327 Columbia

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327 Columbia
Discovery [1]
Discovered by A. Charlois
Discovery site Nice Obs.
Discovery date 22 March 1892
MPC designation (327) Columbia
Named after
Christopher Columbus
(Italian explorer)[2]
1934 JN
main-belt · (middle)[3]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 16 February 2017 (JD 2457800.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 124.62 yr (45,519 days)
Aphelion 2.9496 AU
Perihelion 2.6066 AU
2.7781 AU
Eccentricity 0.0617
4.63 yr (1,691 days)
0° 12m 46.44s / day
Inclination 7.1462°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 26.13±2.8 km[4]
26.17±0.66 km[5]
26.24 km (derived)[3]
30.291±4.049 km[6]
5.93±0.05 h[7]
5.93183±0.00005 h[8]
5.9320±0.0006 h[7]
0.2565 (derived)[3]
SMASS = Sl [1] · S[3]
9.88[6] · 10.0[1][3] · 10.10[5] · 10.19±0.01[9]

327 Columbia is a stony asteroid from the middle region of the asteroid belt, approximately 26 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 22 March 1892, by French astronomer Auguste Charlois at Nice Observatory in southeast France.[10] It is named after Christopher Columbus (1451–1506).[2]


Columbia orbits the Sun at a distance of 2.6–2.9 AU once every 4 years and 8 months (1,691 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.06 and an inclination of 7° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] The body's observation arc begins the night after its official discovery at Nice.[10]

Physical characteristics[edit]

In the SMASS taxonomy, Columbia has been characterized as a Sl-type, an intermediary between the common S-type and rather rare L-type asteroids.[1]

Rotation period and spin axis[edit]

In May 2003, a rotational lightcurve of Columbia was obtained by French amateur astronomer René Roy. It gave a rotation period of 5.93 hours with a brightness variation of 0.16 magnitude (U=2).[7] In February 2007, photometric observations by his college Pierre Antonini gave a well defined period of 5.9320 hours and an amplitude of 0.42 (U=3).[7]

In 2016, a modeled lightcurve was derived from various photometric database sources, giving a concurring period of 5.93183 hours and a spin axis of (52.0°, 43.0°) in ecliptic coordinates.[8]

Diameter and albedo[edit]

According to the surveys carried out by the Infrared Astronomical Satellite IRAS, the Japanese Akari satellite, and NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Columbia measures between 26.13 and 30.29 kilometers in diameter, and its surface has an albedo between 0.214 and 0.250.[4][5][6] The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link derives an albedo of 0.2565 and a diameter of 26.24 kilometers using an absolute magnitude of 10.0.[3]


This minor planet was named in honor of Italian explorer Christopher Columbus (1451–1506), who reached the New World during his first voyage in 1492, instead of arriving at Japan as he had intended. The asteroid was named in 1892, on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of this historic discovery. Naming citation was first mentioned in The Names of the Minor Planets by Paul Herget in 1955 (H 37).[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 327 Columbia" (2016-11-07 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (327) Columbia. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 43. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "LCDB Data for (327) Columbia". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  4. ^ a b c Tedesco, E. F.; Noah, P. V.; Noah, M.; Price, S. D. (October 2004). "IRAS Minor Planet Survey V6.0". NASA Planetary Data System. Bibcode:2004PDSS...12.....T. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  5. ^ 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 6 February 2017. 
  6. ^ 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:1209.5794Freely accessible. Bibcode:2012ApJ...759L...8M. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/759/1/L8. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  7. ^ a b c d Behrend, Raoul. "Asteroids and comets rotation curves – (327) Columbia". Geneva Observatory. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  8. ^ a b Hanus, J.; Durech, J.; Oszkiewicz, D. A.; Behrend, R.; Carry, B.; Delbo, M.; et al. (February 2016). "New and updated convex shape models of asteroids based on optical data from a large collaboration network" (PDF). Astronomy and Astrophysics. 586: 24. arXiv:1510.07422Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016A&A...586A.108H. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201527441. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  9. ^ Veres, Peter; Jedicke, Robert; Fitzsimmons, Alan; Denneau, Larry; Granvik, Mikael; Bolin, Bryce; et al. (November 2015). "Absolute magnitudes and slope parameters for 250,000 asteroids observed by Pan-STARRS PS1 - Preliminary results". Icarus. 261: 34–47. arXiv:1506.00762Freely accessible. Bibcode:2015Icar..261...34V. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.08.007. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 
  10. ^ a b "327 Columbia". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 6 February 2017. 

External links[edit]