Oumuamua was the first interstellar object detected passing through the Solar System and was believed to be cigar-shaped and about 1000 meters long. Using detailed computer models of asteroidal-type objects between the Sun and Jupiter, two Harvard University researchers find that at least four known objects are likely to have origins from outside our solar system.
Harvard co-authors Amir Siraj and Abraham Loeb believe there should be hundreds of Oumuamua-size interstellar objects identifiable by Centaur-like orbits.
Harvard scientist also wrote that Oumuamua might be an alien solar sail. The object seemed to have very unusual movement. However, we could barely see the object and are making many conjectures from very little data.
The four potentially interstellar objects — 2011 SP25, 2017 RR2, 2017 SV13, and 2018 TL6 — are thought to spend most of their time between the orbits of Jupiter and Neptune. They became trapped in the gravity of our solar system.
They believe there should be hundreds of Oumuamua-size interstellar objects identifiable by Centaur-like orbits.
There should be at least 66 possible other interstellar objects in their calculations, ranging in diameter from roughly 100 meters to 10 kilometers in size.
All of these potential interstellar objects should be detectable by the LSST (Large Synoptic Survey Telescope). The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) is a wide-field survey reflecting telescope with an 8.4-meter primary mirror. First light is expected in 2019 and full operations for a ten-year survey will start in January 2022.
“We do not have any evidence that these [four] objects are unnatural at this point,” said Siraj as reported by Bruce Dorminey in Forbes.
They will make passes near Earth over 20 to 120 years. It will be another 20 years until we can photograph one of them unless we send a mission out to check on them.
A Theory Would Be IF Alien Technological Civilizations Are Not Impossible Then A Fraction of Interstellar Objects Are Space Junk from Space Alien Space Programs
This is a theory that I was verbally told to me by Anders Sandberg at the Foresight Vision Weekend yesterday.
Anders Sandberg is co-author research on Fermi Paradox solutions. Anders works with Eric Drexler.
Eric Drexler, Toby Ord and Anders are at the Future of Humanity Institute, Oxford University.
I will discuss a bit more of Anders theory in the next article. I will also discuss a planned public bet that Anders Sandberg and another Vision Weekend attendee were planning to make.
The bet relates to the LSST. If Interstellar Objects of Oumuamua are common then in three years when the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope is working, we will see many (hundreds or more of them). It will be a jump up in our ability to see such objects. The bet is if we see a lot of them or not.
A follow-up bet that I am thinking of now relates to what percentage of interstellar objects ends up being alien space junk. Just like our orbits are filled with space debris and our oceans are filled with plastic. Some things are natural and some things are coke bottles or fishing nets in our ocean.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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5 thoughts on “First Four of Perhaps Hundreds of Captured Oumuamua-size Interstellar Objects Found”
You missed his point, actually. He’s not suggesting alien civilizations would be “inhibited” from exploring space by its size. He is talking about the statistical improbability of finding said derelict spacecrafts/probes by the sheer size of the ocean of space that it could be found in. This has absolutely nothing to do with what sort of technology an alien race has. This is about merely the size of interstellar space you have to look in.
I hate replies like this because they are based on “human logic” our comprehension of space is linear and 2 dimensional compared to the advanced quantum technologies of these aliens , we cant assume theyre inhibited buy what our sciences are inhibited by.
Okay…even IF there are other space-faring civilizations out “there”, somewhere, space is BIG, REALLY BIG, YUGE even. The odds that some bit/piece of alien space trash is floating about in our solar system is so vanishingly small as to be statistically zero. An object would have to have less than maximum capture energy to be “caught”. That means…slow in interstellar distances, really slow, yugely slow, and slow equates to time needed to cross interstellar let alone intergalactic distances. Millions or billions of years of space travel is hard enough on rocks, let alone refined metals/synthetic materials. Would there be anything left of alien space technology to see once exposed to radiation, interstellar wind streams, micro-meteorites (micro-asteroids?), asteroids, and even falling down gravity wells of various suns and/or planets over the course of an eon or two?
Yep, in the next couple of decades we should be able to make Rendezvous with Rama real.
If reusable rockets succeed even mildly on their optimistic goals, there will be people living and working on the Moon and Mars for extended periods by then, and there ought to be spare interplanetary ships someone can dedicate to an intercept mission.
Refueling in space and reusable landers are such big a deal, allowing us to plan missions to any place we want in the Solar System, with only mission duration, radiation and supplies becoming an obstacle.
Gee, the focus after the Moon and Mars will be the Outer planets and their Moons, which could be happening by the late 2030s/2040s.
If it takes 20 years for the next one to turn up, we’ll probably just send someone to it. The BFR will likely have ensured a huge human presence in space by then.
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