Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Access
  • Cited by 2
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Bruck Syal, Megan and Schultz, Peter H. 2015. Cometary impact effects at the Moon: Implications for lunar swirl formation. Icarus, Vol. 257, p. 194.


    Prem, P. Artemieva, N.A. Goldstein, D.B. Varghese, P.L. and Trafton, L.M. 2015. Transport of water in a transient impact-generated lunar atmosphere. Icarus, Vol. 255, p. 148.


    ×

The cometary impactor flux at the Earth

  • Paul R. Weissman (a1)
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1743921307003559
  • Published online: 01 August 2006
Abstract
Abstract

Comets account for a small but very significant fraction of impactors on the Earth. Although the total number of Earth-crossing comets is modest as compared with asteroids, the more eccentric and inclined orbits of the comets result in much higher encounter velocities with the planet. Additionally, some Earth-crossing comets are significantly larger than any current near-Earth asteroids (NEAs); comets 1P/Halley and C/1995 O1 Hale-Bopp are good examples of this. Thus, the most energetic impacts on the Earth likely result from comets and not NEAs. The mean impact probability for long-period comets is 2.4× 10−9 per comet per perihelion passage, assuming the perihelion distribution of Everhart (1967), with a most probable encounter velocity of 53.5 km sec−1. There are 21 known Earth-crossing Jupiter-family comets with a mean impact probability of 1.6× 10−9 per comet per year and a most probable encounter velocity of 17.0 km sec−1. For the 16 known Earth-crossing Halley-type comets the mean impact probability is 1.2× 10−10 per year with a most probable encounter velocity of 51.3 km sec−1. The poor knowledge of the size distribution of cometary nuclei makes it difficult to estimate actual impact energies at this time, though that situation is slowly improving, in particular for the Jupiter-family comets.

    • Send article to Kindle

      To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

      Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

      Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

      The cometary impactor flux at the Earth
      Your Kindle email address
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Dropbox

      To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

      The cometary impactor flux at the Earth
      Available formats
      ×
      Send article to Google Drive

      To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

      The cometary impactor flux at the Earth
      Available formats
      ×
Copyright
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

M.E. Bailey 1984, MNRAS 211, 347

W.F. Bottke , A. Morbidelli , R. Jedicke , 2002, Icarus 156, 399

C.F. Chyba , P.J. Thomas & K.J. Zahnle 1993, Nature 361, 40

M.J. Duncan , T. Quinn & S. Tremaine 1988, Astrophys. J. 328, 69

M.J. Duncan & H.F. Levison 1997, Science 276, 1670

V.V. Emel'Yanenko & M.E. Bailey 1996, Earth, Moon & Planets 72, 35

E. Everhart 1967, Astron. J., 72, 1002

J.A. Fernández 1980, MNRAS 192, 481

Y.R. Fernández , D.C. Jewitt & S.S. Sheppard 2005, Astron. J. 130, 308

D.J. Kessler 1981, Icarus 48, 39

H.F. Levison , L. Dones & M.J. Duncan 2001, Astron. J. 121, 2253

H.F. Levison , A. Morbidelli , L. Dones , 2002, Science 296, 2212

S.C. Lowry & P.R. Weissman 2003, Icarus 164, 492

K.J. Meech , O.R. Hainaut & B.G. Marsden 2004, Icarus 170, 463

H.A. Weaver , P.D. Feldman , M.F. A'Hearn & C. Arpigny 1997, Science 275, 1900

P.R. Weissman 1986, Nature 320, 242

P.R. Weissman & H.F. Levison 1997, Astrophys. J. Lett. 488 133

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
  • ISSN: 1743-9213
  • EISSN: 1743-9221
  • URL: /core/journals/proceedings-of-the-international-astronomical-union
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords: