Key Facts

  • Categorized as a Main-belt Asteroid
  • Comparable in size to the U.S. state of Connecticut (121.33 km diameter)
  • Not a Near Earth Object
  • Not a Potentially Hazardous Object
  • See orbit simulation


Melete is a large asteroid orbiting between Mars and Jupiter in the main portion of the asteroid belt. NASA JPL has not classified Melete as potentially hazardous because its orbit does not bring it close to Earth.

Melete orbits the sun every 1,530 days (4.19 years), coming as close as 1.98 AU and reaching as far as 3.21 AU from the sun. Melete is about 121.3 kilometers in diameter, making it larger than 99% of asteroids, comparable in size to the U.S. state of Connecticut.

The rotation of Melete has been observed. It completes a rotation on its axis every 18.15 hours.

Melete's spectral type P (Tholen) / Xk (SMASSII) indicates that it is likely to contain iron, nickel, and cobalt.

No Close Approaches

Melete's orbit is 0.98 AU from Earth's orbit at its closest point. This means that there is a very wide berth between this asteroid and Earth at all times.

Orbital simulations conducted by NASA JPL's CNEOS do not show any close approaches to Earth.

Images and Observations

Melete's orbit is determined by observations dating back to June 13, 1865. It was last officially observed on May 1, 2022. The IAU Minor Planet Center records 3,578 observations used to determine its orbit.

Scientists have been able to determine this object's shape:

View asteroid Melete in 3D.

Accessibility and Exploration

This asteroid is not considered a viable target for human exploration by the NHATS study.

Similar Objects

These objects have orbits that share similar characteristics to the orbit of Melete:



   or view a random object

Orbital Elements

  • Epoch: 2459800.5 JD
  • Semi-major axis: 2.596 AU
  • Eccentricity: 0.2378
  • Inclination: 8.08°
  • Longitude of Ascending Node: 192.94°
  • Argument of Periapsis: 104.95°
  • Mean Anomaly: 169.42°

Physical Characteristics

  • Diameter: 121.33300 km
  • Magnitude: 8.58
  • Albedo: 0.057
  • Spectral type (Tholen): P
  • Spectral type (SMASS): Xk

Derived Characteristics

  • Orbit Period: 1,530 days (4.19 years)
  • Avg. Orbit Speed: 18.46 km/s
  • Aphelion Distance: 3.21 AU
  • Perihelion Distance: 1.98 AU
  • Rotation Period: 18.15 hours
  • Approx. Composition: iron, nickel, and cobalt.

Map Comparison

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Orbit Simulation

Sky Map

The position of Melete is indicated by a ◯ pink circle. Note that the object may not be in your current field of view. Use the controls below to adjust position, location, and time.