20000 Varuna

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20000 Varuna is a big Kuiper belt object (KBO). It could be a dwarf planet. Before it was named Varuna, it had the provisional designation 2000 WR106.

Varuna is named after the Hindu deity Varuṇa.

Physical characteristics[change | change source]

Varuna completes one rotation in about 3.17 hours (or 6.34 hours, depending on whether the light curve is single or double-peaked). Given the fast rotation, which is not common for objects so big, Varuna is thought to be a stretched spheroid, with a density around 1g/cm³ (close to the density of water).[1]

The surface of Varuna is somewhat red and small amounts of water ice have been found on its surface.[2]

References[change | change source]

  1. Jewitt D, Sheppard S (2002). "Physical Properties Of Trans-Neptunian Object (20000) Varuna". Astronomical Journal. 123 (April): 2110–2120. doi:10.1086/339557. S2CID 16543165. Preprint on arXiv.
  2. Licandro J, Oliva E, Di Martino M (2001). "NICS-TNG infrared spectroscopy of trans-neptunian objects 2000 EB173 and 2000 WR106". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 373 (July): 29–32L. doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20010758. S2CID 15690206.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

Other websites[change | change source]