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5145 Pholus

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Title: 5145 Pholus  
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Subject: Centaur (minor planet), Eric Francis, Trans-Neptunian object, Pholus, List of Uranus-crossing minor planets
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5145 Pholus

5145 Pholus
Orbital diagram (top view)
Discovered by Spacewatch
(David Rabinowitz)
Discovery date 9 January 1992
Named after
1992 AD
Saturn crosser
Uranus crosser
Neptune crosser
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch JD 2454800.5 (30 November 2008)
Aphelion 31.98 AU (Q)
4,784 Gm
Perihelion 8.730 AU (q)
1305 Gm
20.356 AU (a)
3045.2 Gm
Eccentricity 0.5711
91.85 yr
33547.41 d
Average orbital speed
6.01 km/s
Inclination 24.65°
Physical characteristics
Dimensions 185±16 km[2]
9.98 hours[1]
Albedo 0.046±0.02
Temperature ~ 62 K
Spectral type
(red) B−V=1.19;
~ 20.7[4]

5145 Pholus (; from Greek: Φόλος) is a centaur in an eccentric orbit, with a perihelion less than Saturn's and aphelion greater than Neptune's. Pholus has not come within one astronomical unit of a planet since 764 BC, and will not until 5290.[5] It is believed that Pholus originated in the Kuiper belt.

It was discovered by David L. Rabinowitz, then of the University of Arizona's Spacewatch Project, and named after Pholus, the brother of the mythological Chiron, after which 2060 Chiron was named, in order to follow the tradition of naming this class of outer planet-crossing objects after centaurs.

Pholus was the second

  • Orbital simulation from JPL (Java) / Ephemeris

External links

  1. ^ a b c "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 5145 Pholus (1992 AD)" (2008-05-27 last obs). Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  2. ^ a b "Infrared Observations of Distant Asteroids". Retrieved 2013-10-30. 
  3. ^ Tegler, Stephen C. (2006-01-26). "Kuiper Belt Object Magnitudes and Surface Colors". Retrieved 2006-11-05. 
  4. ^ "AstDys (5145) Pholus Ephemerides". Department of Mathematics, University of Pisa, Italy. Retrieved 2010-06-28. 
  5. ^ "Fifty clones of Centaur 5145 Pholus all passing within ~100Gm of Neptune on 5290-07-07". Retrieved 2009-04-23.  (Solex 10)
  6. ^ Wilson PD, Sagan C, Thompson WR (1994). "The organic surface of 5145 Pholus: constraints set by scattering theory". Icarus 107 (2): 288–303.  
  7. ^ Cruikshank DP, and 14 colleagues (1998). "The Composition of Centaur 5145 Pholus". Icarus 135 (2): 389–407.  


The diameter of Pholus is estimated to be 185±16 km.[2]

Unlike 2060 Chiron, Pholus has shown no signs of cometary activity.

The surface composition of Pholus has been estimated from its reflectance spectrum using two spatially segregated components:[7] dark tholins). The carbon black component was used to match the low albedo of the object.


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