A Search for Subkilometer-sized Ordinary Chondrite Like Asteroids in the Main-Belt

H.W. Lin, Fumi Yoshida, Y.T. Chen, W.H. Ip, C.K. Chang

available online 11 April 2015


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The size-dependent effects of asteroids on surface regolith and collisional lifetimes suggest that small asteroids are younger than large asteroids. In this study, we performed multicolor main-belt asteroid (MBA) survey by Subaru telescope/Suprime-Cam to search for subkilometer-sized ordinary chondrite (Q-type) like MBAs. The total survey area was 1.5 deg^2 near ecliptic plane and close to the opposition. We detected 150 MBAs with 4 bands (B, V , R, I) in this survey. The range of absolute magnitude of detected asteroids was between 13 and 22 magnitude, which is equivalent to the size range of kilometer to sub-kilometer diameter in MBAs. From this observation, 75 of 150 MBAs with color uncertainty less than 0.1 were used in the spectral type analysis, and two possible Q-type aster- oids were detected. This mean that the Q-type to S-type ratio in MBAs is < 0.05. Meanwhile, the Q/S ratio in near Earth asteroids (NEAs) has been estimated to be 0.5 to 2 (Binzel et al., 2004; Dandy et al., 2003). Therefore, Q-type NEAs might be delivered from the main belt region with weathered, S-type surface into near Earth region and then obtain their Q-type, non- weathered surface after undergoing re-surfacing process there. The resur- facing mechanisms could be: 1. dispersal of surface material by tidal effect during planetary encounters (Binzel et al., 2010; Nesvorny et al., 2010), 2. the YORP spin-up induced rotational-fission (Polishook et al., 2014) or surface re-arrangement, or 3. thermal degradation (Delbo et al., 2014). [/su_quote]