Analysis of Asteroid (216) Kleopatra using dynamical and structural constraints [EPA]

Given the spin state by Magnusson (1990), the shape model by Ostro et al. (2000), and the mass by Descamps et al. (2011), this paper evaluates a dynamically and structurally stable size of Asteroid (216) Kleopatra. In particular, we investigate two different failure modes: material shedding from the surface and structural failure of the internal body. We construct zero-velocity curves in the vicinity of this asteroid to determine surface shedding, while we utilize a limit analysis to calculate the lower and upper bounds of structural failure under the zero-cohesion assumption. Surface shedding does not occur at the current spin period (5.385 hr) and cannot directly initiate the formation of the satellites. On the other hand, this body may be close to structural failure; in particular, the neck may be situated near a plastic state. In addition, the neck’s sensitivity to structural failure changes as the body size varies. We conclude that plastic deformation has probably occurred around the neck part in the past. If the true size of this body is established through additional measurements, this method will provide strong constraints on the current friction angle for the body.

Read this paper on arXiv…

Thu, 19 Dec 13