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Journal Articles Comptes Rendus. Physique Year : 2007

Formes d'astéroïdes et formation de satellites : rôle de la réaccumulation gravitationnelle

Abstract

Asteroid shapes and satellites: role of gravitational reaccumulation. Following current evidences, it is widely accepted that many asteroids would be "gravitational aggregates", i.e. bodies lacking internal cohesion. They could mainly be originated during the catastrophic disruption of some parent bodies, through the gravitational reaccumulation of the resulting fragments. The same events produced the dynamical families that we observe. In this work we address the problem of the origin of shapes of gravitational aggregates, that could contain signatures of their origin. We use a N-body code to simulate the collapse of a cloud of fragments, with a variety of initial velocity distributions and total angular momentum. The fragments are treated as inhelastic spheres, that rapidly accumulate to form rotating aggregates. The resulting shapes and rotational properties are compared with theoretical predictions. The results show that only a precise category of shapes (flattened spheroids) are created via this mechanism. This may provide interesting constraints on the evolution of asteroid shapes, in particular for those with one or more satellites.
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Dates and versions

insu-00207162 , version 1 (17-01-2008)

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Jean-François Consigli, Paolo Tanga, Carlo Comito, D. Hestroffer, Derek C. Richardson. Formes d'astéroïdes et formation de satellites : rôle de la réaccumulation gravitationnelle. Comptes Rendus. Physique, 2007, 8, pp.469-480. ⟨insu-00207162⟩
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