Polarimetric survey of main-belt asteroids
V. The unusual polarimetric behavior of V-type asteroids⋆
1 Grupo de Ciencias Planetarias, Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito, UNLP-UNC-UNSJ-CONICET, Av. España 1512 sur, J5402DSP San Juan Argentina
2 Universidad Nacional de San Juan, J. I. de la Roza 590 oeste, 5400 Rivadavia, San Juan, Argentina
Received: 10 March 2016
Accepted: 20 December 2016
Aims. We present the results of a polarimetric survey of main-belt asteroids at Complejo Astronómico El Leoncito (CASLEO), San Juan, Argentina. The aims of this survey are to increase the database of asteroid polarimetry, to estimate diversity in polarimetric properties of asteroids that belong to different taxonomic classes, and to search for objects that exhibit anomalous polarimetric properties.
Methods. The data were obtained using the CASPROF and CASPOL polarimeters at the 2.15 m telescope. The CASPROF polarimeter is a two-hole aperture polarimeter with rapid modulation and CASPOL is a polarimeter based on a CCD detector, which allows us to observe fainter objects with better signal-to-noise ratio.
Results. The survey began in 1995 and data on a large sample of asteroids were obtained until 2012. A second period began in 2013 using a polarimeter with a more sensitive detector in order to study small asteroids, families, and special taxonomic groups. We obtained 55 polarimetric measurements for 28 V-type main belt asteroids, all of them polarimetrically observed for the first time. The data obtained in this survey let us find polarimetric parameters for (1459) Magnya and for a group of 11 small V-type objects with similar polarimetric behavior. These polarization curves are unusual since they show a shallow minimum and a small inversion angle in comparison with (4) Vesta, although they have a steeper slope at α0. This polarimetric behavior could be explained by differences in the regoliths of these asteroids. The observations of (2579) Spartacus, and perhaps also (3944) Halliday, indicate a inversion angle larger than 24−25°.
Key words: minor planets, asteroids: general / techniques: polarimetric
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