AAS 195th Meeting, January 2000
Session 58. Solar System
Oral, Thursday, January 13, 2000, 10:00-11:30am, Regency VI

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[58.05] ``Quasi-satellites" around the outer planets

K. Innanen, P. Wiegert (York U.), S. Mikkola (Tuorla Observatory)

Bodies in 1:1 mean motion resonance may be in a configuration such that they librate about the longitude of their associated planet. The stability of such bodies, which we call "quasi-satellites", around the planets of the outer Solar System has been investigated. Numerical simulations reveal that test particles can remain on such orbits around Uranus and Neptune for times up to at least 109 yr, though only at low inclinations relative to their accompanying planet and over a restricted range of heliocentric eccentricities. Thus, we conclude that a primordial population of such objects could still exist in the outer Solar System.

The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: wiegert@yorku.ca

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