Reshaping and ejection processes on rubble-pile asteroids from impacts

Raducan, S. D.; Jutzi, Martin; Zhang, Y.; Ormö, J.; Michel, P. (2022). Reshaping and ejection processes on rubble-pile asteroids from impacts. Astronomy and astrophysics, 665, L10. EDP Sciences 10.1051/0004-6361/202244807

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Context. Most small asteroids (<50 km in diameter) are the result of the breakup of a larger parent body and are often considered to
be rubble-pile objects. Similar structures are expected for the secondaries of small asteroid binaries, including Dimorphos, the smaller
component of the 65 803 Didymos binary system and the target of NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) and ESA’s Hera
mission. The DART impact will occur on September 26, 2022, and will alter the orbital period of Dimorphos around Didymos.
Aims. In this work we assume Dimorphos-like bodies with a rubble-pile structure and quantify the effects of boulder packing in its
interior on the post-impact morphology, degree of shape change, and material ejection processes.
Methods. We used the Bern smoothed particle hydrodynamics shock physics code to numerically model hypervelocity impacts on
small, 160 m in diameter, rubble-pile asteroids with a variety of boulder distributions.
Results. We find that the post-impact target morphology is most sensitive to the mass fraction of boulders comprising the target, while
the asteroid deflection efficiency depends on both the mass fraction of boulders on the target and on the boulder size distribution close
to the impact point. Our results may also have important implications for the structure of small asteroids.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute > Space Research and Planetary Sciences
08 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute

UniBE Contributor:

Raducan, Sabina-Denisa, Jutzi, Martin


500 Science > 530 Physics
500 Science > 520 Astronomy
600 Technology > 620 Engineering




EDP Sciences




Dora Ursula Zimmerer

Date Deposited:

16 Mar 2023 08:32

Last Modified:

27 May 2024 22:37

Publisher DOI:





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