Thursday, June 17, 2010

Recent Mystery Objects in Space

According to Discover, "a few-meter-wide something or other" whizzed past the Earth on May 16.  It was quickly ascertained that the object didn't match any asteroid or other normal space object, but probably a piece of one of our own rockets that has decided to orbit around the sun much like Earth.

Strangely enough, in January of this year a similar incident took place when something passed us by and the jury was out on whether it was a natural piece of space rock or a man-made thing.  They've settled on something man-made, but it doesn't sound very final.

For some reason, it makes me think of this recent article about sunspots disappearing.  For reasons unknown, sunspots are disappearing and this could spell trouble. explains why:

The stakes have never been higher. Groups of sunspots forewarn of gigantic solar storms that can unleash a billion times more energy than an atomic bomb. Fears that these giant solar eruptions could create havoc on Earth, and disputes over the sun's role in climate change, are adding urgency to these studies. 

That's potentially frightening.  It's good to know that our scientists have learned so much about our universe, but it's also interesting to note just how many times they see something unusual and scratch their heads.

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