Radar imaging of Asteroid 7 Iris

S. J. Ostro, C. Magri, L. A.M. Benner, J. D. Giorgini, M. C. Nolan, A. A. Hine, M. W. Busch, J. L. Margot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Arecibo radar images of Iris obtained in November 2006 reveal a topographically complex object whose gross shape is approximately ellipsoidal with equatorial dimensions within 15% of 253 × 228 km. The radar view of Iris was restricted to high southern latitudes, precluding reliable estimation of Iris' entire 3D shape, but permitting accurate reconstruction of southern hemisphere topography. The most prominent features, three roughly 50-km-diameter concavities almost equally spaced in longitude around the south pole, are probably impact craters. In terms of shape regularity and fractional relief, Iris represents a plausible transition between ∼50-km-diameter asteroids with extremely irregular overall shapes and very large concavities, and very much larger asteroids (Ceres and Vesta) with very regular, nearly convex shapes and generally lacking monumental concavities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-294
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Asteroids
  • Radar observations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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