(114) Kassandra

114 Kassandra
Discovered byChristian Heinrich Friedrich Peters
Discovery date23 July 1871
(114) Kassandra
Named after
Main belt
Orbital characteristics[2]
Epoch 31 July 2016 (JD 2457600.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc113.62 yr (41501 d)
Aphelion3.0407 AU (454.88 Gm)
Perihelion2.31581 AU (346.440 Gm)
2.67825 AU (400.660 Gm)
4.38 yr (1600.9 d)
18.12 km/s
0° 13m 29.525s / day
Earth MOID1.3244 AU (198.13 Gm)
Jupiter MOID1.94976 AU (291.680 Gm)
Physical characteristics
Dimensions99.65±1.9 km[2]
99.798 km[3]
Mass1.0×1018 kg
Equatorial surface gravity
0.0278 m/s²
Equatorial escape velocity
0.0527 km/s
10.7431 h (0.44763 d)[2]
10.758 h[4]
0.0868 ± 0.0252[3]
Temperature~170 K
T (Tholen)[3]
8.26,[2] 8.275[3]

Kassandra (minor planet designation: 114 Kassandra) is a large and dark main-belt asteroid. It belongs to the rare class T. It was discovered by C. H. F. Peters on July 23, 1871, and is named after Cassandra, the prophetess in the tales of the Trojan War. The asteroid is featured in the 2009 film Meteor, in which it is split in two by a comet, and set on a collision course with Earth.

This object is classified as a rare T-type asteroid, with parts of the spectrum displaying properties similar to the mineral troilite and to carbonaceous chondrite.[5] The shape of the spectrum also appears similar to fine grain from the Ornans meteorite, which landed in France in 1868.[6] The light curve for this asteroid displays a period of 10.758 ± 0.004 hours with a brightness variation of 0.25 ± 0.01 in magnitude.[4]

During 2001, 114 Kassandra was observed by radar from the Arecibo Observatory. The return signal matched an effective diameter of 100 ± 14 km. This is consistent with the asteroid dimensions computed through other means.[7]

In popular media[]

The 2009 miniseries Meteor featured 114 Kassandra being sent on a collision course with Earth due to a comet impact and the effort by scientists to stop it.


  1. ^ 'Cassandra' in Noah Webster (1884) A Practical Dictionary of the English Language
  2. ^ a b c d e Yeomans, Donald K., "114 Kassandra", JPL Small-Body Database Browser, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, retrieved 12 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d Pravec, P.; et al. (May 2012), "Absolute Magnitudes of Asteroids and a Revision of Asteroid Albedo Estimates from WISE Thermal Observations", Asteroids, Comets, Meteors 2012, Proceedings of the conference held May 16–20, 2012 in Niigata, Japan (1667), Bibcode:2012LPICo1667.6089P.
  4. ^ a b Hutton, R. G.; Blain, A. (December 1988), "V+B Photoelectric Photometry of Asteroid 114 Kassandra", The Minor Planet Bulletin, 15, p. 39, Bibcode:1988MPBu...15...39H.
  5. ^ Dotto, E.; et al. (October 2002), "ISO observations of low and moderate albedo asteroids. PHT-P and PHT-S results", Astronomy and Astrophysics, 393, pp. 1065–1072, Bibcode:2002A&A...393.1065D, doi:10.1051/0004-6361:20021190.
  6. ^ Hamilton, Victoria E. (March 2010), "Thermal infrared (vibrational) spectroscopy of Mg-Fe olivines: A review and applications to determining the composition of planetary surfaces", Chemie der Erde - Geochemistry, 70 (1), pp. 7–33, Bibcode:2010ChEG...70....7H, doi:10.1016/j.chemer.2009.12.005.
  7. ^ Magri, Christopher; et al. (January 2007), "A radar survey of main-belt asteroids: Arecibo observations of 55 objects during 1999–2003", Icarus, 186 (1): 126–151, Bibcode:2007Icar..186..126M, doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2006.08.018

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