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2011 SC191 is a small asteroid and Mars trojan orbiting near the L5 point of Mars (60 degrees behind Mars on its orbit).[2][3]

2011 SC191
Discovered byMt. Lemmon Survey
Discovery date31 October 2011
MPC designation2011 SC191
Martian L5 Martian L5
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 13 January 2016 (JD 2457400.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc4715 days (12.91 yr)
Aphelion1.5910690 AU (238.02053 Gm)
Perihelion1.4565161 AU (217.89171 Gm)
1.5237925 AU (227.95611 Gm)
1.88 yr (687.05 d)
0° 31m 26.331s /day
Earth MOID0.459583 AU (68.7526 Gm)
Jupiter MOID3.37018 AU (504.172 Gm)
Physical characteristics
Dimensions600 m
0.5-0.05 (assumed)


Discovery, orbit and physical propertiesEdit

2011 SC191 was first observed on 21 March 2003 by the Near-Earth Asteroid Tracking (NEAT) project at Palomar Observatory using the Samuel Oschin telescope and given the provisional designation 2003 GX20. The object was subsequently lost and re-discovered on 31 October 2011 by the Mt. Lemmon Survey.[4][5] Its orbit is characterized by low eccentricity (0.044), moderate inclination (18.7°) and a semi-major axis of 1.52 AU.[5] Upon discovery, it was classified as Mars-crosser by the Minor Planet Center. Its orbit is well determined as it is currently (March 2013) based on 45 observations with a data-arc span of 3,146 days.[1] 2011 SC191 has an absolute magnitude of 19.3 which gives a characteristic diameter of 600 m.[1]

Mars trojan and orbital evolutionEdit

Recent calculations indicate that it is a stable L5 Mars trojan with a libration period of 1300 yr and an amplitude of 18°.[2][3] These values as well as its short-term orbital evolution are similar to those of 5261 Eureka. Its eccentricity oscillates mainly due to secular resonances with the Earth and the oscillation in inclination is likely driven by secular resonances with Jupiter.[2]


Long-term numerical integrations show that its orbit is very stable on Gyr time-scales (1 Gyr = 1 billion years). As in the case of Eureka, calculations in both directions of time (4.5 Gyr into the past and 4.5 Gyr into the future) indicate that 2011 SC191 may be a primordial object, perhaps a survivor of the planetesimal population that formed in the terrestrial planets region early in the history of the Solar System.[2]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: (2011 SC191)". Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d de la Fuente Marcos, C.; de la Fuente Marcos, R. (April 2013). "Three new stable L5 Mars Trojans". Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters. 432 (1): L31–L35. arXiv:1303.0124. Bibcode:2013MNRAS.432L..31D. doi:10.1093/mnrasl/slt028.
  3. ^ a b Christou, A. A. (2013). "Orbital clustering of Martian Trojans: An asteroid family in the inner solar system?". Icarus. 224 (1): 144–153. arXiv:1303.0420. Bibcode:2013Icar..224..144C. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2013.02.013.
  4. ^ "MPEC 2011-T02 : 2011 SC191". Minor Planet Center. 1 October 2011. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  5. ^ a b MPC data on 2011 SC191
Further reading

External linksEdit