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IPFS News Link • U F O and Other Unidentified Stuff

Why One Harvard Astronomer Believes This Asteroid Is an Alien Ship

•, David Axe

Shiny, reddish in color, oblong, somewhere between 300 and 3,000 feet in length and moving at an eye-watering 16 miles a second, the object zoomed into our system and past the sun. When Canadian astronomer Robert Weryk first noticed the thing in a telescope survey in October 2017, it was already on its way out of our system.

Astronomers were baffled by this object, which they named "`Oumuamua." That's Hawaiian for "scout." No one knew for sure what `Omuamua is—or isn't.

Just one leading scientist was willing to say what others may only have been thinking. `Oumumua's speed, course and shape were possible signs it's an alien craft, according to Avi Loeb, a Harvard physicist. "The possibility of an artificial origin for `Oumuamua must be considered," Loeb wrote in a hallmark 2021 study.

Loeb's position—that we should at least entertain the possibility that `Oumuamua is a spacecraft and investigate accordingly—has been controversial, to say the least. Now, a Chinese team is trying to dismantle one key part of Loeb's argument: If `Oumuamua is an alien ship, it might be propelled by a super-thin light-sail that captures particles from stars.

There's no sign of a sail in the scant data we have on `Oumuamua, the Chinese team asserted in their own peer-reviewed study, which has been accepted for publication in the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics and appeared on-line on Wednesday. "We conclude that the possibility of `Oumuamua being a light-sail is extremely unlikely," Shangfei Liu, an astronomer at Sun Yat-sen University in Zhuhai, China, told The Daily Beast.

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