List of minor planets

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For unnumbered bodies, see List of unnumbered minor planets
The list of minor planets contains hundreds of thousands numbered minor planets, including Pluto. For an overview, see § Main index.
Growing number of discovered minor planets since 1995.
This list includes all minor planets, that are:
  •      numbered but unnamed
  •      numbered and named
while unnumbered minor planets have no discoverers yet defined and are not part of this list (    ).

This is a list of numbered minor planets in the Solar System, in numerical order. As of August 2016 there are 474,120 numbered minor planets, and 243,648 unnumbered.[1] Most are not particularly noteworthy; only 20,215 minor planets have been given names[1] The Jupiter trojan (3708) 1974 FV1 is currently the lowest-numbered unnamed minor planet.[2] Five minor planets have been accepted as dwarf planets by the IAU, and hundreds more are likely to be dwarf planets.

For specific lists on physical, orbital and other properties, as well as on discovery circumstances and other aspects, see § Specific minor planet lists

Partial lists[edit]

The list of minor planets consists of nearly 500 partial lists, each containing 1000 minor planets grouped in 10 tables. The data is sourced from the Minor Planet Center (MPC). For an overview of all existing partial lists, see § Main index.

Example[edit]

Designation Discovery Discoverer(s) Ref
Permanent Provisional Date Site
189001 4889 P-L September 24, 1960 Palomar C. J. van Houten, I. van Houten-Groeneveld, T. Gehrels MPC
189002 6760 P-L September 24, 1960 Palomar C. J. van Houten, I. van Houten-Groeneveld, T. Gehrels MPC
189003 3009 T-3 October 16, 1977 Palomar C. J. van Houten, I. van Houten-Groeneveld, T. Gehrels MPC
189004 Capys 3184 T-3 October 16, 1977 Palomar C. J. van Houten, I. van Houten-Groeneveld, T. Gehrels MPC
189005 5176 T-3 October 16, 1977 Palomar C. J. van Houten, I. van Houten-Groeneveld, T. Gehrels MPC

The example above shows the beginning of the first table in partial list 189,001 to 190,000. It has the columns § Designation showing its permanent (number and name) and provisional designation, § Discovery, giving the date and location of its discovery, § Discoverers, people, surveys, programs and observatories that are officially credited with its discovery, and a reference column that externally links to the body's dedicated page at the Minor Planet Center's website.

In this example, all 5 bodies were discovered at Palomar Observatory by a trio of astronomers: Cornelis van Houten, Ingrid van Houten-Groeneveld and Tom Gehrels. The row's color represents a minor planet's orbital group—cyan is used for Jupiter trojans, while a white, light-grey and dark-grey color is used for asteroids of the inner, middle and outer regions of the asteroid belt, respectively. For more information, see § Colorized orbital groups. As only 189004 Capys has been named yet, the other four bodies only display their number in the permanent designation column. The provisional designation displayed in this example is an uncommon survey designation.

LINEAR: 146,844 (31.3%) Spacewatch Mount Lemmon Survey Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking CSS: 24,521 (5.2%) LONEOS: 21,692 (4.6%) Palomar-Leiden Surv.: 4,639 (1.0%) Eric Walter Elst: 3,865 (0.8%) Siding Spring Surv.: 2,645 (0.6%) WISE: 2,544 (0.5%) Others: 51,814 (11.0%)Circle frame.svg
  •   LINEAR: 146,844 (31.3%)
  •   Spacewatch: 123,523 (26.3%)
  •   Mt. Lemmon Surv.: 46,482 (9.9%)
  •   NEAT: 40,706 (8.7%)
  •   CSS: 24,521 (5.2%)
  •   LONEOS: 21,692 (4.6%)
  •   Palomar-Leiden Surv.: 4,639 (1.0%)
  •   Eric Walter Elst: 3,865 (0.8%)
  •   Siding Spring Surv.: 2,645 (0.6%)
  •   WISE: 2,544 (0.5%)
  •   Others: 51,814 (11.0%)
Top discoverers of minor planets as of June 2016. Total of 469,275 numbered bodies.

Discoverers[edit]

For a more comprehensive list, see List of minor planet discoverers.

The MPC credits more than 1000 professional and amateur astronomers as discoverers of minor planets. Many of them have discovered only a few minor planets or even just co-discovered a single one. Moreover a discoverer does not need to be a human being. There are about 300 programs, surveys and observatories credited as discoverers. Among these, a small group of U.S. programs and surveys actually account for most of all discoveries made so far (see pie chart). As the total of numbered minor planets is growing by the thousands on a monthly basis, all statistical figures are constantly changing. Note that the MPC summarizes the total of discoveries somewhat differently (typically by distinct group of discoverers), for example, bodies discovered in the Palomar–Leiden Survey are directly credited to the trio of astronomers as displayed in the above table.

Designation[edit]

Total, numbered, and named minor planets from 1995 to 2016.

After discovery, minor planets generally receive a provisional designation (such as "1989 AC"), then a sequential number (such as 4179), and finally (optionally) a name (such as "Toutatis"), in that order.

In modern times, a minor planet receives a sequential number only after it has been observed several times over at least 4 oppositions.[3] Minor planets whose orbits are not (yet) precisely known are known by their provisional designation. This rule was not necessarily followed in earlier times, and some bodies received a number but subsequently became lost minor planets. All of these have now been recovered; the last "lost" numbered asteroid was 719 Albert.

Only after a number is assigned is the minor planet eligible to receive a name. Usually the discoverer has up to 10 years to pick a name; many minor polanets remain unnamed. Especially towards the end of the twentieth century, with large-scale automated asteroid discovery programs such as LINEAR, the pace of discoveries has increased so much that it seems likely that the vast majority of minor planets will never receive names.

For the reasons mentioned above, the sequence of numbers only approximately matches the timeline of discovery. In extreme cases, such as lost minor planets, there may be a considerable mismatch: for instance the high-numbered 69230 Hermes was originally discovered in 1937, but it was a lost until 2003. Only after it was rediscovered could its orbit be established and a number assigned.

Discovery[edit]

For a more comprehensive list, see List of observatory codes.

All observatories that officially are a site where minor planets are discovered have received a numeric or alphanumeric code such as 675 for the Palomar Observatory, or I41 for the Palomar Transient Factory, a dedicated survey that runs at Palomar Mountain.

Colorized orbital groups[edit]

A minor planet's orbital group is represented by the background color of the table row (see § Example). In the partial lists of minor planets, the orbital classification system organizes all minor planets (MPs) into 8 distinct groups. These are the near-Earth asteroids, the Mars-crossing asteroids, the inner-, middle- and outer main-belt asteroids (MBA), the Jupiter trojans, the Centaurs and the trans-Neptunian objects. This classification is exclusively based on the body's relevant orbital elements, that is, its semi-major axis (a) and eccentricity (e). From these elements its perihelion (q) and aphelion (Q) can be derived.[4]

Orbital Group MPs (#) MPs (%) Distribution Orbital criteria
  Near-Earth object 2176 0.46%
NEOs: 2,176 (0.5%) MCs: 4,418 (0.9%) MBA (inner): 159,480 (33.6%) MBA (middle): 165,614 (34.9%) MBA (outer): 137,489 (29.0%) JTs: 4,520 (1.0%) Centaurs: 85 (0.0%) TNOs: 332 (0.1%)Circle frame.svg
q < 1.3 AU
  Mars-crosser 4,418 0.93% 1.3 AU < q < 1.666 AU; a < 3.2 AU
  MBA (inner) 159,480 33.64% a < 2.5 AU; q > 1.666 AU
  MBA (middle) 165,614 34.93% 2.5 AU < a < 2.82 AU; q > 1.666 AU
  MBA (outer) 137,489 29.00% 2.82 AU < a < 4.6 AU
  Jupiter trojan 4,520 0.95% 4.6 AU < a < 5.5 AU; e < 0.3
  Centaur 85 0.02% 5.5 AU < a < 30.1 AU
  Trans-Neptunian object 332 0.07% a > 30.1 AU
Numbered MPs 474,114 100%

The vast majority of numbered minor planets are from the asteroid belt. Approximately 97.5% are evenly distributed between the inner-, middle and outer asteroid belt, which are separated by the two Kirkwood gaps at 2.5 and 2.82 AU. They are followed by the Jupiter trojans, Mars-crossers and near-Earth asteroids, which account for less than 1% of the overall population each. Only a small number of Centaurs and trans-Neptunian objects have been numbered so far.

As of August 2016, among the half million minor planets, 6 remained unclassified by the defined criteria above, as these bodies had a semi-major axis too large to be an outer main-belt asteroid, and too eccentric to be classified as a Jupiter trojan. With the exception of inner- and outer main belt asteroids, all other orbital criteria are in accordance with JPL's SBDB.

Main index[edit]

This is an overview of all existing partial lists of minor planets. Each table stands for 100,000 minor planets, each cell for a specific partial list of 1,000 bodies. For an introduction, see § top

Numberings 1–100,000[edit]

1–1000 1,001 2,001 3,001 4,001 5,001 6,001 7,001 8,001 9,001
10,001 11,001 12,001 13,001 14,001 15,001 16,001 17,001 18,001 19,001
20,001 21,001 22,001 23,001 24,001 25,001 26,001 27,001 28,001 29,001
30,001 31,001 32,001 33,001 34,001 35,001 36,001 37,001 38,001 39,001
40,001 41,001 42,001 43,001 44,001 45,001 46,001 47,001 48,001 49,001
50,001 51,001 52,001 53,001 54,001 55,001 56,001 57,001 58,001 59,001
60,001 61,001 62,001 63,001 64,001 65,001 66,001 67,001 68,001 69,001
70,001 71,001 72,001 73,001 74,001 75,001 76,001 77,001 78,001 79,001
80,001 81,001 82,001 83,001 84,001 85,001 86,001 87,001 88,001 89,001
90,001 91,001 92,001 93,001 94,001 95,001 96,001 97,001 98,001 99,001

Numberings 100,001–200,000[edit]

100,001 101,001 102,001 103,001 104,001 105,001 106,001 107,001 108,001 109,001
110,001 111,001 112,001 113,001 114,001 115,001 116,001 117,001 118,001 119,001
120,001 121,001 122,001 123,001 124,001 125,001 126,001 127,001 128,001 129,001
130,001 131,001 132,001 133,001 134,001 135,001 136,001 137,001 138,001 139,001
140,001 141,001 142,001 143,001 144,001 145,001 146,001 147,001 148,001 149,001
150,001 151,001 152,001 153,001 154,001 155,001 156,001 157,001 158,001 159,001
160,001 161,001 162,001 163,001 164,001 165,001 166,001 167,001 168,001 169,001
170,001 171,001 172,001 173,001 174,001 175,001 176,001 177,001 178,001 179,001
180,001 181,001 182,001 183,001 184,001 185,001 186,001 187,001 188,001 189,001
190,001 191,001 192,001 193,001 194,001 195,001 196,001 197,001 198,001 199,001

Numberings 200,001–300,000[edit]

200,001 201,001 202,001 203,001 204,001 205,001 206,001 207,001 208,001 209,001
210,001 211,001 212,001 213,001 214,001 215,001 216,001 217,001 218,001 219,001
220,001 221,001 222,001 223,001 224,001 225,001 226,001 227,001 228,001 229,001
230,001 231,001 232,001 233,001 234,001 235,001 236,001 237,001 238,001 239,001
240,001 241,001 242,001 243,001 244,001 245,001 246,001 247,001 248,001 249,001
250,001 251,001 252,001 253,001 254,001 255,001 256,001 257,001 258,001 259,001
260,001 261,001 262,001 263,001 264,001 265,001 266,001 267,001 268,001 269,001
270,001 271,001 272,001 273,001 274,001 275,001 276,001 277,001 278,001 279,001
280,001 281,001 282,001 283,001 284,001 285,001 286,001 287,001 288,001 289,001
290,001 291,001 292,001 293,001 294,001 295,001 296,001 297,001 298,001 299,001

Numberings 300,001–400,000[edit]

300,001 301,001 302,001 303,001 304,001 305,001 306,001 307,001 308,001 309,001
310,001 311,001 312,001 313,001 314,001 315,001 316,001 317,001 318,001 319,001
320,001 321,001 322,001 323,001 324,001 325,001 326,001 327,001 328,001 329,001
330,001 331,001 332,001 333,001 334,001 335,001 336,001 337,001 338,001 339,001
340,001 341,001 342,001 343,001 344,001 345,001 346,001 347,001 348,001 349,001
350,001 351,001 352,001 353,001 354,001 355,001 356,001 357,001 358,001 359,001
360,001 361,001 362,001 363,001 364,001 365,001 366,001 367,001 368,001 369,001
370,001 371,001 372,001 373,001 374,001 375,001 376,001 377,001 378,001 379,001
380,001 381,001 382,001 383,001 384,001 385,001 386,001 387,001 388,001 389,001
390,001 391,001 392,001 393,001 394,001 395,001 396,001 397,001 398,001 399,001

Numberings 400,001–500,000[edit]

400,001 401,001 402,001 403,001 404,001 405,001 406,001 407,001 408,001 409,001
410,001 411,001 412,001 413,001 414,001 415,001 416,001 417,001 418,001 419,001
420,001 421,001 422,001 423,001 424,001 425,001 426,001 427,001 428,001 429,001
430,001 431,001 432,001 433,001 434,001 435,001 436,001 437,001 438,001 439,001
440,001 441,001 442,001 443,001 444,001 445,001 446,001 447,001 448,001 449,001
450,001 451,001 452,001 453,001 454,001 455,001 456,001 457,001 458,001 459,001
460,001 461,001 462,001 463,001 464,001 465,001 466,001 467,001 468,001 469,001
470,001 471,001 472,001 473,001 474,001 475,001 476,001 477,001 478,001 479,001
480,001 481,001 482,001 483,001 484,001 485,001 486,001 487,001 488,001 489,001
490,001 491,001 492,001 493,001 494,001 495,001 496,001 497,001 498,001 499,001

Specific minor planet lists[edit]

For links to articles on particular groups, families and lists, also see Minor planet
Euler diagram showing the types of bodies in the Solar System (see Small Solar System body).

The following are lists of minor planets by physical properties, orbital properties, or discovery circumstances: selves into a sphere.

See also[edit]

Other lists

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Minor Planet Statistics". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 2016-08-22. 
  2. ^ "Discovery Circumstances: Numbered Minor Planets (1)-(5000)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 2016-08-22. 
  3. ^ An opposition is the time when a body is at its furthest apparent point from the Sun, and in this case is defined as the time when an asteroid is far enough from the Sun to be observed from the Earth. In most cases, this is about 4 to 6 months a year. Some notable minor planets are exceptions to this rule, such as 367943 Duende.
  4. ^ Small-Body Orbital Elements "Numbered Asteroids (50 MB)", JPL

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]