Astrometry and occultation predictions to trans-Neptunian and centaur objects observed within the Dark Energy Survey

Banda-Huarca, M V, Camargo, J I B, Desmars, J, Ogando, R L C, Vieira-Martins, R, Assafin, M, da Costa, L N, Bernstein, G M, Carrasco Kind, M, Drlica-Wagner, A, Gomes, R, Gysi, M M, Braga-Ribas, F, Maia, M A G, Gerdes, D W, Romer, K, Des Collaboration, , others, , Unset and Unset (2019) Astrometry and occultation predictions to trans-Neptunian and centaur objects observed within the Dark Energy Survey. Astronomical Journal, 157 (3). 120 1-15. ISSN 0004-6256

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Trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) are a source of invaluable information to access the history and evolution of the outer solar system. However, observing these faint objects is a difficult task. As a consequence, important properties such as size and albedo are known for only a small fraction of them. Now, with the results from deep sky surveys and the Gaia space mission, a new exciting era is within reach as accurate predictions of stellar occultations by numerous distant small solar system bodies become available. From them, diameters with kilometer accuracies can be determined. Albedos, in turn, can be obtained from diameters and absolute magnitudes. We use observations from the Dark Energy Survey (DES) from 2012 November until 2016 February, amounting to 4,292,847 charge-coupled device (CCD) frames. We searched them for all known small solar system bodies and recovered a total of 202 TNOs and Centaurs, 63 of which have been discovered by the DES collaboration as of the date of submission. Their positions were determined using the Gaia Data Release 2 as reference and their orbits were refined. Stellar occultations were then predicted using these refined orbits plus stellar positions from Gaia. These predictions are maintained, and updated, in a dedicated web service. The techniques developed here are also part of an ambitious preparation to use the data from the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), that expects to obtain accurate positions and multifilter photometry for tens of thousands of TNOs.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences > Physics and Astronomy
Research Centres and Groups: Astronomy Centre
Subjects: Q Science > QC Physics
Depositing User: Alice Jackson
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2019 07:40
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2019 08:42

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