1877 Marsden


1877 Marsden
Discovered byC. J. van Houten
I. van Houten-G.
T. Gehrels
Discovery sitePalomar Obs.
Discovery date24 March 1971
(1877) Marsden
Named after
Brian G. Marsden
(British astronomer)[2]
1971 FC · 1950 TG
1950 TT2
main-belt · Hilda[3]
Orbital characteristics[1]
Epoch 4 September 2017 (JD 2458000.5)
Uncertainty parameter 0
Observation arc66.57 yr (24,315 days)
Aphelion4.7626 AU
Perihelion3.1251 AU
3.9439 AU
7.83 yr (2,861 days)
Physical characteristics
Dimensions34.01 km (derived)[4]
35.27±1.78 km[5]
35.643±0.298 km[6]
14.4 h[7]
0.057 (assumed)[4]
D[6] · C[4]
10.70[5] · 10.9[1] · 11.07[4][7]

1877 Marsden, provisional designation 1971 FC, is a carbonaceous Hildian asteroid from the outermost region of the asteroid belt, approximately 35 kilometers in diameter. It was discovered during the Palomar–Leiden Trojan survey in 1971, and named after British astronomer Brian Marsden.[2]


Marsden was discovered on 24 March 1971, by Dutch astronomer couple Ingrid and Cornelis van Houten at Leiden, on photographic plates taken by Dutch–American astronomer Tom Gehrels at Palomar Observatory, California.[3]

The discovery was made in a survey of faint Trojans (in spite of not having received a typical T-1 designation).[1] The trio of Dutch and Dutch–American astronomers collaborated on the productive Palomar–Leiden survey in the 1960s, using the same procedure as for this smaller Trojan campaign: Gehrels used Palomar's Samuel Oschin telescope (also known as the 48-inch Schmidt Telescope), and shipped the photographic plates to Cornelis and Ingrid van Houten at Leiden Observatory where blinking and astrometry was carried out.

Orbit and classification

Marsden is a member of the Hilda family.[6] It orbits the Sun in the outermost main-belt at a distance of 3.1–4.8 AU once every 7 years and 10 months (2,861 days). Its orbit has an eccentricity of 0.21 and an inclination of 18° with respect to the ecliptic.[1]

Physical characteristics

This trojan asteroid has been characterized as a dark C-type and D-type asteroid.[4][6]

Rotation period

During a photometric survey of Hilda asteroids in the late 1990s, an obtained light curve for Marsden gave a rotation period of 14.4 hours with a brightness variation of 0.22 in magnitude (U=2).[7]

Diameter and albedo

According to the surveys carried out by the Japanese Akari satellite and NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer with its subsequent NEOWISE mission, Marsden measures 35.27 and 35.643 kilometers in diameter and its surface has an albedo of 0.082 and 0.07, respectively.[5][6] The Collaborative Asteroid Lightcurve Link assumes a standard albedo for carbonaceous asteroids of 0.057 and derives a diameter of 34.01 kilometers with an absolute magnitude of 11.07.[4]


This minor planet was named in honor of British astronomer Brian Marsden (1937–2010), director of the Minor Planet Center (MPC) at the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in recognition of his numerous contributions in the field of orbit calculations for comets and minor planets.[2] The official naming citation was published by the Minor Planet Center on 1 June 1975 (M.P.C. 3826).[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 1877 Marsden (1971 FC)" (2017-05-01 last obs.). Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 9 June 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). "(1877) Marsden". Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – (1877) Marsden. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 150. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-29925-7_1878. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3.
  3. ^ a b "1877 Marsden (1971 FC)". Minor Planet Center. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "LCDB Data for (1877) Marsden". Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB). Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d Usui, Fumihiko; Kuroda, Daisuke; Müller, Thomas G.; Hasegawa, Sunao; Ishiguro, Masateru; Ootsubo, Takafumi; et al. (October 2011). "Asteroid Catalog Using Akari: AKARI/IRC Mid-Infrared Asteroid Survey". Publications of the Astronomical Society of Japan. 63 (5): 1117–1138. Bibcode:2011PASJ...63.1117U. doi:10.1093/pasj/63.5.1117. (online, AcuA catalog p. 153)
  6. ^ a b c d e f Grav, T.; Mainzer, A. K.; Bauer, J.; Masiero, J.; Spahr, T.; McMillan, R. S.; et al. (January 2012). "WISE/NEOWISE Observations of the Hilda Population: Preliminary Results". The Astrophysical Journal. 744 (2): 15. arXiv:1110.0283. Bibcode:2012ApJ...744..197G. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/744/2/197. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  7. ^ a b c Dahlgren, M.; Lahulla, J. F.; Lagerkvist, C.-I.; Lagerros, J.; Mottola, S.; Erikson, A.; et al. (June 1998). "A Study of Hilda Asteroids. V. Lightcurves of 47 Hilda Asteroids". Icarus. 133 (2): 247–285. Bibcode:1998Icar..133..247D. doi:10.1006/icar.1998.5919. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  8. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. "Appendix – Publication Dates of the MPCs". Dictionary of Minor Planet Names – Addendum to Fifth Edition (2006–2008). Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 221. doi:10.1007/978-3-642-01965-4. ISBN 978-3-642-01964-7.

External links

  • Asteroid Lightcurve Database (LCDB), query form (info Archived 16 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine)
  • Dictionary of Minor Planet Names, Google Books
  • Asteroids and comets rotation curves, CdR – Observatoire de Genève, Raoul Behrend
  • Discovery Circumstances: Numbered Minor Planets (1)-(5000) – Minor Planet Center
  • 1877 Marsden at AstDyS-2, Asteroids—Dynamic Site
    • Ephemeris · Observation prediction · Orbital info · Proper elements · Observational info
  • 1877 Marsden at the JPL Small-Body Database Edit this at Wikidata
    • Close approach · Discovery · Ephemeris · Orbit diagram · Orbital elements · Physical parameters