Taxonomic Size Frequency Distributions By Dynamical Zone

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

American Astronomical Society, Department of Planetary Sciences


We investigate the size-frequency distribution of major asteroid taxonomic classes by combining data from the recent Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) and Carvano et al.'s (2010) Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) based taxonomy. Prior to WISE the limited scope of albedo and diameter studies restricted our understanding of taxonomic size frequency distributions. Our research using the new WISE database extends the number of asteroids analyzed from 4,000 to over 8,000 and expands on previous work by focusing on asteroid classes S, C, X (and its subclasses), and D. We remove asteroids belonging to the major asteroid families as defined by Nesvorny (2010) and control for collisional environment by using dynamical zones as defined by Cellino et al. (1991). Understanding the taxonomic size frequency distributions provides insight into the collisional evolution of asteroids in each class. Our results can be extrapolated to infer the overall volume of each class.