Return of an asteroid formed near Earth while still forming

This could well offer astronomers many answers about the secrets of the formation of the Earth. Indeed, an asteroid, formed near the Earth while it was still forming is back and it is perfectly preserved.

It was about 4.5 billion years ago, when the Earth was still forming, that the asteroid C / 2014 S3, or PANSTARRS, formed near it. Since then he has traveled far, far away from the sun. preserved in the great freezer that is the Oort cloud, for billions of years says Karen Meech of the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy. Returning to the solar system, it may well reveal the composition of the early solar system, including that of Earth.

 » We already know of many asteroids, but they have all been ‘cooked’ by billions of years near the Sun. This is the first ‘raw’ asteroid we could observe: it was kept in the best freezer there is adds Karen Meech. Perfectly preserved therefore, and back to our solar system as shown by the calculations made by astronomers.

[media-credit name= »Credits : L. Calçada /  » link= » » align= »aligncenter » width= »1280″]The unique rocky comet C/2014 S3 (PANSTARRS)[/media-credit]

They carefully studied the light reflected from C/2014 S3, and concluded that the asteroid is typical of asteroids known as the S-type, which are generally found in the inner part of the Asteroid Belt. . No resemblance to typical comets, and they are made of ice rather than rock. This study also shows that the material that composes it has undergone very little transformation, indicating a very long period of deep freezing.  » The activity associated with Comet C/2014 S3 (PANSTARRS) is about a million times weaker than that of active long-period comets at a similar distance from the Sun says Karen Meech.

For the team of researchers led by Karen Meech, this object is therefore probably composed of frozen material from the inner solar system (therefore from the Earth at the time of its formation) which was repelled and stored in the Oort cloud, and it is coming back to the inner solar system. Case to follow.

Source: eso

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