Remember 'Oumuamua,' the mysterious interstellar object which was discovered by the scientists to be wondering near Earth? Researchers worldwide have been fascinated with this alien object from another star since the time it was first noticed on October 19.
Now, a team of scientists from the Queen's University in Belfast has confirmed that this cigar shaped asteroid, the first official interstellar object to be observed in our solar system, was actually a natural figure from another solar system, which contains ice-like organic layers.
According to Phys.org, the team from the Queen's University has been researching Oumuamua since its first appearance. The researchers, under the leadership of Dr. Michele Bannister and Professor Alan Fitzsimmons, studied and minutely examined several aspects of the interstellar object to unearth its riddle.
One of the biggest mysteries surrounding Oumuamua was the fact that it was capable of reflecting light, which also gave birth to several rumors including the one that this thin and extremely long asteroid from another star was actually an alien spaceship that is keeping an eye on Earth.
However, later studies have found that the asteroid is covered with the dry crust of certain ice-like objects, which caused the said phenomenon. Scientists also concluded that this rich organic layer surrounding Oumuamua was shaped because it has been in contact with the cosmic rays for millions of years or more.
"We have discovered that the surface of 'Oumuamua is similar to small solar system bodies that are covered in carbon-rich ices, whose structure is modified by exposure to cosmic rays...we have also found that a half-metre thick coating of organic-rich material could have protected a water-ice-rich comet-like interior from vaporizing when the object was heated by the sun, even though it was heated to over 300 degrees centigrade," stated Fitzsimmons in the latest report.
The team has also said that they have uncovered further details about the interstellar object and will publish those findings in the near future.
However, all these facts and findings have not stopped the conspiracy theorists to make up their own versions. Recently a UFO expert, named Nick Pope has claimed that Oumuamua actually accommodates aliens inside it and Earth's attempts at scanning it might have awakened them.
"Simply put, any alien ship searching for life may go into a dormant mode until it gets close to an inhabited planet," said Pope to The Sun. Pope is the former head of Ministry of Defence's UFO investigations group in Britain.
However, Pope doesn't really believe that Oumuamua asteroid is extraterrestrial in terms of its origin. "What's fascinating about this theory is just how many astronomers and other scientists are taking the idea seriously. It's a sign of how accepting we are these days about the likelihood of finding alien life," he added.
According to Pope, attracting the attention of aliens might prove to be a bad idea. "Ouamuamua looked like an interstellar spacecraft because it 'makes perfect sense to take an asteroid and then build your ship around it, or hollow it out and build inside it, for the protection you'd derive from being surrounded by so much rock," he suggested.