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    Physical properties and dynamical relation of the circular depressions on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

    Ip, W.-H. and Lai, I.-L. and Lee, J.-C. and Cheng, Y.-C. and Li, Y. and Lin, Z.-Y. and Vincent, J.-B. and Besse, S. and Sierks, H. and Barbieri, C. and Lamy, P.L. and Rodrigo, R. and Koschny, D. and Rickman, H. and Keller, H.U. and Agarwal, J. and A’Hearn, M.F. and Barucci, M.A. and Bertaux, J.-L. and Bertini, I. and Bodewits, D. and Boudreault, S. and Cremonese, G. and Da Deppo, V. and Davidsson, B. and Debei, S. and De Cecco, M. and El-Maarry, Mohamed Ramy and Fornasier, S. and Fulle, M. and Groussin, O. and Gutiérrez, P.J. and Güttler, C. and Hviid, S.F. and Jorda, L. and Knollenberg, J. and Kovacs, G. and Kramm, J.-R. and Kührt, E. and Küppers, M. and La Forgia, F. and Lara, L.M. and Lazzarin, M. and López-Moreno, J.J. and Lowry, S. and Marchi, S. and Marzari, F. and Michalik, H. and Mottola, S. and Naletto, G. and Oklay, N. and Pajola, M. and Thomas, N. and Toth, E. and Tubiana, C. (2016) Physical properties and dynamical relation of the circular depressions on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Astronomy & Astrophysics 591 , A132. ISSN 0004-6361.

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    Aims. We aim to characterize the circular depressions of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko and investigate whether such surface morphology of a comet nucleus is related to the cumulative sublimation effect since becoming a Jupiter family comet (JFC). Methods. The images from the Rosetta/OSIRIS science camera experiment are used to construct size frequency distributions of the circular depression structures on comet 67P and they are compared with those of the JFCs 81P/Wild 2, 9P/Tempel 1, and 103P/Hartley 2. The orbital evolutionary histories of these comets over the past 100 000 yr are analyzed statistically and compared with each other. Results. The global distribution of the circular depressions over the surface of 67P is charted and classified. Descriptions are given to the characteristics and cumulative size frequency distribution of the identified features. Orbital statistics of the JFCs visited by spacecraft are derived. Conclusions. The size frequency distribution of the circular depressions is found to have a similar power law distribution to those of 9P/Tempel 1 and 81P/Wild 2. This might imply that they could have been generated by the same process. Orbital integration calculation shows that the surface erosion histories of 81P/Wild 2, and 9P/Tempel 1 could be shorter than those of 67P, 103 P/Hartley 2 and 19P/Borrelly. From this point of view, the circular depressions could be dated back to the pre-JFC phase or the transneptunian phase of these comets. The north-south asymmetry in the distribution of the circular depressions could be associated with the heterogeneous structure of the nucleus of comet 67P and/or the solar insolation history.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): comets: individual: 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko
    School: School of Science > Earth and Planetary Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2018 15:30
    Last Modified: 09 Nov 2018 15:30


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