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Physical properties of near-Earth asteroid 2011 MD

Mommert, M. and Farnocchia, D. and Hora, J. L. and Chesley, S. R. and Trilling, D. E. and Chodas, P. W. and Mueller, M. and Harris, A. W. and Smith, H. A. and Fazio, G. G. (2014) Physical properties of near-Earth asteroid 2011 MD. The Astrophysical Journal, 789 (1), L22. American Astronomical Society. doi: 10.1088/2041-8205/789/1/L22. ISSN 0004-637X.

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/2041-8205/789/1/L22


We report on observations of near-Earth asteroid 2011 MD with the Spitzer Space Telescope. We have spent 19.9 hr of observing time with channel 2 (4.5μm) of the Infrared Array Camera and detected the target within the 2σ positional uncertainty ellipse. Using an asteroid thermophysical model and a model of nongravitational forces acting upon the object, we constrain the physical properties of 2011 MD, based on the measured flux density and available astrometry data. We estimate 2011 MD to be 6 (+4,−2)m in diameter with a geometric albedo of 0.3 (+0.4,−0.2) (uncertainties are 1σ). We find the asteroid’s most probable bulk density to be 1.1 (+0.7,−0.5) g cm−3, which implies a total mass of 50–350 t and a macroporosity of greater than or equal to 65%, assuming a material bulk density typical of non-primitive meteorite materials. A high degree of macroporosity suggests that 2011 MD is a rubble-pile asteroid, the rotation of which is more likely to be retrograde than prograde.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/89600/
Document Type:Article
Title:Physical properties of near-Earth asteroid 2011 MD
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Mommert, M.Northern Arizona University, PO Box 6010, Flagstaff, AZ 86011, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Farnocchia, D.JPL, Caltech, Pasadena, CA 91109, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Hora, J. L.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, Cambridge, MA, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Chesley, S. R.JPL, Caltech, Pasadena, CA 91109, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Trilling, D. E.Department of Physics and Astronomy, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ 86001, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Chodas, P. W.JPL, Caltech, Pasadena, CA 91109, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Mueller, M.SRON, 9700 AV Groningen, The NetherlandsUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Smith, H. A.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden Street, MS-65, Cambridge, MA 02138, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Fazio, G. G.Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden Street, MS-65, Cambridge, MA 02138, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Journal or Publication Title:The Astrophysical Journal
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Page Range:L22
EditorsEmailEditor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Publisher:American Astronomical Society
Keywords:Infrared, Minor planets, Near-Earth asteroids: individual (2011 MD)
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Space Exploration
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Exploration of the Solar System
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research
Deposited By: Harris, Prof. Alan
Deposited On:04 Jul 2014 14:43
Last Modified:06 Sep 2019 15:30

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