Rock From Another Star System Is Unlike Anything Seen Before

Rock From Another Star System Is Unlike Anything Seen Before

On Monday, November 20, astronomers from NASA confirmed that a mysterious rocky object, detected in October, would have came from another solar system. A phenomenon that had never been observed before.

It is in the biological journal Nature that scientists have detailed the results of their analysis. This observed phenomenon, for the first time, opens a new way of thinking about the formation of other stellar worlds within The Milky Way.

Detected during the month of October, this asteroid was named “Oumuamua” and is 400 meters long and its length is about 10 times its width according to NASA researchers. An unprecedented form that has never been identified so far among the 750,000 asteroids and comets observed in our solar system where he had been trained.

Therefore, its strange form led the scientists to conclude that “Oumuamua” came from another solar system, especially since the data collected show that its orbit can not have its origin in ours.

It is the first asteroid of this kind to cross our solar system and it is the first to be detected. According to astronomers, he has traveled alone through the Milky Way for hundreds of millions of years before crossing our solar system.

This discovery has been enabled by the establishment of new telescopes powerful enough to detect this type of asteroids, previously very difficult to track down. It is the Pan-STARRS1 telescope, located in Hawaii that detected, on October 19, “Oumuamua”, which means “messenger” in Hawaiian language.

In addition, a team of astronomers from the Institute for Astronomy in Hawaii found that the asteroid’s brightness varied up to ten times in power and that it turned on itself every 7.3 hours. An even more surprising feature since no object in our solar system knows such a magnitude in the variation of its brightness and is endowed with such a shape.

Thus, scientists agree that “Oumuamua” is formed of rocks and perhaps metal but contains neither water nor ice. Monday, November 20, he still traveled 200 million kilometers from the Earth at a speed of 38.3 kilometers per second.

According to scientists’ analysis of its trajectory, the asteroid would have passed into the orbit of Mars around November 1st and should be near Jupiter in May 2018 before continuing on its way out of our solar system towards the constellation of Pegasus around January 2019.

Source: Nature

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