Dynamical Studies of Micrometeorites Detected at the Arecibo Observatory

D. D. Meisel, T. S. Allen (SUNY-Geneseo), V. S. Getman, J. D. Mathews (CSSL-Penn State University), Q. Zhou (Arecibo National Observatory)

A dynamical and orbital analysis of micrometeors detected with the Arecibo 430 MHz radar (and some dual frequency with 50 MHz) has been carried out which includes radiation pressure as well as perturbations by Jupiter and Saturn. Since these objects are apparently a new class of micrometeoroid (Mathews et al., Icarus, 1997), accurate orbital analysis is essential to determine their origin. The hypothesis that all of these small, dense particles originated from outside the solar system is explored in some detail. Alternatives to this view are briefly considered and will be the subject of future dynamical investigations.