A Giant Impact Origin of Pluto-Charon

@article{Canup2005AGI,
  title={A Giant Impact Origin of Pluto-Charon},
  author={Robin M. Canup},
  journal={Science},
  year={2005},
  volume={307},
  pages={546 - 550}
}
  • R. Canup
  • Published 28 January 2005
  • Geology, Physics
  • Science
Pluto and its moon, Charon, are the most prominent members of the Kuiper belt, and their existence holds clues to outer solar system formation processes. Here, hydrodynamic simulations are used to demonstrate that the formation of Pluto-Charon by means of a large collision is quite plausible. I show that such an impact probably produced an intact Charon, although it is possible that a disk of material orbited Pluto from which Charon later accumulated. These findings suggest that collisions… 
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The normalized angular momentum density of Pluto-Charon (0.45) exceeds the critical value of 0.39 above which no stably rotating single object exists, suggesting a collisional origin for this binary.
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Lyttleton hypothesized long ago that Triton and Pluto originated as adjacent prograde satellites of Neptune1. With the presently accepted masses of Triton and Pluto–Charon2,3, however, the momentum
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The origin of the highly eccentric, inclined, and resonance-locked orbit of Pluto has long been a puzzle. A possible explanation has been proposed recently which suggests that these extraordinary
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Abstract The dynamical state of the Pluto-Charon binary is distinctive in several respects including its well-known position in the Neptune 3:2 mean motion resonance, its librating argument of
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▪ Abstract The giant impact theory is the leading hypothesis for the origin of the Moon. This review focuses on dynamical aspects of an impact-induced lunar formation, in particular those areas that
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Although the mechanism by which the Moon was formed is currently unknown, several lines of evidence point to its accretion from a circumterrestrial disk of debris generated by a giant impact on the
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