Dynamics of Mars-orbiting dust: Effects of light pressure and planetary oblateness
ABSTRACT This paper deals with dynamics of impact ejecta from Phobos and Deimos initially on near-circular equatorial orbits around Mars. For particles emitted in a wide size regime of 1 micron and greater, and taking into account the typical particle lifetimes to be less than 100 years, the motion is governed by two perturbing forces: solar radiation pressure and influence of Mars'' oblateness. The equations of motion of particles in Lagrangian non-singular elements are deduced and solved, both analytically and numerically, for different-sized ejecta. We state that the coupled effect of both forces above is essential so that on no account can the oblateness of Mars are be neglected. The dynamics of grains prove to be quite different for the ejecta of Phobos and Deimos. For Deimos, the qualitative results are relatively simple and imply oscillations of eccentricity and long-term variations of orbital inclination, with amplitudes and periods both depending on grain size. For Phobos, the dynamics are shown to be much more complicated, and we discuss it in detail. We have found an intriguous peculiar behavior of debris near 300 m in size. Another finding is that almost all the Phobos ejecta with radii less than 30 m (against the values of 5 to 20 m adopted earlier by many authors) should be rapidly lost by collisions with martian surface. The results of the paper may be the base for constructing an improved model of dust belts that presumably exist around Mars.