15760 Albion

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15760 Albion
Orbit of the four outer planets (red) compared to (15760) Albion (blue)
Discovery [1][2]
Discovered byD. C. Jewitt
J. X. Luu
Discovery siteMauna Kea Obs.
Discovery date30 August 1992
MPC designation(15760) Albion
Named after
Albion[3] (mythology by William Blake)
1992 QB1
TNO[1] · cubewano[4][5] (cold)[6]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 3
Observation arc21.10 yr (7,707 days)
Aphelion46.566 AU
Perihelion40.843 AU
43.704 AU
288.93 yr (105,531 days)
0° 0m 12.24s / day
Physical characteristics
Mean diameter
108 km[6]
167 km[4]
0.2 (assumed)[6]

15760 Albion, provisional designation 1992 QB1, was the first trans-Neptunian object to be discovered after Pluto and Charon. It was discovered in 1992 by David C. Jewitt and Jane X. Luu at the Mauna Kea Observatory, Hawaii. It is a "cold" classical Kuiper belt object and gave rise to the name cubewano for this kind of object, after the QB1 portion of its designation.[8] Decoding its provisional designation, "QB1" reveals that it was the 27th object found in the second half of August of that year.[1] As of January 2018, over 2,400 further objects have been found beyond Neptune, a good number of which are classical Kuiper belt objects. It was named after Albion from William Blake's mythology.[9]


This minor planet was named after Albion from the complex mythology of English poet and painter William Blake (1757–1827). Albion is the island-dwelling primeval man whose division resulted into The Four Zoas: Urizen, Tharmas, Luvah/Orc and Urthona/Los. The name Albion itself derives from the ancient and mythological name of Britain.[3] The official naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center on 31 January 2018 (M.P.C. 108697).[10]

The discoverers suggested the name "Smiley" for (15760) 1992 QB1,[11] but the name was already used for an asteroid 1613 Smiley, named after the American astronomer Charles Hugh Smiley. It has received the number 15760[5] and remained unnamed until January 2018 (it was normally referred to simply as "QB1", even though this was technically ambiguous without the year of discovery).


^ Minor planet and asteroid provisional designations follow a format, in which the year it was discovered comes first, followed by the half-month it was discovered alphabetically (e.g. A=January 1–15, B=January 16–31 and so on, but skipping the letters I and Z) and then the order of its discovery alphabetically followed by a number (e.g. 1992 QA, 1992 QB, 1992 QC ... 1992 QY, 1992 QZ, 1992 QA1, 1992 QB1 and so on.) According to this, Q=August 16–31 and B1=25+2=27.


  1. ^ a b c d "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 15760 Albion (1992 QB1)" (2013-10-06 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 6 February 2018.
  2. ^ "IAUC 5611: 1992 QB1". IAU Minor Planet Center. 14 September 1992. Retrieved 2011-07-05.
  3. ^ a b c "15760 Albion (1992 QB1)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 6 February 2018.
  4. ^ a b William Robert Johnston (28 December 2015). "List of Known Trans-Neptunian Objects". Johnston's Archive. Retrieved 2015-01-03.
  5. ^ a b Marc W. Buie (30 November 1999). "Orbit Fit and Astrometric record for 15760". SwRI, Space Science Department. Retrieved 2008-09-28.
  6. ^ a b c Mike Brown, 'How many dwarf planets are there in the outer solar system? Archived October 18, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. Accessed 2014-11-19
  7. ^ "AstDys (15760) 1992QB1 Ephemerides". Department of Mathematics, University of Pisa, Italy. Retrieved 2010-03-03.
  8. ^ Dr. David Jewitt. "Classical Kuiper Belt Objects". David Jewitt/UCLA. Archived from the original on July 5, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2013.
  9. ^ "(15760) Albion = 1992 QB1". IAU Minor Planet Center. Retrieved February 3, 2018.
  10. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 6 February 2018.
  11. ^ What Lurks in the Outer Solar System? (Science@NASA, 13 September 2001)

External links[edit]