Outrider

First Interstellar Asteroid Observed

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The Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS) in Hawaii has discovered a visitor from afar. Pan-STARRS primary mission is to detect near earth objects that pose an impact threat but sometimes they get to do fun science like this.

The asteroid seems to come from the constellation Lyra, but the exact origin is still unknown. It has been named Oumuamua, Hawaiian for “a messenger from afar arriving first” and they think it has traveled millions of years to visit us.

https://www.theverge.com/2017/11/20/16679890/interstellar-asteroid-oumuamua-pan-starrs-solar-system

http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso1737/

From the second link:

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Karen Meech explains the significance: “This unusually large variation in brightness means that the object is highly elongated: about ten times as long as it is wide, with a complex, convoluted shape. We also found that it has a dark red colour, similar to objects in the outer Solar System, and confirmed that it is completely inert, without the faintest hint of dust around it.”

These properties suggest that `Oumuamua is dense, possibly rocky or with high metal content, lacks significant amounts of water or ice, and that its surface is now dark and reddened due to the effects of irradiation from cosmic rays over millions of years. It is estimated to be at least 400 metres long.

Preliminary orbital calculations suggested that the object had come from the approximate direction of the bright star Vega, in the northern constellation of Lyra. However, even travelling at a breakneck speed of about 95 000 kilometres/hour, it took so long for the interstellar object to make the journey to our Solar System that Vega was not near that position when the asteroid was there about 300 000 years ago. `Oumuamua may well have been wandering through the Milky Way, unattached to any star system, for hundreds of millions of years before its chance encounter with the Solar System.

 

 

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15 minutes ago, Prometheus said:

Damn xeno-asteroids, taking our gravity away.

This post looks like a joke and if so, it's way over my head, I googled it and found nothing, please explain.

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Do we have a system immigration protocol? At the least we should find out where it's been, and what's been influencing it.

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8 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

This post looks like a joke and if so, it's way over my head, I googled it and found nothing, please explain.

The death knell of any joke: being explained.

Nothing sophisticated about it, just a cheap poke at xenophobia. If it doesn't make sense it's because xenophobia rarely does so. 

4 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

Do we have a system immigration protocol? At the least we should find out where it's been, and what's been influencing it.

Obviously the Kuiper belt is too porous, we need to build it higher.

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18 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

This post looks like a joke and if so, it's way over my head, I googled it and found nothing, please explain.

To add to what Prometheus said the prefix xeno means foreign. 

8 minutes ago, Prometheus said:

Obviously the Kuiper belt is too porous, we need to build it higher.

And make the moon pay for it.

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21 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

it's way over my head

Proving that the gravity these migrants take is gravity nobody else wanted anyway.

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So, nothing legitimate can be learned from this news? Shit happens.

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16 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

So, nothing legitimate can be learned from this news? Shit happens.

Legitimacy is all perspective. I think you said that once. I'll do a search.

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Did anyone else think "Rendezvous with Rama" when they first saw this?  

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1 hour ago, dimreepr said:

So, nothing legitimate can be learned from this news? Shit happens.

Yep thats why when it was spotted dozens of observatories turned their telescopes on it.

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On 11/21/2017 at 2:04 PM, Moontanman said:

Did anyone else think "Rendezvous with Rama" when they first saw this?  

What! I am the only one who reads classic Arthur C. Clarke? 

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On 11/21/2017 at 1:04 PM, Moontanman said:

Did anyone else think "Rendezvous with Rama" when they first saw this?  

Not me but...

On 11/22/2017 at 7:00 PM, Moontanman said:

What! I am the only one who reads classic Arthur C. Clarke? 

...somebody did:)

http://www.astronomy.com/news/2017/11/interstellar-asteroid-is-a-quarter-mile-long-red-beast

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Corey S. Powell, an editor at OMNI and Aeon, compared that shape to Rama from Arthur C. Clarke’s Rendevouz with Rama, while Eric Betz of our sister publication Discover magazine likened it to the alien probe from Star Trek IV: oblong and rocky. (`Oumuamua probably wasn’t an alien probe, though, and it definitely wasn’t looking for whales.)  
 

New illustrations of interstellar asteroid Oumuamua are not going to do anything to dissuade those who think it should have been named 'Rama' instead. https://t.co/6fexQcMGHkpic.twitter.com/vekr57Y88K

— Corey S. Powell (@coreyspowell) November 20, 2017

 

 
BTW if you go to the link there are some cool visuals from Kitt Peak and Gemini Observatory. 

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Very cool. Thanks Strange!

I shall now attempt to embed a youtube video. It has some animations of Oumuamua plus a few words from Paul Choda who is manager for NASA's center for NEO studies and Kelly Fast (nice name for an astrophysicist) who is program manager. Paul says "we have been waiting for the discovery of an interstellar object for decades."

 

 

Ok that was a lot easier than I thought it would be. 

Edited by Outrider

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Obviously it is the shot up, shot out hulk of a Draconian Battle Cruiser.  The remaining interior hull core.  This explains how it got all that velocity.  It was running from something and did not completely escape.   This also explains why the thing came so close to Earth.  It was coming our way.  Somebody or something is protecting mankind.  That is all.  :)

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The Initiative for Interstellar Studies (i4is) is planning to build a probe to chase down Oumuamua and make some closeup observations. According to the i4is website they are a dedicated team of volunteers, committed to the vision of seeing interstellar flight achieved in the very near future.

Sounds impossible to me. The fastest thing ever built by man is the Voyager 1 and it is travelling at 17 km/s. Oumuamua is moving at 44 km/s and it already has a large head start. 

https://i4is.org/i4is-announces-project-lyra-mission-a2017-u1-interstellar-asteroid/

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i4is is happy to announce a new project: Project Lyra. Lyra is the star constellation from which the interstellar asteroid  A/2017 U1 came from. According to current information, the object is smaller than 400m  in diameter and is currently travelling at 44km/s with respect to the sun, much faster than any human-made object to date. What can be more exciting than chasing this object with a spacecraft and making observations from a close distance? What secrets are hidden on this visitor from our galaxy? The velocity of the object makes it challenging to reach but this challenge might lead to new, innovative mission concepts.

 

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We may now have an orgin for Oumuamua and its not as far away as first thought. Postdoctoral fellow Fabo Feng of the University of Hertfordshire claims that Oumuamua comes from a loose Stellar Association  known as the Local Association which is part of Pleiades. 

https://theconversation.com/how-i-discovered-the-origins-of-the-cigar-shaped-alien-asteroid-oumuamua-89577

Quote

We also have evidence for 'Oumuamua’s relatively young age from the colour of its surface. Outside of the protection of a star’s magnetic field, objects in space are bombarded with cosmic rays and interstellar dust and gas that gradually alter their surfaces and turn them very red in colour. But 'Oumuamua has a more neutral colour, suggesting it has only been impacted by cosmic rays for, at most, hundreds of million years rather than for the billions of years that our solar system has existed.

Also consensus has been building that Oumuamua is a comet with a cosmic ray baked on shell of hard rock with an icy core.

 

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