Status Report

Long term impact risk for asteroid (101955) 1999 RQ36

By SpaceRef Editor
January 26, 2009
Filed under , , ,
Long term impact risk for asteroid (101955) 1999 RQ36

Andrea Milani, Steven R. Chesley, Maria Eugenia Sansaturio, Fabrizio Bernardi, Giovanni B. Valsecchi, Oscar Arratia

(Submitted on 23 Jan 2009)

The potentially hazardous asteroid (101955) 1999 RQ36 has the possibility of collision with the Earth in the latter half of the 22nd century, well beyond the traditional 100-year time horizon for routine impact monitoring. The probabilities accumulate to a total impact probability of approximately 10E-3, with a pair of closely related routes to impact in 2182 comprising more than half of the total. The analysis of impact possibilities so far in the future is strongly dependent on the action of the Yarkovsky effect, which raises new challenges in the careful assessment of longer term impact hazards.

Even for asteroids with very precisely determined orbits, a future close approach to Earth can scatter the possible trajectories to the point that the problem becomes like that of a newly discovered asteroid with a weakly determined orbit. If the scattering takes place late enough so that the target plane uncertainty is dominated by Yarkovsky accelerations then the thermal properties of the asteroid,which are typically unknown, play a major role in the impact assessment. In contrast, if the strong planetary interaction takes place sooner, while the Yarkovsky dispersion is still relatively small compared to that derived from the measurements, then precise modeling of the nongravitational acceleration may be unnecessary.

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)

Cite as: arXiv:0901.3631v1 [astro-ph.EP]

Submission history

From: Fabrizio Bernardi [view email]

[v1] Fri, 23 Jan 2009 10:03:29 GMT (139kb)

SpaceRef staff editor.