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Missing link found? Mysterious space rock can give clues how planets form



Described as a "missing link," scientists have discovered an object in space that it believes holds the secrets of planet formation.

Known as the "Kuiper Belt Object" (KBO), the 0.8-mile-wide space rock was found in the Kuiper belt, an area of ​​icy bodies far beyond Neptune. Given its size ̵

1; much smaller than Pluto or Ultima Thule – these types of celestial bodies can be far more common than previously thought and give hints to the evolution of the planet.

"If this is a true KBO detection, it implies that planetesimals are in front of their bodies. The uncontrolled growth phase grew into kilometer-sized objects in the original outer solar system and remains as the main population in today's Kuiper belt," the researchers write in the study , The results were published in a study in the scientific journal Nature Astronomy .

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per For the study, up to 60,000 of these medium-sized KBOs per square degree of sky may be present. The summary of the study adds that "these kilometer-sized KBOs are extremely weak and impossible to detect directly", and they can be detected in this way by "stargazing event monitoring".

Ko Arimatsu, who led the study, said they did not have a lot of money and looked for the above events, after events that led to a bleak sky that could cause KBOs to go in front of the stars, to find the object.

a real win for small projects, "said Arimatsu in the statement." Our team had less than 0.3 percent of the budget of major international projects. We did not even have enough money to build a second dome to protect our second telescope! Nevertheless, we managed to make a discovery that is impossible for the big projects.

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Arimatsu added that the team will continue to view the Kuiper Belt as well as the still undiscovered Oort Cloud, which may contain trillions of icy objects, according to Space.com.

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