Astronomers search for interstellar meteorites using large magnets, what for? All page

News from the world of nations – A group of astronomers say they are preparing to fish out a small meteorite from another star system that has already hit the Pacific Ocean. They try to find an interstellar meteorite using large magnets.

The meteorite has already hit Earth with an energy equivalent to about 121 tons (110 metric tons) of TNT.

Therefore, a team from Harvard University plans to find this piece of interstellar meteorite known as CNEOS 2014-01-08.

According to a study published in a preprint journal arXiv In July 2022, CNEOS 2014-01-08 first hit Earth on January 8, 2014.

“Finding such a fragment would represent humanity’s first contact with material larger than dust in the outer solar system,” said study author Amir Siraj, an astrophysicist from Harvard University.

reported from live scienceWednesday (8/10/2022) Siraj identified the origin of interstellar objects in a 2019 study.

Read also: Rare 4.6 billion year old meteorite found in horse tracks

However, he did not confirm the US Space Command findings until May 2022. He said there were no witnesses linked to the object, namely an interstellar meteorite that hit Earth.

“It (the meteorite) hit the atmosphere at midnight about 160 kilometers off the coast of Papua New Guinea, containing about 1% of the energy of the Hiroshima (nuclear) bomb,” said Siraj.

meteor research project

The project, called Galileo, by Siraj and Harvard astrophysicist Avi Loeb, is a $1.6 million campaign to bring down similar-sized magnets. king size bed, With a direction of 1.3 degrees south, 147.6 degrees east.

This is where the United States Department of Defense meteorite is located.

“CNEOS 2014-01-08 far exceeds the strength of normal iron meteorite material, which should make it easier to recover,” Siraj said.

The material strength of these interstellar meteorites refers to how easily something can resist deformation or damage from a load.

Also Read: Meteor Fall in Central Lampung Revealed

Shutterstock/Shutterstock/Marco Aliaksandra Illustration of a comet falling to Earth. 13,000 years ago, the fragment of a large comet caused a firestorm and swept across planet Earth, triggering an ice age.

“Most meteorites have enough iron to hold on to the kind of magnets we plan to use for ocean missions,” Siraj said.

“Given the very high resistance of the material, it is very likely that the CNEOS 2014-01-08 fragment is ferromagnetic,” he continued.

Departing from Papua New Guinea, the Galileo project vessel will use a magnetic sled on a longline winch, which will be hauled 1.7 km to the seabed for 10 days. It is hoped that the magnets will be able to retrieve tiny fragments of the meteorite, measuring as little as 0.004 inches.

However, it is not known when the astronomers will be able to complete their mission. Siraj said another way to study interstellar objects at close range is to launch space missions to future objects, which pass close to Earth.

“But it will be 1,000 times more expensive, around $1 billion,” he explained.

Discovery of the first interstellar meteorite

It indicates that CNEOS 2014-01-08 is only 0.5 meters long and appears to be the first interstellar object discovered in the solar system.

Also read: A meteorite falls but not a meteorite incident, how did it happen?

CNEOS 2014-01-08 is believed to be from another star system as it moves at around 60 km per second relative to the Sun. This force was estimated to be too fast to be related to the Sun’s gravity.

Siraj said any object moving faster than 42 kilometers per second at Earth’s distance from the Sun is on a hyperbolic path.

This means that CNEOS 2014-01-08 exceeds the local speed limit for the bound object and does not encounter any other planets on its way. It can therefore be detected from outside the solar system.

Previously, an object called ‘Oumuamua held the title. The object was discovered in 2017 during the Pan-STARRS Sky Survey, a space rock that enters the solar system at a speed of around 92,000 km/h. At the time, Loeb thought it was an alien machine.

This was followed by the discovery of Comet 2I/Borisov, the first interstellar comet discovered by amateur astronomer Gennady Borisov in Crimea in 2019.

Also Read: Hundreds of Thousands of Meteorites Buried in Antarctica, Study Finds

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Brandon D. James