A kilometer-scale asteroid inside Venus’ orbit. (arXiv:2009.04125v2 [astro-ph.EP] UPDATED)
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Near-Earth asteroid models predict the existence of bodies located inside the
orbit of Venus. Despite searches up to the end of 2019, none had been found.
Here we report the discovery by the Zwicky Transient Facility of the first
known inner-Venus asteroid, (594913) ‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim, possessing an aphelion
distance of 0.65 au and is $sim$2 km in size. While it is possible that
‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim is the largest of its kind, we find that its discovery is
surprising in the context of population models which predict an expected
observed count close to zero. If this discovery is not a statistical fluke,
‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim may be a representative example of a larger population of
asteroids located inside the orbit of Venus than is described in contemporary
asteroid models.

Near-Earth asteroid models predict the existence of bodies located inside the
orbit of Venus. Despite searches up to the end of 2019, none had been found.
Here we report the discovery by the Zwicky Transient Facility of the first
known inner-Venus asteroid, (594913) ‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim, possessing an aphelion
distance of 0.65 au and is $sim$2 km in size. While it is possible that
‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim is the largest of its kind, we find that its discovery is
surprising in the context of population models which predict an expected
observed count close to zero. If this discovery is not a statistical fluke,
‘Ayl'{o}’chaxnim may be a representative example of a larger population of
asteroids located inside the orbit of Venus than is described in contemporary
asteroid models.

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