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Multiple solutions for asteroid orbits: Computational procedure and applications

Milani, Andrea and Sansaturio, Maria Eugenia and Tommei, Giacomo and Arratia, Oscar and Chesley, Steven R. (2005) Multiple solutions for asteroid orbits: Computational procedure and applications. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 431 . pp. 729-746.

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    We describe the Multiple Solutions Method, a one-dimensional sampling of the six-dimensional orbital confidence region that is widely applicable in the field of asteroid orbit determination. In many situations there is one predominant direction of uncertainty in an orbit determination or orbital prediction, i.e., a ``weak'' direction. The idea is to record Multiple Solutions by following this, typically curved, weak direction, or Line Of Variations (LOV). In this paper we describe the method and give new insights into the mathematics behind this tool. We pay particular attention to the problem of how to ensure that the coordinate systems are properly scaled so that the weak direction really reflects the intrinsic direction of greatest uncertainty. We also describe how the multiple solutions can be used even in the absence of a nominal orbit solution, which substantially broadens the realm of applications. There are numerous applications for multiple solutions; we discuss a few problems in asteroid orbit determination and prediction where we have had good success with the method. In particular, we show that multiple solutions can be used effectively for potential impact monitoring, preliminary orbit determination, asteroid identification, and for the recovery of lost asteroids.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Minor planets, Asteroids, Celestial mechanics, Astrometry,Surveys
    Subjects: Area01 - Scienze matematiche e informatiche > MAT/07 - Fisica matematica
    Area02 - Scienze fisiche > FIS/05 - Astronomia e astrofisica
    Divisions: Dipartimenti (until 2012) > DIPARTIMENTO DI MATEMATICA "L. TONELLI"
    Depositing User: Dr Giacomo Tommei
    Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2010
    Last Modified: 20 Dec 2010 11:46
    URI: http://eprints.adm.unipi.it/id/eprint/722

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