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(594913) Ayló’chaxnim, a kilometer-scale asteroid inside Venus orbit

Presentation #202.01 in the session Asteroid Dynamics.

Published onOct 20, 2022
(594913) Ayló’chaxnim, a kilometer-scale asteroid inside Venus orbit

Near-Earth asteroid population models predict the existence of bodies located inside the orbit of Venus. Despite searches up to the end of 2019, none had been found. I report the discovery and follow-up observations of (594913) 'Ayló'chaxnim, the first known asteroid possessing an aphelion entirely within the orbit of Venus. (594913) 'Ayló'chaxnim has an aphelion of ~0.65 au, is red in color, and is 2 km in diameter. The detection of such a large asteroid inside the orbit of Venus is unexpected given their rarity according to near-Earth asteroid population models and limited coverage of this region of the Solar System by ground-based surveys. Thus, 'Ayló'chaxnim may be a fluke, or asteroid population models may need to be revised. The prospects of finding more 'Ayló'chaxnim in ground-based surveys are discussed.

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