From Centaurs to comets - 40 years

In 1977, while Apple II and Atari computers were being sold, a tiny dot was observed in an inconvenient orbit. The minor body 1977 UB, to be named (2060) Chiron, with an orbit between Saturn and Uranus, became the first Centaur, a new class of minor bodies orbiting roughly between Jupiter and Neptun...

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Detalles Bibliográficos
Autores principales: Peixinho, Nuno, Thirouin, Audrey, Tegler, Stephen C., Di Sisto, Romina Paula, Delsanti, Audrey, Guilbert Lepoutre, Aurélie, Bauer, James G.
Formato: Libro Capitulo de libro
Lenguaje:Español
Publicado: Springer 2020
Materias:
Acceso en línea:http://sedici.unlp.edu.ar/handle/10915/126064
Aporte de:SEDICI (UNLP) de Universidad Nacional de La Plata Ver origen
Descripción
Sumario:In 1977, while Apple II and Atari computers were being sold, a tiny dot was observed in an inconvenient orbit. The minor body 1977 UB, to be named (2060) Chiron, with an orbit between Saturn and Uranus, became the first Centaur, a new class of minor bodies orbiting roughly between Jupiter and Neptune. The observed overabundance of short-period comets lead to the downfall of the Oort Cloud as exclusive source of comets and to the rise of the need for a Trans-Neptunian comet belt. Centaurs were rapidly seen as the transition phase between Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs), also known as Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNOs) and the Jupiter-Family Comets (JFCs). Since then, a lot more has been discovered about Centaurs: they can have cometary activity and outbursts, satellites, and even rings. Over the past four decades since the discovery of the first Centaur, rotation periods, surface colors, reflectivity spectra and albedos have been measured and analyzed. However, despite such a large number of studies and complementary techniques, the Centaur population remains a mystery as they are in so many ways different from the TNOs and even more so from the JFCs.