An Alien Star Passed Through Our Solar System


About 70,000 years ago, when humanity migrated out of Africa, a star passed through our Solar System. It is known as the star of Scholz and has only 9% of the mass of our own Sun, not so great.

So by 2015, when astronomers discovered that it had passed through us, they assumed that this would not have had much effect on our solar system.

But researchers have now shown that this is not the case - in fact, we can still see the impact of the visit today. A closer look at the positions of objects in the Oort Cloud led to a rethinking of this conclusion - this incredible encounter with a passing star left, in fact, small gravitational impressions at the extreme outer limits of our Solar System.

Astronomers at the University of Cambridge and Universidad Complutense de Madrid analyzed the positions of about 340 objects in the outer solar system with wide orbits, and found that several dozen of them were not exactly where they expected them to be.

"In principle, these positions would be expected to be evenly distributed in the sky, particularly if those objects came from the Oort cloud," said Carlos de la Fuente Marcos of the Complutense University of Madrid.

Rewinding the clock, it seems that a red dwarf named Scholz's star is probably the cause of subtle redistribution. At this point, the tiny little shiny object is about 20 light-years away.

But only 70,000 years ago, it was approaching against the outer edge of our Solar System, somewhere around 0.8 light-years away from us. Translating this in terms we can easily imagine, this equals a distance of 7.6 trillion kilometers or about 50,000 AU (1 AU is the distance from Earth to the Sun).

These are big numbers, but in galactic terms it was an uncomfortable intrusion into our personal space. To give you an idea, the outer shield of frozen material of the Sun, called the Cloud of Oort, reaches 100,000 AU.

Within any one million-year period, there may be up to 600 stars passing within 16.3 light-years of our Sun. It is possible until our ancestor star observers have noticed the red glow of the "invading" star. [ ScienceAlert ]