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The Populations of Plutinos and Other Resonant TNOs in the Distant Solar System

Presentation #202.04 in the session Dynamics Beyond Neptune.

Published onApr 25, 2022
The Populations of Plutinos and Other Resonant TNOs in the Distant Solar System

We have an ongoing survey on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope that is targeted toward the off-ecliptic areas where Kozai Plutinos are predicted to be at pericenter and thus easiest to detect. We found fewer Plutinos than we expected, but a larger fraction of potential Kozai Plutinos, showing the power of off-ecliptic measurements for constraining dynamically hot populations in the Kuiper Belt as compared with primarily ecliptic surveys. Our survey also discovered many new TNOs on large semimajor axis orbits. With additional astrometry in the near-future, we expect many of these to be on resonant orbits, because the OSSOS Survey found dozens of TNOs in high-order resonances at very large distances. Because OSSOS was well-characterized, with well-known observational biases, we can measure the debiased orbital distributions and absolute populations in these distant resonances. Our findings are suggestive of ongoing temporary resonant sticking by scattering TNOs. However, the approximately measured population sizes from Survey Simulator modelling are much larger than predicted from the current scattering population size, so the full story of emplacing TNOs into these distant resonances isn’t yet clear.


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