Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.
Latest topics
» Martin Luther King, Jr. I Have A Dream Speech
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:20 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Myocarditis Tops List of COVID Vaccine Injuries Among 12- to 17-Year-Olds, VAERS Data Show
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:14 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Non-Jabbed Father Stripped of Visiting Rights by Judge
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:11 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Dangerous M6.6 earthquake hits off Java, Indonesia
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:08 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Life insurer refuses to cover vaccine death
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:01 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Dr. Sam White Interview – Doctors Are Being Suppressed, Censored & Attacked For Telling The Truth
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 11:32 am by PurpleSkyz

» American Students Organize Classroom “Walk Outs” To Demand Return To Remote Learning
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 11:27 am by PurpleSkyz

» 15-Year-Old Soccer Player from Brazil Dies from Cardiac Arrest Following National Football Cup Tournament Game
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:34 am by PurpleSkyz

» Route 91: Uncovering the Cover-Up of the Vegas Mass Shooting
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:21 am by PurpleSkyz

» COVID-19 Vaccines: Scientific Proof of Lethality
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:17 am by PurpleSkyz

» Open Letter to Steve Kirsch
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyToday at 12:14 am by PurpleSkyz

» New Normal: Former Malaysian Professional Football Player Dies of Heart Attack 5 Days After Receiving COVID-19 Booster Shot
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 4:10 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Hundreds of Thousands Protest ‘New World Order’ in France as COVID Narrative Crumbles
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 12:58 pm by PurpleSkyz

» The Full Extent of Jeffrey Epstein’s Crimes Are Slowly Being Revealed
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 12:50 pm by PurpleSkyz

» 36 Million Families to Stop Receiving Monthly Child Tax Credit Payments in January
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 12:45 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Japan Drops All Vaccine Mandates, Places Myocarditis Warning on Label
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 12:42 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Why Are Concrete Walls Being Constructed Around The White House?
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 12:36 pm by PurpleSkyz

» Q&A With Scientist Who Discovered Cannabis Can Prevent COVID-19
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 9:52 am by PurpleSkyz

» Tragic: 38yo Athlete Dies after Suffering Heart Attack During Swim Portion at Ironman 70.3 Pucon
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 9:48 am by PurpleSkyz

» Smoking Gun: Moderna Patented ‘Man Made’ SARS-CoV2 Gene Sequence in 2018
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 9:41 am by PurpleSkyz

» NASA Probe Gets Closest Look At Sun’s Atmosphere Than Ever Before And Makes Immediate Discoveries
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptyYesterday at 9:34 am by PurpleSkyz

Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon EmptySat Jan 15, 2022 4:44 pm by PurpleSkyz

Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon 4ccd9cb4-22af-4abe-a6c4-4d57fbce210b_zps8t6pdo1h

You are not connected. Please login or register


Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon

Go down  Message [Page 1 of 1]

1Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Empty Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Thu Dec 13, 2018 11:36 am



Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon

By Deborah Byrd in Astronomy Essentials | Space | December 17, 2017
3200 Phaethon – parent object of the Geminid meteors – is an interesting and mysterious object. It was one of the 1st known bodies in space that blurred the distinction between asteroids and comets.

Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Phaethon_asteroid_illustration

Artist’s concept of what asteroid 3200 Phaethon might look like close up. Notice its blue color and tail of dust. Image via Heather Roper/UANews.
The 2018 Geminid meteor shower peaks this week (best morning likely December 14; try December 13, too). This annual shower is always reliable, but was extra special last year because its parent object – a mysterious, blue rock-comet known as 3200 Phaethon – was nearby. When a parent object is nearby, a meteor shower can be extra rich.
So it was with the Geminids last year (see photos).
This year? 3200 Phaethon is far from Earth, but it’s no less an object of speculation and interest. At a meeting of the Division of Planetary Sciences in Knoxville, Tennessee, earlier this fall, professional astronomers waxed enthusiastic about their studies of 3200 Phaethon in 2017, when it was nearby. They commented that this unusual object was even more enigmatic than they’d previously thought.
What’s so odd about 3200 Phaethon? Let’s start with its blue color. Most asteroids are dull grey to red, depending on the type of material on their surface. Blue asteroids are known, but make up only a fraction of all known asteroids. And Phaethon isn’t just blue. It’s one of the bluest of similarly-colored asteroids (or comets) in the solar system.
Here’s another odd feature of 3200 Phaethon. While comets tend to have more elliptical orbits, asteroid orbits are more circular. 3200 Phaethon’s orbit – which is now exceedingly well known – is highly elongated, reminiscent of some comets. Its orbit crosses the orbits of Mars, Earth, Venus and Mercury.
EarthSky lunar calendars are cool! They make great gifts. Order now. Going fast!
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Phaethon_orbit-e1449144562950
Orbital path of 3200 Phaethon, via SkyandTelescope.com. The 2017 encounter was the closest this object will come to Earth until 2093.
Plus its orbit brings 3200 Phaethon closer to the sun than any other named asteroid (though some smaller, unnamed asteroids come even closer). At its closest point, Phaethon is only 13 million miles (20.9 million km) from the sun. That’s less than half of Mercury’s closest distance. Its name honors this object’s relationship to the sun. In Greek mythology, Phaethon was the son of the sun god Helios.
3200 Phaethon’s orbit carries it so close to the sun that its surface heats up to about 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit (800 degrees C). That’s hot enough to melt aluminum.
When closest to the sun, 3200 Phaethon releases a tiny dust tail; that’s right, it’s a dust tail for an asteroid, one of only two known so far in our solar system. Scientists have said it’s possible the sun’s heat causes fractures, in much the same way a dry riverbed cracks in the afternoon heat.
Comets are known for their tails. 3200 Phaethon’s dust tail is one of the features of this object that blurs the line traditionally thought to set comets and asteroids apart.
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon 3200-Phaethon-STEREO-A
This closeup image of 3200 Phaethon by NASA’s STEREO A spacecraft in 2017 shows a tail extending faintly toward lower left. Image via NASA/SkyandTelescope.com.
3200 Phaethon was the first asteroid to be discovered via spacecraft on October 11, 1983. Astronomers Simon F. Green and John K. Davies noticed it while searching Infrared Astronomical Satellite data for moving objects. Charles T. Kowal confirmed it optically and said it was asteroid-like in appearance. The object received the provisional designation 1983 TB. Two years later, in 1985, using the convention for naming asteroids, astronomers assigned it its asteroid number and name: 3200 Phaethon.
Before 3200 Phaethon, scientists linked all known meteor showers to active comets and not asteroids.
Thus 3200 Phaethon surprised them from the beginning, because – while it looked like an asteroid – it appeared to be the source of the annual Geminid meteor shower. Astronomers began calling 3200 Phaethon a comet-asteroid hybrid, an asteroid that behaves like a comet. Later, they began using the term rock-comet.
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Phaeton-asteroid-2017
Radar images of 3200 Phaethon generated by astronomers at the Arecibo Observatory on December 17, 2017. Image via Wikipedia.
At the 2018 DPS meeting, astronomer Teddy Kareta of the University of Arizona’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory reported on his 2017 studies of 3200 Phaethon. He said:
[At first], the assumption was that Phaethon probably was a dead, burnt-out comet, but comets are typically red in color, and not blue. So, even though Phaethon’s highly eccentric orbit should scream ‘dead comet,’ it’s hard to say whether Phaethon is more like an asteroid or more like a dead comet.
Kareta and his team analyzed data about 3200 Phaethon obtained in 2017 from NASA’s Infrared Telescope Facility in Hawaii and the Tillinghast telescope in Arizona. These astronomers think Phaethon might be related to or have broken off from 2 Pallas, a large blue asteroid located farther out in the solar system. Karate said:
Interestingly, we found Phaethon to be even darker than had been previously observed, about half as reflective as Pallas. This makes it more difficult to say how Phaethon and Pallas are related.
The team also observed that Phaethon’s blue color is the same on all parts of its surface, which they say indicates it has been cooked evenly by the sun in the recent past.
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon 3200-Phaethon-composition-e1512820450357
The composition of 3200 Phaethon resembles that of asteroid 2 Pallas. Both are dark, B-type asteroids composed of materials that have been modified by water. The 1st in this series of Hubble images of 3200 Phaethon in 2017 is marked with the asteroid’s spin axis (top) and south pole. Image via B. E. Schmidt et. al/NASA/ESA/SkyandTelescope.com.
3200 Phaethon is classified as a potentially hazardous asteroid, which doesn’t mean it’s a threat to Earth. It just means two things. First, 3200 Phaethon is big – about 3 miles (5 km) wide – big enough to cause significant regional damage if it were to strike Earth.
Second, it’s known to make periodic close approaches to Earth.
The 2017 “close approach” brought this object to about 26 times the moon’s distance. Astronomers know of no upcoming strike by this object in this foreseeable future.
Both amateur and professional astronomers watched 3200 Phaethon as carefully as they could in 2017. For example, Northolt Branch Observatories in London, England, created the animation below from images it captured in 2017.
Steven Bellavia also produced a video of 3200 Phaethon in 2017 – below. He commented then that he’d endured cloudy weather and sub-freezing temperatures in order to capture the images. “My fingers still hurt!” he wrote.


Mike Olason in Denver, Colorado captured 3200 Phaethon on December 4, 2017:
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon 3200-Phaethon-12-16-2017-Mike-Olason-Denver-CO-e1513508672557
Image via Mike Olason.
The 2017 encounter was the closest this object will come to Earth until 2093.
Mysterious rock-comet 3200 Phaethon Orbit_of_3200-Phaethon_16-17Dec2017_678x509
3200 Phaethon swept close to Earth – jus 0.069 astronomical units (6.4 million miles, 10.3 million km, 26 lunar-distances) on December 16, 2017 at 23 UTC. Image via Osamu Ajiki (AstroArts)/ Ron Baalke (JPL)/Ade Ashford (AN)/AstronomyNow.
Bottom line: 3200 Phaethon is a mysterious rock-comet and the source of the Geminid meteor shower.

Thanks to: https://earthsky.org


Back to top  Message [Page 1 of 1]

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum