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37 Fides

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Title: 37 Fides  
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Subject: Asteroid, Astronomical symbols, Fides, Robert Luther, Provisional designation in astronomy
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37 Fides

37 Fides
A three-dimensional model of 37 Fides based on its light curve.
Discovered by R. Luther
Discovery date October 5, 1855
Named after
1925 WH
Main belt
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch December 31, 2006 (JD 2454100.5)
Aphelion 464.908 Gm (3.108 AU)
Perihelion 325.340 Gm (2.175 AU)
395.124 Gm (2.641 AU)
Eccentricity 0.177
1,567.873 d (4.29 a)
Average orbital speed
18.18 km/s
Inclination 3.073°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 108.35 km ±1.9
Mass 1.3×1018 kg
Mean density
2.0 g/cm³
0.0303 m/s²
0.0573 km/s
0.3055 d (7.334 h)[2]
Albedo 0.183[3] ±0.007
Temperature ~167 K
Spectral type

37 Fides ( ) is a large main-belt asteroid. It was discovered by German astronomer Karl Theodor Robert Luther on October 5, 1855,[4] and named after Fides, the Roman goddess of loyalty. Fides was the last of the main-belt asteroids to be assigned an iconic symbol.[5] 37 Fides is also a S-type asteroid in the Tholen classification system.[1]

Photometric observations of this asteroid at multiple observatories during 1981–82 gave an unusual light curve with three minima and maxima. The curve changed with varying phase angle of the asteroid relative to the viewer and the position of the Sun, indicating the changing influence of shadows cast by surface features. The composite light curve has a best fit period estimate of 7.33 hours.[6] Austrian astronomer Hans Josef Schober has suggested that the multiple minima and maxima during each period may be an indication of a binary nature.[7]


  1. ^ a b Yeomans, Donald K., "37 Fides", JPL Small-Body Database Browser (NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory), retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  2. ^ Asteroid Lightcurve Parameters, Planetary Science Institute, archived from the original on 2006-06-14, retrieved 2008-11-03 
  3. ^ Asteroid Data Archive, Planetary Science Institute, archived from the original on 2006-06-23, retrieved 2008-11-03. 
  4. ^ "Numbered Minor Planets 1–5000", Discovery Circumstances (IAU Minor Planet center), retrieved 2013-04-07. 
  5. ^  
  6. ^ Zappla, V.; et al. (July 1983), "Remarkable modification of light curves for shadowing effects on irregular surfaces - The case of the asteroid 37 Fides", Astronomy and Astrophysics 123 (2): 326–330,  
  7. ^ Schober, H. J. (February 1984), "A comparison between binary star light curves and those of possible binary asteroids", Astrophysics and Space Science 99 (1–2): 387–392,  

External links

  • JPL Ephemeris
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