Detection of Rotational Acceleration of Bennu Using HST Light Curve Observations

M. C. Nolan, E. S. Howell, D. J. Scheeres, J. W. McMahon, O. Golubov, C. W. Hergenrother, J. P. Emery, K. S. Noll, S. R. Chesley, Dante Lauretta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We observed the near-Earth asteroid (101955) Bennu from the ground in 1999 and 2005, and with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) in 2012, to constrain its rotation rate. The data reveal an acceleration of 2.64 ± 1.05 × 10 −6  deg/day 2 , which could be due to a change in the moment of inertia of Bennu or to spin up from the Yarkovsky-O'Keefe-Radzievskii-Paddack effect or other source of angular momentum. The best solution is within 1 σ of the period determined by Nolan et al. (2013, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2013.05.028). The Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, and Security–Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission will determine the rotation state independently in 2019. Those measurements should show whether the change in rotation rate is a steady increase (due, e.g., to the Yarkovsky-O'Keefe-Radzievskii-Paddack effect) or some other phenomenon. The precise shape and surface properties measured by the OSIRIS-REx science team will allow for a better understanding of variations in rotation rate of small asteroids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Fingerprint

Hubble Space Telescope
light curve
asteroids
asteroid
resources
moments of inertia
resource
inertia
angular momentum
surface properties
detection
rate
effect

Keywords

  • asteroids
  • Bennu
  • Hubble Space Telescope
  • OSIRIS-REx
  • YORP

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Detection of Rotational Acceleration of Bennu Using HST Light Curve Observations. / Nolan, M. C.; Howell, E. S.; Scheeres, D. J.; McMahon, J. W.; Golubov, O.; Hergenrother, C. W.; Emery, J. P.; Noll, K. S.; Chesley, S. R.; Lauretta, Dante.

In: Geophysical Research Letters, 01.01.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Nolan, MC, Howell, ES, Scheeres, DJ, McMahon, JW, Golubov, O, Hergenrother, CW, Emery, JP, Noll, KS, Chesley, SR & Lauretta, D 2019, 'Detection of Rotational Acceleration of Bennu Using HST Light Curve Observations', Geophysical Research Letters. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL080658
Nolan MC, Howell ES, Scheeres DJ, McMahon JW, Golubov O, Hergenrother CW et al. Detection of Rotational Acceleration of Bennu Using HST Light Curve Observations. Geophysical Research Letters. 2019 Jan 1. https://doi.org/10.1029/2018GL080658
Nolan, M. C. ; Howell, E. S. ; Scheeres, D. J. ; McMahon, J. W. ; Golubov, O. ; Hergenrother, C. W. ; Emery, J. P. ; Noll, K. S. ; Chesley, S. R. ; Lauretta, Dante. / Detection of Rotational Acceleration of Bennu Using HST Light Curve Observations. In: Geophysical Research Letters. 2019.
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