EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 439, Number 2, August IV 2005
Page(s) L1 - L4
Section Letters
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:200500144

A&A 439, L1-L4 (2005)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:200500144


Is Sedna another Triton?

M. A. Barucci1, D. P. Cruikshank2, E. Dotto3, F. Merlin1, F. Poulet4, C. Dalle Ore5, S. Fornasier6 and C. de Bergh1

1  LESIA, Observatoire de Paris, 92195 Meudon Principal Cedex, France
    e-mail: [antonella.barucci;frederic.merlin;catherine.debergh]@obspm.fr
2  NASA Ames Research Center, MS 245-6, Moffett Field, CA 94035-1000, USA
    e-mail: Dale.P.Cruikshank@nasa.gov
3  INAF-OAR Via Frascati 33, 00040 Monteporzio Catone (Roma), Italy
    e-mail: dotto@mporzio.astro.it
4  IAS, Université Paris-Sud, 91405 Orsay Cedex, France
    e-mail: francois.poulet@ias.u-psud.fr
5  SETI Institute, Mountain View, CA & NASA Ames Research Center, USA
    e-mail: cdalleore@mail.arc.nasa.gov
6  Dipartimento di Astronomia, Vicolo dell'Osservatorio 2, 35122 Padova, Italy
    e-mail: fornasier@pd.astro.it

(Received 30 May 2005 / Accepted 20 June 2005)

90377 Sedna is, so far, the largest and most distant trans-neptunian object. It was observed at visible and near-infrared wavelengths using simultaneously two 8.2 m telescopes at the Very Large Telescope of the European Southern Observatory. The spectrum of Sedna suggests the presence on its surface of different ices (total abundance >50%). Its surface composition is different from that determined for other trans-neptunian objects, and apparently resembles that of Triton, particularly in terms of the possible presence of nitrogen and methane ices.

Key words: TNOs -- visible -- infrared -- spectroscopy -- photometry

SIMBAD Objects

© ESO 2005

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