International Astronomical Union names minor planet after Pandit Jasraj

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News: International Astronomical Union (IAU) has named a minor planet after Indian musician Pandit Jasraj. He’s the first Indian musician to receive this honour.

Facts:

  • Minor planet 2006 VP32 (number -300128), has been named ‘Panditjasraj.’
  • The minor planet is an asteroid. It traverses the cosmos between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.
  • It was discovered on November 11, 2006 by the Catalina Sky Survey, whose telescopes are based in Arizona in the United States.

Additional Information:

Minor Planets:

  • Minor planet is a term used to refer to a celestial object that is not a planet or comet which orbits the Sun.
  • Minor planets can be dwarf planets, asteroids, Trojans, centaurs, Kuiper belt objects, and other trans-Neptunian objects.
  • Ceres, found in 1801, was the first minor planet discovered. It is a dwarf planet.
  • As of September, there are 5, 41,131 numbered minor planets of a total of 79, 70, 78 observed bodies, with the rest being unnumbered minor planets.
Celestial Object Description
Dwarf Planets It is a planetary-mass object that does not dominate its region of space (as a true planet does) and is not a satellite. Ex: Pluto, Eris
Asteroid They are small, rocky objects that orbit the sun. They are smaller than a planet, but they are larger than meteoroids.
Trojan It is a small celestial body that shares the orbit of a larger one. Trojans can share the orbits of planets or of large moons.
Centaurs They are small Solar System bodies with a semi-major axis between those of the outer planets.
Kuiper Belt Object Objects found in Kuiper Belt. Kuiper belt, also called the Edgeworth–Kuiper belt, is a circumstellar disc in the outer Solar System, extending from the orbit of Neptune (at 30 AU) to approximately 50 AU from the Sun.

International Astronomical Union

  • It is an international association of professional astronomers.
  • Its mission is to promote and safeguard the science of astronomy in all its aspects, including research, communication, education and development, through international cooperation.
  • It was founded in 1919. It is headquartered in Paris, France.