Prospects of Dynamical Determination of General Relativity Parameter β and Solar Quadrupole Moment J(2 circle dot) with Asteroid Radar Astronomy
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Prospects of Dynamical Determination of General Relativity Parameter β and Solar Quadrupole Moment J(2 circle dot) with Asteroid Radar Astronomy

  • Author(s): Verma, Ashok K
  • Margot, Jean-Luc
  • Greenberg, Adam H
  • et al.
Abstract

We evaluated the prospects of quantifying the parameterized post-Newtonian parameter beta and solar quadrupole moment J2 with observations of near-Earth asteroids with large orbital precession rates (9 to 27 arcsec century$^{-1}$). We considered existing optical and radar astrometry, as well as radar astrometry that can realistically be obtained with the Arecibo planetary radar in the next five years. Our sensitivity calculations relied on a traditional covariance analysis and Monte Carlo simulations. We found that independent estimates of beta and J2 can be obtained with precisions of $6\times10^{-4}$ and $3\times10^{-8}$, respectively. Because we assumed rather conservative observational uncertainties, as is the usual practice when reporting radar astrometry, it is likely that the actual precision will be closer to $2\times10^{-4}$ and $10^{-8}$, respectively. A purely dynamical determination of solar oblateness with asteroid radar astronomy may therefore rival the helioseismology determination.

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