Physical Characterization of 2015 JD1: A Possibly Inhomogeneous Near-Earth Asteroid

Andy J. López-Oquendo, David E. Trilling, Annika Gustafsson, Anne Virkki, Edgard G. Rivera-Valentín, Mikael Granvik, Colin Orion Chandler, Joseph Chatelain, Patrick Taylor, Luisa Fernanda-Zambrano

Submitted on 11 July 2022


The surfaces of airless bodies such as asteroids are exposed to many phenomena that can alter their physical properties. Bennu, the target of the OSIRIS-REx mission, has demonstrated how complex the surface of a small body can be. In 2019 November, the potentially hazardous asteroid 2015 JD1 experienced a close approach of 0.0331 au from the Earth. We present results of the physical characterization of 2015 JD1 based on ground-based radar, spectroscopy, and photometric observations acquired during 2019 November. Radar polarimetry measurements from the Arecibo Observatory indicate a morphologically complex surface. The delay-Doppler images reveal a contact-binary asteroid with an estimated visible extent of ~150 m. Our observations suggest that 2015 JD1 is an E-type asteroid with a surface composition similar to aubrites, a class of differentiated enstatite meteorites. The dynamical properties of 2015 JD1 suggest it came from the ν6 resonance with Jupiter, and spectral comparison with major E-type bodies suggest that it may have been derived from a parental body similar to the progenitor of the E-type (64) Angelina. Significantly, we find rotational spectral variation across the surface of 2015 JD1 from red to blue spectral slope. Our compositional analysis suggests that the spectral slope variation could be due to the lack of iron and sulfides in one area of the 2015 JD1 and/or differences in grain sizes.


Comment: 20 pages, 14 figures, 3 tables; accepted for publication in Planetary Science Journal

Subject: Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astrophysics