Home > Astronomy, KBO's (Kuiper Belt Objects), Solar System > Spinning Hourglass Object May Be The First Of Many To Be Discovered In The Kuiper Belt

Spinning Hourglass Object May Be The First Of Many To Be Discovered In The Kuiper Belt


The bizarre, hourglass-shaped Kuiper Belt Object 2001QG298 spins round like a propeller as it orbits the Sun, according to an astronomer from Queens University Belfast.   The discovery that the spinning object is tilted at nearly 90 degrees to the ecliptic plane is surprising, and suggests that this type of object could be very common in the Kuiper Belt. The finding will be presented by Dr Pedro Lacerda at the Joint Meeting of the European Planetary Science Congress and the Division for Planetary Sciences (EPSC-DPS 2011) in Nantes, France, on 3 October 2011.

Kuiper Belt Objects (KBOs) orbit the Sun beyond Neptune and are the best preserved leftovers of the formation of the planets. 2001QG298 is a remarkable KBO made up from two components that orbit each other very closely, possibly touching.

“Imagine that you glue two eggs together tip to tip – that’s approximately the shape of 2001QG298.  It looks a bit like an hourglass,” says Lacerda.

Full Story: https://habu.pst.qub.ac.uk/groups/pedrolacerda/wiki/3cf95/Extreme_and_Extremely_Tilted_KBO.html

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