Nov 202017
 

ESO Observations Show First Interstellar Asteroid is Like Nothing Seen Before

Asteroid 1I/2017 U1 (`Oumuamua) turns out to have been reddish – like a lot of outer solar system objects – and had a length-to-diameter ratio of about ten. Funky. Overall length of about 400 meters, no detectable gas or dust, indicating solid rock and/or metal. Tumble rate was once per 7.3 hours.

Irrational hypothesizing:

1: It’s Gungnir.

2: A starship, long dead.

3: A planet killer, badly targeted.

 

 Posted by at 6:04 pm
  • B-Sabre
    • Adam

      I was thinking the same thing. It’s the Zentraedi!

      • B-Sabre

        It’s about the right dimensional ratio for a dreadnought.

  • Michael

    The conspiracy theorists may be ecstatic over the ESO painting. That thing has about the same proportions as something they claim to have found in a valley on the other side of the Moon. The photos one of them sent to me were claimed to be from Apollo 15.

  • Michael Jurkoic

    Not big enough to be a ship like Rama… maybe a scout?

    • Nick Gaston

      Hmmm…”Rama Engineering Boilerplate” or “Rama 0.17 (Early Alpha)” don’t really have the same marketing “oomf,” do they?

    • markus baur

      we need to look for the other two ..

  • Lawrance Wong

    Could it just be oddly colored (like Iapetus or something) instead of long and skinny? Has anyone found the original paper?

    • Doug Pirahna

      Most likely, the long and skinny version is just one theory to match the light curve.
      We don’t have any direct images of it, just a few pixels so extrapolating the size has to be partially based on the curve.
      It could be like Ceres and be roughly spherical with some bright areas, or potato-shaped with some bright spots, or long and thin.
      Based on other asteroids my vote is one of the first two.

  • KellyFromMesquite

    Scout ship trying to be stealthy? God’s toothpick? Lamar’s javelin?

  • Paul451

    (‘Oumuamua)

    Haven’t you heard?

    • publiusr

      Here is an idea. The Falcon Heavy launches something like Dawn–but nuclear powered. Could it catch up?

      • Paul451

        Way to ruin a joke.

        But no, it wasn’t detected until after closest approach, it’s already on its way out of the system with 20km/s more velocity than escape. So you’d need to launch a probe not only to match the speed, but to exceed it in order to catch up within reasonable time and radio distance (pointless if it takes a century to catch up, and/or is so far away bandwidth must drop to into single-digit bits/min.)

        • publiusr

          Guess it is BFR then…
          space.com/38919-interstellar-asteroid-mission-spacex-mars-rocket.html

  • Paul451

    Irrational hypothesizing:
    1: It’s Gungnir.
    2: A starship, long dead.
    3: A planet killer, badly targeted.

    4. Dead baby space whale?