2011 HM102

Date of the discovery: 1 March 2013

Short Description: 2011 HM102 is a Neptune Trojan with an inclination of 29°. From the 17 known Neptune Trojans it is the one with the highest inclination discovered so far. Neptune Trojans are solar system objects (like asteroids and comets), but with the special characteristic that they orbit the sun at one Lagrangian point of Neptune, an point that always has the same distance to Neptune because the combined gravity of the sun and Neptune holds the object at this point. The four Lagrangian points are known to be very stable, so the planets in the solar system have their own family of solar system objects, which they collected over time. 2011 HM102 was discovered in an attempt to discover a flyby target for New Horizons. The Trojan is in a 1:1 resonance with Neptune.

Volunteer(s): A. Agbedor, A. Assioli, E. Baeten, T. D. Beer, P. Bel, M. C. Blanaru, M. Bovingdon, P. Brayshaw, T. Brydon, D. Cameron, J. Campos, E. Conseil, M. Cotton, C. Cripps, A. Crouthamel, J. Dadesky, J. M. Dawey, T. Demko, L. Dinsdale, G. Dungworth, A. Duvall, A. Erena, R. Evans, P. Fitch, R. Frasier, R. Gagliano, B. Gilbert, A. Gillis, V. Gonano, F. Helk, F. Henriquez, M. Herrenbruck, J. Herridge, D. Herron, T. Hodge, S. Ivanchenko, M. Kelp, C. Kindel, J. Koopmans, H. Krawczyk, A. Lamperti, D. V. Lessen, S. Li, N. Macklem, M. H. Massuda, A. Maya, M. T. Mazzucato, K. McCoy, P. A. McDonald, R. Mideke, G. Mitchell, V. Mottino, D. O’Connor, M. Olga, N. N. Paklin, A. Pandey, C. Panek, E. R. Pearsall, K. Pidgley, S. Pogrebenko, B. Replogle, J. Riley, K. Roovers, C. Schlesinger, T. Sieben, P. D. Stewart, S. R. Taylor, J. Thebarge, H. Turner, R. H.B. Velthuis, P. Verdelis, E. Walravens, B. Way, B. Wyatt, A. Zane, M. Zehner, and D. R. Zeigler

Researchers in the discovery paper: Alex H. Parker, Marc W. Buie, David J. Osip, Stephen D. J. Gwyn, Matthew J. Holman, David M. Borncamp, John R. Spencer, Susan D. Benecchi, Richard P. Binzel, Francesca E. DeMeo, Sébastian Fabbro, Cesar I. Fuentes, Pamela L. Gay, J. J. Kavelaars, Brian A. McLeod, Jean-Marc Petit, Scott S. Sheppard, S. Alan Stern, David J. Tholen, David E. Trilling, Darin A. Ragozzine, Lawrence H. Wasserman, and the Ice Hunters

Link to paper in ADS: https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2013AJ….145…96P/abstract

Minor Planet Center page: https://www.minorplanetcenter.net/db_search/show_object?utf8=%E2%9C%93&object_id=2011+HM102

Telescopes involved: 6.5 m Magellan Telescopes, Subaru telescope, Canada–France–Hawaii Telescope

Figure 1 of the paper. 2011 HM102 is shown as a large green square, comparing the colours of this Neptune trojan with other solar system objects
Other pages:

wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_HM102

Press Release: http://www.planetary.org/blogs/guest-blogs/2013/0430-2011hm102-new-neptune-companion.html

Project websites: Project website does not seem to exist anymore

Credit for the header image: Orbital Sketch from the Minor Planet Center

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