Hartzell Receives Astronomical Honor

Hartzell Receives Astronomical Honor

Next time you look to the sky, see if you can spot "9319 Hartzell," the main belt asteroid named after the Department of Aerospace Engineering's Assistant Professor Christine Hartzell. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) announced the asteroid naming, and IAU selects new names only every few years.

Having your name attached to an asteroid is no easy feat as the process can take years, and final names are judged by the fifteen-person Committee for Small-Body Nomenclature of the International Astronomical Union, comprised of professional astronomers (with research interests connected with minor planets and/or comets) from around the world.

"I think it's every scientist's dream to have something named after them," said Hartzell. "Having an asteroid named after me is really exciting because it means that my research is valued by the planetary science community."

It is a fitting honor for Hartzell. Her research focuses on the electrostatic and cohesion properties of dust on the surface of asteroids such as how the particles interact with one another and in relation to asteroid's surface. Understanding dust particle motion on asteroids can improve not only the understanding of their evolution, but it can help improve the design of future space craft used for exploring these unique environments.

S. J. Bus originally discovered asteroid 9319 Hartzell in 1988 at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, an observatory located in the northern region of Chile. The Hartzell asteroid–which is approximately two-kilometers in size—is part of the main asteroid belt located between the orbits of planets Mars and Jupiter.

For more information on Hartzell and her research, visit her website.

 

January 16, 2015


Prev   Next

Current Headlines

UMD Division of Research Announces Summer Tier 1 Awards

Gamma-ray Burst Captured in Unprecedented Detail

New UMD Research Tracks Global IT’s Shift from Cost-Cutting to Revenue-Boosting

UMD Engineers Invent the First Bio-Compatible, Ion Current Battery

Flying Dog Brewery and University of Maryland Partner on Hops Production Initiative

UMD’s “It Takes Just One” Student Team Wins National Competition to Curb Violent Extremism Online

Call for Proposals: UMD-TEC Seed Grant Program

UMD Named a 2017 Best College by MONEY Magazine

News Resources

Return to Newsroom

Search News

Archived News

Events Resources

Events Calendar

Additional Resources

UM Newsdesk

Faculty Experts

Connect

social iconstwitterlinkedinrssYouTube
Division of Research
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742-1541

Email: vpr@umd.edu
© Copyright 2017 University of Maryland

Did You Know

UMD is the largest university in the region, with the most highly ranked programs, awarding the largest number of degrees.