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3844 Lujiaxi, provisional designation 1966 BZ, is a Henan asteroid from the central regions of the asteroid belt, approximately 15 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered on 30 January 1966, by astronomers at the Purple Mountain Observatory in Nanking, China.[10] The asteroid was named after Chinese chemist Lu Jiaxi.[2]

3844 Lujiaxi
Discovery [1]
Discovered byPurple Mountain Obs.
Discovery sitePurple Mountain Obs.
Discovery date30 January 1966
MPC designation(3844) Lujiaxi
Named after
Lu Jiaxi (Chinese chemist)[2]
1966 BZ · 1933 XH
1964 VC1 · 1975 BW
1977 RW3 · 1977 SP
1980 FY10 · 1982 VJ9
1985 HD1 · 1985 JV
1985 KK · 1986 PU
1986 QA · 1987 YQ
main-belt · (middle)
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc83.47 yr (30,488 days)
Aphelion3.0148 AU
Perihelion2.4484 AU
2.7316 AU
4.51 yr (1,649 days)
0° 13m 5.88s / day
Physical characteristics
Dimensions13.74±3.48 km[4]
15.538±0.718 km[5]
25.44 km (calculated)[6]
10.415 h[7]
13.33±0.01 h[8]
0.057 (assumed)[6]
SMASS = L[1]
L (Bus–DeMeo)[8]:5
C (assumed)[6]
11.60[4] · 11.7[6] · 11.8[1] · 11.94±0.22[9]

Orbit and classificationEdit

Lujiaxi is a member of the Henan family (532),[3] a large asteroid family in the intermediate main-belt, named after 2085 Henan.[11]:23 It orbits the Sun in the central asteroid belt at a distance of 2.4–3.0 AU once every 4 years and 6 months (1,649 days; semi-major axis of 2.73 AU). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.10 and an inclination of 4° with respect to the ecliptic.[1]

The body's observation arc begins with its first identification as 1933 XH at Heidelberg Observatory in December 1933, more than 32 years prior to its official discovery observation at Nanking.[10]

Physical characteristicsEdit

In the Bus–DeMeo and SMASS classification, Lujiaxi is an uncommon L-type asteroid,[1][8]:5 which is also the overall spectral type for members of the Henan family.[11]:23

Rotation period and shapeEdit

In August 2013, a rotational lightcurve of Lujiaxi was obtained from photometric observations by Italian amateur astronomer Silvano Casulli. Lightcurve analysis gave a rotation period of 10.415 hours (given as 0.43397 days) with a brightness amplitude of 0.43 magnitude (U=n.a.).[7]

In December 2014, a study by an international collaboration of astronomers found a period of 13.33 hours with an amplitude of 0.34 magnitude (U=2+).[8] The study selected Lujiaxi because it is a suspected "Barbarian" asteroid with a potentially slow rotation period. This group is named after 234 Barbara, which polarimetric properties and observed occultations suggest that such bodies have an unusual shape and topographic features with large concave areas.[8]

Diameter and albedoEdit

According to the survey carried out by the NEOWISE mission of NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, Lujiaxi measures 13.74 and 15.538 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an albedo of 0.18 and 0.168, respectively.[4][5]

The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link assumes a standard albedo for carbonaceous asteroids of 0.057 and consequently calculates a much larger diameter of 25.44 kilometers based on an absolute magnitude of 11.7.[6]


This minor planet was named after Lu Jiaxi (1915–2001), a Chinese physical chemist, who headed the Chinese Academy of Sciences and made important contributions to the structural chemistry of cluster compounds.[2] The official naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center on 11 February 1998 (M.P.C. 31188).[12]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 3844 Lujiaxi (1966 BZ)" (2017-06-05 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). "(3844) Lujiaxi". Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (3844) Lujiaxi. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 326. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-29925-7_3836. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3.
  3. ^ a b "Small Bodies Data Ferret". Nesvorny HCM Asteroid Families V3.0. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d Nugent, C. R.; Mainzer, A.; Masiero, J.; Bauer, J.; Cutri, R. M.; Grav, T.; et al. (December 2015). "NEOWISE Reactivation Mission Year One: Preliminary Asteroid Diameters and Albedos". The Astrophysical Journal. 814 (2): 13. arXiv:1509.02522. Bibcode:2015ApJ...814..117N. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/814/2/117. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  5. ^ a b c Masiero, Joseph R.; Mainzer, A. K.; Grav, T.; Bauer, J. M.; Cutri, R. M.; Nugent, C.; et al. (November 2012). "Preliminary Analysis of WISE/NEOWISE 3-Band Cryogenic and Post-cryogenic Observations of Main Belt Asteroids". The Astrophysical Journal Letters. 759 (1): 5. arXiv:1209.5794. Bibcode:2012ApJ...759L...8M. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/759/1/L8. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d e "LCDB Data for (3844) Lujiaxi". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  7. ^ a b Behrend, Raoul. "Asteroids and comets rotation curves – (3844) Lujiaxi". Geneva Observatory. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  8. ^ a b c d e Devogè; le, M.; Tanga, P.; Bendjoya, P.; Rivet, J. P.; Surdej, J.; et al. (July 2017). "Shape and spin determination of Barbarian asteroids". Astronomy & Astrophysics. 607 (119): A119. arXiv:1707.07503. Bibcode:2017A&A...607A.119D. doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201630104.
  9. ^ 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 November 2017.
  10. ^ a b "3844 Lujiaxi (1966 BZ)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  11. ^ a b Nesvorný, D.; Broz, M.; Carruba, V. (December 2014). Identification and Dynamical Properties of Asteroid Families. Asteroids IV. pp. 297–321. arXiv:1502.01628. doi:10.2458/azu_uapress_9780816532131-ch016. ISBN 9780816532131.
  12. ^ "MPC/MPO/MPS Archive". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 18 November 2017.

External linksEdit