Kuiper Belt evolution due to dynamical friction
A. Del Popolo 1,2,
E. Spedicato 2 and
M. Gambera 1,3
Received 23 September 1998 / Accepted 24 June 1999
In this paper we study the role of dynamical friction on the evolution of a population of large objects ( g) at heliocentric distances AU in the Kuiper Belt. We show that the already flat distribution of these objects must flatten further due to non-spherically symmetric distribution of matter in the Kuiper Belt. Moreover the dynamical drag, produced by dynamical friction, causes objects of masses to lose angular momentum and to fall through more central regions in a timescale . This mechanism is able to transport inwards objects of the size of Pluto, supposing it was created beyond , according to a Stern & Colwell's (1997b) suggestion.
Key words: minor planets, asteroids comets: general planets and satellites: general solar system: general
Send offprint requests to: A. Del Popolo (firstname.lastname@example.org);
This article contains no SIMBAD objects.
© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999
Online publication: October 4, 1999