Imaging polarimetry of Comet 9P/Tempel before and after the Deep Impact

Reiko Furusho, Yuji Ikeda, Daisuke Kinoshita, Wing Huen Ip, Hideyo Kawakita, Toshihiro Kasuga, Yusuke Sato, Hung Chin Lin, Ming Shin Chang, Zhong Yi Lin, Jun ichi Watanabe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The NASA's Deep Impact mission was the first impact experiment to a cometary nucleus. The target of the mission was Comet 9P/Tempel, one of the Jupiter family comets. The impact was performed on July 4th, 2005. Imaging polarimetric observations were carried out by Polarimetric Imager for COmets (PICO) mounted on the Lulin One-meter Telescope (LOT) at Lulin Observatory, Taiwan. Intensity and linear polarization degree maps were obtained on July 3-5, 2005. Impact ejecta plume was clearly recognized in the enhanced intensity map. Furthermore, arc-shaped region of high polarization was recognized in the polarization map. Dust grains in this region had larger expansion velocity than the grains which provided the brightest area in the intensity map. comparing our results with the MIR spectroscopy obtained by Subaru Telescope we conclude that very small carbonaceous grains might be responsible for the region of high polarization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)454-458
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Oct 2007


  • Comet Tempel-1
  • Comets
  • Polarimetry
  • The Deep Impact
  • dust


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