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Congratulations to Aswin Shekhar

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) has recognized India’s prominent meteor astronomer Aswin Sekhar by naming a minor planet after him. This prestigious tribute was bestowed upon the young Malayali at the Asteroids Comets Meteors Conference 2023, held in Arizona, USA, on June 21. The IAU citation lauds Aswin Sekhar as the first professional meteor astronomer from India in modern times, highlighting his significant contributions in the field of meteoroid stream dynamics and the effects of relativity and resonances in meteoroid streams.

Aswin's father, Shekhar Warrier is from Kanjirangattu Warriam, Nellaya and mother is Antha Sekhar from a Nair family in Thrikkaderi ,Ottappalam

His grandma’s father , Nellaya Sekharan Unni Warrier, is from Nellaya Warriam. & grandma’s uncle (Padmabhushan Dr P K Warrer) is from Panniyampally Warriam, Kottakkal.

You may view position of the minor planet at

More details at

This honor places Aswin Sekhar among a select group of distinguished Indians who have received this recognition before. The list includes two Nobel laureates, Subramanya Chandrasekhar and C V Raman, as well as renowned figures like Srinivasa Ramanujan, Vikram Sarabhai, and Manali Kallat Vainu Bappu. Aswin currently works as an astronomer affiliated with the Paris Observatory under the French government’s Science, Technology & Education Ministry. His role as a “solar system dynamicist” involves studying the evolution of orbits of asteroids, comets, and meteor streams and their interactions with Earth. By utilizing powerful supercomputers, Aswin models past, present, and future trajectories of celestial bodies in the solar system, providing valuable insights into impact risks and aiding in the preparation for potential collisions on Earth.

The IAU, an international association of professional astronomers, bestows the authority to assign designations and names to celestial bodies. In a cosmic naming ceremony, the IAU named an asteroid in Aswin’s honor, joining approximately 50 other asteroids named after prominent scientists. The specific minor planet designated in his name, (33928) Aswinsekhar = 2000 LJ27, was discovered in 2000 at the Lowell Observatory Near-Earth Asteroid Search in Arizona, USA. Notably, the process of naming minor planets involves ceremonial and non-ceremonial nomenclatures. The discoverer of a celestial body is granted naming rights in the ceremonial kind, while the non-ceremonial naming honors scientists for their significant contributions. Aswin’s case falls into the latter category, with renowned experts in small body dynamics from multiple continents nominating his name and the IAU subsequently approving it. Once approved, the IAU selected a suitable unnamed asteroid from its database and assigned Aswin’s name to it.

Hailing from Ottapalam, Kerala, Aswin credits his childhood mentors Krishna Warrier and Shashi Warrier for instilling in him a fascination for physics and astronomy. They encouraged him to observe celestial events and visit science museums and planetariums across the country. Aswin’s formal foray into professional meteor science began under the guidance of renowned Scottish astrophysicist Dr. David Asher, who taught him to model meteor streams during his Ph.D. studies in the UK. Dr. Asher’s father, professor Ronald Asher, a distinguished linguist and specialist in South Indian languages, was a dear friend of the renowned writer Vaikom Muhammad Basheer.

Aswin Sekhar’s significant contributions to the field of meteor astronomy have earned him a place among the stars, commemorated by the naming of a minor planet, reflecting his dedication and expertise in unraveling the mysteries of the cosmos.

Congratulations & All the very best from

with parents

with grand parents

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