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Encyclopedia > Minor Planet Center

The Minor Planet Center operates at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), which is part of the Center for Astrophysics (CfA) along with the Harvard College Observatory (HCO). The Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) is a research institute of the Smithsonian Institution headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where it is joined with the Harvard College Observatory (HCO) to form the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA). ... The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. ... Harvard College Observatory, about 1900. ...


Under the auspices of the International Astronomical Union, it is the official organization in charge of collecting observational data for minor planets (asteroids) and comets, calculating their orbits and publishing this information via the Minor Planet Circulars. It runs a number of free on-line services for observers to assist them in observing minor planets and comets. The complete catalogue of minor planet orbits (MPCORB, sometimes referred to as the Minor Planet Catalogue) may also be freely downloaded. Logo of the IAU The International Astronomical Union (French: Union astronomique internationale) unites national astronomical societies from around the world. ... Minor planets, or planetoids are minor bodies of the Solar system orbiting the Sun (or of other planetary systems orbiting other stars) that are larger than meteoroids (the largest of which might be taken to be around 10 meters or so across) but smaller than major planets (Mercury having a... 253 Mathilde, a C-type asteroid. ... Comet Hale-Bopp For other uses, see Comet (disambiguation). ... In physics, an orbit is the path that an object makes, around another object, whilst under the influence of a source of centripetal force, such as gravity. ...


The Minor Planet Center was set up at the University of Cincinnati in 1947, under the direction of Paul Herget. Upon Herget's retirement in 1978, the MPC was moved to the SAO, under the direction of Brian Marsden. Brian G. Marsden is an astronomer, the longtime director of the Minor Planet Center. ...


See also: Minor planet number Minor planet names, including those of asteroids and dwarf planets, are managed by the Minor Planet Center, a branch of the IAU. They consist, in their final form, of a number originally assigned in approximate order of discovery, now assigned only after the orbit is determined, coupled with a name...


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External links

  • Minor Planet Center
  • MPCORB orbit catalogue
  • Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory

  Results from FactBites:
 
Minor Planet Center - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (162 words)
The Minor Planet Center operates at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), which is part of the Center for Astrophysics (CfA) along with the Harvard College Observatory (HCO).
Under the auspices of the IAU, it is the official organization in charge of collecting observational data for minor planets (asteroids) and comets and calculating their orbits, and publishing this information.
The Minor Planet Center was set up at the University of Cincinnati in 1947, under the direction of Paul Herget.
IAU: Minor Planet Center (497 words)
The Minor Planet Center (MPC) operates at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, under the auspices of Division III of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), with significant funding coming from subscriptions to the various services offered by the Center.
The MPC is responsible for the designation of minor bodies in the solar system: minor planets; comets (in conjunction with CBAT); and natural satellites (also in conjunction with CBAT).
Ephemerides and orbital elements for comets, NEOs, distant objects and bright minor planets.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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