, Volume 113, Issue 1, pp 23-34
Date: 15 Apr 2012

Trojan capture by terrestrial planets

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The paper is devoted to investigate the capture of asteroids by Venus, Earth and Mars into the 1:1 mean-motion resonance, especially into Trojan orbits. Current theoretical studies predict that Trojan asteroids are a frequent by-product of the planet formation. This is not only the case for the outer giant planets, but also for the terrestrial planets in the inner Solar System. By using numerical integrations, we investigated the capture efficiency and the stability of the captured objects. We found out that the capture efficiency is larger for the planets in the inner Solar System compared to the outer ones, but most of the captured Trojan asteroids are not long term stable. These temporary captures caused by chaotic behaviour of the objects were investigated without any dissipative forces. They show an interesting dynamical behaviour of mixing, like jumping from one Lagrange point to the other one.