Abstract

"Variability of Kuiper Belt Objects"

Tuesday, March 1, 4:00pm, 265 McCone Hall

Scott Sheppard

Nearly 40 Kuiper Belt objects have been systematically monitored for possible light variations due to rotational, phase angle, binary and cometary effects. Most objects have voluminous observations on consecutive nights as well as weeks, months and years apart. About 30% show some type of short-term variation. I will discuss these new results as they relate to the possible angular momenta, shapes, densities and surface characteristics of the Trans-Neptunian objects, Centaurs and comets.