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Quirky Comet

24 November 2017

At https://phys.org/print430554336.html … when a comet passed through the inner solar system at the beginning of 2017 it presented astronomers with the chance to turn their telescopes in its direction – and analysis is said to have filled in some crucial details what ices in Jupiter family comets do. Ices in this instance mean frozen gases. The comet it seems did not meet expectations as it is described as quirky – or different from other comets. The team measured 9 gases released from the nucleus into the coma. Several of these gases supply the building blocks of life such as amino acids, sugars and other biologically distinct molecules. Of particular interest was carbon monoxide and methane. The comet was rich in the latter and depleted in the former.

Meanwhile, at https://phys.org/print430559849.html … a blazing meteorite seen over Norway and Russia, in the near Arctic zone, last week, is thought to have scattered over lakes in the north of Finland, over a 100 miles from Helsinki. It was extremely bright and hopes are high that some of the remnants can be picked up from the ground.

Jovan also sent in a link to https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/fly-by-of-interstellar… … which one can take with a pinch of salt. The cigar shaped asteroid (see News a few days ago) that is thought to have passed through our solar system as the orbit was extraordinary and apparently not in sync with the orbits of other solar system rocks, is discussed by Scientific American. The mere fact of its presence, and passage through our solar system, suggests that a staggeringly large number of similar objects must be drifting though our galaxy. It is thought Oumuamua has been travelling through the Milky Way for hundreds of millions of years.

See also https://arxiv.org/pdf/1711.05687.pdf … and https://arxiv.org/abs/1711.02260

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