What is asteroid?

  • (adj): Shaped like a star.
    Synonyms: star-shaped
    See also — Additional definitions below

Asteroid

Asteroids (from Greek ἀστεροειδής - asteroeidēs, "star-like", from ἀστήρ "star" and εἶδος "like, in form") are a class of small Solar System bodies in orbit around the Sun. They have also been called planetoids, especially the larger ones. These terms have historically been applied to any astronomical object orbiting the Sun that did not show the disk of a planet and was not observed to have the characteristics of an active comet, but as small objects in the outer Solar System were discovered, their volatile-based surfaces were found to more closely resemble comets, and so were often distinguished from traditional asteroids. Thus the term asteroid has come increasingly to refer specifically to the small bodies of the inner Solar System out to the orbit of Jupiter, which are usually rocky or metallic. They are grouped with the outer bodies—centaurs, Neptune trojans, and trans-Neptunian objects—as minor planets, which is the term preferred in astronomical circles. This article will restrict the use of the term 'asteroid' to the minor planets of the inner Solar System.

Read more about Asteroid.

Some articles on asteroid:

1052 Belgica
1052 Belgica is an asteroid ... Designation Groups Moons Meanings of names Pronunciation of names Asteroids Aten asteroid Families Jupiter Trojans Main-belt Near-Earth Spectral types Distant minor planets Centaurs ...
1181 Lilith
... The asteroid 1181 Lilith is a main belt asteroid discovered February 11, 1927 by Benjamin Jekhowsky ... It is part of the main asteroid belt outside the orbit of Mars ...
1050 Meta
1050 Meta is an asteroid ... Moons Meanings of names Pronunciation of names Asteroids Aten asteroid Families Jupiter Trojans Main-belt Near-Earth Spectral types Distant minor planets ...
23756 Daniellozano
23756 Daniellozano is a main belt asteroid with an orbital period of 1268.0535603 days (3.47 years) ... The asteroid was discovered on May 22, 1998 ... This asteroid was named after Daniel Lozano of Weslaco, Texas for placing second in the group physical science category of the International Science and ...
Asteroid - Fiction
... Asteroids and the asteroid belt are a staple of science fiction stories ... Asteroids play several potential roles in science fiction as places human beings might colonize, resources for extracting minerals, hazards encountered by spaceships traveling between two other points ...

More definitions of "asteroid":

  • (noun): Any of numerous small celestial bodies composed of rock and metal that move around the sun (mainly between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter).
    Synonyms: minor planet, planetoid