April 22, 2022 | 3 comments
Harvard physicist Avi Loeb has suggested that some interstellar meteorites could be artificial in nature.
Earlier this month, it was revealed by the US Space Command (USSC) that a fast-moving fireball, which exploded over Papua New Guinea 8 years ago, actually originated from outside our solar system – predating the discovery of interstellar visitor ‘Oumuamua in 2017.
Whatever remained of this object, if anything, would have ended up falling to the bottom of the ocean.
According to Loeb, something to consider is whether such an object – especially if it has come from interstellar space – has the potential to be a piece of extraterrestrial technology.
Given its small size and the vast area in which it now lies, however, finding it would be a tough ask.
Even so, Loeb has an answer to this too – suggesting the use of “scooping” magnets that could scour vast swatches of the Pacific seafloor for fragments of this and other interstellar visitors.
“Our discovery of an interstellar meteor heralds a new research frontier,” he wrote in a recent article on the subject. “The fundamental question is whether any interstellar meteor might indicate a composition that is unambiguously artificial in origin ?”
“Better still, perhaps some technological components would survive the impact.”
Of course the question is currently impossible to answer (and the chances of such a likelihood seem slim), however Loeb has set his sights on one day getting his hands on such a find.
“My dream is to press some buttons on a functional piece of equipment that was manufactured outside of Earth,” he said.