Statistics of encounters in the trans-Neptunian region

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Title: Statistics of encounters in the trans-Neptunian region
Authors: Dell'Oro, Aldo | Campo Bagatin, Adriano | Benavídez, Paula Gabriela | Alemañ Berenguer, Rafael Andrés
Research Group/s: Astronomía y Astrofísica
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Física, Ingeniería de Sistemas y Teoría de la Señal
Keywords: Kuiper belt: general
Knowledge Area: Física Aplicada
Issue Date: 15-Oct-2013
Publisher: EDP Sciences
Citation: Astronomy & Astrophysics. 2013, 558: A95. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201321461
Abstract: The inventory of the populations of trans-Neptunian objects (TNO) has grown considerably over the last decade. As for other groups of small bodies in our solar system, TNOs are expected to have experienced a collisional evolution owing to their mutual impacts. The knowledge of the statistics of collisions, including determination of the rate of mutual collisions and the distribution of the impact velocity, is indeed a fundamental prerequisite for developing models of collisional evolution. We revised the evaluation of those statistical parameters for TNOs provided more than ten years ago on the basis of a much more limited sample of objects than currently available. We used the Canada-France Ecliptic Plane Survey (CFEPS) L7 model to extract an unbiased sample of orbits for TNOs, while the statistical parameters of impact are computed using a statistical tool. We investigated the statistics of impacts among TNOs for the whole population and for different dynamical subgroups. Moreover, we investigated the statistics of collisions between subgroups with crossing orbits. The peculiar dynamical behavior of objects in resonant orbits is taken into account. Our present computation of the probabilities of collision are 20% to 50% lower than previous estimates, while mean impact velocities turn out to be about 70% higher. For instance, the rate of collisions among Plutinos, expressed in terms of the so-called mean intrinsic probability of collision, results to be (3.90 ± 0.01) × 10-22 km-2 yr-1 and the mean impact velocity is 2.46 ± 0.01 km s-1. We also find that the distributions of impact velocities seem to be quite different from pure Maxwellian distributions. These results can be useful in developing models of the collisional evolution in the trans-Neptunian region.
Sponsor: A.C.B. and P.G.B. acknowledge funding by the national program of the Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación, project grant AYA2011-30106-C02-02.
ISSN: 0004-6361 (Print) | 1432-0746 (Online)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201321461
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © ESO, 2013
Peer Review: si
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Appears in Collections:INV - Astronomía y Astrofísica - Artículos de Revistas

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