13:10 GMT29 January 2020
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    ‘Oumuamua is the first known object from another solar system to pass through our own, which sparked excitement among scientists all around the world due to its mysterious origins.

    'Oumuamua (1I/2017 U1) is a Hawaiian word meaning "a messenger from afar arriving first.” It was first observed on October 19 by the Pan-STARRS telescope in Hawaii.

    It sent waves of excitement around the globe when scientists said that the fast moving object was coming from another solar system.

    At first it was thought that 'Oumuamua was a comet, a cosmic ball of ice and dust that forms a halo or coma when it gets close to the sun.

    However, after further study of the object, it was seen that it did not develop a coma and thus it was decided that ‘Oumuamua was actually an asteroid.

    "The consensus was that it was asteroidal because there was no gas and there was no dust," said Karen Meech, an astronomer at the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii.

    ​She went on to say that the object looked reddish, or in other words it speckled the red end of the light spectrum better than blue, like comets.

    In a new study published in the journal Nature, Meech indicated that 'Oumuamua is indeed a comet despite it being a little bit different compared to those in our own solar system.

    ​"Every time we study this object in more detail it's giving us a little bit more of a surprise," Dr. Meech added.

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    Tags:
    science, space, comet, NASA
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