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Explore NEOs: The Warm Spitzer NEO survey

Trilling, D. and Bhattacharya, B. and Bottke, W. and Chesley, S. and Delbo, M. and Emery, J. and Fazio, G. and Harris, A.W. and Hora, J. and Mainzer, A. and Mueller, M. and Penprase, B. and Smith, H and Spahr, T and Stansberry, J.A. and Thomas, C.A. (2009) Explore NEOs: The Warm Spitzer NEO survey. In: Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 41 (3). AAS. American Astronomical Society, DPS meeting #41, 04 Oct - 09 Oct 2009 , Puert Rico, USA.

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The majority of Near Earth Objects (NEOs) originated in collisions between bodies in the main asteroid belt and have found their way into near Earth space via complex and little understood dynamical interactions. This transport of material from the main belt into the inner Solar System has shaped the histories of the terrestrial planets. However, despite their scientific importance, key characteristics of the NEO population --- such as the size distribution, mix of albedos and mineralogies, and contributions from so-called dead or dormant comets --- remain largely unexplored; some 99% of all presently known NEOs are essentially uncharacterized. We have an approved 500 hour Warm Spitzer program to derive albedos and diameters for some 700 NEOs. We will measure the size distribution of this population to understand fundamental physical processes that occur among the small bodies of our Solar System. We will measure the fraction of NEOs likely to be dead comets, with implications for the flux of organic material onto the Earth. We will measure the NEO albedo distribution, which indicates the compositional diversity among these small bodies. We will study properties of individual NEOs, including their surface properties and potentially their densities, and detailed properties of a subset of well-characterized objects. Our Warm Spitzer program will begin execution in August, 2009, and will return on average one target per day for the next two years. We will present the first results from our program at the DPS meeting. This work is based on observations made with the Spitzer Space Telescope, which is operated by JPL/Caltech, under a contract with NASA. Support for this work was provided by NASA through an award issued by JPL/Caltech.

Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Title:Explore NEOs: The Warm Spitzer NEO survey
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Trilling, D.Northern Arizona Univ., USA
Bhattacharya, B.NASA Herschel Science Center, USA
Bottke, W.Southwest Research Institute, USA
Chesley, S.NASA-JPL, USA
Delbo, M.Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur, France
Emery, J.University of Tenessee, USA
Fazio, G.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA
Hora, J.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA
Mainzer, A.NASA-JPL, USA
Mueller, M.University of Arizona, USA
Penprase, B.Pomona College, USA
Smith, HHarvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA
Spahr, THarvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA
Stansberry, J.A.University of Arizona, USA
Thomas, C.A.Northern Arizona Univ., USA
Date:September 2009
Journal or Publication Title:Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society
Refereed publication:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Series Name:Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society
Keywords:Near-Earth objects, asteroids, Warm Spitzer
Event Title:American Astronomical Society, DPS meeting #41
Event Location:Puert Rico, USA
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:04 Oct - 09 Oct 2009
Organizer:American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences
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: Prof. Alan Harris
Deposited On:11 Nov 2009 08:30
Last Modified:11 Nov 2009 08:30

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