The dynamical history of Chariklo and its rings

Wood, Jeremy and Horner, Jonti and Hinse, Tobias C. and Marsden, Stephen C. (2017) The dynamical history of Chariklo and its rings. The Astronomical Journal, 153 (6). ISSN 0004-6256

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Chariklo is the only small solar system body confirmed to have rings. Given the instability of its orbit, the presence of rings is surprising, and their origin remains poorly understood. In this work, we study the dynamical history of the Chariklo system by integrating almost 36,000 Chariklo clones backward in time for 1 Gyr under the influence of the Sun and the four giant planets. By recording all close encounters between the clones and planets, we investigate the likelihood that Chariklo’s rings could have survived since its capture to the Centaur population. Our results reveal that Chariklo’s orbit occupies a region of stable chaos, resulting in its orbit being marginally more stable than those of the other Centaurs. Despite this, we find that it was most likely captured to the Centaur population within the last 20 Myr, and that its orbital evolution has been continually punctuated by regular close encounters with the giant planets. The great majority (>99%) of those encounters within 1 Hill radius of the planet have only a small effect on the rings. We conclude that close encounters with giant planets have not had a significant effect on the ring structure. Encounters within the Roche limit of the giant planets are rare, making ring creation through tidal disruption unlikely.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Access to published version in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Agricultural, Computational and Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2017 04:48
Last Modified: 26 Sep 2018 04:59
Uncontrolled Keywords: minor planets, asteroids: individual: 10199 Chariklo, planets and satellites: dynamical evolution and stability, planets and satellites: rings
Fields of Research : 02 Physical Sciences > 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences > 020108 Planetary Science (excl. Extraterrestrial Geology)
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970102 Expanding Knowledge in the Physical Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: 10.3847/1538-3881/aa6981

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