A Brief History of the Workshop
The possibility that asteroids might have satellites or even "contact binary" form has been a matter of speculation since the early discoveries of these small bodies. In Asteroids II (1989), Weidenschilling et al., in a chaper titled "Do asteroids have satellites?", said that there was no conclusive proof (Pluto had not bee demoted to "dwarf planet" at the time). In Asteroids III (2002), Merline et al's chapter declared "Asteroids do have satellites" and described the properties for about 25 binaries that ranged from NEA, main-belt, Trojan, and TNO. To-date, more than 300 satellites belonging to minor bodies of all types have been discovered along with numerous "asteroid pairs", those in extremely similar heliocentric orbits that are likely binaries that broke their bonds and are slowly drifting apar.
This is the fifth workshop in a series, the previous one were
- 2007 Steamboat Springs, Colorado
- 2010 Poznan, Poland
2013 Kohala Coast, Hawai'i
- 2016 Prague, Czech Republic
The workshops are characterized by a relaxed atmosphere and free format, with almost as much time for discussion as for the presentations themselves.
The goal of the workshop is to bring together various ideas on the detection, characterization, formation, and implications of binary and multiple objects among the NEO, main-belt, Trojan, Centaur, TNO populations. We hope to include all of the many modes of observation, in all of the dynamical populations, as well as theory and numerical modeling of formation and evolution of these systems. We especially welcome the new topics of rings of small bodies, and heliocentric orbital pairs of asteroids and their implications.