EDP Sciences
Free Access
Volume 415, Number 2, February IV 2004
Page(s) L21 - L25
Section Letters
DOI https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20040005

A&A 415, L21-L25 (2004)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20040005


Surface characterization of 28978 Ixion (2001 KX $\mathsf{_{76}}$)

H. Boehnhardt1, S. Bagnulo2, K. Muinonen3, M. A. Barucci4, L. Kolokolova5, E. Dotto6 and G. P. Tozzi7

1  Max-Planck-Institut für Astronomie, Königstuhl 17, 69117 Heidelberg, Germany
2  European Southern Observatory, Alonso de Cordova 3107, Santiago de Chile
3  Observatory, PO Box 14, 00014 University of Helsinki, Finland
4  Observatoire Paris-Meudon, 5 place Jules Janssen, 92195 Meudon Cedex, France
5  Department of Astronomy, 211 SSRB, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2055, USA
6  INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Roma, via Frascati 33, 00040 Monteporzio Catone, Italy
7  INAF - Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, Largo E. Fermi 5, 50125 Firenze, Italy

(Received 21 November 2003 / Accepted 7 January 2004)

The Plutino 28978 Ixion, one of the largest objects in the Kuiper Belt, is measured by  R filter photometry and linear polarimetry over the phase angle range as well as by BVRI colours and visible spectroscopy. Ixion is a medium red object with spectral slope of 17.7%/100 nm (400-900 nm). While its opposition phase curve surge (0.2 mag/deg) is within the typical range found for other solar system objects, it displays unusually high negative polarization (min. -1.3%). Comparison with model spectra and numerical modeling of the opposition brightening and polarization effects suggest an areal mixture of absorbing (dark) and icy (bright) compounds on its surface: the mixing ratio is about 6:1 for dark and bright material of 0.21 and 0.79 single-scattering albedo and of 250 and 33 dimensionless mean free path (length multiplied by wave number), respectively.

Key words: transneptunian object -- 28978 Ixion: 2001 KX 76 -- surface properties

Offprint request: H. Boehnhardt, hboehnha@mpia-hd.mpg.de

© ESO 2004

Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.

Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.

Initial download of the metrics may take a while.