1721 Wells

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1721 Wells
Discovery [1]
Discovered by Indiana University
(Indiana Asteroid Program)
Discovery site Goethe Link Obs.
Discovery date 3 October 1953
MPC designation (1721) Wells
Named after
Herman Wells
(Indiana University)[2]
1953 TD3 · 1944 DA
1958 QE · A905 CG
main-belt · (outer)
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 112.13 yr (40,957 days)
Aphelion 3.2969 AU
Perihelion 3.0049 AU
3.1509 AU
Eccentricity 0.0463
5.59 yr (2,043 days)
Inclination 16.107°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 43.576±0.166 km[3]

1721 Wells, provisional designation 1953 TD3, is a dark asteroid from the outer region of the asteroid belt, approximately 44 kilometers in diameter.

It was discovered on 3 October 1953, by IU's Indiana Asteroid Program at Goethe Link Observatory near Brooklyn, Indiana, United States.[4] It was named after UI's president and chancellor Herman B. Wells.[2]

Orbit and classification[edit]

Wells orbits the Sun in the outer main-belt at a distance of 3.0–3.3 AU once every 5 years and 7 months (2,043 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.05 and an inclination of 16° with respect to the ecliptic.[1]

First identified as A905 CG at Heidelberg in 1905, Well's first used observation was taken at Turku in 1944, extending the asteroid's observation arc by 9 years prior to its official discovery observation.[4]

Physical characteristics[edit]

According to the survey carried out by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Wells measures 43.576 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an albedo of 0.045.[3] It has an absolute magnitude of 10.9.[1] As of 2017, Well's spectral type, rotation period and shape remain unknown.


This minor planet was named in honor of Herman B. Wells (1902–2000), chancellor and president and of Indiana University, who has transformed Indiana University from a provincial college into a world-renowned institution of higher learning. During this time, Wells also fostered higher education nationally and internationally.[2]

The official naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center before November 1977 (M.P.C. 3508).[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 1721 Wells (1953 TD3)" (2017-03-30 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 7 June 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (1721) Wells. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 137. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 
  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 22 December 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "1721 Wells (1953 TD3)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 
  5. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 22 December 2016. 

External links[edit]