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Understanding the Origin and Arrival Rates of Interstellar Objects

19 Mar 2021, 00:24 UTC
Understanding the Origin and Arrival Rates of Interstellar Objects
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Title: Interstellar Objects in the Solar System: 1. Isotropic Kinematics from the Gaia Early Data Release 3Authors: T. Marshall Eubanks, Andreas M. Hein, Manasvi Lingam et al.First Author’s Institution: Space Initiatives Inc, Newport VA 24128, USAStatus: Submitted to the Astronomical JournalThree and a half years ago, astronomers discovered something in our solar system that had never been seen before: an object from another star system! Having been discovered by observatories in Hawaiʻi, this object (pictured below in Fig. 1) was given the name ʻOumuamua, which in the Hawaiian language is roughly translated to “the first distant messenger.” Two years later, astronomers repeated this feat, and discovered yet another interstellar object (ISO), this one appearing cometary. This object was named after its discoverer, Borisov. These types of objects were expected to exist but eluded discovery until just now. So where do these objects actually come from? And how often should we expect to find them, now that we know they’re out there? We explore these questions in today’s astrobite. Fig. 1: An artist’s rendition of ʻOumuamua, the first object ever discovered in our solar system to have originated from another star system. The discovery of this object by Hawaii’s PanSTARRS observatory ...

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