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(3172) Hirst

Reference work entry

1981 WW. Discovered 1981 Nov. 24 by E. Bowell at Anderson Mesa.

Named in honor of William P. Hirst, computer of the orbits of several of the minor planets discovered in Johannesburg. A Yorkshireman by birth, he worked for many years as Shell Oil’s chief chemist in South Africa. He led the Cape Town Moonwatch Team from its inception in 1957, and following his retirement from Shell he served for several years at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory as Moonwatch world coordinator. After returning to South Africa he continued to lecture on celestial mechanics at the University of Cape Town until the age of 83. (M 12014)

Name proposed by the discoverer, following a suggestion by R. Hurly and B. G. Marsden.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2003

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