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Title: New active asteroid 313P/Gibbs

We present initial observations of the newly discovered active asteroid 313P/Gibbs (formerly P/2014 S4), taken to characterize its nucleus and comet-like activity. The central object has a radius ∼0.5 km (geometric albedo 0.05 assumed). We find no evidence for secondary nuclei and set (with qualifications) an upper limit to the radii of such objects near 20 m, assuming the same albedo. Both aperture photometry and a morphological analysis of the ejected dust show that mass-loss is continuous at rates ∼0.2–0.4 kg s{sup −1}, inconsistent with an impact origin. Large dust particles, with radii ∼50–100 μm, dominate the optical appearance. At 2.4 AU from the Sun, the surface equilibrium temperatures are too low for thermal or desiccation stresses to be responsible for the ejection of dust. No gas is spectroscopically detected (limiting the gas mass-loss rate to <1.8 kg s{sup −1}). However, the protracted emission of dust seen in our data and the detection of another episode of dust release near perihelion, in archival observations from 2003, are highly suggestive of an origin by the sublimation of ice. Coincidentally, the orbit of 313P/Gibbs is similar to those of several active asteroids independently suspected to be ice sublimators, including P/2012 T1, 238P/Read,more » and 133P/Elst–Pizarro, suggesting that ice is abundant in the outer asteroid belt.« less
Authors:
; ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [5] ;  [6]
  1. Department of Earth, Planetary and Space Sciences, UCLA, 595 Charles Young Drive East, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1567 (United States)
  2. Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Max-Planck-Str. 2, D-37191 Katlenburg-Lindau (Germany)
  3. Unidad de Astronomía, Fac. de Ciencias Básicas, Universidad de Antofagasta, Avda. U. de Antofagasta 02800, Antofagasta (Chile)
  4. The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, 11100 Johns Hopkins Road, Laurel, Maryland, MD 20723 (United States)
  5. Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States)
  6. Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, 1629 E. University Blvd. Tucson AZ 85721-0092 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22342101
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astronomical Journal (New York, N.Y. Online); Journal Volume: 149; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; APERTURES; ASTEROIDS; COMETS; DETECTION; DUSTS; EMISSION; EQUILIBRIUM; ICE; MASS TRANSFER; ORBITS; PHOTOMETRY; PLANETS; STELLAR WINDS; STRESSES; SUBLIMATION; SUN