Projets par an
The symmetric trace free (STF) tensor formalism, developed by Hartmann et al. (Celest Mech Dyn Astron 60:139-159. doi:10.1007/BF00693097, 1994), is a nice tool, not much used in Celestial Mechanics. It is fully equivalent to the usual spherical harmonics but permits more elegant and compact formulations. The coupling between the gravitational fields of extended bodies with this formalism has been used in Mathis and Le Poncin-Lafitte (Astron Astrophys 497:889-910. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/20079054, 2009) for binary stars or planetary systems, but not yet applied to binary asteroids. However, binary asteroids are common in the Solar System and usually their study requires a full two rigid body approach. The formulation of the two-body interaction potential in the STF formalism in the full two rigid body problem is detailed and completed in this article. An application to the binary asteroid (66391) 1999 KW4 is presented with a comparison of our results with other results of the literature for validation.