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Astronomers discovery in Tenerife

For the first time ever a comet or asteroid that likely originated from outside our solar system has passed close enough to Earth to be visible by astronomers.

 

The interstellar object has sparked huge enthusiasm from scientists who are urgently working to gather information on the mysterious body before it disappears from sight. 

According to astronomers, the object is on a hyperbolic trajectory which suggests the body has escaped from a star from outside our solar system. 

Early findings published by the International Astronomical Union's Minor Planet Centre state: "If further observations confirm the unusual nature of this orbit, this object may be the first clear case of an interstellar comet." 

The mysterious object, named A/2017 U1, was discovered by the University of Hawaii's Pan-STARRS 1 telescope on Haleakala, Hawaii. 

Rob Weryk from the University of Hawaii's Institute of Astronomy was the first to identify the moving object. Comparing his findings with images taken at the European Space Agency's telescope on Tenerife in the Canary Islands, he concluded the object came from somewhere else in our galaxy. 

The alien space rock, believed to have come from the direction of the constellation Lyra, is less than 400 metres in diameter and is travelling through space at a remarkable 15.8 miles (25.5 kilometres) per second. 

 

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