Scientists have finally completed their research, examined all of the facts, and have arrived at their final answer on whether the bizarre cigar-shaped, interstellar asteroid known as “Oumuamua” is an alien spaceship.
A team of international asteroid and comet experts weigh in
Oumuamua, means “a scout or messenger that reaches out from the distant past” in the Hawaiian language.
The name was given to an asteroid with a strange cigar shape, which is the first interstellar object to pass through our solar system. It was first discovered in October 2017 by the Pan-STARRS 1 telescope in Honolulu, Hawaii. The object was traveling through space at roughly 196,000 miles per hour.
Object was accelerating
In fact, due to not only its bizarre shape, but other attributes – Oumuamua made scientists ponder whether this object might not be an asteroid, but a spacecraft that was sent from a distant civilization into our solar system. This possibility grew even stronger when astronomers noticed that it appeared to be accelerating before leaving our solar system.
Is Oumuamua an alien spacecraft?
To answer the question of possible alien origin, a 14-person research team comprised of international asteroid and comet experts collaborated to review all the data on Oumuamua.
Nothing like it in the solar system
They published their findings in the Journal Nature astronomy this week, writing: “We have never seen anything like ʻOumuamua in our solar system.”
The team duly noted that “Oumuamua appears to have an extremely elongated shape, unlike any known object in our solar system.”
While the report acknowledged that the object had some interesting properties, they wrote: “While ʻOumuamua’s interstellar origin makes it unique, many of its other properties are perfectly consistent with objects in our own solar system.”
Alien or not: A final conclusion?
“The alien spacecraft hypothesis is a fun idea, but our analysis suggests there is a whole host of natural phenomena that could explain it,” the report concluded. Still, they did not definitively say it is not an alien spacecraft.