A minor planet discovered by the Lulin Observatory at National Central University has been formally named Chiayi -- the name of the county that houses the observatory, university president Lee Lou-chuang (
The observatory officially adopted the name on Monday, after the International Astronomical Union's Committee on Small Body Nomenclature approved its application on Sept. 26, Lee said.
Lee said the minor planet was named Chiayi in order to express gratitude to the Aboriginal people who helped the observatory in the early stages of its establishment.
The minor planet, about 2.4km in diameter, was spotted between Mars and Jupiter by Lulin Observatory director Lin Hung-chin (
Lin said Chiayi's orbit brings it within 280 million kilometers of the sun and takes it as far as 420 million kilometers away.
It takes just over three-and-a-half years for the minor planet to complete its path around the sun, Lin said.
University vice president Ip Wing-huen (
The university will spend about NT$130 million (US$3.98 million) to purchase a new 2m telescope, which will be installed in 2010, which is when Chiayi will be best viewed from the observatory.
A Taipei veterinarian is urging pet owners to avoid using insecticides around their homes, as their ingredients can be toxic to pets. Commercial-grade insecticides contain pyrethroids — organic compounds similar to natural pyrethrins, pesticides produced by flowers such as chrysanthemums — in quantities that are harmless to humans, but potentially fatal to cats and dogs, Asian Veterinary Specialist Referral Center veterinarian Chua Man-ling (蔡曼琳) said. Even in small quantities, pyrethroids are hazardous to cats, as they lack the metabolic enzymes needed to process them, Chua said. Cockroach sprays and ant traps are especially dangerous to pets as they contain boric acid, she
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