3 years ago

Disrupted asteroid P/2016 G1. II. Follow-up observations from the Hubble Space Telescope.

A. Cabrera-Lavers, F.J. Pozuelos, N. Pinilla-Alonso, J. Licandro, M. Mutchler, F. Moreno

After the early observations of the disrupted asteroid P/2016 G1 with the 10.4m Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC), and the modeling of the dust ejecta, we have performed a follow-up observational campaign of this object using the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) during two epochs (June 28 and July 11, 2016). The analysis of these HST images with the same model inputs obtained from the GTC images revealed a good consistency with the predicted evolution from the GTC images, so that the model is applicable to the whole observational period from late April to early July 2016. This result confirms that the resulting dust ejecta was caused by a relatively short-duration event with onset about 350 days before perihelion, and spanning about 30 days (HWHM). For a size distribution of particles with a geometric albedo of 0.15, having radii limits of 1 $\mu$m and 1 cm, and following a power-law with index --3.0, the total dust mass ejected is $\sim$2$\times$10$^7$ kg. As was the case with the GTC observations, no condensations in the images that could be attributed to a nucleus or fragments released after the disruption event were found. However, the higher limiting magnitude reachable with the HST images in comparison with those from GTC allowed us to impose a more stringent upper limit to the observed fragments of $\sim$30 m.

Publisher URL: http://arxiv.org/abs/1711.01793

DOI: arXiv:1711.01793v1

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