From the Kuiper Belt to Jupiter-Family Comets: The Spatial Distribution of Ecliptic Comets☆

  title={From the Kuiper Belt to Jupiter-Family Comets: The Spatial Distribution of Ecliptic Comets☆},
  author={Harold F. Levison and Martin J. Duncan},
Abstract We present numerical orbital integrations of thousands of massless particles as they evolve from Neptune-encountering orbits in the Kuiper belt for up to 1 Gyr or until they either impact a massive body or are ejected from the Solar System. The median dynamical lifetime of these objects is 4.5 × 10 7 years. We found that about 30% of these objects became visible comets. (We refer to a comet with perihelion distance H T 7 ecliptic comets (those with T > 2), of sizes consistent with this… Expand
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