Status Report

Photometric Properties of Ceres from Telescopic Observations using Dawn Framing Camera Color Filters

By SpaceRef Editor
November 9, 2015
Filed under , ,

Vishnu Reddy, Jian-Yang Li, Bruce L. Gary, Juan A. Sanchez, Robert D. Stephens, Ralph Megna, Daniel Coley, Andreas Nathues, Lucille Le Corre, Martin Hoffmann
(Submitted on 1 Oct 2015)

The dwarf planet Ceres is likely differentiated similar to the terrestrial planets but with a water/ice dominated mantle and an aqueously altered crust. Detailed modeling of Ceres’ phase function has never been performed to understand its surface properties. The Dawn spacecraft began orbital science operations at the dwarf planet in April 2015. We observed Ceres with flight spares of the seven Dawn Framing Camera color filters mounted on ground-based telescopes over the course of three years to model its phase function versus wavelength. Our analysis shows that the modeled geometric albedos derived from both the IAU HG model and the Hapke model are consistent with a flat and featureless spectrum of Ceres, although the values are ~10% higher than previous measurements. Our models also suggest a wavelength dependence of Ceres’ phase function. The IAU G-parameter and the Hapke single-particle phase function parameter, g, are both consistent with decreasing (shallower) phase slope with increasing wavelength.

Such a wavelength dependence of phase function is consistent with reddening of spectral slope with increasing phase angle, or phase-reddening. This phase reddening is consistent with previous spectra of Ceres obtained at various phase angles archived in the literature, and consistent with the fact that the modeled geometric albedo spectrum of Ceres is the bluest of all spectra because it represents the spectrum at 0 degree phase angle. Ground-based FC color filter lightcurve data are consistent with HST albedo maps confirming that Ceres’ lightcurve is dominated by albedo and not shape. We detected a positive correlation between 1.1-micron absorption band depth and geometric albedo suggesting brighter areas on Ceres have absorption bands that are deeper.

Comments: 40 pages, 9 figures, 5 tables. Accepted for publication in Icarus
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
Cite as: arXiv:1510.00387 [astro-ph.EP]
(or arXiv:1510.00387v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Juan Sanchez
[v1] Thu, 1 Oct 2015 20:03:26 GMT (2179kb)

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