IRTF Data Archive Program Information

# # Program information file # PROGRAM_ID 2023B023 PROGRAM_TITLE LXD Observations of Relic Low-Albedo Asteroids PROGRAM_INV1 Andrew Rivkin PROGRAM_INV2 PROGRAM_INV3 PROGRAM_INV4 PROGRAM_INV5 PROGRAM_SCICAT main-belt / Trojan asteroids PROGRAM_ABSTRACT_BEG Dynamical studies suggest that the vast majority of asteroids belong to collisional families, each of which samples a single parent body. It has further been proposed that all but a small number of low-albedo asteroids belong to a single, ancient 'Primordial Family', and be related. By force of numbers, small members of these families should dominate the NEO population and the meteorite collection. However, 11-19 large low-albedo objects are estimated to be non-members of the Primordial Family, and thus have formed independently. Studying their composition, best done in the 3-micron region with SpeX LXD, will help us determine the true diversity of material available for accretion early in solar system history. Twelve of the 19 potential Relics are observable [reaching V < 14.0 at solar elongations > 90 degrees] during the 2023B semester. We propose the equivalent of two nights of observing, split into one night and two half-nights, to allow the faintest of these objects to be caught close to their peak 2023B brightness. We will spend 1-2 hours per target, depending on brightness, to obtain SNR > 50 near 3 microns after binning data to resolution ~150. This SNR will allow quantitative compositional measurements to be made in comparison to other relevant asteroid spectra. PROGRAM_ABSTRACT_END