The Main Belt Comets and ice in the Solar System

  title={The Main Belt Comets and ice in the Solar System},
  author={Colin Snodgrass and Jessica Agarwal and Michael R. Combi and Alan Fitzsimmons and Aur{\'e}lie Guilbert-Lepoutre and Henry H. Hsieh and Man-To Hui and Emmanuel Jehin and Michael S. P. Kelley and Matthew M. Knight and Cyrielle Opitom and Roberto Orosei and Miguel de Val-Borro and Bin Yang},
  journal={The Astronomy and Astrophysics Review},
We review the evidence for buried ice in the asteroid belt; specifically the questions around the so-called Main Belt Comets (MBCs). We summarise the evidence for water throughout the Solar System, and describe the various methods for detecting it, including remote sensing from ultraviolet to radio wavelengths. We review progress in the first decade of study of MBCs, including observations, modelling of ice survival, and discussion on their origins. We then look at which methods will likely be… 

The Asteroid-Comet Continuum

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The proposed CUBES spectrograph for ESO’s Very Large Telescope will be an exceptionally powerful instrument for the study of comets. The gas coma of a comet contains a large number of emission

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The proposed Caroline ESA M3 mission to a Main Belt Comet

The Reactivation of Main-belt Comet 259P/Garradd (P/2008 R1)

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Main-Belt Comets as Tracers of Ice in the Inner Solar System

  • H. Hsieh
  • Physics, Geology
    Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
  • 2012
Abstract As a recently recognized class of objects exhibiting apparently cometary (sublimation-driven) activity yet orbiting completely within the main asteroid belt, main-belt comets (MBCs) have

A Population of Comets in the Main Asteroid Belt

Optical data is presented showing the existence of a population of comets originating in a third reservoir: the main asteroid belt, which lends new support to the idea that main-belt objects could be a major source of terrestrial water.

Detection of ice and organics on an asteroidal surface

The spectroscopic detection of water ice and organic material on the asteroid 24 Themis is reported, a detection that has been independently confirmed and concludes that water ice is more common on asteroids than was previous thought and may be widespread in asteroidal interiors at much smaller heliocentric distances than was previously expected.

The Detection of Water Ice in Comet Hale-Bopp

Abstract We present spectra of Comet Hale-Bopp (C/1995 O1) covering the range 1.4–2.5 μm that were recorded when the comet was 7 AU from the Sun. These spectra show broad absorption features at 1.5


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Localized sources of water vapour on the dwarf planet (1) Ceres

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Exposed Water Ice Deposits on the Surface of Comet 9P/Tempel 1

The direct detection of solid water ice deposits exposed on the surface of comet 9P/Tempel 1, as observed by the Deep Impact mission, suggests that the surface deposits are loose aggregates.

Perennial water ice identified in the south polar cap of Mars

This work presents the first direct identification and mapping of both carbon dioxide and water ice in the martian high southern latitudes, at a resolution of 2 km, during the local summer, when the extent of the polar ice is at its minimum.

Main Belt Comets: A new class of small bodies in the solar system