Centaurs and scattered disk objects in the thermal infrared: Analysis of wise/neowise observations

James M. Bauer, Tommy Grav, Erin Blauvelt, A. K. Mainzer, Joseph R. Masiero, Rachel Stevenson, Emily Kramer, Yan R. Fernández, C. M. Lisse, Roc M. Cutri, Paul R. Weissman, John W. Dailey, Frank J. Masci, Russel Walker, Adam Waszczak, Carrie R. Nugent, Karen J. Meech, Andrew Lucas, George Pearman, Ashlee WilkinsJessica Watkins, Shrinivas Kulkarni, Edward L. Wright

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) observed 52 Centaurs and scattered disk objects (SDOs) in the thermal infrared, including 15 new discoveries. We present analyses of these observations to estimate sizes and mean optical albedos. We find mean albedos of 0.08 ± 0.04 for the entire data set. Thermal fits yield average beaming parameters of 0.9 ± 0.2 that are similar for both SDO and Centaur sub-classes. Biased cumulative size distributions yield size-frequency distribution power law indices of ∼-1.7 ± 0.3. The data also reveal a relation between albedo and color at the 3σ level. No significant relation between diameter and albedos is found.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number22
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume773
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 10 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • comets: general
  • minor planets, asteroids: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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