First Interstellar Asteroid Wows Scientists – It Has A Bizarre, Cigar-Shaped Form

SHARE

Advertisement

Scientists were surprised and delighted to detect –for the first time– an interstellar asteroid passing through our solar system. Additional observations brought more surprises: the object is cigar-shaped with a somewhat reddish hue.

image/text credit: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory 

The asteroid, named ‘Oumuamua by its discoverers, is up to one-quarter mile (400 meters) long and highly-elongated—perhaps 10 times as long as it is wide. That is unlike any asteroid or comet observed in our solar system to date, and may provide new clues into how other solar systems formed.more info(jpl.nasa)

That aspect ratio is greater than that of any asteroid or comet observed in our solar system to date. While its elongated shape is quite surprising, and unlike asteroids seen in our solar system, it may provide new clues into how other solar systems formed.

Advertisement

No known asteroid or comet from our solar system varies so widely in brightness, with such a large ratio between length and width. The most elongated objects we have seen to date are no more than three times longer than they are wide.