Refinement of the convex shape model and tumbling spin state of (99942) Apophis using the 2020-2021 apparition data
Context. The close approach of the near-Earth asteroid (99942) Apophis to Earth in 2029 will provide a unique opportunity to examine how the physical properties of the asteroid could be changed due to the Earth's gravitational perturbation. As a result, the Republic of Korea is planning a rendezvous mission to Apophis.
Aims: Our aim was to use photometric data from the apparitions in 2020−2021 to refine the shape model and spin state of Apophis.
Methods: Using thirty-six 1- to 2-meter-class ground-based telescopes and the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, we carried out a photometric observation campaign throughout the 2020−2021 apparition. The convex shape model and spin state were refined using the light-curve inversion method.
Results: According to our best-fit model, Apophis is rotating in a short-axis mode with rotation and precession periods of 264.178 h and 27.38547 h, respectively. The angular momentum vector orientation of Apophis was found to be (275°, −85°) in the ecliptic coordinate system. The ratio of the dynamic moments of inertia of this asteroid was fitted to Ia : Ib : Ic = 0.64 : 0.97 : 1, which corresponds to an elongated prolate ellipsoid. These findings regarding the spin state and shape model can be used to both design the space mission scenario and investigate the impact of the Earth's tidal force during close encounters.
Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Pub Date:
- May 2022
- minor planets;
- asteroids: individual: (99942) Apophis;
- techniques: photometric;
- Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astrophysics
- 14 pages, 5 figures