Discovery and physical properties of Dactyl, a satellite of asteroid 243 Ida
Chapman, C.R.(1) and Veverka, J.(2) and Thomas, P.C.(2) and Klaasen, K.(3) and Belton, M.J.S.(4) and Harch, A.(2) and McEwen, A.(5) and Johnson, T.V.(3) and Helfenstein, P.(2) and Davies, M.E.(6) and Merline, W.J.(1) and Denk, T. (1995) Discovery and physical properties of Dactyl, a satellite of asteroid 243 Ida. Nature, 6525, pp. 783-785. Macmillan Magazine Ltd., London, Great Britain.
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Observations of stellar occultions by asteroids have suggested that some may have satellites. But given the absence of any confirmatory evidence, the prevailing view has been that although such satellites probably do exist, they are likely to be rare. Here we report the discovery by the Galileo spacecraft of a satellites associated with the asteroid 243 Ida. Although the satellite, Dactyl, is only 1.6 km across, it has been imaged with sufficient resolution for geological analysis. We describe the physical properties of Dactyl, with emphasis on its notably smooth shape, its crater population (which includes a crater chain) and its photometric properties. We find that, spectroscopically, Dactyl resembles both Ida and the other members of the Koronis asteroid family, implying a similar composition; small spectral differences may reflect a space weathering process that slightly alters the colours with time. We argue that Dactyl originated during the breakup of the Koronis parent body, and that satellites could be common around other asteroids (particularly members of asteroid families).
|Title:||Discovery and physical properties of Dactyl, a satellite of asteroid 243 Ida|
|Journal or Publication Title:||Nature|
|In ISI Web of Science:||Yes|
|Page Range:||pp. 783-785|
|Publisher:||Macmillan Magazine Ltd., London, Great Britain|
|Keywords:||Asteroid; Dactyl; Galileo; Ida; Photometric properties; satellite; shape|
|HGF - Research field:||UNSPECIFIED|
|HGF - Program:||Space|
|HGF - Program Themes:||W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums|
|DLR - Research area:||UNSPECIFIED|
|DLR - Program:||W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums|
|DLR - Research theme (Project):||UNSPECIFIED|
|Institutes and Institutions:||Institute of Planetary Research > Institut für Planetenerkundung|
|Deposited By:||elib DLR-Beauftragter|
|Deposited On:||02 Apr 2006|
|Last Modified:||27 Apr 2009 09:49|
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