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Astronomy Colloquium

Thursday, November 15, 2012
5:00 AM
807 Dennison

UV and X-ray observations of small bodies in the solar system

Swift is a space borne observatory initially designed for rapid follow-up of gamma-ray bursts. It is equipped with co-aligned gamma-ray, X-ray, and UV telescopes, and can quickly slew between targets, allowing for rapid response observations and monitoring campaigns.

In the past five years, we have used Swift to study numerous small bodies in the solar system. I will give an overview of our results, ranging from UV grism spectroscopy of comets and asteroids, UV imaging of the impact on Asteroid (596) Scheila, and how Swift’s multi-wavelength capabilities were used to study the interaction between Comet C/2007 N3 (Lulin) and the solar wind.