NASA’s top astronomical expert Paul Choda claims that a newly discovered object that reached Earth is in fact an old rocket from a failed lunar mission. Mr. Chodas pointed to the way the favorite debris is orbiting the sun and said that it could not be a space rock because of the unique path around the star. Speculation began earlier this month that the matter would become a new “mini-moon” and join other smaller asteroids to get stuck in our planet’s orbit.
Added to the number of asteroids at the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center last month after being identified by a Hawaiian telescope, the object known as Asteroids 2020 SO
Mr. Chodas believes the 2020 SO is actually the rocket stage above the Centaur that led NASA surveyors to land on the moon.
The rocket took off in 1956, 54 years ago, and remains in space as floating debris.
S.Uvory 2 ended up crashing to the surface of the moon when one of its thrusters failed to get close to the rock.
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Mr. Chodas added excitedly about his discovery, adding that he was “quite jazzy” about his search for the 2020 SO.
He added: “Finding one of these and drawing this kind of link was my hobby and I’ve been doing it for decades.”
The asteroid expert said that the matter raised his suspicions when he noticed the formation of a near-circular orbit around the same sun as our planet.
Mr. Chodas claimed that the plane path around the star was “flag number one” and not an asteroid.
The expert admits he may be wrong about his belief that the subject is the old rocket, and admits his evidence is circumstantial.
Mr Chodas added: “I could be wrong. I don’t want to show too much confidence.
“But in my opinion this is the first time that all the pieces fit together with a real familiar launch.”
Astronomers will be able to better determine what the 2020 SO will be as it gets closer to Earth, with an old Centaur rocket running separately in heavy space rockets.
Astronomer Tony Dunn when the object was first recorded: “Asteroids 2020 SO may be captured by Earth between October 2020 – 2021. The current nominal trajectory shows the capture with L2, and escapes through L1.
.. / src / NamedConfOptions.py: 327 msgid “High-chaotic path, so be prepared for lots of corrections as new observations arrive.”
Earth’s last mini-moon came earlier this year when a small meteorite named 2020 CD3 was caught in orbit.
THe orbited Space Rock for about three months before continuing his journey across the solar system in March.