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Poster communications

Spectro-Polarimetry of Fine-Grained Ice and Dust Surfaces Measured in the Laboratory to Study Solar System Objects and Beyond

Abstract : The polarization of the light is very sensitive to the size, morphology, porosity and composition of the scattering particles. As a consequence, polarimetric observations could significantly complement observations performed in total light intensity, providing additional constraints to interpret remote sensing observations of Solar System and extra-solar objects. This presentation will focus on measurements performed in the laboratory on carefully characterized surface samples, providing reference data that can be used to test theoretical models and predict or interpret spectro-polarimetric observations. Using methods developed in the Laboratory for Outflow Studies of Sublimating Materials (LOSSy) at the University of Bern, we produce well-characterized and reproducible surfaces made of water ice particles having different grain sizes and porosities, as well as mineral/organic dusts, pure or mixed together, as analogues of planetary or small bodies surfaces. These surface samples are illuminated with a randomly polarized light source simulating the Sun. The polarization of their scattered light is measured at multiple phase angles and wavelengths, allowing to study the shape of the polarimetric phase curves and their spectral dependence, with two recently developed setups: The POLarimeter for Icy Samples (POLICES), at the University of Bern, allows the measurement of the weak polarization of ice surfaces from 400 to 800 nm, with direct application to icy satellites. Using a precision Stokes polarimeter, this setup is also used to study the spectral variations of circular polarization in the light scattered by biotic versus abiotic surfaces. The Spectrogonio radiometer with cHanging Angles for Detection Of Weak Signals (SHADOWS), at IPAG (University of Grenoble Alpes), measures linear polarization spectra from 0.35 to 5 μm in the light scattered by dark meteorite powders or icy samples, with application to primitive objects of the Solar System (asteroids, comets).
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Poster communications
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Contributor : Catherine Cardon <>
Submitted on : Saturday, January 6, 2018 - 5:26:20 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, July 8, 2020 - 5:05:18 PM


  • HAL Id : insu-01676891, version 1


Olivier Poch, Romain Cérubini, Antoine Pommerol, Nicolas Thomas, Hans Martin Schmid, et al.. Spectro-Polarimetry of Fine-Grained Ice and Dust Surfaces Measured in the Laboratory to Study Solar System Objects and Beyond. AGU 2017 Fall Meeting, Dec 2017, New Orleans, United States. ⟨insu-01676891⟩



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