1303 Luthera

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1303 Luthera
Discovery [1]
Discovered by A. Schwassmann
Discovery site Bergedorf Obs.
Discovery date 16 March 1928
MPC designation (1303) Luthera
Named after
Robert Luther[2]
(German astronomer)
1928 FP · 1926 XD
1928 HH · 1972 VP1
A917 KC
main-belt · (outer)[1][3]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 89.60 yr (32,726 days)
Aphelion 3.5680 AU
Perihelion 2.8910 AU
3.2295 AU
Eccentricity 0.1048
5.80 yr (2,120 days)
0° 10m 11.28s / day
Inclination 19.491°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 81.685±0.494 km[5]
85.08 km (derived)[3]
87.15±1.13 km[6]
90.65±25.04 km[7]
91.35±24.52 km[8]
92.118±2.084 km[9]
112.74±1.41 km[10]
5.878±0.003 h[11]
7.92±0.05 h[12]
0.0387 (derived)[3]
9.00[6][9] · 9.40[7][10] · 9.5[1][3] · 9.51[8]

1303 Luthera, provisional designation 1928 FP, is a dark asteroid and the parent body of the Luthera family, located in the outermost regions of the asteroid belt. It measures approximately 90 kilometers in diameter. The asteroid was discovered on 16 March 1928, by astronomer Friedrich Schwassmann at the Bergedorf Observatory in Hamburg, Germany, and later named after German astronomer Robert Luther.[2][13]

Orbit and classification[edit]

Luthera is the parent body of the Luthera family (904), a smaller asteroid family of less than 200 known members.[4][14]:23 It orbits the Sun in the outermost asteroid belt at a distance of 2.9–3.6 AU once every 5 years and 10 months (2,120 days; semi-major axis of 3.23 AU). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.10 and an inclination of 19° with respect to the ecliptic.[1]

The asteroid was first observed as A917 KC at Simeiz Observatory in May 2017. The body's observation arc begins at Heidelberg Observatory in April 1928, or one month after its official discovery observation at Bergedorf.[13]

Physical characteristics[edit]

Due to its low geometric albedo, Luthera is an assumed carbonaceous C-type asteroid,[3] while the overall spectral type for members of the Luthera family is that of an X-type.[14]:23

Rotation period[edit]

In February 2008, a rotational lightcurve of Luthera was obtained from photometric observations by Mexican astronomer Pedro Sada at the University of Monterrey, Mexico. Lightcurve analysis gave a short rotation period of 5.878 hours with a low brightness variation of 0.05 magnitude, indicative for a nearly spherical shape (U=3).[11] A lower-rated lightcurve with a period of 7.92 hours and an amplitude of 0.06 magnitude was obtained by French amateur astronomer Pierre Antonini in May 2009 (U=2).[12]

Diameter and albedo[edit]

According to the surveys carried out by the Japanese Akari satellite and the NEOWISE mission of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, Luthera measures between 81.685 and 112.74 kilometers in diameter and its surface has a low albedo between 0.024 and 0.059.[5][6][7][8][9][10]

The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link derives an albedo of 0.0387 and a diameter of 85.08 kilometers based on an absolute magnitude of 9.5.[3]


This minor planet was named after German astronomer Karl Theodor Robert Luther (1822–1900), who was a discoverer of minor planets himself, most notably 17 Thetis, 90 Antiope (binary) and 288 Glauke (slow rotator). The official naming citation was mentioned in The Names of the Minor Planets by Paul Herget in 1955 (H 119). The lunar crater Luther has also been named after him.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 1303 Luthera (1928 FP)" (2017-11-25 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (1303) Luthera. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 107. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "LCDB Data for (1303) Luthera". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Small Bodies Data Ferret". Nesvorny HCM Asteroid Families V3.0. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  5. ^ a b 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" (PDF). The Astrophysical Journal. 791 (2): 11. arXiv:1406.6645. Bibcode:2014ApJ...791..121M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/791/2/121. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d Usui, Fumihiko; Kuroda, Daisuke; Müller, Thomas G.; Hasegawa, Sunao; Ishiguro, Masateru; Ootsubo, Takafumi; et al. (October 2011). "Asteroid Catalog Using Akari: AKARI/IRC Mid-Infrared Asteroid Survey". Publications of the Astronomical Society of Japan. 63 (5): 1117–1138. Bibcode:2011PASJ...63.1117U. doi:10.1093/pasj/63.5.1117. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  7. ^ a b c d Nugent, C. R.; Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J.; Cutri, R. M.; Grav, T.; et al. (December 2015). "NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year One: Preliminary Asteroid Diameters and Albedos". The Astrophysical Journal. 814 (2): 13. arXiv:1509.02522. Bibcode:2015ApJ...814..117N. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/814/2/117. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  8. ^ a b c d Nugent, C. R.; Mainzer, A.; Bauer, J.; Cutri, R. M.; Kramer, E. A.; Grav, T.; et al. (September 2016). "NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year Two: Asteroid Diameters and Albedos". The Astronomical Journal. 152 (3): 12. arXiv:1606.08923. Bibcode:2016AJ....152...63N. doi:10.3847/0004-6256/152/3/63. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  9. ^ a b c d Mainzer, A.; Grav, T.; Masiero, J.; Hand, E.; Bauer, J.; Tholen, D.; et al. (November 2011). "NEOWISE Studies of Spectrophotometrically Classified Asteroids: Preliminary Results" (PDF). The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 25. arXiv:1109.6407. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...90M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/90. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  10. ^ a b c d Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Grav, T.; Bauer, J. M.; Cutri, R. M.; Nugent, C.; et al. (November 2012). "Preliminary Analysis of WISE/NEOWISE 3-Band Cryogenic and Post-cryogenic Observations of Main Belt Asteroids". The Astrophysical Journal Letters. 759 (1): 5. arXiv:1209.5794. Bibcode:2012ApJ...759L...8M. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/759/1/L8. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  11. ^ a b Sada, Pedro V. (September 2008). "CCD Photometry of Six Asteroids from the Universidad de Monterry Observatory". The Minor Planet Bulletin. 35 (3): 105–107. Bibcode:2008MPBu...35..105S. ISSN 1052-8091. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  12. ^ a b Behrend, Raoul. "Asteroids and comets rotation curves – (1303) Luthera". Geneva Observatory. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  13. ^ a b "1303 Luthera (1928 FP)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 15 December 2017.
  14. ^ a b Nesvorný, D.; Broz, M.; Carruba, V. (December 2014). "Identification and Dynamical Properties of Asteroid Families" (PDF). Asteroids IV: 297–321. arXiv:1502.01628. Bibcode:2015aste.book..297N. doi:10.2458/azu_uapress_9780816532131-ch016. Retrieved 15 December 2017.

External links[edit]