Bulgarian astronomers discover new asteroid
Harvard's Minor Planet Center for the Solar System has acknowledged the existence of a new asteroid discovered by Bulgarian astronomers at the end of last week, a Bulgarian research body said Friday.
The object, in the constellation Taurus, is two km in diameter and presently situated in the inner parts of the main asteroid belt, making its full turn around the Sun for a period of 3.2 years, the Center for Space Research of Sofia University said.
The asteroid has temporarily been dubbed 2008 WN96 by the international organization at Harvard.
The three scientists who made the new discovery under "Star Society MPC A79" are now conducting further research to affirm the characteristics of the new object, the center said.
The three have discovered nine new celestial bodies, including the 2005 UT12, the 2007 PQ2 and the 2007 QD2, since 2005 in spite of the lack of government financing, the center added.
The center said the 2008 WN96 will probably be the last asteroid discovered in Bulgaria as the three scientists will start working on a new long-term project sponsored by the U.S. government in the beginning of 2009, reported Xinhua.