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A ring system detected around the Centaur (10199) Chariklo

Braga-Ribas, F.; Sicardy, B.; Ortiz, J. L.; Snodgrass, C.; Roques, F.; Vieira-Martins, R.; Camargo, J. I. B.; Assafin, M.; Duffard, R.; Jehin, E.; Pollock, J.; Leiva, R.; Emilio, M.; Machado, D. I.; Colazo, C.; Lellouch, E.; Skottfelt, J.; Gillon, M.; Ligier, N.; Maquet, L.; Benedetti-Rossi, G.; Ramos Gomes, A.; Kervella, P.; Monteiro, H.; Sfair, R.; El Moutamid, M.; Tancredi, G.; Spagnotto, J.; Maury, A.; Morales, N.; Gil-Hutton, R.; Roland, S.; Ceretta, A.; Gu, S.-h.; Wang, X.-b.; Harpsøe, K.; Rabus, M.; Manfroid, J.; Opitom, C.; Vanzi, L.; Mehret, L.; Lorenzini, L.; Schneiter, E. M.; Melia, R.; Lecacheux, J.; Colas, F.; Vachier, F.; Widemann, T.; Almenares, L.; Sandness, R. G.; Char, F.; Perez, V.; Lemos, P.; Martinez, N.; Jørgensen, U. G.; Dominik, M.; Roig, F.; Reichart, D. E.; LaCluyze, A. P.; Haislip, J. B.; Ivarsen, K. M.; Moore, J. P.; Frank, N. R. and Lambas, D. G. (2014). A ring system detected around the Centaur (10199) Chariklo. Nature, 508(7494) pp. 72–75.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: https://doi.org/10.1038/nature13155
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Abstract

Hitherto, rings have been found exclusively around the four giant planets in the Solar System. Rings are natural laboratories in which to study dynamical processes analogous to those that take place during the formation of planetary systems and galaxies. Their presence also tells us about the origin and evolution of the body they encircle. Here we report observations of a multichord stellar occultation that revealed the presence of a ring system around (10199) Chariklo, which is a Centaur—that is, one of a class of small objects orbiting primarily between Jupiter and Neptune—with an equivalent radius of 124 ±9 kilometres. There are two dense rings, with respective widths of about 7 and 3 kilometres, optical depths of 0.4 and 0.06, and orbital radii of 391 and 405 kilometres. The present orientation of the ring is consistent with an edge-on geometry in 2008, which provides a simple explanation for the dimming of the Chariklo system between 1997 and 2008, and for the gradual disappearance of ice and other absorption features in its spectrum over the same period. This implies that the rings are partly composed of water ice. They may be the remnants of a debris disk, possibly confined by embedded, kilometre-sized satellites.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited
ISSN: 1476-4687
Keywords: giant planets; asteroids, comets and Kuiper belt; rings and moons
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) > Physical Sciences
Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Research Group: Centre for Electronic Imaging (CEI)
Space
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Item ID: 43025
Depositing User: Colin Snodgrass
Date Deposited: 19 May 2015 14:59
Last Modified: 31 May 2019 12:24
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/43025
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