MARK GARLICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARK GARLICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Interstellar asteroid 'Oumuamua, illustration. In 2017, astronomers discovered an object in the Solar System which seemed out of place. Its orbit is highly hyperbolic, not parabolic, which implies it originated outside of the Solar System and is just passing through. The interloper has been named 'Oumuamua – Hawaiian for scout or messenger. Follow-up observations have revealed that 'Oumuamua is very oddly shaped, like a cigar, more elongated than any known Solar System object. Estimates put its size at 200 x 30 x 30 m, and its rotational period at 8.14 hours.
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