High-resolution OSIRIS/Rosetta images of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko acquired on the night run of 2016 April 9-10 show, at large scale, an opposition effect (OE) spot sweeping across Imhotep as the phase angle ranges from 0° to 17°. In this work, we fitted the phase curve of the whole surface imaged as well as three particular features using both the linear- exponential and Hapke models. These features encompass different types of spectral behaviour: a circular mesa, one venous structure and an assemblage of bright spots, going from red to blue colours. Both the Hapke and linear-exponential parameters indicate a stepwise sharpening of the OE from bright spots to circular mesa. Yet a very broad nonlinear phase curve is verified and no sign of sharp OE associated with a coherent-backscattering mechanism is observed. We estimate that the 67P surface is dominated by opaque, desiccated and larger-than-wavelength irregular grains. Veins and bright spots display photometric properties consistent with surfaces becoming slightly brighter as they are enriched by high-albedo ice grains. We also report the estimation of normal albedo for all cometary regions observed throughout the image sequence. Comparison to pre-perihelion results indicates that far better insolation of northern brighter regions, i.e. Hapi, Hathor and Seth, is sufficient to explain mismatches on the photometric parameters. However, metre-scale photometric analysis of the Imhotep-Ash boundary area advocates for mild darkening (< 7 per cent) of the surface at local scale.
|Journal||Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society|
|State||Published - 2017|
- Rosetta: 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko