An estimate of Eros's porosity and implications for internal structure

Sarah L. Wilkison, Mark S. Robinson, Peter C. Thomas, Joseph Veverka, Timothy J. McCoy, Scott L. Murchie, Louise M. Prockter, Donald K. Yeomans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Earth-based spectral measurements and NEAR Shoemaker magnetometer, X-ray, and near-infrared spectrometer data are all consistent with Eros having a bulk composition and mineralogy similar to ordinary chondrite meteorites (OC). By comparing the bulk density of 433 Eros (2.67 ± 0.03 g/cm3) with that of OCs (3.40 g/cm3), we estimate the total porosity of the asteroid to be 21-33%. Macro (or structural) porosity, best estimated to be ∼20%, is constrained to be between 6 and 33%. We conclude that Eros is a heavily fractured body, but we find no evidence that it was ever catastrophically disrupted and reaccumulated into a rubble pile.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)94-103
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Asteroids
  • Eros
  • Interiors
  • Meteorites
  • Surfaces

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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