31st Annual Meeting of the DPS, October 1999
Session 4. Asteroids: Spanning the Spectrum
Contributed Oral Parallel Session, Monday, October 11, 1999, 10:30am-12:00noon, Sala Plenaria

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[4.07] Light Scattering by Stochastic Solids, Aggregates and Regoliths

K. Lumme (Observatory, University of Helsinki, Finland), J. Rahola (CSC, Espoo, Finland)

We use our well-tested light scattering code based on a numerical solution of the electromagnetic integral equation to complete the full four by four Müller matrix for light scattering. Our code is very versatile as to the geometry of particles. One of our goals is doing light scattering by various particle forms to understand the two ubiquitous photopolarimetric phenomena of the atmosphereless solar system bodies, comets and interplanetary dust. These are: the universal brightening of the object towards the planetary opposition (opposition effect or spike) and the reversal of linear polarization taking place at the phase angles of about 20o. First, we generate stochastically deformed spheres with two different radius covariance functions in the size parameter range from 1 to 7 and apply the power law size distribution to their individual contributions. Our computations quite naturally produce both the opposition effect and the reversal of linear polarization. Second, we create with the diffusion-limited aggregation code closely packed clusters with a power law size distributed particles. Again the above mentioned two phenomena quite naturally follow. These two different particle geometries seem to indicate that an unambiguous inversion of the photopolarimetric data is not possible. This is even more so because the typical cosmic dust particles are almost certainly much bigger than allowed in our code. Finally, we model a planetary regolith by randomly placing several hundred sheres in a cylidrical geometry with a varying packing density. Once again those two phenomena follow. We also compare our computations to our Monte-Carlo code for a horizontally finite cylinder in the radiative transfer regime to see the effects fo close packing. Both the intensity and linear polarization are fairly well reproduced, excluding the forward and backward directions by the ray-optical, radiattive transfer model.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: Kari.Lumme@cc.helsinki.fi

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