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Title: OSSOS. II. A SHARP TRANSITION IN THE ABSOLUTE MAGNITUDE DISTRIBUTION OF THE KUIPER BELT’S SCATTERING POPULATION

We measure the absolute magnitude, H, distribution, dN(H) ∝ 10{sup αH}, of the scattering Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) as a proxy for their size-frequency distribution. We show that the H-distribution of the scattering TNOs is not consistent with a single-slope distribution, but must transition around H{sub g} ∼ 9 to either a knee with a shallow slope or to a divot, which is a differential drop followed by second exponential distribution. Our analysis is based on a sample of 22 scattering TNOs drawn from three different TNO surveys—the Canada–France Ecliptic Plane Survey, Alexandersen et al., and the Outer Solar System Origins Survey, all of which provide well-characterized detection thresholds—combined with a cosmogonic model for the formation of the scattering TNO population. Our measured absolute magnitude distribution result is independent of the choice of cosmogonic model. Based on our analysis, we estimate that the number of scattering TNOs is (2.4–8.3) × 10{sup 5} for H{sub r} < 12. A divot H-distribution is seen in a variety of formation scenarios and may explain several puzzles in Kuiper Belt science. We find that a divot H-distribution simultaneously explains the observed scattering TNO, Neptune Trojan, Plutino, and Centaur H-distributions while simultaneously predicting a large enough scattering TNO population to act as the solemore » supply of the Jupiter-Family Comets.« less
Authors:
 [1] ; ; ;  [2] ; ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [5] ;  [6] ;  [7] ;  [8]
  1. Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Victoria, Elliott Building, 3800 Finnerty Road, Victoria, British Columbia V8P 5C2 (Canada)
  2. National Research Council of Canada, Victoria, BC (Canada)
  3. Department of Physics and Astronomy, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC (Canada)
  4. Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution for Science, Washington, DC (United States)
  5. Institut UTINAM, CNRS-Université de Franche-Comté, Besançon (France)
  6. Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Academia Sinica, Taiwan (China)
  7. Astronomical Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Tatranská Lomnica, The Slovak Republic (Slovakia)
  8. University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22520020
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astronomical Journal (Online); Journal Volume: 151; 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; ASTRONOMY; COMETS; DETECTION; JUPITER PLANET; NEPTUNE PLANET; ORIGIN; SCATTERING; SOLAR SYSTEM