A large near-Earth asteroid Florence has two moons

Radar images of the asteroid Florence, obtained with the help of the 70-meter radio telescope of the Goldstone Long-Distance Space Communication Complex and the 300-meter radio telescope of the Arecibo Observatory from August 29 to September 2 showed that the asteroid has two small moons, and also confirmed that the size of Florence is about 4,5 km in diameter. Florence is only the third triple asteroid in the near-earth population, which currently has more than 16 thousand objects. The triplicity of these three asteroids was detected using radar observations. The last time two moons were discovered around the asteroid 1999 CC in June 2009.

The dimensions of the two moons are not yet exactly known, but they are probably in the range of 100 to 300 meters in diameter. The period of revolution of the moons around the asteroid is also not exactly known, but it is probably about 8 hours for the inner moon and 22-27 hours for the outer moon. The inner moon of the Florence system has the shortest orbital period of revolution among other moons of near-Earth asteroids.

Radar images also show that the asteroid has a ridge along the equator, as well as at least one large crater. The shape of the asteroid is rather round. The asteroid rotates about its axis with a period of 2.4 hours, which is consistent with early optical measurements.

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