3367 Alex

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3367 Alex
Discovery [1]
Discovered by N. G. Thomas
Discovery site Anderson Mesa Stn.
Discovery date 15 February 1983
MPC designation (3367) Alex
Named after
Alex R. Baltutis
(discoverer's grandson)[2]
1983 CA3 · 1953 XM
1971 SH2 · 1981 UQ9
1981 UW15
main-belt · (middle)[3]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 63.42 yr (23,165 days)
Aphelion 2.9767 AU
Perihelion 2.5915 AU
2.7841 AU
Eccentricity 0.0692
4.65 yr (1,697 days)
0° 12m 43.92s / day
Inclination 5.3195°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 9.607±0.124 km[4][5]
15.19±0.23 km[6]
16.96±1.11 km[7]
19.30 km (calculated)[3]
9.6 h[8]
9.6±0.5 h[8]
0.057 (assumed)[3]
SMASS = X[1]
E[4] · X[3]
12.3[1][3] · 12.00[7][4] · 12.20[6] · 12.77±0.25[9]

3367 Alex, provisional designation 1983 CA3, is a background asteroid from the intermediate region of the asteroid belt, approximately 17 kilometers (11 miles) in diameter. It was discovered on 15 February 1983, by American astronomer Norman Thomas at Lowell's Anderson Mesa Station, near Flagstaff, Arizona, in the United States.[10] The X-type asteroid has a rotation period of 9.6 hours. It was named after the grandson of the discoverer, Alex Baltutis.[2]

Orbit and classification[edit]

Alex is a non-family asteroid from the main belt's background population. It orbits the Sun in the central asteroid belt at a distance of 2.6–3.0 AU once every 4 years and 8 months (1,697 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.07 and an inclination of 5° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] The asteroid was first identified as 1953 XM at Heidelberg Observatory in 1953, extending the body's observation arc by 30 years prior to its official discovery observation at Anderson Mesa.[10]


This minor planet was named by the discoverer after his grandson, Alex R. Baltutis.[2] The official naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center on 26 March 1986 (M.P.C. 10550).[11]

Physical characteristics[edit]

In the SMASS classification, Alex is an X-type asteroid, while NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer characterizes it as a bright E-type asteroid.[1][4] Due to its intermediate albedo, the body may be of metallic composition.

Rotation period[edit]

In February 2006 and April 2011, two rotational lightcurves of Alex were obtained from photometric observations made by French astronomers René Roy and Laurent Bernasconi, respectively. The fragmentary lightcurves gave an identical rotation period of 9.6 and 9.6±0.5 hours with a respective brightness variation of 0.01 and 0.05 in magnitude (U=1/1).[8] Such a low amplitude typically indicates that the body has a nearly spheroidal shape.

Diameter and albedo[edit]

According to the space-based surveys carried out by the Japanese Akari satellite and by WISE with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Alex has an albedo of 0.10, and measures 17.0 and 15.2 kilometers in diameter, respectively.[7][6] The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link assumes a standard albedo for carbonaceous asteroids of 0.057 and calculates a diameter of 19.3 kilometers with an absolute magnitude of 12.3.[3]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 3367 Alex (1983 CA3)" (2017-05-05 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (3367) Alex. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 280. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "LCDB Data for (3367) Alex". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d e Mainzer, A.; Grav, T.; Masiero, J.; Hand, E.; Bauer, J.; Tholen, D.; et al. (November 2011). "NEOWISE Studies of Spectrophotometrically Classified Asteroids: Preliminary Results". The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 25. arXiv:1109.6407. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...90M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/90. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  5. ^ a b 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:1109.4096. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...68M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/68. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  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:1209.5794. Bibcode:2012ApJ...759L...8M. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/759/1/L8. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  7. ^ 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 9 May 2016.
  8. ^ a b c Behrend, Raoul. "Asteroids and comets rotation curves – (3367) Alex". Geneva Observatory. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  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:1506.00762. Bibcode:2015Icar..261...34V. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.08.007. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  10. ^ a b "3367 Alex (1983 CA3)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  11. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 9 May 2016.

External links[edit]