Light curves of ten Centaurs from K2 measurements

Gábor Marton, Csaba Kiss, László Molnár, András Pál, Anikó Farkas-Takács, Gyula M. Szabó, Thomas Müller, Victor Ali-Lagoa, Róbert Szabó, József Vinkó, Krisztián Sárneczky, Csilla E. Kalup, Anna Marciniak, Rene Duffard, László L. Kiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Here we present the results of visible range light curve observations of ten Centaurs using the Kepler Space Telescope in the framework of the K2 mission. Well defined periodic light curves are obtained in six cases allowing us to derive rotational periods, a notable increase in the number of Centaurs with known rotational properties. The low amplitude light curves of (471931) 2013 PH44 and (250112) 2002 KY14 can be explained either by albedo variegations, binarity or elongated shape. (353222) 2009 YD7 and (514312) 2016 AE193 could be rotating elongated objects, while 2017 CX33 and 2012 VU85 are the most promising binary candidates due to their slow rotations and higher light curve amplitudes. (463368) 2012 VU85 has the longest rotation period, P = 56.2 h observed among Centaurs. The P > 20 h rotation periods obtained for the two potential binaries underlines the importance of long, uninterrupted time series photometry of solar system targets that can suitably be performed only from spacecraft, like the Kepler in the K2 mission, and the currently running TESS mission.

Original languageEnglish
Article number113721
Publication statusPublished - Jul 15 2020


  • (250112) 2002 KY
  • (353222) 2009 YD
  • (463368) 2012 VU
  • (471931) 2013 PH
  • (472760) 2015 FZ
  • (499522) 2010 PL
  • (514312) 2016 AE
  • (523798) 2017 CX
  • 2010 GX
  • 2010 JJ
  • Asteroids
  • General
  • Individual
  • Kuiper belt objects
  • Methods
  • Minor planets
  • Observational
  • Photometric
  • Techniques

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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  • Cite this

    Marton, G., Kiss, C., Molnár, L., Pál, A., Farkas-Takács, A., Szabó, G. M., Müller, T., Ali-Lagoa, V., Szabó, R., Vinkó, J., Sárneczky, K., Kalup, C. E., Marciniak, A., Duffard, R., & Kiss, L. L. (2020). Light curves of ten Centaurs from K2 measurements. Icarus, 345, [113721].