Billowen

1990 RD9. Discovered 1990 Sept. 14 by H. E. Holt at Palomar.

Named in honor of William Mann Owen, Jr. (1954), an astronomer at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Owen developed the initial orbits for the small satellites of Uranus and Neptune discovered during the Voyager space mission. He also participated in the first determination of the mass ratio of Pluto and Charon using the Hubble Space Telescope. Using his extensive knowledge of astrometry, Owen played a significant role in reducing the ephemeris uncertainties for some flight project target bodies, including (951) Gaspra and (243) Ida. (M 27461; M 27477)

Name proposed by the discoverer following a suggestion by the JPL ephemeris group.

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