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Thermal Model Calibration for Minor Planets Observed with Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer/Neowise

Mainzer, A. and Grav, T. and Masiero, J. and Bauer, J. and Wright, E. and Cutri, R. M. and McMillan, R. S. and Cohen, M. and Ressler, M. and Eisenhardt, P. (2011) Thermal Model Calibration for Minor Planets Observed with Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer/Neowise. Astrophysical Journal, 736 (2). Art. No. 100. ISSN 0004-637X. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20110901-122925447

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Abstract

With the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), we have observed over 157,000 minor planets. Included in these are a number of near-Earth objects, main-belt asteroids, and irregular satellites which have well measured physical properties (via radar studies and in situ imaging) such as diameters. We have used these objects to validate models of thermal emission and reflected sunlight using the WISE measurements, as well as the color corrections derived in Wright et al. for the four WISE bandpasses as a function of effective temperature. We have used 50 objects with diameters measured by radar or in situ imaging to characterize the systematic errors implicit in using the WISE data with a faceted spherical near-Earth asteroid thermal model (NEATM) to compute diameters and albedos. By using the previously measured diameters and H magnitudes with a spherical NEATM model, we compute the predicted fluxes (after applying the color corrections given in Wright et al.) in each of the four WISE bands and compare them to the measured magnitudes. We find minimum systematic flux errors of 5%-10%, and hence minimum relative diameter and albedo errors of ~10% and ~20%, respectively. Additionally, visible albedos for the objects are computed and compared to the albedos at 3.4 μm and 4.6 μm, which contain a combination of reflected sunlight and thermal emission for most minor planets observed by WISE. Finally, we derive a linear relationship between subsolar temperature and effective temperature, which allows the color corrections given in Wright et al. to be used for minor planets by computing only subsolar temperature instead of a faceted thermophysical model. The thermal models derived in this paper are not intended to supplant previous measurements made using radar or spacecraft imaging; rather, we have used them to characterize the errors that should be expected when computing diameters and albedos of minor planets observed by WISE using a spherical NEATM model.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/0004-637X/736/2/100DOIArticle
http://iopscience.iop.org/0004-637X/736/2/100PublisherArticle
ORCID:
AuthorORCID
Grav, T. 0000-0002-3379-0534
Masiero, J.0000-0003-2638-720X
Wright, E.0000-0001-5058-1593
Cutri, R. M.0000-0002-0077-2305
Additional Information:© 2011 The American Astronomical Society. Received 2011 February 2; accepted 2011 May 4; published 2011 July 13. We thank L. Benner, M. Busch, and M. Shepard for useful discussions and for providing diameter information on a number of objects in advance of publication. This publication makes use of data products from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, which is a joint project of the University of California, Los Angeles, and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology, funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. This publication also makes use of data products from NEOWISE, which is a project of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory/California Institute of Technology, funded by the Planetary Science Division of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. We thank our referee, A.W. Harris of Pasadena, California, for constructive comments that materially improved this work. We gratefully acknowledge the extraordinary services specific to NEOWISE contributed by the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center, operated by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, and the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, operated by Harvard University. We also thank the worldwide community of dedicated amateur and professional astronomers devoted to minor planet follow-up observations. This research has made use of the NASA/IPAC Infrared Science Archive, which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. This research has made use of NASA’s Astrophysics Data System.
Group:Infrared Processing and Analysis Center (IPAC)
Funders:
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NASA/JPL/CaltechUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:catalogs; minor planets, asteroids: general; surveys
Issue or Number:2
Classification Code:PACS: 96.30.Ys; 95.85.Hp
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20110901-122925447
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20110901-122925447
Official Citation:Thermal Model Calibration for Minor Planets Observed with Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer/NEOWISE A. Mainzer, T. Grav, J. Masiero, J. Bauer, E. Wright, R. M. Cutri, R. S. McMillan, M. Cohen, M. Ressler and P. Eisenhardt doi: 10.1088/0004-637X/736/2/100
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:25198
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:01 Sep 2011 20:39
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 03:03

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