37th DPS Meeting, 4-9 September 2005
Session 43 Deep Impact A
Poster, Wednesday, September 7, 2005, 6:00-7:15pm, Music Foyer

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[43.06] Mid-IR Observations of Comet 9P/Tempel 1 During the DEEP IMPACT Event Using Gemini-N +MICHELLE

D.E. Harker (University of California, San Diego), C.E. Woodward (University of Minnesota), D.H. Wooden (NASA Ames Research Center), S. Fisher, C.A. Trujillo (Gemini Observatory)

Comets are thought to contain pristine solar nebula material from the early epoch of planet formation. Material on the nuclear surface of Jupiter Family (JF) comets has been modified by cosmic rays during parent body dwell time in the Kuiper Belt and through insolation during subsequent perihelion passages. It is thought that pristine solar nebula material remains unaltered in the interior of the nucleus of JF comets. The DEEP IMPACT spacecraft sent an impactor to collide with comet 9P/Tempel 1 to break through the processed nuclear surface thereby releasing pristine material from the nuclear interior to populate the surrounding coma.

We report on the GEMINI-N (+MICHELLE) mid-infrared observations of the DEEP IMPACT event prior to (2005 May 17 and July 3 UT), during (2005 July 4 UT), and just after (2005 July 5 UT) impact. We will present 10 and 20 micron spectroscopy (R = 200) and high spatial resolution mid-IR images of Tempel 1. The properties of the dust grains pre- and post-impact are constrained using our thermal emission dust model. Post-impact, we anticipate new minerals to be observed in the coma of Tempel 1, including crystalline olivine, a signpost of thermal processing in the early solar nebula. We will also compare the dust properties of Tempel 1 pre- and post- impact to better understand parent body processing of SP comets.

This work is supported by NSF Grant AST03-07466 and the NASA Planetary Astronomy Program.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: dharker@ucsd.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #3
© 2004. The American Astronomical Soceity.