|Discovered by E. F. Helin, J. Alu|
Alternative names MPO 244277, 1992 WA
Observation arc 9733 days (26.65 yr)
Discovery site Palomar Observatory
|Discovery date 29 June 1989|
Minor planet category Amor NEO
Discovered 29 June 1989
Asteroid group Amor asteroid
|Aphelion 1.44623 AU (216.353 Gm)|
Discoverers Jeff T. Alu, Eleanor F. Helin
Similar 4660 Nereus, Sun, Solar System, 4015 Wilson–Harrington, 1943 Anteros
(10302) 1989 ML is an as yet unnamed near-Earth asteroid. It is approximately 0.6 km in diameter. An Amor asteroid, it orbits between Earth and Mars. It is an X-type asteroid, so its surface composition is yet unknown. It was discovered by Eleanor F. Helin and Jeff T. Alu at Palomar Observatory on June 29, 1989.
Targeting by spacecraft
The delta-v ('effort') required to reach 1989 ML from a low-Earth orbit is only 4.8 km/s, ranking fifth (as of March 2007) amongst the near-Earth asteroids with well-established orbits. 1989 ML is thus particularly 'easy' (and 'cheap') to reach by spacecraft.
1989 ML was considered as a target of the Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa (then Muses-C) but had to be given up due to technical reasons. It was also considered by the European Space Agency as a candidate target for the Don Quijote mission to study the effects of impacting a spacecraft into an asteroid; however, they too changed to other targets.