An asteroid after Mars could be our moon’s stolen twin

An asteroid after Mars could be our moon's stolen twin

A remote Asteroid Behind the gravity wave Tuesday Observed in more detail than ever before, and the close-up reveals a striking resemblance – raising some interesting questions about the ancient origin of the object.

Suspicious asteroid (101429) 1998 VF31, Is part of a group of Trojan asteroids that share the orbit of Mars.

Trojans are celestial bodies It falls into areas of gravitational equilibrium near other planets, located 60 degrees in front of and behind the planet.

Most of the Trojan asteroids we know share the orbits of Jupiter, but other planets also have them. Including Mars And And land.

(101429) 1998 VF31 (hereinafter referred to as ‘101429’) What’s interesting is that 101429 seems to be unique among the Trojans behind the Red Planet (those behind Mars as they orbit the Sun).

Depiction of Mars and Trojans; The blue point around L5 is 101429. (AOP)

The rest of the group are called the L5 Martin Trojans, all of which are known as the Eureka family. 5261 Eureka – The first Martian Trojan to be discovered – is believed to have unleashed a group of small fragments from their parent space rock.

101429 Although different a New study Led by astronomers at the Armag Observatory and Planetarium (AOP) in Northern Ireland, the researchers wanted to examine why.

Using the spectrograph X-shooter on the 8-meter Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory in Chile, we examined how sunlight reflects 101429, L5 relatives of the Eureka family. 101429 and the Eureka race do not seem to be related, and the analysis revealed by 101429 shows the spectral similarity of a satellite very close to home.

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“The spectrum of this particular asteroid seems to be almost dead in some parts of the moon, where crater interiors and mountain – like giants are exposed.” Explaining AOP astronomer Galin Borisov.

Although we are still not sure why, the researchers say that the origin of the Trojan on Mars began somewhere far away from the Red Planet, 101429, representing the “remnants of the Moon’s real solid crust”.

If so, how did the Moon end up as a Trojan tied to the long double Mars?

010 Moon Asteroid2Spectral comparison of 101429, lunar surface. (AOP)

“The early solar system was very different from where we see it today.” Explaining The main author of the study, AOP astronomer Apostolos Christa ou.

“Space between the newly formed planets was full of debris and collisions were common. Large asteroids. [planetesimals] Constantly hitting the moon and other planets. A piece from such a collision would have reached the orbit of Mars and the planet would have formed and trapped in its Trojan clouds.

This is a fascinating idea, but researchers say it is not an explanation of 101429’s past. A similar event affecting the Red Planet is likely to represent a part of Mars instead of the Trojan; Or it could be a typical asteroid that looks like the moon through the climatic processes of solar radiation.

Further observations with more powerful spectrographs, such as future spacecraft visits, may shed more light on this question of space patronage. Says the team, “On the way to the Trojans, you can get spectrum on Mars or the Moon for direct comparison with asteroid data”.

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Findings reported Icarus.

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