. Additionally, we report ∼1 hr light curve data for each NEA, and of the 39 targets, we were able to resolve the complete rotation period and amplitude for six targets and report lower limits for the remaining targets.

  17. Planetary chaos and the (In)stability of Hungaria asteroids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ćuk, Matija; Nesvorný, David

    2018-04-01

    The Hungaria asteroid group is located interior to the main asteroid belt, with semimajor axes between 1.8 and 2 AU, low eccentricities and inclinations of 16-35 degrees. Recently, it has been proposed that Hungaria asteroids are a secularly declining population that may be related to the Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB) impactors (Cuk, 2012; Bottke et al., 2012). While Cuk (2012) and Bottke et al. (2012) have reproduced a Hungaria-like population that declined exponentially, the real Hungarias were never confirmed to be unstable to the same degree. Here we find that the stability of Hungarias is strongly dependent on the evolution of the eccentricity of Mars, which is chaotic and unpredictable on Gyr timescales. We find that the high Martian eccentricity chiefly affects Hungarias through close approaches with Mars, rather than planetary secular modes. However, current minimum perihelia of Hungarias (over Myr timescales) are not diagnostic of their long-term stability due to a number of secular and mean motion resonances affecting the Hungaria region Milani et al., 2010. We conclude that planetary chaos makes it impossible to determine the effective lifetimes of observed Hungarias. Furthermore, long-term changes of Martian eccentricity could lead to variable Hungaria loss over time. We speculate that some of the most stable Hungarias may have been placed in their present orbit when the eccentricity of Mars was significantly higher than today.

  18. 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. .

  19. The nature of C-class asteroids from 3-micron spectrophotometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feierberg, M. A.; Lebofsky, L. A.; Tholen, D. J.

    1985-01-01

    Narrowband spectrophotometry between 2.3 and 3.5 micrometers is presented for 14 main-belt C asteroids greater than 100 km in diameter. Absorption features at 3 micrometers due to water of hydration are present in the spectra of nine of the asteroids, with intensities ranging from 6 to 23 percent. The other five asteroids have no such absorption greater than 2 percent in intensity. The present C-asteroid population may be fragments of larger parent bodies with anhydrous C3-like cores and hydrated C1I- or C2M-like mantles.

  20. Overview of Mission Design for NASA Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strange, Nathan; Landau, Damon; McElrath, Timothy; Lantoine, Gregory; Lam, Try; McGuire, Melissa; Burke, Laura; Martini, Michael; Dankanich, John

    2013-01-01

    Part of NASA's new asteroid initiative would be a robotic mission to capture a roughly four to ten meter asteroid and redirect its orbit to place it in translunar space. Once in a stable storage orbit at the Moon, astronauts would then visit the asteroid for science investigations, to test in space resource extraction, and to develop experience with human deep space missions. This paper discusses the mission design techniques that would enable the redirection of a 100-1000 metric ton asteroid into lunar orbit with a 40-50 kW Solar Electric Propulsion (SEP) system.