A Survey of Orbits of Co-Orbitals of Jupiter (Poster)
Stacey, R. Greg
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Co- Jupiter’s Trojan asteroids fulfill the prediction of Lagrange that orbits can be stable when a small body orbits in specific locations relative to its ‘parent’ planet and the Sun. The first such Trojan was discovered in 1906, and subsequently similar asteroids have been discovered associated with Mars and with Neptune. Other planets are not known to have Trojan-type asteroids associated with them, although Earth and Venus have co-orbital companions. Since the number of detected Jupiter Trojans has increased dramatically in the last few years, we have conducted a numerical survey of their orbital motions to see whether any in fact move in horseshoe orbits. We find that none do, although there is some possibility that escaped Trojans have been detected. Here we also use the enlarged database of information about Trojans to summarize their orbital and some physical properties as now known. We further compare some relations between orbital properties to existing theories. In particular, we verify the results of multiple time scale investigations undertaken by Erdì to relate the amplitude of libration of Trojans to their librational period, extending the results of the restricted three-body problem.