NASA Releases New Details About Oumuamua
The NASA Oumuamua research investigation has revealed more details about the alleged alien spacecraft.
Discovered in 2017, Oumuamua has fascinated many astronomers and scientists. The interstellar asteroid was detected by the Pan-STARRS1 telescope. Initial examination showed the cosmic body to have dimensions of 230 x 35 x 35 m.
More recently, NASA tried to observe the object. Using their Spitzer Space Telescope, they hoped to understand much more about Oumuamua. On the other hand, the American Space Agency’s telescope was unable to detect the asteroid! This in itself may provide us with more information than initially thought.
Oumuamua is the first known object to enter our solar system from interstellar space. Everyone has pointed telescopes at it in order to better understand the heap of rock.
The NASA Spitzer Space Telescope tried to observe the object in early November. However, it was unable to detect the cigar-shaped asteroid. Notwithstanding, this failure allows us to understand something about the cosmic body. It showed the object was too small for detection. The details were released in a published article in Astronomical Journal.
This then gave indicators that escaping gas was the cause of the alien objects increased velocity as it passed through our solar system. Previous theories have suggested Oumuamua was an interstellar alien spacecraft. Sent to observe our world.
In fact, it was the increased speed of the extraterrestrial asteroid that led some scientists to believe it was sent by an alien life form. The theory of escaping frozen gas seems more plausible.
Harvard University Science Professor Avi Loeb appears to be the leading expert in claiming Oumuamua is an interstellar spacecraft.
His initial examinations were to try and detect radio signal waves. Using the Green Bank radio telescope in West Virginia, he hoped to prove his theories correct. However, initial examinations proved inconclusive.
Afterward, Prof. Loeb teamed up with Shmuel Bialy from the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Together they published a paper called “Could Solar Radiation Pressure Explain ‘Oumuamua’s Peculiar Acceleration?” Within they propose their evidence to state Oumuamua could be an alien lightsail.
They observed the cosmic body shooting past the sun. In theory, the passage by the sun should have slowed Oumuamua down. But instead, it sped up. They did not witness gas escaping the asteroid. Therefore they concluded that only a lightsail would explain the increased velocity.
The absorption of solar light would explain the speeding up.
However, it seems NASA do not agree with this conclusion.
As already previously stated, NASA believes escaping frozen gas is the cause for the objects increased speed.
North Arizona University Astronomy Professor David Trilling lead a new study on Oumuamua. “Oumuamua has been full of surprises from day one, so we were eager to see what Spitzer might show,” said the professor. He continued to state that the size of the object is very valuable to astronomers.
The NASA Spitzer telescope tracks objects using infrared energy. This means that the asteroid it was tracking for two months did not have enough mass heat to be detected.
This, in turn, limits the size of Oumuamua. As it avoided detection, it indicates the object is a lot smaller than previously thought.
The new data would suggest the asteroid’s “spherical diameter” as 440 meters (1,440 feet), 140 meters (460 feet). It could also be as small as 100 meters (320 feet).
Another find from the study details that the asteroid is more reflective than those in our solar system. This is a surprising find. The cosmic asteroid has a low body temperature, indicating its high reflectivity. Much in the same way, a black t-shirt absorbs heat and a white one reflects.
Soon Oumuamua will leave our solar system. It will soon travel beyond the reach of our current telescopes for further observation.
This means that the mysteries surrounding the asteroid will remain. Normally astronomers can maintain observation on comets and asteroids already in orbit if they give off strange results. However, with Oumuamua, we will not have another chance to recheck the anomalies.
For more information on NASA news about Oumuamua, click here.
Alien spacecraft sent to investigate our solar system or weird asteroid? We’d love to know what you think.
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