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‘space cigar’ asteroid is spinning and scientists don’t know why


hey, so, remember that really bizarre cigar-shaped asteroid that flew through our solar system late last year? it whipped around the sun and back out into space so fast that astronomers almost missed it, but we now know that it actually came from very far away and it’s the first interstellar asteroid ever observed by mankind. it was such a strange event and the asteroid’s shape was so peculiar, that some scientists thought it might actually be an alien probe of some kind. that idea was largely debunked, but the story of the odd space rock just took an unexpected turn: it’s apparently spinning.the long, narrow rock — called oumuamua in case you had forgotten — has apparently been tumbling for quite some time and it began its awkward spin long before it entered our solar system, bu...






scientists have spotted their first-ever interstellar asteroid


this ufo has been identified. a long, cigar-shaped hunk of rock that whizzed past the sun last month originated from another solar system, according to nasa. the interstellar asteroid, named ‘oumuamua, or hawaiian for messenger, is believed to have been wandering through the milky way for hundreds of millions of years before it was spotted on oct. 19 by robert weryk at the university of hawaii. the dense space rock, which may also consist of metals, is about 10 times as long as it is wide. “we don’t have anything in the solar system that’s got this shape,” planetary astronomer karen meech told the los angeles times. scientists initially thought it was a comet before more telescopes started observing its unusual path. “its orbit shape means it is not...






scientists have spotted their first-ever interstellar asteroid


this ufo has been identified. a long, cigar-shaped hunk of rock that whizzed past the sun last month originated from another solar system, according to nasa. the interstellar asteroid, named ‘oumuamua, or hawaiian for messenger, is believed to have been wandering through the milky way for hundreds of millions of years before it was spotted on oct. 19 by robert weryk at the university of hawaii. the dense space rock, which may also consist of metals, is about 10 times as long as it is wide. “we don’t have anything in the solar system that’s got this shape,” planetary astronomer karen meech told the los angeles times. scientists initially thought it was a comet before more telescopes started observing its unusual path. “its orbit shape means it is not...






scientists discover the first ever backwards asteroid that shares an orbit with


scientists have discovered an asteroid that flies around the sun in the same orbit as a planet, but in the opposite direction.asteroid 2015 bz509 mirrors jupiter’s orbit and is the first asteroid in the solar system known to follow a so-called “retrograde” path.but despite it’s seemingly perilous loop, the giant ball of rock has so far managed to avoid smashing into the gas giant university of western ontario at its closest approach, the asteroid comes within 176 million kilometres of jupiter, tweaking the asteroid’s orbit, the study found.during each orbit, the asteroid passes jupiter twice, once between the sun and the planet and once on the planet’s far side.paul wiegert at the university of western ontario and his colleagues found that these close calls cause minor tu...






asteroid expected to fly by earth for the first time in 40 years


a large asteroid is expected to fly close to earth in mid-december for the first time in over 40 years, scientists say. the asteroid — 3200 phaethon — is the third largest asteroid with a diameter of about 3 miles that’s classified as “potentially hazardous,” to pass by earth, nasa said. phaethon would be 6.4 million miles away when it approaches earth on dec. 16, according to the space agency. “the 2017 apparition is the closest to earth since the asteroid's discovery so it may be possible for optical observers to detect new activity,” nasa said.planet x or nibiru is headed for earth, doomsayers believethe asteroid — 3200 phaethon — is expected to pass by earth on dec. 16.(ethan miller/getty images) nasa discovered phaethon on oct. 11, 1983. sci...






one of jupiter's asteroid 'moons' is orbiting backwards


in a sense, it's a matter of luck. the asteroid travels on alternating sides of jupiter, with one pass reeling it in while another pushes it outward -- it's in just the right trajectory to maintain a yin-yang balance. this is a stable orbit, too, as scientists estimate that the asteroid has been locked to jupiter's orbit for about 1 million years.the finding isn't completely shocking given the scale of the cosmos (something like this was bound to crop up), but it's still important. it could help shed new light on how orbits work, and it's a friendly reminder that space doesn't always conform to expectations.






asteroid hitting the earth is very much possible


space is full of mysterious objects that possess an unimaginable threat to our earth. from solar flares and stellar winds to the black holes and gamma ray bursts, our planet today stands at a point wherein a number of stellar events can wreak havoc and wipe off the life from our planet. while these threats might seem distant at this point, but there is another celestial object that can prove to be catastrophic for our planet– asteroids.according to a team of astrophysicists from queen’s university belfast in northern ireland, the world must be prepared for an asteroid strike. scientists said that it’s only a matter of time before a large asteroid strike the earth bringing an unprecented amount of destruction on our planet.“it is a case of when an asteroid collision will happen, rat...






dinosaurs may have survived if asteroid hit earth differently


there's a chance dinosaurs could be still roaming around. in a bbc2 documentary set to air monday, scientists claim that it wasn't the size of the asteroid that killed off dinosaurs 66 million years ago but the timing in which the rock made contact with the earth. "this is where we get to the great irony of the story — because in the end it wasn't the size of the asteroid, the scale of the blast, or even its global reach that made dinosaurs extinct — it was where the impact happened," ben garrod, an evolutionary biologist, told bbc. garrod spent time on the rig as scientists drilled into and examined the chicxulub crater underneath the yucatan peninsula in mexico. he will present the scientists' findings in the documentary "the day the dinosaurs died."museum of...






kilometre-long asteroid 2014-jo25 - named 'the rock'


a huge asteroid travelling at 33 kilometres a second will sail past the earth on thursday morning, reminding us all that the universe is a very dynamic and potentially dangerous place."this tells us how active space is - it's not static," said brad tucker, an astronomer at the australian national university.meet the giant shipwormvideo duration01:04previous slidenext slidevideo duration00:44large asteroid to fly past earthlarge asteroid to fly past earthkilometre-wide asteroid 2014-jo25 will sail past earth on the morning of thursday, april 20.meet the giant shipwormvideo duration01:04video duration01:04meet the giant shipwormmeet the giant shipwormthis 1.5 metre-long mollusc may not have the best looks, but scientists have discovered something fascinating about how these unusual mud-dw...






kilometre-long asteroid 2014-jo25 - named 'the rock'


a huge asteroid travelling at 33 metres a second will sail past the earth on thursday morning, reminding us all that the universe is a very dynamic and potentially dangerous place."this tells us how active space is - it's not static," said brad tucker, an astronomer at the australian national university. meet the giant shipwormvideo duration01:04previous slidenext slidevideo duration00:44large asteroid to fly past earthlarge asteroid to fly past earthkilometre-wide asteroid 2014-jo25 will sail past earth on the morning of thursday, april 20.meet the giant shipwormvideo duration01:04video duration01:04meet the giant shipwormmeet the giant shipwormthis 1.5 metre-long mollusc may not have the best looks, but scientists have discovered something fascinating about how these unusual mud-dwel...






misconceptions about physics, space, and planet earth : thechive


the asteroid belt is filled with giant rockswe can thank tv and film for this myth. the truth is, the asteroid belt, which is around 200 and 300 million miles from the sun, is incredibly lonely. in fact, if you took every asteroid within the belt and put them together, it would weigh 4% of what our moon weighs.






first observed interstellar object is a speedy, cigar-shaped asteroid


first, it turns out 'oumuamua, which is hawaiian for "messenger from afar arriving first," is most likely an asteroid, not a comet, because it lacks a comet's hallmark coma -- the cloud of gas that surrounds and trails a comet. secondly, it has a super weird shape. it's very long and skinny, about 1,300 feet long and around 130 feet wide, which was discovered because of the asteroid's massive change in brightness as astronomers observed it moving away from earth. "this unusually large variation in brightness means that the object is highly elongated: about ten times as long as it is wide, with a complex, convoluted shape," karen meech, who led the international effort to observe the asteroid, said in a statement. additionally, 'oumuamua is dark red in color, which is likely due to...






super bowl 2018: nasa says asteroid 2000 aj129 won’t hit earth feb. 4


you may have heard about a daily mail piece that helpfully informed everyone that a giant asteroid will be hurtling through earth’s little corner of the universe on sunday. go ahead and rsvp to that super bowl party and buy whatever you need to make that buffalo-chicken dip, because that asteroid isn’t going to hit anything. nasa has been tracking this particular asteroid, known as asteroid 2000 aj129, for years. but it landed on everyone’s radar (pun intended) in january when the daily mail made it sound like this thing might actually collide with earth. it won’t. here’s everything you need to know about this massive chunk of space gravel that’s not going to actually impact your life in any way on sunday. what is an asteroid? it’s a piece of rock that orbits the sun. the ear...






new nasa budget focuses almost exclusively on space


for instance, nasa has been tasked with pushing through its orion and sls programs, and needs to fly an un-crewed mission by 2018. in addition, the agency has been told to work out a plan to get humans on, or at least close to, mars by the year 2030. closer to home, scientists will look at establishing a human presence beyond low-earth orbit, as well as kickstarting innovation in supersonic aircraft and travel capabilities.one project whose fate hangs in the balance is the asteroid redirect mission, which nasa planned to use to capture a near-earth asteroid. the rock was intended to be experimented on by crewed missions as a way to help scientists understand how to keep astronauts safe as they flew to mars. unfortunately, the project was attacked by lamar smith and brian babin, who failed






meteorite's origins point to possible undiscovered asteroid


the bunburra rockhole meteorite was discovered in australia.  (imperial college london) a new analysis of a meteorite called bunburra rockhole has revealed that the rock originated from a previously unknown parent asteroid, allowing scientists to understand the geology of the parent body.the parent body was differentiated, meaning that it was large enough to separate into a core, mantle and crust, and was roughly spherical in shape, though not as large as a planet. identifying a new differentiated asteroid is vital for understanding the formation of asteroids and planets in the solar system. most of the large asteroids in the asteroid belt are already known, so this means that either the meteorite originated on an asteroid that has been eroded, or there is anothe...






an asteroid will not destroy earth today. but let’s consider that for a moment.


several views of the asteroid (2014 jo25) that’s not going to destroy earth today. (nasa)a very large, very peanut-shaped asteroid is whizzing past earth on wednesday, about 1.1 million miles away. for perspective, that’s about 4.6 times the distance to the moon. that’s razor-edge close compared with the vastness of space, but in our human-relative universe it’s waaaayyy out there.good news: wednesday is the closest this asteroid will get in 400 years, and it won’t get this close again for at least 500 years. it’s not going to hit earth, and if it were, we’d know it by now.somewhat disconcerting news: when the radar at arecibo observatory in puerto rico spotted it, astronomers realized the space rock was larger than they had thought. today’s estimate is about 0.8 mile...






an asteroid will not destroy earth today. but let’s consider that for a moment.


several views of the asteroid (2014 jo25) that’s not going to destroy earth today. (nasa)a very large, very peanut-shaped asteroid is whizzing past earth on wednesday, about 1.1 million miles away. for perspective, that’s about 4.6 times the distance to the moon. that’s razor-edge close compared with the vastness of space, but in our human-relative universe it’s waaaayyy out there.good news: wednesday is the closest this asteroid will get in 400 years, and it won’t get this close again for at least 500 years. it’s not going to hit earth, and if it were, we’d know it by now.somewhat disconcerting news: when the radar at arecibo observatory in puerto rico spotted it, astronomers realized the space rock was larger than they had thought. today’s estimate is about 0.8 mile...






nearby asteroid is surprisingly big, as seen by telescope that survived hurrican


radar images of near-earth asteroid 3200 phaethon. (arecibo observatory/nasa/nsf)when the asteroid named 3200 phaethon passed by our planet earlier in december, people were watching. the asteroid is not a huge space rock, but it zipped close enough to earth that nasa classified phaethon as a “potentially hazardous asteroid.”this does not mean that phaethon posed any immediate danger. potential space hazards are matters of cosmic perspective: on dec. 16, the nearest phaethon has been since the 1970s, it was 6 million miles from us. the moon, in comparison, is 240,000 miles away.in puerto rico, the arecibo observatory watched phaethon's passage. the world's second-largest radio telescope has not had an easy year. hurricane maria roughed up the observatory sept. 20, destroyin...






nasa probe on a fast track to reach metallic asteroid


while nasa's plans to put humans on mars have suffered recent setbacks, its unmanned robotic programs are achieving milestones on a daily basis. earlier this year, nasa announced that it had approved a mission, psyche, to the asteroid belt. today, the organization announced a shift in psyche's launch schedule -- with big ramifications.psyche 16 is a metal asteroid that may be the remnant of an early planet core. by studying the asteroid, scientists hope to learn more about earth and the development of planets in our solar system. the mission was originally slated for liftoff in 2023, with arrival at the asteroid psyche 6 in 2030. however, nasa directed the team to research whether an earlier mission would be feasible. after studying possible trajectories, they determined that launching o..






thanks to movies you're imagining asteroid fields 100% wrong


we all know that asteroid fields are dangerous because -- to quote c-3po from star wars -- the odds of navigating one are 3,720 to 1. in real life, though, c-3po could've just sighed and taken a nap, because han solo probably couldn't have hit an asteroid unless he was truly awful at flying the millennium falcon.lucasfilm"eh, put it on autopilot, chewie. i got make an 'asteroid field' of my own to make and a princess to sexually harass."the usual distance between two asteroids is 1-3 million kilometers, making them far more spread apart than the densely clustered ones that we usually see in hollywood blockbusters. in pictures of space, asteroids look like they're right next to each other ...nasa/jpl-caltechnasa... but these pictures never do a great job of showing scale. by outer sp...






look up! a 2000-foot asteroid will fly past earth next week


a large asteroid will fly safely past the earth on april 19 at a distance of about 1.8 million kilometres. although there is no possibility for the asteroid to collide with earth, this will be a very close approach for an asteroid of this size, nasa said.the asteroid, known as 2014 jo25, was discovered in may 2014 by astronomers at the catalina sky survey in arizona, us. contemporary measurements by nasas neowise mission indicate that the asteroid is roughly 650 meters in size and that its surface is about twice as reflective as that of the moon. at this time very little else is known about the objects physical properties, even though its trajectory is well known.the asteroid will approach earth from the direction of the sun and will become visible in the night sky after april 19.it is pre






house-sized asteroid will just barely miss striking earth


a house-sized asteroid hurtling through space is expected to just barely shave past earth this week, according to experts. the space rock, dubbed 2012 tc4, will whiz by the planet at an altitude of less than 27,300 miles and squeeze past geostationary satellites orbiting earth with even less distance to spare, the guardian reported. the gap is equivalent to an eighth of the distance between the earth and the moon. “we’ve now been observing tc4 for two months, so we have very accurate position information on it, which in turn allows very precise calculations of its orbit,” nasa’s mike kelley told the news outlet.dinosaurs may have survived if asteroid hit earth differently the asteroid, which is expected to brush past earth overnight wednesday and into thursday,...






'asteroid day' is a good time to learn about the threat of space rocks


"asteroid day" is a un-sanctioned event held every june 30th on the anniversary of the tunguska incident since 2014. that was when former queen guitarist and current astrophysicist, dr. brian may, teamed up with rusty schweickart and dr. ed lu, a pair of former nasa astronauts and current proprietors of the b612 foundation, along with danica remy and director grigorij richters to form the asteroid day foundation (the adf).while the b612 group seeks to develop methods of deflecting dangerous asteroids before they stray into earth's path, asteroid day instead works to increase our ability to detect incoming threats before it's too late. specifically, the adf advocates for improving our asteroid spotting capabilities by a factor of 100, which would enable astronomers to more quickly ident...






'asteroid day' is a good time to learn about the threat of space rocks


"asteroid day" is a un-sanctioned event held every june 30th, the anniversary of the tunguska incident, since 2014. that was when former queen guitarist and now astrophysicist dr. brian may teamed up with rusty schweickart and dr. ed lu, a pair of former nasa astronauts and current proprietors of the b612 foundation, along with danica remy and film director grigorij richters, to form the asteroid day foundation (the adf).while the b612 group seeks to ultimately develop methods of deflecting dangerous asteroids before they stray into earth's path, asteroid day works to simply increase our ability to detect incoming threats before it's too late. specifically, the adf advocates for improving our asteroid-spotting capabilities by a factor of 100, which would enable astronomers to more quic...






reproduction - is pregnancy in zero-g a barrier to long term space living?


i'd like to have a community of humans live indefinitely in space habitats (think space stations supporting mining operations in the asteroid belt).the technology would be "day after tomorrow"-level; no anti-gravity, no effector fields, or the like. so, my problem is that i'd like to have happy space families, but i've read that long-term zero-g living is dangerous and bad for many physical systems, especially bones. the big question is whether a child can successfully be brought to term in zero gravity. will the children be able to be born? as a possible mitigation, we could spin the habitats, but i'm not sure if that will be "good enough" to substitute for gravity, nor whether current construction methods will be able to hold up under relentless spinning.please help, the gallant ...






dinosaurs would have survived if asteroid hit earth elsewhere, scientists claim


an illustration of an asteroid striking earth, setting off a mass extinction event. (istock)when the cosmos shoots pool, it plays for keeps. it sunk a six-mile-wide rock in our pocket of the solar system 66 million years ago. the smack of the asteroid against earth released energy on the order of billions of atomic bombs. dinosaurs were the cataclysm's most famous victims, joined by sea creatures, plants and microorganisms. all told, earth's biodiversity shrank by 75 percent in what is known as the cretaceous-paleogene, or k-pg, extinction (also known as the k-t extinction).a large asteroid strike happens only once every 100 million years. and a controversial new report suggests the k-pg impact was an exceptionally unlikely shot. in a paper published thursday in the journal sci...






creepy skull-shaped asteroid to haunt earth again


a creepy skull-shaped space rock is due to haunt the world again next yearthe asteroid named 2015 tb145 first passed earth by 300,000 miles on oct. 31, 2015.owing to its timing and skull-like appearance, it was nicknamed the “halloween asteroid” at the time.but astronomers think the skeletal rock will be revisiting us sometime in mid-november next year.during its flyby two years ago, astronomers were able to become more familiar with its characteristics.they managed to pin down it measurements to around 2,100 feet across and plot its orbital path.as they examined it, nasa was able to categorize it as a “potentially hazardous asteroid.”asteroid 2015 tb145 is depicted in eight individual radar images.nasascientists also managed to work out that it most likely completes a rotation eve...






these scientific advances could improve lives — or destroy them


going up? many of us have dreamed about blasting into space sometime in our lives. but if some scientists have their way, it won’t be in a spaceship or a rocket, but in an elevator.according to kelly and zach weinersmith, authors of the new book “soonish: ten emerging technologies that’ll improve and/or ruin everything” (penguin press), out tuesday, it’s possible that travelers could arrive in space via a small box attached to a 62,000-mile cable made out of carbon nanotube.in space, the cable would be attached to an asteroid or another geode that revolves along with the planet; while on earth, it would be fixed to a “sea platform” that can move to avoid bad weather and space junk. as they move up the shaft, travelers could stop off at space stations serving as “fuel and ma...






we still don’t know where the first interstellar asteroid came from


iso: a home for a stray space rock. astronomers are tracking the motions of stars to figure out which one sent an alien asteroid speeding past earth in october — but they may never find the rock’s true origins.officially named ‘oumuamua, the asteroid was spotted by the pan-starrs 1 telescope in hawaii on october 18 (sn: 11/25/17, p. 14). its inbound speed of about 25.5 kilometers per second and its slingshot route around the sun pegged it as the first interstellar vagabond ever seen.that was the easy part. now astronomers are trying to trace ‘oumuamua’s path backwards to a particular star or group of stars, without much success. several papers published online since the asteroid’s flyby peg it as a relatively youthful vagabond, but where it came from is all over the map.“from...






we still don’t know where the first interstellar asteroid came from


iso: a home for a stray space rock. astronomers are tracking the motions of stars to figure out which one sent an alien asteroid speeding past earth in october — but they may never find the rock’s true origins.officially named ‘oumuamua, the asteroid was spotted by the pan-starrs 1 telescope in hawaii on october 18 (sn: 11/25/17, p. 14). its inbound speed of about 25.5 kilometers per second and its slingshot route around the sun pegged it as the first interstellar vagabond ever seen.that was the easy part. now astronomers are trying to trace ‘oumuamua’s path backwards to a particular star or group of stars, without much success. several papers published online since the asteroid’s flyby peg it as a relatively youthful vagabond, but where it came from is all over the map.“from...






here’s how an asteroid impact would kill you


it won’t be a tsunami. nor an earthquake. not even the crushing impact of the space rock. no, if an asteroid kills you, gusting winds and shock waves from falling and exploding space rocks will most likely be to blame. that’s one of the conclusions of a recent computer simulation effort that investigated the fatality risks of more than a million possible asteroid impacts.in one extreme scenario, a simulated 200-meter-wide space rock whizzing 20 kilometers per second whacked london, killing more than 8.7 million people. nearly three-quarters of that doomsday scenario’s lethality came from winds and shock waves, planetary scientist clemens rumpf and colleagues report online march 27 in meteoritics & planetary science.in a separate report, the researchers looked at 1.2 million potential...






‘wow, it's got satellites!’ how some arizona scientists got some amazing new pic


closeskip in skipxembedxshare on sept 8, nasa plans to launch an suv-sized spacecraft toward an asteroid named bennu. the spacecraft's mission is to collect material from the asteroid and return to earth. the mission will last approximately seven years. images were taken while osiris-rex spacecraft tests out cameras for its eventual asteroid missionthe polycam imager aboard the osiris-rex spacecraft captured this image of jupiter and three of its moons on feb. 12, when the spacecraft was 76 million miles from earth.(photo: nasa/goddard/university of arizona)story highlightsthe $1 billion mission is being led by university of arizonaspacecraft is headed toward a distant asteroidcraft will reach asteroid in 2018 and collect a surface sample 105 connectlinkedinemail...






‘wow, it's got satellites!’ how some arizona scientists got some amazing new pic


closeskip in skipxembedxshare on sept 8, nasa plans to launch an suv-sized spacecraft toward an asteroid named bennu. the spacecraft's mission is to collect material from the asteroid and return to earth. the mission will last approximately seven years. images were taken while osiris-rex spacecraft tests out cameras for its eventual asteroid missionthe polycam imager aboard the osiris-rex spacecraft captured this image of jupiter and three of its moons on feb. 12, when the spacecraft was 76 million miles from earth.(photo: nasa/goddard/university of arizona)story highlightsthe $1 billion mission is being led by university of arizonaspacecraft is headed toward a distant asteroidcraft will reach asteroid in 2018 and collect a surface sample 105 connectlinkedinemail...






‘wow, it's got satellites!’ how some arizona scientists got some amazing new pic


closeskip in skipxembedxshare on sept 8, nasa plans to launch an suv-sized spacecraft toward an asteroid named bennu. the spacecraft's mission is to collect material from the asteroid and return to earth. the mission will last approximately seven years. images were taken while osiris-rex spacecraft tests out cameras for its eventual asteroid missionthe polycam imager aboard the osiris-rex spacecraft captured this image of jupiter and three of its moons on feb. 12, when the spacecraft was 76 million miles from earth.(photo: nasa/goddard/university of arizona)story highlightsthe $1 billion mission is being led by university of arizonaspacecraft is headed toward a distant asteroidcraft will reach asteroid in 2018 and collect a surface sample 105 connectlinkedinemail...






‘wow, it's got satellites!’ how some arizona scientists got some amazing new pic


closeskip in skipxembedxshare on sept 8, nasa plans to launch an suv-sized spacecraft toward an asteroid named bennu. the spacecraft's mission is to collect material from the asteroid and return to earth. the mission will last approximately seven years. images were taken while osiris-rex spacecraft tests out cameras for its eventual asteroid missionthe polycam imager aboard the osiris-rex spacecraft captured this image of jupiter and three of its moons on feb. 12, when the spacecraft was 76 million miles from earth.(photo: nasa/goddard/university of arizona)story highlightsthe $1 billion mission is being led by university of arizonaspacecraft is headed toward a distant asteroidcraft will reach asteroid in 2018 and collect a surface sample 105 connectlinkedinemail...






new york city teacher accused of training roosters for fighting


federal prosecutors have accused a new york city teacher of breeding and training roosters for fighting in his bronx backyard.prosecutors from the office of manhattan u.s. attorney preet bharara charged hector cruz, who was arrested tuesday, with one count of animal fighting. they said he trained the roosters for fighting, or a sport in which roosters fight each other with a knife or other blade attached to their legs. the fight ends when one dies or refuses to fight, the complaint said.the charges against mr. cruz, 59 years old, e out of an investigation by the new york police department and u.s. department of agriculture into the breeding of roosters for fighting, the complaint said.an attorney representing mr. cruz declined to comment. mr. cruz, who has worked for the department of educ