Six Years of Sustained Activity from Active Asteroid (6478) Gault. (arXiv:1904.10530v1 [astro-ph.EP])

Six Years of Sustained Activity from Active Asteroid (6478) Gault. (arXiv:1904.10530v1 [astro-ph.EP])
<a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Chandler_C/0/1/0/all/0/1">Colin Orion Chandler</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Kueny_J/0/1/0/all/0/1">Jay Kueny</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Gustafsson_A/0/1/0/all/0/1">Annika Gustafsson</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Trujillo_C/0/1/0/all/0/1">Chadwick A. Trujillo</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Robinson_T/0/1/0/all/0/1">Tyler D. Robinson</a>, <a href="http://arxiv.org/find/astro-ph/1/au:+Trilling_D/0/1/0/all/0/1">David E. Trilling</a>

We present archival observations demonstrating main belt asteroid (6478)
Gault has an extensive history of comet-like activity. Outbursts have taken
place during multiple epochs since 2013 and at distances extending as far as
2.68 au, nearly aphelion. (6478) Gault is a member of the predominately S-type
(i.e., volatile-poor) Phocaea family; no other main belt object of this type
has ever shown more than a single activity outburst. Furthermore, our data
suggest this is the longest duration of activity caused by a body spinning near
the rotational breakup barrier. If activity is indeed unrelated to volatiles,
as appears to be the case, (6478) Gault represents a new class of object,
perpetually active due to rotational spin-up.

We present archival observations demonstrating main belt asteroid (6478)
Gault has an extensive history of comet-like activity. Outbursts have taken
place during multiple epochs since 2013 and at distances extending as far as
2.68 au, nearly aphelion. (6478) Gault is a member of the predominately S-type
(i.e., volatile-poor) Phocaea family; no other main belt object of this type
has ever shown more than a single activity outburst. Furthermore, our data
suggest this is the longest duration of activity caused by a body spinning near
the rotational breakup barrier. If activity is indeed unrelated to volatiles,
as appears to be the case, (6478) Gault represents a new class of object,
perpetually active due to rotational spin-up.

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