1218 Aster

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1218 Aster
Discovery [1]
Discovered by K. Reinmuth
Discovery site Heidelberg Obs.
Discovery date 29 January 1932
MPC designation (1218) Aster
Named after
Aster (genus of flowers)[2]
1932 BJ · 1978 TJ5
1978 VQ12
main-belt · (inner)
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 85.35 yr (31,173 days)
Aphelion 2.5110 AU
Perihelion 2.0158 AU
2.2634 AU
Eccentricity 0.1094
3.41 yr (1,244 days)
0° 17m 21.84s / day
Inclination 3.1572°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 5.554±0.084 km[3]

1218 Aster, provisional designation 1932 BJ, is a bright asteroid from the inner regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 5.5 kilometers in diameter. Discovered by Karl Reinmuth in 1932, it was later named after the flowering plant Aster.


Aster was discovered on 29 January 1932, by German astronomer Karl Reinmuth at Heidelberg Observatory in southern Germany.[4] Two nights later, it was independently discovered by Italian astronomer Mario A. Ferrero at the Pino Torinese Observatory at Turin, Italy.[2]

Classification and orbit[edit]

Aster orbits the Sun in the inner main-belt at a distance of 2.0–2.5 AU once every 3 years and 5 months (1,244 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.11 and an inclination of 3° with respect to the ecliptic.[1]

The asteroid's observation arc begins at the discovering observatory, one week after its official discovery observation.[4]

Physical characteristics[edit]

Diameter and albedo[edit]

According to the survey carried out by the NEOWISE mission of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, Aster measures 5.554 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an albedo of 0.332.[3]


As of 2017, rotational lightcurve of Aster has been obtained.[5] The body's rotation period, shape and variation in magnitude shifted from unknown movements[1][6] to specific identifiable spin/shape determinations.


The minor planet was named after the genus of flowers, Aster (also see List of minor planets named after animals and plants § Plants). The official naming citation was mentioned in The Names of the Minor Planets by Paul Herget in 1955 (H 113).[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 1218 Aster (1932 BJ)" (2017-06-04 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (1218) Aster. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 101. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c Masiero, Joseph R.; Grav, T.; Mainzer, A. K.; Nugent, C. R.; Bauer, J. M.; Stevenson, R.; et al. (August 2014). "Main-belt Asteroids with WISE/NEOWISE: Near-infrared Albedos". The Astrophysical Journal. 791 (2): 11. arXiv:1406.6645Freely accessible. Bibcode:2014ApJ...791..121M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/791/2/121. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "1218 Aster (1932 BJ)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 
  5. ^ Minor Planet Lightcurve Data, Organ Mesa Observatory. "Asteroid Lightcurve Research 1218 Aster Phased Plot". Fred Pilcher's Minor Planet Lightcurves. Astronomical Society of Las Cruces (ASLC). Retrieved 1 June 2018. 
  6. ^ "LCDB Data for (1218) Aster". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 23 July 2017. 

External links[edit]