CAOSP abstracts, Volume: 47, No.: 1, year: 2017

Abstract: Comet 29P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 1 currently moves around the Sun in an orbit wholy situated between the orbits of Jupiter and Saturn. Recent Spitzer observations, however, revealed that it contains a material that formed in a hotter region than the cometary nuclei used to form. We investigate a recent dynamical evolution of 29P to point out its most probable previous orbit, a range of its migration in the inner Solar System, and to indicate the region of its origin. We numerically integrate the nominal orbit of the comet, as well as the orbits of 100 clones, mapping the phase space in which the actual orbit of the comet could be situated in respect to the orbit-determination uncertainity. Non-gravitational effects are not considered for this large comet. We confirm that 29P is now situated in a chaotic region. After several hundred thousand years, it will be, most probably, ejected into interstellar space. The comet orbit has largely changed during its residing in the inner Solar System. Hence, its surface can no longer be regarded as primordial. Some features, which are inconsistent with the site of formation of a typical comet, are not surprising.

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Last update: June 29, 2017