192 Nausikaa

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192 Nausikaa
192Nausikaa (Lightcurve Inversion).png
A three-dimensional model of 192 Nausikaa based on its light curve.
Discovered by J. Palisa, 1879
Pronunciation /nɔːˈsɪk.ə/ naw-SIK-ay-ə
Named after
Main belt
Orbital characteristics
Aphelion 2.997 AU
Perihelion 1.808 AU
2.402 AU
Eccentricity 0.247
3.72 years
Inclination 6.83°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 90.18 ± 2.80[1] km
Mass (1.79 ± 0.42) × 1018[1] kg
Mean density
4.64 ± 1.17[1] g/cm3
13.622 hours
Albedo 0.233
Spectral type

192 Nausikaa[2] is a large main-belt S-type asteroid. It was discovered by Johann Palisa on February 17, 1879 at Pula, then in Austria, now in Croatia. The name derives from Nausicaä, a princess in Homer's Odyssey.

This is an S-type asteroid around 86 km with an elliptical ratio of 1.51. The sidereal rotation period is 13.6217 hours.[3]

Based on the lightcurve data obtained from Nausikaa, a possible satellite was reported in 1985. However, this has not been confirmed.[4] A shape model of Nausikaa has been constructed, also based on the lightcurve data. It indicates a roughly cut, but not very elongated body.[5] In 1998 an occultation of a star by the asteroid was observed from the United States.

In 1988 a search for satellites or dust orbiting this asteroid was performed using the UH88 telescope at the Mauna Kea Observatories, but the effort came up empty.[6]

Nausikaa's orbital period is 3.72 years, its distance from the Sun varying between 1.81 and 2.99 AU. The orbital eccentricity is 0.246. Nausikaa brightened to magnitude 8.3 at a quite favorable opposition on 2 September 2011, when it was 1.875 AU from the Sun and 0.866 AU from the Earth.


  1. ^ a b c Carry, B. (December 2012), "Density of asteroids", Planetary and Space Science 73, pp. 98–118, arXiv:1203.4336, Bibcode:2012P&SS...73...98C, doi:10.1016/j.pss.2012.03.009.  See Table 1.
  2. ^ Stressed on the second syllable, /nɔːˈsɪk.ə/ naw-SIK-ay-ə.
  3. ^ Marchis, F.; et al. (November 2006), "Shape, size and multiplicity of main-belt asteroids. I. Keck Adaptive Optics survey", Icarus 185 (1), pp. 39–63, Bibcode:2006Icar..185...39M, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2006.06.001, PMC 2600456, PMID 19081813. 
  4. ^ Other reports of asteroid/TNO companions, Johnstonsarchive.net, retrieved 2012-09-01 
  5. ^ http://www.astro.helsinki.fi/~kaselain/asteroids.html
  6. ^ Gradie, J.; Flynn, L. (March 1988), "A Search for Satellites and Dust Belts Around Asteroids: Negative Results", Abstracts of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 19, pp. 405–406, Bibcode:1988LPI....19..405G. 

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