It is called 2020 AV2 but is also known by the designation of ZTF09k5 the asteroid of which an image was taken thanks to the Virtual Telescope Project by Gianluca Masi that can boast the smallest known aphelion among all the objects of the solar system, except Mercury. The aphelion is the furthest point that can reach an object orbiting the Sun and usually determines the narrowest orbit around the star.
And this is also the case of 2020 AV2, an asteroid that shows a very short orbital period, more than any other known asteroid, so much so that it makes a full circle around our star in just 151 days.
According to Masi himself, this is the first “intervenusian” object, that is, an object whose orbit is entirely within the orbit of Venus. It is of course also an Inner-Earth Object (IEO), as objects that orbit the Sun and whose orbit is entirely within the Earth’s orbit are classified.
These are objects, those that orbit very close to the Sun and whose orbit falls entirely within the orbit of the Earth, difficult to locate, as explained in a statement that appeared on the site of the Virtual Telescope Project announcing the discovery of the asteroid. These are particular orbits that are not in the best condition to be observed from our point of view.
Moreover, IEOs are substantially very few and represent only 2% of near-Earth objects (NEOs), another class of objects that are very often mentioned when mentioning asteroids that approach, more or less dangerously, our planet. The image, with the relative photo, which confirms the existence of the object and its particular orbit, was taken through the robotic telescope in Ceccano, Italy.
The discovery of the asteroid took place last January 4 thanks to the 1.2-metre Oschin Schmidt telescope at the Monte Palomar observatory in the context of the Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF).