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Simultaneous visible-near IR photometric study of Kuiper Belt Object surfaces with the ESO/Very Large Telescopes

Abstract : We present simultaneous visible-near-IR (BVRIJHK) photometry of 8 Kuiper belt objects (KBOs) and 4 Centaurs. The observations were carried out using two 8m-units of the ESO/Very Large Telescope operated simultaneously on November 29 and 30, 2000. The KBOs displayed linear reflectivity spectra in the optical with a wide range of slopes from neutral (solar) to very red. In most cases, the reflectivity spectra are linear from B to J bands. We notice a change of regime in the spectra which flatten toward the H and K bandpasses. (33128) 1998 BU48 even has a significantly negative H-K value. Only (54598) 2000 QC243 does not flatten in the infra-red. (24835) 1995 SM55 has a noticeably blue spectrum in the near-IR which might be indicative of water ice absorption features. We also present an empirical model for KBO surface evolution, based on models from \cite{LJ96} and \cite{Stern95}, in which surface colors evolve because of collisions. In the model presented here we propose that cometary activity can refresh the surface. This model predicts that (1) small (e.g. ≪80 km in radius) KBOs should have color variations with rotation, (2) the larger objects should display uniform colors, (3) there should be no color dependence with inclination for objects >100 km in radius, and (4) very distant KBOs are fully irradiated.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03796973
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 5, 2022 - 4:24:43 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, October 6, 2022 - 3:48:26 AM

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Audrey Delsanti, Olivier Hainaut, E. Jourdeuil, Karen J. Meech, Hermann Boehnhardt, et al.. Simultaneous visible-near IR photometric study of Kuiper Belt Object surfaces with the ESO/Very Large Telescopes. Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A, 2004, 417, pp.1145-1158. ⟨10.1051/0004-6361:20034182⟩. ⟨hal-03796973⟩

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