Now that the buzz that Oumuamua might be an extraterrestrial light sail has died down, here are some more down-to-earth thoughts, if anyone is interested:
1. Fluffy ice fractal To get a push from starlight, an object needs to have a large surface area — to provide more surfaces for particles of light called photons to nudge — and a small mass, so that even tiny amounts of photon pressure can make a difference. A flat sheet, such as a solar sail, isn’t the only way to harness this radiation pressure, Moro-Martín says. A fluffy, porous structure that resembles a fractal, a geometric pattern that repeats itself on smaller and larger scales, could also be propelled by light, she argues. “Physically it would be the same idea, just the geometry would be different.” … Lisa Grossman, “3 explanations for ‘Oumuamua that aren’t alien spaceships” at Science News
And two more suggestions are offered as well.
See also: Astronomers: Solar System Object In Transit, Oumuamua, Might Be A “Light Sail Of Extra-Terrestrial Origin”
Why Some Scientists Saw Asteroid Oumuamua As ET
Why can top scientists get away with extraordinary claims?
“Tales of an Invented God. Why They must be Out There.
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