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624 Hektor

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624 Hektor
Discovered byAugust Kopff
Discovery dateFebruary 10, 1907
1907 XM; 1948 VD
Trojan asteroid
Orbital characteristics
Epoch October 22, 2004 (JD 2453300.5)
Aphelion800.220 Gm (5.349 AU)
Perihelion762.145 Gm (5.095 AU)
781.183 Gm (5.222 AU)
4358.521 d (11.93 a)
13.03 km/s
Physical characteristics
Dimensions370 × 195 km
Mass~1.4×1019 kg
Mean density
2 ? g/cm³
~0.067 m/s²
~0.13 km/s
0.2884 d (6.92 h)[1]
Albedo0.025 (geometric[2]
Temperature~122 K
Spectral type
13.79 to 15.26
0.078" to 0.048"

624 Hektor is the biggest of the Jovian Trojan asteroids. It was found in 1907 by August Kopff.

Hektor is a D-type asteroid, dark and reddish in colour. It lies in Jupiter's leading Lagrangian point, L4, called the 'Greek' node after one of the two sides in the legendary Trojan War. Ironically, Hektor is named after the Trojan hero Hektor, and is thus one of two Trojan asteroids that is "misplaced" in the wrong camp (the other being 617 Patroclus in the Trojan node).

Hektor is one of the most stretched bodies of its size in the solar system, being 370 × 200 km. It is thought that Hektor might be a contact binary (two asteroids joined by gravitational attraction) like 216 Kleopatra. Hubble Space Telescope sightings of Hektor in 1993 did not show an obvious stretched shape because of a limited angular resolution. On July 17, 2006, the Keck-10m II telescope and its Laser guide star Adaptive Optics (AO) system indicated a stretched shape for Hektor. Additionally, since this AO system provides an excellent and stable correction (angular resolution of 0.060 arcsec in K band), a 15-km moon at 1000 km from Hektor was found. The moon's provisional designation is S/2006 (624) 1.[3] Hektor is, so far, the only known binary Trojan asteroid in the L4 point and the first Trojan with a moon. 617 Patroclus, another big Trojan asteroid in the L5, is made of two same-sized asteroids.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Pole, albedo and shape of the minor planets 624 Hektor and 43 Ariadne". Retrieved 2007-09-22.
  2. "JPL Small-Body Database Search Engine". Retrieved 2007-09-22.
  3. "IAUC 8732: S/2006 (624) 1 (Satellite Discovery)". Retrieved 2006-07-23.

Other websites[change | change source]