2101 Adonis

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2101 Adonis
Discovery [1]
Discovered by E. Delporte
Discovery site Uccle – Belgium
Discovery date 12 February 1936
MPC designation 2101 Adonis
Named after
(Greek mythology)[2]
1936 CA
Apollo · NEO · PHA[1]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 31 July 2016 (JD 2457600.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 77.08 yr (28,154 days)
Aphelion 3.3072 AU
Perihelion 0.4421 AU
1.8746 AU
Eccentricity 0.7642
2.57 yr (937 days)
0° 23m 2.4s / day
Inclination 1.3286°
Earth MOID 0.0117 AU
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 0.6 km (est. of 0.15)[1]
0.5–1.2 km (assumed)[3]

2101 Adonis, provisional designation 1936 CA, is an extremely eccentric asteroid, classified as near-Earth object and potentially hazardous asteroid. It belongs to the group of Apollo asteroids and measures approximately 1 kilometer in diameter. The asteroid was discovered on 12 February 1936, by Belgian astronomer Eugène Delporte at the Royal Observatory of Belgium in Uccle.[4] It may also be an extinct comet and a source of meteor showers.[5]

It was one of the first near-Earth asteroids ever to be discovered. Adonis was also the second known Apollo asteroid after 1862 Apollo, the group's namesake discovered four years earlier in 1932. After the initial discovery of Adonis, which happened during a close approach with Earth in 1936, the asteroid was observed for two months, before it became a lost asteroid, as not enough observations could be made to calculate a sufficiently accurate orbit. It took 41 years until it was finally rediscovered by the American astronomer Charles Kowal in 1977.

The asteroid orbits the Sun at a distance of 0.4–3.3 AU once every 2 years and 7 months (937 days). Its orbit has an extraordinary eccentricity of 0.76 and an inclination of 1° with respect to the plane of the ecliptic.[1] It is a potentially hazardous asteroid because its minimum orbit intersection distance (MOID) is less than 0.05 AU and its diameter is greater than 150 meters. The Earth-MOID is 0.0117 AU (1,750,000 km).[6] The asteroid's orbit is well-determined for the next several hundred years. It also makes close approaches to Venus and Mars and comes within 30 Gm of the Earth six times in the 21st century, the nearest being 0.03569 AU (5,339,000 km) on 7 February 2036.[6][7]

The minor planet is named from Greek mythology after the handsome, ever-youthful vegetation god Adonis, with whom the goddess Aphrodite fell in love. Persephone was also taken by Adonis' beauty and refused to give him back to Aphrodite. The dispute between the two goddesses was settled by Zeus: Adonis was to spend one-third of every year with each goddess and the last third wherever he chose. He was killed by a boar sent by Artemis. The minor planets 105 Artemis, 399 Persephone, 1388 Aphrodite and 5731 Zeus were named for these Greek gods.[2] Naming citation was published before November 1977 (M.P.C. 4548).[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 2101 Adonis (1936 CA)" (2013-03-13 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 4 June 2016. 
  2. ^ a b Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (2101) Adonis. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 170. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 4 June 2016. 
  3. ^ "(2101) Adonis – PHYSICAL INFORMATION". NEODyS—Near Earth Objects - Dynamic Site. Retrieved 1 August 2015. 
  4. ^ "2101 Adonis (1936 CA)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 4 June 2016. 
  5. ^ Babadzhanov, P. B. (2003). "Meteor showers associated with the near-Earth asteroid (2101) Adonis". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 397 (1): 319–323. Bibcode:2003A&A...397..319B. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20021506. 
  6. ^ a b "JPL Close-Approach Data: 2101 Adonis (1936 CA)" (2008-03-10 last obs.). Retrieved 5 May 2009. 
  7. ^ "NEODys (2101) Adonis". Department of Mathematics, University of Pisa, ITALY. Retrieved 5 May 2009. 
  8. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 4 June 2016. 

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