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Ensemble properties of comets in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

Author(s): Solontoi, Michael; Lvezic, Zeljko; Juric, Mario; Becker, Andrew C; Jones, Lynne; et al

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Abstract: We present the ensemble properties of 31 comets (27 resolved and 4 unresolved) observed by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). This sample of comets represents about 1 comet per 10 million SDSS photometric objects. Five-band (u,g,r,i,z) photometry is used to determine the comets’ colors, sizes, surface brightness profiles, and rates of dust production in terms of the Af rho formalism. We find that the cumulative luminosity function for the Jupiter Family Comets in our sample is well fit by a power law of the form N(<H) proportional to 10((0.49 +/- 0.05)H) for H < 18, with evidence of a much shallower fit N(<H) proportional to 10((0.19 +/- 0.03)H) for the faint (14.5 < H < 18) comets. The resolved comets show an extremely narrow distribution of colors (0.57 +/- 0.05 in g - r for example), which are statistically indistinguishable from that of the Jupiter Trojans. Further, there is no evidence of correlation between color and physical, dynamical, or observational parameters for the observed comets. (C) 2012 Published by Elsevier Inc.
Publication Date: Mar-2012
Electronic Publication Date: 9-Dec-2011
Citation: Solontoi, Michael, Lvezic, Zeljko, Juric, Mario, Becker, Andrew C, Jones, Lynne, West, Andrew A, Kent, Steve, Lupton, Robert H, Claire, Mark, Knapp, Gillian R, Quinn, Tom, Gunn, James E, Schneider, Donald P. (2012). Ensemble properties of comets in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. ICARUS, 218 (571 - 584. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2011.10.008
DOI: doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2011.10.008
ISSN: 0019-1035
EISSN: 1090-2643
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Pages: 571 - 584
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: ICARUS
Version: Author's manuscript

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