SHERMAN – A shape-based thermophysical model II. Application to 8567 (1996 HW1)

E. S. Howell, C. Magri, R. J. Vervack, M. C. Nolan, P. A. Taylor, Y. R. Fernández, M. D. Hicks, J. M. Somers, K. J. Lawrence, A. S. Rivkin, S. E. Marshall, J. L. Crowell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


We apply a new shape-based thermophysical model, SHERMAN, to the near-Earth asteroid (NEA) 8567 (1996 HW1) to derive surface properties. We use the detailed shape model of Magri et al. (2011) for this contact binary NEA to analyze spectral observations (2–4.1 microns) obtained at the NASA IRTF on several different dates to find thermal parameters that match all the data. Visible and near-infrared (0.8–2.5 microns) spectral observations are also utilized in a self-consistent way. We find that an average visible albedo of 0.33, thermal inertia of 70 (SI units) and surface roughness of 50% closely match the observations. The shape and orientation of the asteroid is very important to constrain the thermal parameters to be consistent with all the observations. Multiple viewing geometries are equally important to achieve a robust solution for small, non-spherical NEAs. We separate the infrared beaming effects of shape, viewing geometry and surface roughness for this asteroid and show how their effects combine. We compare the diameter and albedo that would be derived from the thermal observations assuming a spherical shape with those from the shape-based model. We also discuss how observations from limited viewing geometries compare to the solution from multiple observations. The size that would be derived from the individual observation dates varies by 20% from the best-fit solution, and can be either larger or smaller. If the surface properties are not homogeneous, many solutions are possible, but the average properties derived here are very tightly constrained by the multiple observations, and give important insights into the nature of small NEAs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)220-233
Number of pages14
StatePublished - Mar 15 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Asteroids
  • Infrared observations
  • Near-earth objects
  • Spectroscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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