EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 385, Number 1, April I 2002
Page(s) 281 - 288
Section The solar system
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20020077

A&A 385, 281-288 (2002)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20020077

Bicolour lightcurve of TNO 1996 TO $_{\mathsf{66}}$ with the ESO-VLT

T. Sekiguchi1, 2, H. Boehnhardt1, O. R. Hainaut1 and C. E. Delahodde1

1  European Southern Observatory(ESO), Casilla 19001, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Vitacura, Santiago, Chile
    e-mail: tsekiguc@eso.org
2  Graduate University for Advanced Studies, National Astronomical Observatory, Osawa 2-21-1, Mitaka, Japan

(Received 12 March 2001 / Accepted 15 January 2002)

We performed high resolution imaging of 1996 TO 66 in V and R band to verify and monitor the lightcurve change, to address a colour change over a rotation and to search for a cometary activity. No activity was detected at the 29 mag/sq.arcsec level with 5400 s integration time with the ESO-VLT. Combining the data in Nov. and Dec. 1999, we obtained a complete rotation period coverage. The lightcurve was a single-peaked, with an amplitude of 0.21 mag in R. The ( V - R) colour displays the inhomogeneity of TNO surface. TNO's patchy surface may be cause the intensity change of water absorption feature in near-IR spectra. These observations can be the starting points for a challenging work of surface mapping of TNOs.

Key words: comets: general -- comets: individual: activity, nucleus -- Kuiper Belt -- asteroids

Offprint request: T. Sekiguchi, t.sekiguchi@nao.ac.jp

© ESO 2002