Impact-Induced Seismic Activity on Asteroid 433 Eros: A Surface Modification Process

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Science  26 Nov 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5701, pp. 1526-1529
DOI: 10.1126/science.1104731

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High-resolution images of the surface of asteroid 433 Eros revealed evidence of downslope movement of a loose regolith layer, as well as the degradation and erasure of small impact craters (less than ∼100 meters in diameter). One hypothesis to explain these observations is seismic reverberation after impact events. We used a combination of seismic and geomorphic modeling to analyze the response of regolith-covered topography, particularly craters, to impact-induced seismic shaking. Applying these results to a stochastic cratering model for the surface of Eros produced good agreement with the observed size-frequency distribution of craters, including the paucity of small craters.

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