Baucis (minor planet designation: 172 Baucis) is a large main belt asteroid that was discovered by French astronomer Alphonse Borrelly on February 5, 1877, and named after a fictional character in the Greek legend of Baucis and Philemon. The adjectival form of the name is Baucidian. It is classified as an S-type asteroid based upon its spectrum.

172 Baucis
Discovered byA. Borrelly
Discovery date5 February 1877
(172) Baucis
A877 CA; 1921 EE
Main belt
Orbital characteristics[2]
Epoch 31 July 2016 (JD 2457600.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc133.62 yr (48806 d)
Aphelion2.6525 AU (396.81 Gm)
Perihelion2.1073 AU (315.25 Gm)
2.3799 AU (356.03 Gm)
3.67 yr (1341.0 d)
0° 16m 6.42s / day
Earth MOID1.09593 AU (163.949 Gm)
Jupiter MOID2.67257 AU (399.811 Gm)
Physical characteristics
Mean radius
31.215±0.6 km
27.417 h (1.1424 d)[2][3]

Photometric observations of this asteroid from the southern hemisphere during 2003 gave a light curve that indicated a slow synodic rotation period of 27.417 ± 0.013 hours and a brightness variation of 0.25 in magnitude.[3]

Polarimetric study of this asteroid reveals anomalous properties that suggests the regolith consists of a mixture of low and high albedo material. This may have been caused by fragmentation of an asteroid substrate with the spectral properties of CO3/CV3 carbonaceous chondrites.[4]


  1. ^ Noah Webster (1884) A Practical Dictionary of the English Language
  2. ^ a b Yeomans, Donald K., "172 Baucis", JPL Small-Body Database Browser, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, retrieved 6 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b Bembrick, C. S.; et al. (September 2004), "172 Baucis - a slow rotator", The Minor Planet Bulletin, vol. 31, no. 3, pp. 51–52, Bibcode:2004MPBu...31...51B.
  4. ^ Gil-Hutton, R.; et al. (April 2008), "New cases of unusual polarimetric behavior in asteroids", Astronomy and Astrophysics, vol. 482, no. 1, pp. 309–314, Bibcode:2008A&A...482..309G, doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20078965.

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