2577 Litva

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2577 Litva
Discovery [1]
Discovered by N. Chernykh
Discovery site Crimean Astrophysical Obs.
Discovery date 12 March 1975
MPC designation (2577) Litva
Named after
(Baltic state)[2]
1975 EE3 · 1934 VY
1954 JD · 1976 SA2
Mars-crosser[1] · Hungaria[3][4]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 16 February 2017 (JD 2457800.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 81.08 yr (29,614 days)
Aphelion 2.1667 AU
Perihelion 1.6423 AU
1.9045 AU
Eccentricity 0.1377
2.63 yr (960 days)
0° 22m 30s / day
Inclination 22.910°
Known satellites 2 [a][b]
Earth MOID 0.7593 AU
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 4.23 km (derived)[4]
2.81±0.06 h[5]
2.81258±0.00002 h[6]
2.81288±0.00005 h[7]
2.8141±0.0006 h[8]
2.82±0.01 h[9]
5.618±0.006 h[10]
0.40 (assumed)[4]
B–V = 0.787[1]
U–B = 0.340[1]
Tholen = EU [1] · Sl [12] · Q[13] · EU [4]
12.81±0.43[13] · 13.18[1] · 13.48±0.09[4][10][14]

2577 Litva, provisional designation 1975 EE3, is a Hungarian-type Mars-crosser and rare trinary[b] asteroid from the inner regions of the asteroid belt, about 4 kilometers in diameter.

It was discovered on 12 March 1975, by Soviet–Ukrainian astronomer Nikolai Chernykh at the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory in Nauchnyj, on the Crimean peninsula.[3] It was "named for the Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic" (what is currently known as Lithuania).[2]


The E-type asteroid, classified as an EU-subtype in the Tholen taxonomy, is a member of the Hungaria family, which form the innermost dense concentration of asteroids in the Solar System. It orbits the Sun at a distance of 1.6–2.2 AU once every 2 years and 8 months (960 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.14 and an inclination of 23° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] It has a rotation period of 2.813 hours and an assumed, very high albedo of 0.4, which is typical for E-type asteroids of the Hungaria family.

In March 2009 the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams announced the discovery of a moon orbiting the asteroid.[a] The satellite measures about 1.4 kilometer in diameter and orbits Litva at distance of 21 kilometers, with an orbital period of 1 day, 11 hours, and 53 minutes. In 2012, a second satellite orbiting at a distance of 378 kilometers with a diameter of 1.2 kilometers was discovered, with a rotation period of 214 days. The discovery was announced in late 2013. This made 2577 Litva the 11th asteroid discovered to be in a trinary system.[b][15]

Additional observations in 2014 gave a refined period of 2.812186±0.000005 hours, using a statistical Bayesian inference methodology.[16]

The minor planet was named after the Russian name for the Baltic state Lithuania, former member of the Soviet Union and now an independent Republic.[2] Naming citation was published on 1 December 1982 (M.P.C. 7472).[17]


  1. ^ a b Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams (No.3402), 11 March 2009 for (2577) LITVA:
    "Photometric observations obtained during Feb. 28 – Mar. 8 reveal that minor planet (2577) is a binary system with an orbital period of 35.78 +/- 0.05 hr. The primary shows a period of 2.8141 +/- 0.0006 hr, and it has a lightcurve amplitude of 0.24 mag. Mutual eclipse/occultation events indicate a secondary-to-primary mean-diameter ratio of 0.35 +/- 0.02. The periods and amplitudes were determined using a subset of data (Mar. 4-8). Data on Feb. 28 and Mar. 1 show no events and fit the same primary period, but the lightcurve has a slightly different shape; this may indicate that the primary lightcurve is evolving with changing viewing aspect, and so additional observations are warranted as the moon clears the area."
    Reported by B. D. Warner, Palmer Divide Observatory and Space Science Institute, Colorado Springs, CO, U.S.A.; P. Pravec, Ondrejov Observatory; A. W. Harris, Space Science Institute, La Canada, CA, U.S.A.; D. Higgins, Hunters Hill Observatory, Ngunnawal, ACT, Australia; C. Bembrick, Mt. Tarana Observatory, Bathurst, NSW, Australia; and J. Brinsfield, Via Capote Observatory, Thousand Oaks, CA, U.S.A.
  2. ^ a b c Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams (No.3765), 22 December 2013 for S/2012 (2577) 1:
    Reports the discovery, using the Keck II telescope (+ NIRC2 Laser-Guide-Star adaptive-optics system), of a second satellite of the Hungaria-type minor planet (2577) Litva. On 2012 June 22.3 UT, the satellite was found at p.a. 89 deg and separation 0".229 (projected separation 230 km). At that time, (2577) was 1.39 AU from the earth at magnitude V = 16.6. The satellite has been imaged in the K_p, H, and J bands. It was also detected on 2012 June 27, Aug. 11, and Aug. 16. Failure to detect it on 2012 July 15, despite excellent conditions, is now seen, in retrospect, to be due to being in conjunction with the primary. Follow-up observations were made at the Keck II telescope (+ LGS-AO) on 2013 Aug. 25 and 26 by Merline, Tamblyn, Conrad, and Tamblyn. Additional detections were made at the Large Binocular Telescope (adaptive secondary mirror and PISCES near-infrared camera at the "Right Front Bent" Gregorian focus) by Veillet and Arcidiacono on 2013 Oct. 12 and at the Keck II telescope (+ LGS-AO) by Grundy and Porter on 2013 Oct. 25, giving a total baseline of 490 days. The best-fit orbit analysis indicates that the third component has a semi-major axis of 378 km and an orbital period of 214 days. Despite the long baseline and the number of observational epochs, the phasing of the observations is such that a period of half this length cannot be ruled out. Either orbit would be among the longest periods known for main-belt binary/multiple systems and would also be the most loosely bound. It resembles other wide binary systems discovered by this same group (see: The Formation of the Wide Asynchronous Binary Asteroid Population). The third component is about 2.6 mag fainter than the combined brightness of the close inner pair. Using H magnitudes to scale the size of (2577) from other E-type objects of better-known size, the diameter of (2577) is estimated to be about 4 km, implying a size for the new satellite of 1.2 km. The first satellite of (2577) was discovered by Warner et al. (CBET 1715) in 2009, by lightcurve analysis, revealing eclipses/occultations by a close secondary, having an orbital period of 35.9 hr; their estimate of the size ratio was 0.35, meaning that the second component would be 1.4 km diameter, based on the 4-km assumption for (2577), above. This close inner pair is unresolvable in the imaging data reported above. Warner et al. (2009, Minor Planet Bull. 36, 165) suggested that a residual 5.7-hr lightcurve period may be due to rotation by a third body, an idea further bolstered by Pravec et al. (2012, Icarus 218, 125), who found that this period was still evident even when the secondary object was in eclipse. The observing program described here has given high priority to objects suspected of having satellites. To the authors' knowledge, S/2012 (2577) 1 is the only satellite to have been predicted prior to being found by targeted imaging."
    Reported by W. J. Merline, Southwest Research Institute (SwRI); P. M. Tamblyn, Binary Astronomy, LLC, Dillon, CO, U.S.A., and SwRI; B. D. Warner, Center for Solar System Studies, Landers, CA, USA; P. Pravec, Ondrejov Observatory; J. P. Tamblyn, Binary Astronomy, LLC, Dillon, CO, U.S.A.; C. Neyman, W. M. Keck Observatory; A. R. Conrad, Max Planck Institute for Astronomy; W. M. Owen, Jet Propulsion Laboratory; B. Carry, Institut de Mecanique Celeste et de Calcul des Ephemerides, Paris Observatory; J. D. Drummond, Starfire Optical Range, Air Force Research Laboratory, Kirtland Air Force Base, Albuquerque, NM, U.S.A.; C. R. Chapman and B. L. Enke, SwRI; W. M. Grundy, Lowell Observatory; C. Veillet, Large Binocular Telescope Observatory (LBTO); S. B. Porter, Lowell Observatory; C. Arcidiacono, Astronomical Observatory of Bologna, Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica; J. C. Christou, LBTO; D. D. Durda, SwRI; A. W. Harris, "More Data!", La Canada, CA, USA; H. A. Weaver, Applied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins University; C. Dumas, European Southern Observatory, Chile; D. Terrell, Sonoita Research Observatory and SwRI; and P. Maley, Houston, TX, USA


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 2577 Litva (1975 EE3)" (2015-12-02 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (2577) Litva. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 210. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  3. ^ a b "2577 Litva (1975 EE3)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "LCDB Data for (2577) Litva". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  5. ^ Behrend, Raoul. "Asteroids and comets rotation curves – (2577) Litva". Geneva Observatory. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  6. ^ Warner, Brian D.; Pravec, Petr; Harris, Alan W.; Higgins, David; Bembrick, Colin; Brinsfield, James W.; et al. (October 2009). "2577 Litva: A Hungaria Binary". The Minor Planet Bulletin. 36 (4): 165–166. Bibcode:2009MPBu...36..165W. ISSN 1052-8091. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  7. ^ Warner, Brian D. (January 2011). "A Quartet of Known and Suspected Hungaria Binary Asteroids". The Minor Planet Bulletin. 38 (1): 33–36. Bibcode:2011MPBu...38...33W. ISSN 1052-8091. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  8. ^ Warner, B. D.; Pravec, P.; Harris, A. W.; Higgins, D.; Bembrick, C.; Brinsfield, J. (March 2009). "(2577) Litva". Central Bureau Electronic Telegrams (1715). Bibcode:2009CBET.1715....1W. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  9. ^ Stephens, Robert D. (December 2004). "Photometry of 1196 Sheba, 1341 Edmee, 1656 Suomi, 2577 Litva, and 2612 Kathryn". The Minor Planet Bulletin. 31 (4): 95–97. Bibcode:2004MPBu...31...95S. ISSN 1052-8091. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  10. ^ a b Wisniewski, W. Z.; Michalowski, T. M.; Harris, A. W.; McMillan, R. S. (March 1995). "Photoelectric Observations of 125 Asteroids". Abstracts of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. Bibcode:1995LPI....26.1511W. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  11. ^ Gil-Hutton, R.; Lazzaro, D.; Benavidez, P. (June 2007). "Polarimetric observations of Hungaria asteroids". Astronomy and Astrophysics. 468 (3): 1109–1114. Bibcode:2007A&A...468.1109G. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20077178. Retrieved 25 November 2015. 
  12. ^ Sanchez, Juan A.; Michelsen, René; Reddy, Vishnu; Nathues, Andreas (July 2013). "Surface composition and taxonomic classification of a group of near-Earth and Mars-crossing asteroids". Icarus. 225 (1): 131–140. Bibcode:2013Icar..225..131S. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2013.02.036. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  13. ^ a b 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:1506.00762Freely accessible. Bibcode:2015Icar..261...34V. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.08.007. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  14. ^ Pravec, Petr; Harris, Alan W.; Kusnirák, Peter; Galád, Adrián; Hornoch, Kamil (September 2012). "Absolute magnitudes of asteroids and a revision of asteroid albedo estimates from WISE thermal observations". Icarus. 221 (1): 365–387. Bibcode:2012Icar..221..365P. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2012.07.026. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 
  15. ^ Johnston, Robert. "(2577) Litva, second component, and S/2012 (2577) 1". johnstonsarchive.net. Retrieved 28 May 2015. 
  16. ^ Lust, Nathaniel B.; Britt, Daniel (November 2014). "Observations of Asteroid 2577 Litva with Analysis of Physical Properties Through Bayesian Interence Based Modeling". American Astronomical Society. Bibcode:2014DPS....4650306L. Retrieved 25 November 2015. 
  17. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 6 December 2016. 

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