4942 Munroe

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4942 Munroe
4942 Munroe.png
Orbital diagram of Munroe
Discovery [1]
Discovered by H. Debehogne
Discovery site La Silla Obs.
Discovery date 24 February 1987
Designations
MPC designation (4942) Munroe
Named after
Randall Munroe
(American cartoonist)[2]
1987 DU6 · 1955 MS
1971 GE · 1990 CB
main-belt · (inner)
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 61.76 yr (22,559 days)
Aphelion 2.5000 AU
Perihelion 1.9026 AU
2.2013 AU
Eccentricity 0.1357
3.27 yr (1,193 days)
9.2509°
0° 18m 6.48s / day
Inclination 3.8333°
278.09°
11.227°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 3.453±0.139 km[3]
0.936±0.183[3]
SMASS = X[1]
13.5[1]

4942 Munroe, provisional designation 1987 DU6, is an asteroid from the inner regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 3 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 24 February 1987, by Belgian astronomer Henri Debehogne at ESO's La Silla Observatory in northern Chile, and later named after American cartoonist Randall Munroe.[2]

Orbit and classification[edit]

Munroe orbits the Sun in the inner main-belt at a distance of 1.9–2.5 AU once every 3 years and 3 months (1,193 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.14 and an inclination of 4° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] It was first identified as 1955 MS at the Leiden Southern Station (Johannesburg-Hartbeespoort) in 1955, extending the body's observation arc by 32 years prior to its official discovery observation.[2]

Physical characteristics[edit]

In the SMASS taxonomy, Munroe is characterized as a X-type asteroid, it has an absolute magnitude of 13.5.[1]

Diameter and albedo[edit]

According to the survey carried out by the NEOWISE mission of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, Munroe measures 3.453 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an exceptionally high albedo of 0.936.[3] On his private blog, Randall Munroe (after whom the asteroid is named) calculates that the asteroid is between 6 and 10 kilometers in diameter, comparable in size to the Chicxulub asteroid.[4]

Lightcurves[edit]

As of 2017, Munroe's rotation period, poles and shape remain unknown.[1][5]

Naming[edit]

In 2013, it was named after Randall Munroe (born 1984), a former NASA roboticist and the author of the xkcd webcomic.[6] The name was chosen by xkcd readers Lewis Hulbert and Jordan Zhu,[7] the official naming citation was published on 22 July 2013 (M.P.C. 84378).[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 4942 Munroe (1987 DU6)" (2017-03-28 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 4 July 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c "4942 Munroe (1987 DU6)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 April 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Grav, T.; Bauer, J. M.; Cutri, R. M.; Dailey, J.; et al. (November 2011). "Main Belt Asteroids with WISE/NEOWISE. I. Preliminary Albedos and Diameters". The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 20. arXiv:1109.4096Freely accessible. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...68M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/68. Retrieved 18 April 2017. 
  4. ^ Munroe, Randall (September 30, 2013). "Asteroid 4942 Munroe". xkcd. Retrieved July 7, 2014. 
  5. ^ "LCDB Data for (4942) Munroe". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 18 April 2017. 
  6. ^ Richardson, Chris (October 2, 2013). "xkcd Author Gets Asteroid Named After Him". iEntry Network. Retrieved May 8, 2014. 
  7. ^ Lecher, Colin (October 2, 2013). "Aw, They Named An Asteroid After The Creator Of XKCD". nextmedia Pty Ltd. Retrieved May 8, 2014. 
  8. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 April 2017. 

External links[edit]