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Tumbling asteroids

Pravec, Petr and Harris, Alan W. and Scheirich, P. and Kušnirák, P. and Šarounová, L. and Hergenrother, Cark W. and Mottola, Stefano and Hicks, Michael and Masi, Gianluca and Krugly, Yura N. and Shevchenko, V.G. and Nolan, Michael C. and Howell, Ellen S. and Kaasalainen, Mikko and Galád, A. and Brown, P. and DeGraff, D. R. and Lambert, J. V. and Cooney Jr., V. R. and Foglia, S. (2004) Tumbling asteroids. Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies, 173 (1), pp. 108-131. Elsevier. DOI: doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2004.07.021.

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Abstract

We present both a review of earlier data and new results on non-principal axis rotators (tumblers) among asteroids. Among new tumblers found, the best data we have are for 2002 TD60, 2000WL107, and (54789) 2001 MZ7—each of them shows a lightcurve with two frequencies (full terms with linear combinations of the two frequencies are present in the lightcurve). For 2002 TD60, we have constructed a physical model of the NPA rotation. Other recent objects which have been found to be likely tumblers based on their lightcurves that do not fit with a single periodicity are 2002 NY40, (16067) 1999 RH27, and (5645) 1990 SP. We have done a statistical analysis of the present sample of the population of NPA rotators. It appears that most asteroids larger than ~ 0.4 km with estimated damping timescales (Harris, 1994, Icarus 107, 209) of 4.5 byr and longer are NPA rotators. The statistic of two short-period tumblers (D = 0.04 and 0.4 km) with non-zero tensile strength suggests that for them the quantity μQ/T , where μ is the mechanical rigidity, Q is the elastic dissipation factor, and T is a spin excitation age (i.e., a time elapsed since the last significant spin excitation event), is greater by two to four orders of magnitude than the larger, likely rubble-pile tumblers. Among observational conditions and selection effects affecting detections of NPA rotations, there is a bias against detection of low-amplitude (small elongation) tumblers.

Document Type:Article
Title:Tumbling asteroids
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Pravec, PetrAstronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Fricova 1, CZ-25165 Ondrejov, Czech Republic
Harris, Alan W.Space Science Institute, Boulder, CO 80301, USA
Scheirich, P.Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Fricova 1, CZ-25165 Ondrejov, Czech Republic
Kušnirák, P.Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Fricova 1, CZ-25165 Ondrejov, Czech Republic
Šarounová, L.Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Fricova 1, CZ-25165 Ondrejov, Czech Republic
Hergenrother, Cark W.Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA
Mottola, StefanoUNSPECIFIED
Hicks, MichaelJet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, 4800 Oak Grove Drive, Pasadena, CA 91109, USA
Masi, GianlucaPhysics Department, University of Rome “Tor Vergata”, Via della Ricerca Scientifica 1, 00133 Rome, Italy
Krugly, Yura N.Institute of Astronomy of Kharkiv National University, Sumska Str. 35, Kharkiv 61022, Ukraine
Shevchenko, V.G.Institute of Astronomy of Kharkiv National University, Sumska Str. 35, Kharkiv 61022, Ukraine
Nolan, Michael C.Arecibo Observatory, National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center, PR 00612, USA
Howell, Ellen S.Arecibo Observatory, National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center, PR 00612, USA
Kaasalainen, MikkoDepartment of Mathematics/Rolf Nevanlinna Institute, University of Helsinki, PO Box 4, FIN-00014, Finland
Galád, A.Modra Observatory, Astronomical Institute, FMFI Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovak Republic
Brown, P.Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Western Ontario, London, ON N6A 3K7, Canada
DeGraff, D. R.Alfred University, 1 Saxon Drive, Alfred, NY 14802, USA
Lambert, J. V.Air Force Maui Optical and Supercomputing Facility, Kihei, HI 96753, USA
Cooney Jr., V. R.Blackberry Observatory, 1927 Fairview Dr., Port Allen, LA 70767, USA
Foglia, S.Serafino Zani Observatory, Lumezzane, I-25065, Italy
Date:25 September 2004
Journal or Publication Title:Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies
Volume:173
DOI:doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2004.07.021
Page Range:pp. 108-131
Publisher:Elsevier
Status:Published
Keywords:Asteroids, excited rotation, photometry
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):W - Vorhaben Asteroiden und Kometen (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Asteroids and Comets
Deposited By: Dr.phys. Stefano Mottola
Deposited On:24 Jan 2007
Last Modified:12 Dec 2013 20:08

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