ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around an Asteroid

26 March 2014

This episode of the ESOcast presents the recent discovery that the remote asteroid Chariklo is surrounded by two dense and narrow rings.

Telescopes at seven locations in South America, including the 1.54-metre Danish and TRAPPIST telescopes at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile were used to make this surprise discovery in the outer Solar System.

This unique finding has sparked much interest and debate since it is the smallest object by far to have rings and only the fifth body in the Solar System — after the much larger planets Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune — to have this feature.

Astronomers think that this sort of ring is likely to be formed from debris left over after a collision. The story of this unique and unexpected discovery is told in ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around an Asteroid.

More episodes of the ESOcast are also available.

Find out how to view and contribute subtitles for the ESOcast in multiple languages, or translate this video on dotSUB.

More Information

The ESOcast is a video podcast series dedicated to bringing you the latest news and research from ESO — the European Southern Observatory. Subscribe to our video podcast now to keep up with the latest news from ESO: the ESOcast is available via iTunes in HD and SD. It’s also available on YouTube , Vimeo and is offered for download in several formats including HD.



Richard Hook
ESO, Public Information Officer
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6655
Cell: +49 151 1537 3591

About the Announcement



Screenshot of ESOcast 64:
Screenshot of ESOcast 64: "First Ring System Around Asteroid"


ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around Asteroid
ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around Asteroid