The recent news reports suggested scientists have new theories about the missing asteroids case. According to a new study about the mysteriously case of the missing asteroids, these space rocks might, in fact, be disappearing. A few years ago, experts discovered something particularly unusual.
A large number of asteroids seemed to have disappeared from the central are of the solar system. The asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter showed a significant number of space rocks; also, they were plentiful in the neighborhood of Earth, Venus and Mercury. However, in the region closest to the sun, there seemed to be no trace of any asteroid.
Ever since scientists made this discovery, they have been wondering what could have possibly happened. In a new study, experts claimed the space rocks seem to be disintegrating when they are too close to the sun. All they leave behind is a trail of space rubble. Experts claimed their aim wasn’t to conduct an asteroid hunt.
They focused on developing an improved prototype of all the near-Earth objects (NEO) from our solar system. A NEO is an asteroid or a comet which orbits around our planet. The majority of the asteroids in our solar system come from the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. In this area of the solar system there are around 1 million asteroids with a diameter of 0, 4971 miles.
Experts claim there are many more which are even smaller than that. Most of these asteroids remain to their standard orbits for billions of years. However, sometimes the solar radiation force pushes some of them in an area in which they interact with Jupiter or Saturn’s gravity. This was, the asteroids’ orbit becomes more elliptical and they are sent into the Earth’s vicinity.
To develop a precise map of the NEO moving around the solar system, the scientists used data from the Catalina Sky Survey (CSS). They put into their study observation of 9, 000 near-Earth objects captured in almost 100, 000 pictures. Robert Jedicke from the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy said the new prototype was very helpful. It allowed Jedicke and his team to match the data in all the regions of the solar system, except for the area closest to the sun.
Experts said this was very unusual and their instinct told them something was missing. After further investigations, they could indeed prove the asteroids they expected to see were missing. Mikael Granvik, lead author of the study and scientist at the University of Helsinki, claimed the asteroids must be disappearing when they get close to the sun.
After re-assessing CSS observations, the experts pointed out that smaller asteroids disintegrate farther from the sun than the bigger ones. Moreover, brighter space rocks remained intact when they got closer to the sun in comparison to the dark asteroids, which absorb more light.
However, researchers cannot say for sure why the asteroids disintegrate when they get too close to the sun. Their theory is that sun’s powerful radiations might interfere with the asteroids’ rotation rate. This way, gravity and cohesive forces cannot keep them together and the asteroids break up.
Also, experts think as the space rocks fly towards the sun, their surface becomes too hot and they crack. Nevertheless, researchers said there are just new theories about the missing asteroids case and further studies are needed to find out the real cause.
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