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Is 2021 PH27 an active asteroid with a meteor shower detectable on Venus?

Abstract : The recently discovered near-Earth asteroid 2021 PH27 has the shortest orbital period of all known asteroids. It cannot be excluded that 2021 PH27 is also an active asteroid, as (3200) Phaethon. We intend to estimate the consequences of this hypothesis, although testing is difficult with ground-based observations during perihelion passages, due to low solar elongation. Assuming a surface activity similar to that of Phaethon, an increase in brightness of about 1.4 mag can be estimated. Since it is an asteroid with a minimum orbit intersection distance of 0.014660 ± 0.000034 au with Venus, 2021 PH27 could be the equivalent of Phaethon for the Earth and be the progenitor body of a Venusian meteor shower. A good opportunity to observe the hypothetical fireballs in Venus's atmosphere will take place on the days around 2023 June 7, when Venus will pass at the minimum distance from the nominal orbit of 2021 PH27. Another favourable date will be 2026 July 5. Finally, on 2022 March 28, the asteroid will also be at the maximum Sun elongation of about 52${_{.}^{\circ}}$3 and at the aphelion of its orbit, the most favourable configuration to characterize it from the physical point of view with photometric, polarimetric, and spectroscopic observations.
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Submitted on : Monday, May 2, 2022 - 2:53:38 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, August 4, 2022 - 4:55:40 PM

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Albino Carbognani, Paolo Tanga, Fabrizio Bernardi. Is 2021 PH27 an active asteroid with a meteor shower detectable on Venus?. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters, 2022, 511, pp.L40-L44. ⟨10.1093/mnrasl/slac004⟩. ⟨insu-03656913⟩

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