274301 Wikipedia, provisional designation 2008 QH24, is a Vestian asteroid orbiting in the inner region of the asteroid belt, approximately 1 kilometer (0.6 mi) in diameter. It was discovered on 25 August 2008 by astronomers at the Andrushivka Astronomical Observatory in northern Ukraine.[1] The asteroid was named after the online encyclopedia Wikipedia in January 2013.[2]

274301 Wikipedia
Orbital diagram of 274301 Wikipedia
Discovered byAndrushivka Obs.
Discovery siteAndrushivka Obs.
Discovery date25 August 2008
(274301) Wikipedia
Named after
(online encyclopedia)
2008 QH24
1997 RO4
2007 FK34
main belt[1][2] · (inner)
Orbital characteristics[2]
Epoch 27 April 2019 (JD 2458600.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc20.62 yr (7,530 d)
Aphelion2.7306 AU
Perihelion2.0325 AU
2.3815 AU
3.68 yr (1,342 d)
0° 16m 5.52s / day
Physical characteristics
Mean diameter
0.95 km (est. at 0.35)[5]
1.5±0.5 km (assumed)[6]
V or S (SDSS-MOC)[3]



The decision of the Committee for Small Body Nomenclature to assign the name "Wikipedia" to the asteroid was published in the Minor Planet Circulars on 27 January 2013 (M.P.C. 82403).[7] The asteroid received the number 274301.[8] The name was proposed by Andriy Makukha, a board member of Wikimedia Ukraine. It was submitted to the Committee by the owner of the observatory, Yuri Ivashchenko.[9] It reads:

Wikipedia is a free, copyleft, collaboratively edited online encyclopedia launched in 2001. In 11 years of its compilation it became one of the largest reference works and one of the most visited web-sites on the Internet. It is developed in more than 270 languages by enthusiasts from all over the world.



Wikipedia is a member of the Vesta family (401), one of the most numerous asteroid families in the asteroid belt.[3] It is located in the proximity of 21791 Mattweegman, one of the family's principal members.[4] Vestian asteroids have a composition akin to cumulate eucrites (HED meteorites). They are thought to have originated deep within Vesta's crust, possibly from the Rheasilvia crater, a large impact crater on its southern hemisphere which formed as the result of a subcatastrophic collision.[10] Wikipedia orbits the Sun in the inner asteroid belt at a distance of 2.0–2.7 AU (300–400 million km) once every 3 years and 8 months (1,342 days; semi-major axis of 2.38 AU). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.15 and an inclination of 7° with respect to the ecliptic.[2] The asteroid's observation arc begins almost 11 years prior to its official discovery, with its first observation being 1997 RO4 by the ODAS survey in September 1997.[1]



The asteroid now named Wikipedia was discovered by astronomers from the Andrushivka Astronomical Observatory (A50) in Ukraine, the country's only privately owned observatory,[9] which has discovered over 120 asteroids since 2003.[11] It was first observed by the Andrushivka team on 25 August 2008 at 22:47 UTC.[1] It was also observed on the next night and it received provisional designation 2008 QH24.[12] After it was also observed on 6 September by the Andrushivka team, the orbit of the asteroid was calculated accurately. It was shown that the asteroid 2008 QH24 was the same as 1997 RO4 and 2007 FK34 previously spotted by observatories Caussols-ODAS (France), Mount Lemmon Survey and Steward Observatory (both in Arizona, U.S.).[1]

See also



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "274301 Wikipedia (2008 QH24)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 274301 Wikipedia (2008 QH24)" (2018-04-21 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  3. ^ a b c "Asteroid 274301 Wikipedia". Small Bodies Data Ferret. Archived from the original on 7 July 2018. Retrieved 7 July 2018.
  4. ^ a b "Asteroid (274301) Wikipedia – Proper Elements". AstDyS-2, Asteroids – Dynamic Site. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Asteroid Size Estimator". CNEOS NASA/JPL. Retrieved 7 July 2018.
  6. ^ Workman, Robert (5 February 2013). "'Wikipedia' is in space — as an asteroid". NBC News. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
  7. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 7 July 2018.
  8. ^ "MPC 74684" (PDF). Minor Planet Center. 18 April 2011.
  9. ^ a b "Астероїд, відкритий в Україні, було названо "Вікіпедія"". RegioNews. 31 January 2013. Archived from the original on 3 February 2013. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
  10. ^ Kelley, Michael S.; Vilas, Faith; Gaffey, Michael J.; Abell, Paul A. (September 2003). "Quantified mineralogical evidence for a common origin of 1929 Kollaa with 4 Vesta and the HED meteorites". Icarus. 165 (1): 215–218. Bibcode:2003Icar..165..215K. doi:10.1016/S0019-1035(03)00149-0.
  11. ^ "Minor Planet Discoverers". Minor Planet Center. 4 February 2023. Retrieved 17 April 2023.
  12. ^ "MPS 255948" (PDF). Minor Planet Center. 14 September 2008.