Non-Vestoid candidate asteroids in the inner main belt
1 Astronomical Observatory Institute, Faculty of Physics, A. Mickiewicz University, Słoneczna 36, 60-286 Poznań, Poland
2 Lowell Observatory, 14000 W Mars Hill Rd, 86001 Flagstaff, AZ, USA
3 Institute of Physics, Astrophysics Division, Jan Kochanowski University, Swietokrzyska 15, 25-406 Kielce, Poland
4 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC), C/ Vía Láctea sn, 38205 La Laguna, Spain
5 Departamento de Astrofísica, Universidad de La Laguna, 38206 La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
6 Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Western Ontario, 1151 Richmond Street, London, Ontario, Canada
7 Institut für Astrophysik der Universität Wien, Türkenschanzstraße 17, 1180 Wien, Austria
Received: 18 August 2016
Accepted: 9 December 2016
Context. Most howardite-eucrite-diogenite (HED) meteorites (analogues to V-type asteroids) are thought to originate from the asteroid (4) Vesta. However some HEDs show distinct oxygen isotope ratios and therefore are thought to originate from other asteroids. In this study we try to identify asteroids that may represent parent bodies of those mismatching HEDs.
Aims. The main goal of this study is to test the hypothesis that there might be V-type asteroids in the inner main asteroid belt unrelated to (4) Vesta. In order to evolve outside the Vesta family and became Vesta fugitives, asteroids should produce the correct Yarkovsky drift. The direction of which is dependent on asteroid sense of rotation. Therefore we focus on determining sense of rotation for asteroids outside the Vesta family to better understand their origin.
Methods. We performed photometric observations using the 1.1 m and 1.8 m telescopes at Lowell Observatory to determine rotational synodic periods of selected objects before, at, and after opposition. Prograde rotators show a minimum in synodic period at opposition while retrograde rotators show a maximum. This is known as the “drifting minima” method. Changes in the rotational period are on the order of seconds and fractions of seconds and depend on the rotational pole of the object and the asteroid-observer-Sun geometry at opposition.
Results. We have determined sense of rotation for eight asteroids and retrieved spin states for three objects from literature. For one asteroid we were not able to determine the sense of rotation. In total our sample includes 11 V-type asteroids and one S-type (test object). We have revised rotation periods for three objects. Five V-types in our sample can be explained by migration from the Vesta family. Two show spin states that are inconsistent with migration from Vesta. The origin of the remaining objects is ambiguous.
Conclusions. We found two objects with rotations inconsistent with migration from Vesta. Assuming that the YORP effect and random collisions did not substantially modify their sense of rotation, those objects are candidates for non-Vestoids in the inner asteroid belt. Finding more non-Vestoids is crucial in testing the formation and migration theory of differentiated parent bodies.
Key words: minor planets, asteroids: general / meteorites, meteors, meteoroids / techniques: photometric
© ESO, 2017