Asteroid reflects ten times more light.
After analyzing data from the Spitzer telescope, the astronomers discovered that the first discovered interstellar object – an asteroid Omului – almost doubled less than previously thought. The study is published in The Astronomical Journal.
Asteroid 1I / Omwamwi was found in October 2017. First, it was considered a comet, but then the astronomers agreed that it is an asteroid with an unusual cigar-shaped. According to previous data, which researchers have used telescopes Pan-STARRS 1, Hubble and other observatories, the length of Omwamwi can be no more than 800 meters. To get new information about it, NASA astronomers in November 2017 pointed to the asteroid infrared telescope Spitzer.
But within two months the telescope could not fix the Omwamwi traces. Based on this, astronomers have concluded that the size of the asteroid is much smaller than those who can "see" Spitzer. To estimate the size of Omwamwi, researchers have decided to use three independent models to find out the maximum dimensions for objects that can fix the telescope. They received the results from 100, 140 and 440 meters – that is, Spitzer would have seen any object with a maximum dimension ranging from 100 to 440 meters. Thus, it is within these limits and is the length of the cigar-shaped Omwamwi.
In addition, the astronomers discovered that the asteroid reflects ten times more light than flying into the solar system of the coma. This conclusion, the scientist did because of the temperature Omwamwi: the less the more light and heat reflective.