40463 Frankkameny

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40463 Frankkameny
Discovery [1]
Discovered by G. W. Billings
Discovery site Calgary Obs. (681)
Discovery date 15 September 1999
MPC designation (40463) Frankkameny
Named after
Frank Kameny
(gay rights activist)[2]
1999 RE44 · 1997 EJ19  
main-belt · (middle)
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 16 February 2017 (JD 2457800.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc 19.17 yr (7,002 days)
Aphelion 3.2809 AU
Perihelion 2.2764 AU
2.7786 AU
Eccentricity 0.1808
4.63 yr (1,692 days)
0° 12m 46.08s / day
Inclination 2.4414°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 3.855±0.638 km[3][4]
4.23 km (calculated)[5]
56.5554±0.2034 h[6]
0.057 (assumed)[5]
15.147±0.004 (R)[6]
15.2[1] · 15.38±0.05[7]
15.5[3] · 15.6[5]

40463 Frankkameny, provisional designation 1999 RE44, is a carbonaceous asteroid from the middle region of the asteroid belt, approximately 4 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 15 September 1999, by Canadian amateur astronomer Gary W. Billings at Calgary Observatory (681) in Alberta, Canada.[2]

The C-type asteroid orbits the Sun at a distance of 2.3–3.3 AU once every 4 years and 8 months (1,692 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.18 and an inclination of 2° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] Frankkameny was first identified as 1997 EJ19 by Spacewatch in 1997, extending the asteroid's observation arc by more than 2 years prior to its discovery observation.[2]

It has a rotation period of 56.6 hours with a brightness variation of 0.51 magnitude, based on a light-curve obtained in September 2013, from photometric observations made at the Palomar Transient Factory, California (U=2).[6] While not being a slow rotator, Frankkameny's period is far longer than average, and its brightness amplitude is indicative of a non-spheroidal shape.

According to the survey carried out by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, the asteroid measures 3.9 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an albedo of 0.075,[3][4] while the Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link assumes a standard albedo for carbonaceous asteroids of 0.057 and calculates a diameter of 4.2 kilometers.[5]

The minor planet was named in honour of American astronomer and gay rights activist Frank Kameny (1925–2011), by the Minor Planet Center and the International Astronomical Union on 3 July 2012. Frank Kameny was a Harvard-trained variable star astronomer. He died 11 October 2011.[2][8][9][10][11][12] Naming citation was published on 3 July 2012 (M.P.C. 79911).[13]


  1. ^ a b c d "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 40463 Frankkameny (1999 RE44)" (2016-05-04 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 2 December 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d "40463 Frankkameny (1999 RE44)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d Mainzer, A.; Grav, T.; Masiero, J.; Hand, E.; Bauer, J.; Tholen, D.; et al. (November 2011). "NEOWISE Studies of Spectrophotometrically Classified Asteroids: Preliminary Results" (PDF). The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 25. arXiv:1109.6407Freely accessible. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...90M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/90. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Grav, T.; Bauer, J. M.; Cutri, R. M.; Dailey, J.; et al. (November 2011). "Main Belt Asteroids with WISE/NEOWISE. I. Preliminary Albedos and Diameters". The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 20. arXiv:1109.4096Freely accessible. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...68M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/68. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c d e "LCDB Data for (40463) Frankkameny". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  6. ^ a b c Waszczak, Adam; Chang, Chan-Kao; Ofek, Eran O.; Laher, Russ; Masci, Frank; Levitan, David; et al. (September 2015). "Asteroid Light Curves from the Palomar Transient Factory Survey: Rotation Periods and Phase Functions from Sparse Photometry". The Astronomical Journal. 150 (3): 35. arXiv:1504.04041Freely accessible. Bibcode:2015AJ....150...75W. doi:10.1088/0004-6256/150/3/75. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 
  7. ^ 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 17 November 2016. 
  8. ^ US: Gay rights campaigner Frank Kameny has asteroid named for him, Pink News, 10 July 2012
  9. ^ Asteroid between Mars, Jupiter named for US gay rights pioneer Frank Kameny, The Washington Post, July 10, 2012
  10. ^ Brett Zongker, Asteroid named for gay rights pioneer Frank Kameny, Business Week, July 10, 2012
  11. ^ Andrew Davis, Canadian names asteroid for Kameny; Anderson Cooper inspires Chinese, Windy City Times, 2012-07-10
  12. ^ Freya Petersen, Canadian astronomer names asteroid after gay rights activist, Alaska Dispatch, July 11, 2012
  13. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 17 November 2016. 

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