Gas outflow and dust transport of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

Ian Lin Lai, Wing Huen Ip, Cheng Chin Su, Jong Shinn Wu, Jui Chi Lee, Zhong Yi Lin, Ying Liao, Nicolas Thomas, Holger Sierks, Cesare Barbieri, Philippe Lamy, Rafael Rodrigo, Detlef Koschny, Hans Rickman, Horst Uwe Keller, Jessica Agarwal, Michael F. A'Hearn, Maria Antonella Barucci, Jean Loup Bertaux, Ivano BertiniSteven Boudreault, Gabriele Cremonese, Vania Da Deppo, Björn Davidsson, Stefano Debei, Mariolino De Cecco, Jakob Deller, Sonia Fornasier, Marco Fulle, Olivier Groussin, Pedro J. Gutiérrez, Carsten Güttler, Marc Hofmann, Stubbe F. Hviid, Laurent Jorda, Jörg Knollenberg, Gabor Kovacs, J. Rainer Kramm, Ekkehard Kührt, Michael Küppers, Luisa M. Lara, Monica Lazzarin, Josè J.Lopez Moreno, Francesco Marzari, Giampiero Naletto, Nilda Oklay, Xian Shi, Cecilia Tubiana, Jean Baptiste Vincent

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35 Scopus citations


Because of the diurnal thermal cycle and the irregular shape of the nucleus, gas outflow of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko could be highly anisotropic as indicated by the colliminated dust jet structures on the sunlit side. Based on the OSIRIS imaging observations of the outgassing effect, a simple model of surface sublimation can be constructed by taking into account the dependence on the solar insolation. With preliminary information on the time variability of the global gas production rate, a sequence of gas coma models can be generated at different epochs before and after perihelion. We also investigate different patterns of dust particle dynamics under the influences of nuclear rotation and gas drag. From these considerations, a consistent picture of the spatial distribution of dusty materials across the surface of comet 67P as it moves around the perihelion can be developed. It is found that because of the redeposition of the ejected dust from the Southern hemisphere to the Northern hemisphere during the southern summer season the Hapi region could gain up to 0.4 m while the Wosret region would lose up to 1.8 m of dust mantle per orbit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S533-S546
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
StatePublished - 2016


  • Comets: general
  • Comets: individual: comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko
  • Methods: numerical


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