1221 Amor

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1221 Amor
Discovered by Eugène Joseph Delporte
Discovery date March 12, 1932
1932 EA1
Amor II asteroid,
Mars-crosser asteroid
Orbital characteristics
Epoch July 14, 2004 (JD 2453200.5)
Aphelion 2.754 AU (412.011 Gm)
Perihelion 1.086 AU (162.403 Gm)
1.920 AU (287.207 Gm)
Eccentricity 0.435
2.66 a (971.635 d)
20.44 km/s
Inclination 11.879°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 1.5? km
Mass 3.5×1012 kg
Mean density
2? g/cm³
0.000 42 m/s²
0.000 79 km/s
Albedo 0.15?
Temperature ~198 K
Spectral type
C or S?
Orbit of 1221 on 1932-03-12: yellow - Sun, green - Earth, red -Mars, light blue - 1221 Amor, dark blue - Jupiter

1221 Amor is the namesake of the Amor asteroids, a group of near-Earth asteroids whose orbits range between those of Earth and Mars. Amors are often Mars-crossers but they are not Earth-crossers.

Eugène Joseph Delporte photographed Amor as it approached Earth to within 16 million kilometers (about 40 times the distance from Earth to the moon); this was the first time that an asteroid was seen to approach Earth so closely. A month later, 1862 Apollo was seen to cross Earth's orbit, and the scientific community suddenly realised the potential threat these flying mountains presented.

Amor is named after the Roman god of love, better known as Cupid.[1] See also 763 Cupido and 433 Eros, which is named after Cupid's Greek counterpart. Coincidentally, 433 Eros, like 1221 Amor, makes close approaches to Earth. It is a Mars-crosser as well.


  1. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. (2003). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names. Springer. p. 100. ISBN 3-540-00238-3. 

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