Evidence that a star disturbed prehistory solar system comets

March 21, 2018, Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT)
At a time when modern humans were beginning to leave Africa and the Neanderthals were living on our planet, Scholz's star approached less than a light-year. Credit: José A. Peñas/SINC

About 70,000 years ago, during human occupation of the planet, a small, reddish star approached our solar system and gravitationally disturbed comets and asteroids. Astronomers from the Complutense University of Madrid and the University of Cambridge have verified that the movement of some of these objects is still marked by that stellar encounter.

At a time when modern humans were beginning to leave Africa and the Neanderthals still thrived, Scholz's star—named after the German astronomer who discovered it—approached less than a light-year from the sun. Today, it is almost 20 light-years away, but 70,000 years ago, it entered the Oort cloud, a reservoir of trans-Neptunian objects located at the confines of the solar system.

This discovery was made public in 2015 by a team of astronomers led by Professor Eric Mamajek of the University of Rochester (USA). The details of that stellar flyby, the closest documented so far, were presented in The Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Now, two astronomers from the Complutense University of Madrid, the brothers Carlos and Raúl de la Fuente Marcos, together with the researcher Sverre J. Aarseth of the University of Cambridge (United Kingdom), have analyzed for the first time nearly 340 solar system objects with hyperbolic orbits (very open V-shaped, rather than elliptical) They have concluded that the trajectories of some of these were influenced by the passage of Scholz's star.

"Using numerical simulations, we have calculated the radiants or positions in the sky from which all these hyperbolic objects seem to come," explains Carlos de la Fuente Marcos, a co-author of the study now published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

"In principle," he adds, "one would expect those positions to be evenly distributed in the sky, particularly if these objects come from the Oort cloud. However, what we find is very different—a statistically significant accumulation of radiants. The pronounced over-density appears projected in the direction of the constellation of Gemini, which fits the close encounter with Scholz's star."

The period in which this star passed through the Oort Cloud and its position during prehistory coincide with the data of the new investigation and in those of Mamajek and his team. "It could be a coincidence, but it is unlikely that both location and time are compatible," says De la Fuente Marcos, who points out that their simulations suggest that Scholz's star approached even more than the 0.6 light-years pointed out in the 2015 study as the lower limit.

The close fly-by of this star 70,000 years ago did not disturb all the hyperbolic objects of the solar system, only those that were closest to it at that time. "For example, the radiant of the famous interstellar asteroid 'Oumuamua is in the constellation of Lyra (the Harp), very far from Gemini, therefore it is not part of the detected over-density," says De la Fuente Marcos. He is confident that new studies and observations will confirm the idea that a star passed close to us in a relatively recent period.

Scholz's star is actually a binary system formed by a small red dwarf with about 9 percent of the mass of the sun, around which a much less bright and smaller brown dwarf orbits. It is likely that human ancestors saw its faint reddish light during prehistorical nights.

Explore further: 'Oumuamua likely came from a binary star system

More information: Carlos de la Fuente Marcos et al. Where the Solar system meets the solar neighbourhood: patterns in the distribution of radiants of observed hyperbolic minor bodies, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters (2018). DOI: 10.1093/mnrasl/sly019

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granville583762
1 / 5 (2) Mar 21, 2018
Still! In the 5billion years of the suns existence has any a star come close enough to graze its surface that is gravitationally stretches and disrupts the star. The Ort cloud is one light year away so there is no noticeable effect on planetary motion as we have three stars permanently at four light years; Alpha Centauri A, Alpha Centauri B and Proxima Centauri.
katesisco
1 / 5 (5) Mar 21, 2018
Fleshing out the choices of the Klube-Napier comet, the Geminga nova and now Schultz's star.
When in all actuality the cause of our cyclic catastrophes may come down to planetary alignments per Miles Mathis.
What's even more scary is if our sun's photons reach the Oort shell, are re-energized from the massive magnetic field outside, and return to blast us with these mysterious hyper velocity particles.
Nik_2213
5 / 5 (6) Mar 21, 2018
Mark Thomas
5 / 5 (5) Mar 21, 2018
340 solar system objects with hyperbolic orbits


Once an object begins traveling on a hyperbolic trajectory through the solar system it is no longer gravitationally bound to our solar system. While it is possible for an object to achieve a hyperbolic trajectory as it passes by a planet, etc., you have to wonder if all 340 objects are actually from our solar system. The astronomers who published this study must have been thinking along the same lines because they wrote, "In addition to and besides 1I/2017 U1 ('Oumuamua), we single out eight candidate interstellar comets based on their radiants' velocities."

https://arxiv.org...0778.pdf

The discovery of up to 8 interstellar comets should be pretty big science news considering how much news coverage Oumuamua got.
Nik_2213
5 / 5 (6) Mar 21, 2018
#granville, you are mistaken about Alpha Cen & Co position / distance. They *ARE* moving relative to the Sun.
See Wiki: https://en.wikipe...Centauri
"The proper motion of the centre of mass is about 3620 mas (milli-arcseconds per year toward the west and 694 mas/y toward the north, giving an overall motion of 3686 mas/y in a direction 11° north of west.[84][85] The motion of Alpha Centauri is about 6.1 arcmin each century, or 1.02° each millennium. These motions are about one-fifth and twice, respectively, the diameter of the full Moon. The velocity in the western direction is 23.0 km/s and in the northerly direction 4.4 km/s. Using spectroscopy the mean radial velocity has been determined to be around 22.4 km/s towards the Solar System.[84]"
doogsnova
1 / 5 (6) Mar 21, 2018
WCFTSATFM p.222 22. Then, about 75,000 years ago, at the time of the destruction of Phaeton/Malona, the Sun developed a sudden high-level of activity, whereby much more solar energy was released into the vastness of universal space in the area of the SOL system, which unleashed a tremendously strong evaporation on the planet Mars, which had fallen to its present orbit. 23. All CO2 settled down into the ground, whereby the planet practically "died of thirst" and became a red and black dry desert.
#WCFTSATFM
Mark Thomas
5 / 5 (9) Mar 21, 2018
Alpha Centauri is the closest star system for a relatively short period of time. This chart shows the closest stars to our solar system over a 100,000 year period.

https://en.wikipe...e-en.svg

If we assume for a moment that the 4 or 5 different closest stars in the 100,000 period in the chart is actually typical (4.5/100Kyr), that would mean there have been over 200,000 different star systems that were our nearest neighbors at some point in time. You can bet that a good fraction of these passed much closer than Proxima Centauri is now, e.g., Scholz's Star. We are just beginning to fully appreciate how dynamic things are out there on geological time scales.
granville583762
1 / 5 (3) Mar 21, 2018
Really! Well that say's a lot for this red sun 70,000 yrs ago because at your reckoning we can still the star glowing red in the sky.
Nik_2213:- #granville, you are mistaken about Alpha Cen & Co position / distance. They *ARE* moving relative to the Sun.
See Wiki: https://en.wikipe...Centauri
"The proper motion of the centre of mass is about 3620 mas (milli-arcseconds per year toward the west and 694 mas/y toward the north, giving an overall motion of 3686 mas/y in a direction 11° north of west.[84][85] The motion of Alpha Centauri is about 6.1 arcmin each century, or 1.02° each millennium. These motions are about one-fifth and twice, respectively, the diameter of the full Moon. The velocity in the western direction is 23.0 km/s and in the northerly direction 4.4 km/s. Using spectroscopy the mean radial velocity has been determined to be around 22.4 km/s towards the Solar System.[84]"

granville583762
1 / 5 (3) Mar 21, 2018
We can see our Neanderthal star in our telescopes.

Nik_2213:- if we take your reliable source for Alpha Centauri proper motion of 22.4km/s and aplly it to our Neanderthal Star x 70,000years = 4.95x10+16m means it has moved 5.25 Lys towards the solar system which also means Alpha Centauri has moved 5.25 Lys or put it another way Alpha Centauri is now 9 Lys distant after 70,000 yrs
Nik_2213
4.3 / 5 (6) Mar 21, 2018
#granville: Scholz' Star is NOT Alpha Cen & Co, and does not move in the same way. 70ky ago, the AlphaCen system was indeed much further away. It is only a temporary neighbour, in astronomical terms, 'passing trade'...
Kaymen
3 / 5 (2) Mar 21, 2018
Just a thought, but this system is a binary with a red dwarf primary and a brown dwarf secondary. Any chance that the secondary could have been captured from our own solar system during this close approach? That might explain some of the Planet 9 predictions.
granville583762
1 / 5 (2) Mar 22, 2018
The orbital Newtonian rotation of galactic stars

This is what I've been saying! That the fact the stars are coming within a Ly yr of each other they orbit as though they are binary orbital stars in relation to each other otherwise the two will gravitationally attract each other and millions of stars will be going supernova all the time. which is why the galaxy rotating once every 250million yrs, two stars are in binary orbit of 250million yrs which counteracts their gravity (what we're seeing now! is pure Newtonian gravitation, no darkmatter, as it does not exist) this is the apparent strange rotation of the galaxy reaming constant with increasing radii -1 galactic rotation = 1 orbital rotation of 2 stars counteracts their gravitation.
granville583762
2 / 5 (2) Mar 22, 2018
Which come full circle! No star has ever grazed the surface of sun in its 5billion year existence there are all in binary orbit in relation to each other and as the graph shows a succession of stars up to a light year https://en.wikipe...e-en.svg If the Ort cloud contains material when our Neanderthal sun passed through this cloud it should have increased the activity of the red sun
Nik_2213
5 / 5 (1) Mar 22, 2018
#G: Passing stars do not need to get within sun-grazing distance to kick over the Oort cloud and send comets etc flying every-which-way. FWIW, there are no obvious mega-holes dating from Scholz' Star's 70ky BP pass. If it did stir *our* Oort cloud, most would just be arriving...
https://the-nik-f...23385646
granville583762
3 / 5 (1) Mar 22, 2018
The Oort cloud is only theoretical

The Oort cloud is only a theoretical cloud of icy planetesimal's proposed to surround the Sun, if it actually exists, its icy planetesimal's would not have any effect on Scholz so were still in dark as to the cloud actually existing.

The chances of a star grazing the sun is from a suggestion that although stars outnumber blackholes billions to one blackhole, blackholes are regularly grazing suns despite the lack of evidence of stars grazing our sun!

Nik_2213:- ]#G: Passing stars do not need to get within sun-grazing distance to kick over the Oort cloud and send comets etc flying every-which-way. FWIW, there are no obvious mega-holes dating from Scholz' Star's 70ky BP pass. If it did stir *our* Oort cloud, most would just be arriving...
https://the-nik-f...23385646

Osiris1
5 / 5 (1) Mar 24, 2018
Scholz' Star could have had planets and an Oort cloud of its own. That said, these objects could have had their own 'interactions' with bodies within our Oort cloud, gravitational AND possibly kinetic as well. Could have made the collective semi-merged Oort clouds a virtual shooting gallery. Hope if there were habitable planets around Sholtze' that the inhabitants survived. Scholtz'e is only 20Ly away now, and likely a future warp ship of ours will be able to find out.
granville583762
not rated yet Mar 26, 2018
If Scholz' Star is slowly meandering through it's nieghbouring stars maybe with planets, this means our Sun is also meandering through it's nieghbouring stars maybe with it's planets

Osiris1:- Scholz' Star could have had planets and an Oort cloud of its own. That said, these objects could have had their own 'interactions' with bodies within our Oort cloud, gravitational AND possibly kinetic as well. Could have made the collective semi-merged Oort clouds a virtual shooting gallery. Hope if there were habitable planets around Sholtze' that the inhabitants survived. Scholtz'e is only 20Ly away now, and likely a future warp ship of ours will be able to find out.

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