IRTF Data Archive Program Information

# # Program information file # PROGRAM_ID 2022B069 PROGRAM_TITLE Observations of Near Earth Objects with MIRSI and MOC PROGRAM_INV1 Andy Lopez-Oquendo PROGRAM_INV2 David Trilling PROGRAM_INV3 Joseph Hora PROGRAM_INV4 Howard Smith PROGRAM_INV5 PROGRAM_SCICAT near-Earth objects PROGRAM_ABSTRACT_BEG Near-Earth Objects [NEOs] are small rocky bodies in the Solar System whose orbits bring them close to the Earth's vicinity. NEOs constitute a threat to human civilization; thus, having knowledge of their physical properties [i.e., composition, size, and albedo] is crucial to developing efficient mitigation strategies in the case of possible future impacts. We propose 38 hours of 2022B time with the newly available MIRSI and its optical camera [MOC] to measure the diameters and albedos of at least 40 NEOs. By observing simultaneously in infrared and optical wavelengths, we will derive high-quality diameters and albedos for these NEOs using the Near-Earth Asteroid Thermal Model. From the albedo and diameter measurements, we expect to obtain the compositional distribution as a function of size; this will have direct implications on whether the NEO population is compositionally uniform and size-independent. This semester's allocation will be part of a large survey that will probe sizes down to 60 meters or smaller when the science-grade detector is installed in MIRSI. Our simultaneous observations will be performed using the MIRSI N band filter and the MOC R filter. PROGRAM_ABSTRACT_END