DECRYPTION – The first object “from elsewhere” detected in the Solar System, in 2017, surprised observers by escaping faster than expected after its brief incursion near our star.
He’s a visitor who has swept through our solar system and left humanity full of unanswered questions. The asteroid Oumuamua (“scout” in Hawaiian) gives full meaning to the etymology of the word “foreign”: this object “from elsewhere” was really very strange. A new study published in Nature nevertheless thinks to be able to remove at least part of its mysteries.
In October 2017, astronomical automatic detection systems spotted a small body speeding at around 100,000 km/h. Gradually, astronomers understand that it is on such a trajectory that it cannot come from the Solar System, and that it will come out just as quickly after having “grazed” the Sun. Amazement: this is quite simply the first time that humanity has detected an interstellar object.
The object shows “non-gravitational acceleration”
And this is not its only peculiarity. First of all, its brightness varies a lot, which suggests that it is a very elongated object rotating in a disorderly fashion…