90 Antiope is the first asteroid shown to be a binary
system (see binary asteroid); its
two components, each about 85 km across, are separated by about 170 km,
and appear to be rubble piles consisting of about 30 percent empty space
(see rubble-pile asteroid).
They complete an orbit around one another every 16.5 hours. Antiope was
discovered in 1866 by the German astronomer R. Luther and is a member of
the Themis family, located in the
outer part of the main asteroid belt.
|Artist's rendering of one of the components of the
binary asteroid 90 Antiope as seen from the surface of the other.
Credit and ©: Mark
Garlick (reproduced with permission)
|Artist's rendering of the binary asteroid 90 Antiope.
Credit: European Southern Observatory
in mythology (Encyclopedia of History)
ASTEROIDS, CENTAURS, AND KUIPER BELT OBJECTS