Napier

1992 VM. Discovered 1992 Nov. 3 by R. H. McNaught at Siding Spring.

Named for the Scottish astronomer William (Bill) M. Napier (1940- ), who has made seminal contribu tions in several areas of astrophysics. In collaboration with Victor Clube {see planet (6523)}, Napier was one of the first to suggest that impacts by comets and minor planets have had a significant influence upon life on the earth, and that those impacts are temporally linked to cyclic disturbances of the Oort Cloud {see planet (1691)} as the sun moves about the galactic plane, as well as to the sporadic arrival of giant comets in the inner solar system. Napier is currently investigating the effect upon the terrestrial climate of the varying influx of cometary dust in such a picture, although he also actively works on the apparent quantization of galactic redshifts. (M 29148)

Name proposed by the discoverer following a suggestion by D. I. Steel, who prepared the citation.

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