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NH Arrokoth (formerly Ultima Thule) Encounter Observations & Results, post-flyby discussion as the data arrives
fredk
post Jan 13 2019, 02:50 PM
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It's hard to know without seeing the raw images how much noise we have in these views. To me they look noisy (and we were told to expect noisy images), so I'm suspicious of the fine, pixel-scale detail. But on the other hand, the abstract cited above refers to the "mottled appearance", and the team should know whether the amplitude of that fine detail is consistent with noise or not. Or maybe by the "mottling" they mean several-pixel-scale detail? It'll be really interesting to see the closer views.

And also interesting to see higher phase angle views, to break the degeneracy between topography and albedo variations...
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kenny
post Jan 13 2019, 10:00 PM
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The interesting light color at the "neck" might suggest there could be slight movement between the 2 component bodies, and "grinding" of relatively fresh ice in that area...
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HSchirmer
post Jan 13 2019, 11:29 PM
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QUOTE (kenny @ Jan 13 2019, 11:00 PM) *
The interesting light color at the "neck" might suggest there could be slight movement between the 2 component bodies, and "grinding" of relatively fresh ice in that area...


Anybody know which direction is "up" and which is "down" at the neck of a contact binary like UT?

How did / could that change as the binary spun-down?
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JTN
post Jan 14 2019, 01:19 AM
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QUOTE (HSchirmer @ Jan 13 2019, 11:29 PM) *
Anybody know which direction "up" and which is "down" at the neck of a contact binary like UT?

This slide from the Jan 2 press conference slides sheds some light on the present situation. (It doesn't give a vector but I assume things roll toward the neck.)
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JTN
post Jan 14 2019, 10:01 AM
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Tidbit from Alan Stern on Twitter yesterday: "We’re plaiinong an inage release— in 10 days!" (I make that about 23 Jan).

https://twitter.com/AlanStern/status/1084661266159931393
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alex_k
post Jan 14 2019, 02:00 PM
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An animation about details. Quality of 4:22 LORRI image is lower, but still.
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Alan Stern
post Jan 14 2019, 10:26 PM
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QUOTE (JTN @ Jan 14 2019, 11:01 AM) *
Tidbit from Alan Stern on Twitter yesterday: "We’re plaiinong an inage release— in 10 days!" (I make that about 23 Jan).

https://twitter.com/AlanStern/status/1084661266159931393


Update: Now planning an image release for this week too.

Sorry for the typos above, was walking between flights in Doha; well, actually running between flights!
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peikojose
post Jan 15 2019, 12:55 AM
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QUOTE (Alan Stern @ Jan 14 2019, 06:26 PM) *
Update: Now planning an image release for this week too.

Sorry for the typos above, was walking between flights in Doha; well, actually running between flights!

Nice!
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John Moore
post Jan 15 2019, 02:51 AM
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QUOTE (Alan Stern @ Jan 14 2019, 10:26 PM) *
Update: Now planning an image release for this week too.

Sorry for the typos above, was walking between flights in Doha; well, actually running between flights!


Interviewed Alan many years' back...a wonderful experience: walking then, running still today to inspire.
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Marcin600
post Jan 15 2019, 07:18 PM
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A slightly more elongated and less round shape of UT from a slightly different perspective ? https://twitter.com/hashtag/UltimaThuleFlyby?src=hash
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Marcin600
post Jan 16 2019, 12:00 AM
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New movie from 500000 km to 28000 km: http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/News-Center/News-A...p?page=20190115
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Øyvind G
post Jan 16 2019, 01:04 AM
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QUOTE (Marcin600 @ Jan 16 2019, 01:00 AM) *


From the release:
"...rotation of Ultima Thule in the seven hours between 20:00 UT (3 p.m. ET) on Dec. 31, 2018, and 05:01 UT (12:01 a.m.) on Jan. 1, 2019..."

Isn't that nine hours?
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john_s
post Jan 16 2019, 01:27 AM
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Oops! Sorry about that.

John
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Ian R
post Jan 16 2019, 07:19 AM
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Wonderful images! Amazing how a slew of pictures at very moderate resolution can still be pretty insightful. I took one of the GIF animations and made an aligned and 'bouncy' version:

Attached Image


Looks as if the lobes are less spherical than they are hamburger shape!


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Ian R
post Jan 16 2019, 08:19 AM
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My speculation is that the two lobes were never individual objects in the first place, and that the original fast rotation of MU69 -- back when it was newly formed and more prone to deformation -- caused a 'blob' to begin to separate from the main body due to centripetal forces, which in the end weren't enough for the two components to part completely.

Just a stab in the dark from a layperson!


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