Meaning of Asteroid

What is Asteroid:

As an asteroid, the small celestial bodies that circulate around the Sun in an orbit interior to that of Neptune are called. Because they have a dimension less than that of a planet, they can also be called planetoids or minor planets. The word comes from the Greek and is composed of ἀστηρ (aster), which means 'star', and ειδής (eidós), 'form', 'appearance', hence it is also used as an adjective to refer to a thing with a shape or star figure.

There are millions of asteroids in our Solar System, mostly located between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter, a place also known as the asteroid belt. They do not always have a spherical shape, and their dimensions can range between 500 km in diameter (the largest, such as Palas and Vesta) and 50 m (the smallest).

Asteroids are designated according to a catalog number, the list of which is arranged chronologically according to their date of discovery, and they are often baptized with names taken from Greek mythology. Thus, for example, we find the group of Trojans, made up of asteroids whose names were taken from the heroes of the Trojan War. Other groups of importance in the studies of Astronomy are the centaurs, located outside the Solar System, and the Amor, Apollo and Aten groups, due to their proximity to Earth.

It may interest you Solar system.

There are different theories about the origin of asteroids. One of them affirms that they are nothing but the remains of a planet torn apart by the enormous attraction of Jupiter, another refers that the asteroids could be the fragments of the original nebula that never came together and became a planet, and there is also the one that it relates them to comets.

The close passage of asteroids such as 2000 M26, 2003 QQ47 or 2012 DA14, have put alerts on collision probabilities with the Earth, indicated for March 2014 or 2016, although they are minimal.

In literature, the most famous asteroid is B 612, the one from which The Little Prince, a character in Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's book, originated.

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