Scientists were floored by the discovery, as the asteroid appears to have come from a different solar system than ours.
Scientists are shocked by the discovery of a large object that has entered our solar system, as it appears to be the first time we have ever spotted something that came from a different star system passing through our own neighborhood. Rob Weryk, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy, spotted the 400-meter-wide object Oct. 19 as a bright object speeding across the sky.
But there was something weird about it, as it wasn’t following an ecliptic plane like all the other planets and comets and cosmic objects in our solar system as they orbit the sun. It approached the solar system from the above, coming from the direction of the constellation Lyra. It swung by the sun within 15 million miles of Earth, and is now headed for the constellation Pegasus.
“This is the most extreme orbit I have ever seen,” said Davide Farnocchia, a scientist at NASA’s Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) at the agency’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. “It is going extremely fast and on such a trajectory that we can say with confidence that this object is on its way out of the solar system and not coming back.”