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Solar System's First Interstellar Visitor Is Tumbling Wildly

Scientists are still confounded by the mysterious object 'Oumuamua' that was detected by the Pan-STARRS observatory last year. They confirmed that 'Oumuamua' is the first ever interstellar visitor ever discovered. Although, it was moving so fast to get a closer look of it. There will still a lot of instruments that were used to determine the size, trajectory etc of the steroid (it's not an alien spacecraft).

A new study suggests that it might have extremely violent origins. Oumumua was first thought to be a comet ejected from the Oort cloud. But, it was actually a rock of truly bizarre measurements. It is roughly shaped like a cigar and has a width of around 30 metres and a length of 200 metres. On the other hand, most asteroids in solar system are lumpy and potato-shaped. Researchers at Queen's University Belfast in Northern Ireland have published a paper that shows 'Oumuamua' is not just tumbling but is tumbling chaotically. The scientists do not know the reason behind it but speculate it might be due to the way it is ejected from its home solar system. The team's observations also shows that 'Oumuamua' has a very complex compositions with the color of the dirty snow and large red spot on one side. This interstellar visitor is already quite near to the orbit of the Jupiter and on its way out of the solar system at a staggering rate of 38.3 km/second.

By: Neha Maheshwari


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