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    Surface changes on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko suggest a more active past

    El-Maarry, Mohamed Ramy and Groussin, O. and Thomas, N. and Pajola, M. and Auger, A.-T. and Davidsson, B. and Hu, X. and Hviid, S. F. and Knollenberg, J. and Güttler, C. and Tubiana, C. and Fornasier, S. and Feller, C. and Hasselmann, P. and Vincent, J.-B. and Sierks, H. and Barbieri, C. and Lamy, P. and Rodrigo, R. and Koschny, D. and Keller, H.U. and Rickman, H. and A’Hearn, M.F. and Barucci, M.A. and Bertaux, J.-L. and Bertini, I. and Besse, S. and Bodewits, D. and Cremonese, G. and Da Deppo, V. and Debei, S. and De Cecco, M. and Deller, J. and Deshapriya, J.D.P. and Fulle, M. and Gutierrez, P.J. and Hofmann, M. and Ip, W.-H. and Jorda, L. and Kovacs, G. and Kramm, J.-R. and Kührt, E. and Küppers, M. and Lara, L.M. and Lazzarin, M. and Lin, Z.-Yi and Lopez Moreno, J.J. and Marchi, S. and Marzari, F. and Mottola, S. and Naletto, G. and Oklay, N. and Pommerol, A. and Preusker, F. and Scholten, F. and Shi, X. (2017) Surface changes on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko suggest a more active past. Science 355 (6332), pp. 1392-1395. ISSN 0036-8075.

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    Abstract

    The Rosetta spacecraft spent ~2 years orbiting comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, most of it at distances that allowed surface characterization and monitoring at submeter scales. From December 2014 to June 2016, numerous localized changes were observed, which we attribute to cometary-specific weathering, erosion, and transient events driven by exposure to sunlight and other processes. While the localized changes suggest compositional or physical heterogeneity, their scale has not resulted in substantial alterations to the comet’s landscape. This suggests that most of the major landforms were created early in the comet’s current orbital configuration. They may even date from earlier if the comet had a larger volatile inventory, particularly of CO or CO2 ices, or contained amorphous ice, which could have triggered activity at greater distances from the Sun.

    Metadata

    Item Type: Article
    School: Birkbeck Schools and Departments > School of Science > Earth and Planetary Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 17 Oct 2018 11:36
    Last Modified: 17 Oct 2018 11:36
    URI: http://eprints.bbk.ac.uk/id/eprint/24696

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