VLA Expansion Project Science Working Group:
The Solar System
(1 December 1998)

Summary by M. Rupen.

Chaired by Bryan Butler
Also present:
  Peter Barnes, Tim Bastian, Tony Beasley, Alan Bridle, Mark Claussen,
  Ken Kellerman, Leonid Kogan, Frazer Owen, Imke de Pater, Rick Perley,
  Michael Rupen, Craig Walker.

Most of this is discussed in the 1995 Science Workshop Proceedings.

0- MMA overlap
  Frazer in particular expressed concern that much of what was covered here
  would overlap with MMA science.

1- Thermal Emission from Asteroids
  a. Detections of main-belt asteroids and NEOs, and
    * one detection at one wavelength gives you a size (the MMA is better
        for this though, since you'd prefer thermal to reflected emission)
    * freq. dependence tells you surface structure: wavelengths > 1cm probe
        further in
        --> tells what it's made of (e.g. ice vs. dust)
        --> Tb(lambda) vs. time (light curves) tells you the thermal
          intertia (mostly for main belt asteroids)
      : VLA upgrade could detect these guys down to 6cm
    * Kuiper belt tells you about the formation of the solar system 
    * "saving the earth from the onslaught of hot rocks"
    --> need SENSITIVITY

  b. Mapping of main-belt asteroids and NEOs
    * Could map asteroids bigger than 100km with A configuration (about 50
      objects)
    * MMA can do this, but want 2 wavelengths: as above, tells about the
      dirt layers on the asteroids
      "better understanding of the regolith gives insight into the origin
      and history of the body"
      and cm is better than mm 'cause you can see deeper in
    * should also help figure out rotation
    * NEOs in A+: interesting but not a driver (radar wins) -- would help
      resolved ambiguities in radar maps
    --> need SENSITIVITY
  
2- Comets: origins and formation of solar system ***
  

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Last modified 08 December 1999

mrupen@nrao.edu