3 years ago

Constraining the ratio of micrometeoroids from Short and Long Period Comets at 1 AU from LADEE observations of the Lunar Dust Cloud

Jamey R. Szalay, Mihály Horányi, Petr Pokorný, Diego Janches, David Nesvorný, Menelaos Sarantos
We interpret recent observations of the secondary dust ejecta cloud around the Moon from the Lunar Dust Experiment (LDEX) on-board the NASA Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft with help from dynamical models of meteoroids. Results suggest that in order to match the spatial structure of observed ejecta profiles, the flux of meteoroids on the Moon must be primarily provided by short period comets with an excess ratio of at least 1.3:1 compared to long period comets. This ratio increases significantly if the dependence of the ejecta yield on impactor velocity is stronger than generally believed. The model accounts for the orbital geometry of LADEE and shows no indication of a large asymmetry in the meteoroid flux impacting from the Helion and Anti-helion directions.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/2017GL076065

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