3494 Purple Mountain

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3494 Purple Mountain
Discovered by Purple Mountain Observatory
Discovery date December 7, 1980
Named after
Purple Mountain Observatory
1980 XW; 1962 WV1;
1969 UD; 1972 OA
Main belt (Vesta family)
Orbital characteristics
Epoch November 26, 2005 (JD 2453700.5)
Aphelion 397.281 Gm (2.656 AU)
Perihelion 305.825 Gm (2.044 AU)
351.553 Gm (2.350 AU)
Eccentricity 0.130
1315.820 d (3.60 a)
19.35 km/s
Inclination 5.837°
Physical characteristics
Temperature ~182 K (estimate)
Spectral type
V-type asteroid

3494 Purple Mountain is a small asteroid in the asteroid belt. It is not purple; its unusual name comes from the Purple Mountain Observatory in China, where it was rediscovered in 1980, as it had been seen but lost several times since 1962. (See lost asteroids.)

Purple Mountain is a vestoid, a fragment blasted off the giant asteroid 4 Vesta by the impact that formed the Vestian collisional family. A spectroscopic analysis showed it to have a composition very similar to the cumulate eucrite meteorites.[1]


  1. ^ Kelley, Michael S.; Vilas, Faith; Gaffey, Michael J.; Hicks, Anthony; Abell, Paul A.; Lederer, Susan M., "Mineralogical Analyses of Two Small Vesta Family Asteroids", SAO/NASA ADS—Astronomy Abstract Service, retrieved August 2015 

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