31st Annual Meeting of the DPS, October 1999
Session 14. Celestial Mechanics of Planets and Comets Posters
Poster Group I, Monday-Wednesday, October 11, 1999, , Kursaal Center

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[14.01] Classification of the Trajectories of the Gravitational Capture Problem

E. Vieira Neto, O.C. Winter (Grupo de Dinamica Orbital e Planetologia - UNESP)

Recently two new moons of Uranus have been discovered. These moons have highly eccentric and inclined orbits and characteristics of the Kuiper Belt types objects. So probably Uranus captured them. Many authors use the gravitational capture phenomenon to explain the existence of some planetary satellite. It is also well known that in the elliptic restricted problem of three-body the gravitational capture is temporary. Nevertheless there are some perturbations (gas drag, tides, etc.) that could turn this capture to a permanent one. To define the gravitational capture trajectory is used an approach that considers an energy defined similar to the two-body problem. The variation of this energy is checked during the calculations. If there is a change in sign from negative (closed trajectory) to positive (open trajectory) this is considered an escape trajectory, so a capture, in the positive sense of time. With the study of the gravitational capture trajectories is possible to have a clue of the perturbations that could turn the temporary capture to a permanent one. So, a series of simulations was done varying the orbital elements. The objective is to know the quantity of energy needed to pass from one of this gravitational capture trajectory to the orbit of the recent discovered moons. Vieira Neto thanks Fapesp for financial support.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: ernesto@feg.unesp.br

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