Not content with leading NASA to detect water from an alien star system on board an interstellar visitor, Crimean amateur astronomer Gennady Borisov has discovered another comet.
The new comet, traveling at roughly 30km per second in the patch of sky between the Lynx and Cancer constellations, marks the ninth stellar object Borisov has discovered. Unlike his previously discovered comet, dubbed 2I/Borisov, this one is a resident of our solar system.
“I discovered a new comet in early November. I have just received a letter from the Minor Planet Center of the International Astronomical Union. This is not an interstellar comet. It’s an ordinary one, which is a solar system object. It got the name C2019V1 (Borisov). This is a confirmed discovery,” Borisov told TASS news agency.
“This is a distant object flying in the Milky Way among a large number of stars.”
Borisov was officially the first person in the world to discover an interstellar comet and, by the looks of things, his illustrious amateur astronomy career won’t be winding down any time soon.
His detection of the original Borisov comet on August 30 allowed scientists to run a battery of tests on the interstellar visitor as it passed through our space neighborhood. In late October, astronomers announced that they believe they have detected water on the body from an alien star system.
The hugely significant finding would indicate that water-rich comets are not unique to the solar system and that the universe is likely to contain other Earth-like worlds with the potential to support life.
NASA is sitting on a groundbreaking discovery.
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