Researchers have discovered a pair of asteroids that formed less than 300 years ago orbiting the Sun, according to a new study.
This makes the two asteroids – known as 2019 PR2 and 2019 QR6 – the smallest to be found in our solar system.
“It’s exciting to find such a young person small planet a pair formed only about 300 years ago, like this morning – not even yesterday – in astronomical intervals,” says astronomer Petr Fatka of the Astronomical Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences said.
The two asteroids were initially discovered separately in 2019 by teams of scientists using the Pan-STARRS1 survey telescopes in Hawaii and the Catalina Sky Survey in Arizona.
Using a number of different telescopes to image the pair of rocks, observations showed that the two rocks had very similar surfaces, which suggests that they came from the same parent object.
However, upon further analysis, the scientists also discovered that the asteroids, about 600,000 miles (1 million km) apart, possess unusual properties for their young age.
“Today, celestial bodies do not show any signs of cometary activity. So it remains a mystery how these objects could go from a single parent body into the individually active objects, to the dormant pair we see today in just 300 years. ,” said Nicholas Moskovitz of the Lowell Observatory.
“Questions remain regarding whether these objects originated from comets or parent asteroids and how activity may have evolved since they separated,” the study also notes. .
The two asteroids were closest to Earth in October 2019, with the next such visit due to take place in November 2047.
However, scientists are aiming to collect data on the interstellar rocks by 2033, which is when they will be visible from Earth again.
Researchers are hoping the mysterious young rocks will give them insight into how asteroids work and form.
In other news, Nasa has upgraded Asteroid dangerous software with some key changes that will help it better detect potentially dangerous space rocks.
Nasa revealed Beautiful footage of solar energy burst into action.
And, the US space agency is planning for a ‘golden asteroid’ The exploratory mission will launch this summer.
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https://www.thesun.co.uk/tech/17577439/youngest-asteroids-solar-system/ Youngest Asteroids Ever Found in Solar System and They’re Confusing Scientists