Small-body deflection techniques using spacecraft: Techniques in simulating the fate of ejecta

Schwartz, Stephen R.; Yu, Yang; Michel, Patrick; Jutzi, Martin (2016). Small-body deflection techniques using spacecraft: Techniques in simulating the fate of ejecta. Advances in space research, 57(8), pp. 1832-1846. Pergamon 10.1016/j.asr.2015.12.042

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We define a set of procedures to numerically study the fate of ejecta produced by the impact of an artificial projectile with the aim of deflecting an asteroid. Here we develop a simplified, idealized model of impact conditions that can be adapted to fit the details of specific deflection-test scenarios, such as what is being proposed for the AIDA project. Ongoing studies based upon the methodology described here can be used to inform observational strategies and safety conditions for an observing spacecraft. To account for ejecta evolution, the numerical strategies we are employing are varied and include a large N-Body component, a smoothed-particle hydrodynamics (SPH) component, and an application of impactor scaling laws. Simulations that use SPH-derived initial conditions show high-speed ejecta escaping at low angles of inclination, and very slowly moving ejecta lofting off the surface at higher inclination angles, some of which reimpacts the small-body surface. We are currently investigating the realism of this and other models' behaviors. Next steps will include the addition of solar perturbations to the model and applying the protocol developed here directly to specific potential mission concepts such as the proposed AIDA scenario.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


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

UniBE Contributor:

Jutzi, Martin


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








Katharina Weyeneth-Moser

Date Deposited:

14 Nov 2016 16:11

Last Modified:

16 Apr 2018 02:30

Publisher DOI:





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