NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2011A-0388

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Proposal Information for 2011A-0388


PI: David E. Harker, University of California, San Diego, dharker@ucsd.edu
Address: Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences, 9500 Gilman Dr. Dept 0424, La Jolla, CA 92093-0424, USA

CoI: Charles E. Woodward, University of Minnesota
CoI: Michael S. Kelley, University of Maryland
CoI: Diane H. Wooden, NASA Ames Research Center

Title: T-ReCS Comet ToO Initiative 2011A

Abstract: We propose to perform mid-infrared observations of a target-of- opportunity (ToO) comet during the 2011A semester using Gemini-South and T-ReCS. Near perihelion, solar insolation causes a marked increase in activity, markedly enhancing the population of dust in the coma. Our observations enable determination of grain mineralogy and spatial morphology of the dust in the coma of a ToO comet, and permit intercomparisions between the ToO comet grain properties with the known silicate features detected in other short period Ecliptic Comets (ECs) and long-period Nearly-Isotropic Comets (NICs) including Oort Cloud comets. T-ReCS spectral energy distributions will be modeled to determine dust grain properties. In particular, spectra (10/20 \micron) of a ToO comet will constrain the grain properties, including size distribution, the silicate-to-amorphous carbon ratio and possibly the crystalline silicate fraction.


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NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2011A-0388

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