3350 Scobee

3350 Scobee, provisional designation 1980 PJ, is a stony Florian asteroid from the inner regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 3 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 8 August 1980 by American astronomer Edward Bowell at Lowell's Anderson Mesa Station near Flagstaff, Arizona.[3] It was named for Dick Scobee, commander of the ill-fated Challenger crew.

3350 Scobee
Discovery [1]
Discovered byE. Bowell
Discovery siteAnderson Mesa Stn.
Discovery date8 August 1980
(3350) Scobee
Named after
Dick Scobee
(Challenger crew member)[2]
1980 PJ · 1973 SG2
1976 JU10
main-belt[1][3] · Flora[4]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc64.53 yr (23,568 days)
Aphelion2.7846 AU
Perihelion1.8357 AU
2.3102 AU
3.51 yr (1,283 days)
0° 16m 50.52s / day
Physical characteristics
Dimensions3.11±0.59 km[5]
3.26 km (calculated)[4]
7.401±0.210 km[6][7]
0.24 (assumed)[4]
14.3[6] · 14.6[1][4] · 14.81[5] · 15.10±0.25[8]

Orbit and classificationEdit

Scobee is a member of the Flora family, one of the largest families of stony asteroids. It orbits the Sun in the inner main-belt at a distance of 1.8–2.8 AU once every 3 years and 6 months (1,283 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.21 and an inclination of 3° with respect to the ecliptic.[1] A first precovery was taken at Palomar Observatory in 1952, extending the body's observation arc by 28 years prior to its official discovery observation at Anderson Mesa.[3]

Physical parametersEdit

According to preliminary results of the space-based survey carried out by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Scobee measured 7.401 kilometers in diameter and its surface had a dark, carbonaceous albedo of 0.059.[6][7] The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link, however, assumed an albedo of 0.24 – derived from 8 Flora, the largest member and namesake of the family – and calculated a diameter of 3.26 kilometers based on an absolute magnitude of 14.6.[4] More recent NEOWISE-observations, taken during the second year since the spacecraft was reactivated in late 2013, are in agreement, giving a diameter of 3.11 kilometers and an albedo of 0.22.[5]

Photometric observations gave a respective brightness variation of 0.16 and 0.17 magnitude, which indicates that the body has a rather spheroidal shape. As of 2017, however, no rotational lightcurve of Scobee has been obtained and its rotation period remains unknown.[4][5][9]


This minor planet was named in memory of American astronaut and commander of the Challenger Space Shuttle Dick Scobee (1939–1986), who died in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster on 28 January 1986.[2] The sequentially numbered minor planets 3351 Smith, 3352 McAuliffe, 3353 Jarvis, 3354 McNair, 3355 Onizuka, and 3356 Resnik were named for the other crew members of the ill-fated STS-51-L mission. The approved naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center on 26 March 1986 (M.P.C. 10549).[10]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 3350 Scobee (1980 PJ)" (2017-03-26 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 3 July 2017.
  2. ^ a b Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). "(3350) Scobee". Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (3350) Scobee. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 279. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-29925-7_3351. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3.
  3. ^ a b c "3350 Scobee (1980 PJ)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g "LCDB Data for (3350) Scobee". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  5. ^ a b c d e Nugent, C. R.; Mainzer, A.; Bauer, J.; Cutri, R. M.; Kramer, E. A.; Grav, T.; et al. (September 2016). "NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year Two: Asteroid Diameters and Albedos". The Astronomical Journal. 152 (3): 12. arXiv:1606.08923. Bibcode:2016AJ....152...63N. doi:10.3847/0004-6256/152/3/63. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d Mainzer, A.; Grav, T.; Masiero, J.; Hand, E.; Bauer, J.; Tholen, D.; et al. (November 2011). "NEOWISE Studies of Spectrophotometrically Classified Asteroids: Preliminary Results". The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 25. arXiv:1109.6407. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...90M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/90.
  7. ^ a b c Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Grav, T.; Bauer, J. M.; Cutri, R. M.; Dailey, J.; et al. (November 2011). "Main Belt Asteroids with WISE/NEOWISE. I. Preliminary Albedos and Diameters". The Astrophysical Journal. 741 (2): 20. arXiv:1109.4096. Bibcode:2011ApJ...741...68M. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/741/2/68. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  8. ^ Veres, Peter; Jedicke, Robert; Fitzsimmons, Alan; Denneau, Larry; Granvik, Mikael; Bolin, Bryce; et al. (November 2015). "Absolute magnitudes and slope parameters for 250,000 asteroids observed by Pan-STARRS PS1 - Preliminary results". Icarus. 261: 34–47. arXiv:1506.00762. Bibcode:2015Icar..261...34V. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2015.08.007. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  9. ^ Wisniewski, W. Z.; Michalowski, T. M.; Harris, A. W.; McMillan, R. S. (March 1995). "Photoelectric Observations of 125 Asteroids". Abstracts of the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. 26: 1511. Bibcode:1995LPI....26.1511W. Retrieved 18 March 2017.
  10. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 March 2017.

External linksEdit