Status Report

Herschel-PACS photometry of Uranus’ five major moons

By SpaceRef Editor
June 19, 2020
Filed under , ,

Ö. H. Detre, T. G. Müller, U. Klaas, G. Marton, H. Linz, Z. Balog

Aims. We aim to determine far-infrared fluxes at 70, 100, and 160μm of the five major Uranus satellites Titania, Oberon, Umbriel, Ariel and Miranda, based on observations with the photometer PACS-P aboard the Herschel Space Observatory.

Methods. The bright image of Uranus is subtracted using a scaled Uranus point spread function (PSF) reference established from all maps of each wavelength in an iterative process removing the superimposed moons. Photometry of the satellites is performed by PSF photometry. Thermophysical models of the icy moons are fitted to the photometry of each measurement epoch and auxilliary data at shorter wavelengths.

Results. The best fitting thermophysical models provide constraints for important thermal properties of the moons like surface roughness and thermal inertia. We present the first thermal infrared radiometry longward of 50μm of the four largest Uranian moons, Titania, Oberon, Umbriel and Ariel, at epochs with equator-on illumination. Due to this inclination geometry there was heat transport to the night side so that thermal inertia played a role, allowing us to constrain that parameter. Also some indication for differences in the thermal properties of leading and trailing hemispheres is found. We specify precisely the systematic error of the Uranus flux by its moons, when using Uranus as a far-infrared prime flux calibrator.

Conclusions. We have successfully demonstrated an image processing technique for PACS photometer data allowing to remove a bright central source. We have established improved thermophysical models of the five major Uranus satellites. Derived thermal inertia values resemble more those of TNO dwarf planets Pluto and Haumea than those of smaller TNOs and Centaurs.

Comments: 25 pages, 10 figures, 7 tables, plus appendices. Accepted for publication on A&A

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM)

Cite as: arXiv:2006.09795 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2006.09795v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Örs Hunor Detre 

[v1] Wed, 17 Jun 2020 11:59:43 UTC (7,436 KB)

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