1. silicon valley
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    12 Jun '10 18:09
    that looks awfully like a flying saucer with ridership in close orbit.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%2866391%29_1999_KW4
  2. Subscribersonhouse
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    13 Jun '10 19:22
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    that looks awfully like a flying saucer with ridership in close orbit.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%2866391%29_1999_KW4
    You do realize asteroids that small are not deformed into spherical shapes by gravity, right? Whatever they are left with shape-wise after whatever collisions that took place in its past is what is left with no modification of shape. I assume you know that, right?
  3. SubscriberAThousandYoung
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    13 Jun '10 20:19
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    You do realize asteroids that small are not deformed into spherical shapes by gravity, right? Whatever they are left with shape-wise after whatever collisions that took place in its past is what is left with no modification of shape. I assume you know that, right?
    Three things:

    Flying saucers are symmetrical. Rocks that are the shape they are because of random impacts are not. You are supporting his claim.

    Second, this thing is apparently spinning so fast and is so small that it's particles are actually in orbit around it's center...interparticle forces are barely strong enough to provide centripetal force to keep the thing in one piece.

    Third, that's a computer generated image on the right of the article.
  4. silicon valley
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    14 Jun '10 04:58
    i like my theory better. remember the Face?
  5. Cape Town
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    14 Jun '10 08:14
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    You do realize asteroids that small are not deformed into spherical shapes by gravity, right?
    If they are made up of small loose particles then yes, they are deformed into spherical shapes. If they rotate fast enough, then they are deformed into an oblate spheroid (flying saucer shape).
  6. Cape Town
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    14 Jun '10 08:16
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    that looks awfully like a flying saucer with ridership in close orbit.
    Of course this assumes that alien spacecraft are saucer shaped - a totally unfounded assumption.
  7. Subscribersonhouse
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    14 Jun '10 12:501 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Of course this assumes that alien spacecraft are saucer shaped - a totally unfounded assumption.
    If it's an alien spacecraft, it must be a dead one. It is in a stable orbit and has been for millions of years.
    You aren't suggesting the face on Mars is a real example of intelligence at work are you?
  8. silicon valley
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    14 Jun '10 19:18
    if they backdated an artificial orbit assuming it was natural, i guess they WOULD get a date of millions of years!

    re the Face, don't know if they have made a close enough look to tell. maybe they are Martian pyramids or something.
  9. Subscribersonhouse
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    22 Jun '10 19:57
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    if they backdated an artificial orbit assuming it was natural, i guess they WOULD get a date of millions of years!

    re the Face, don't know if they have made a close enough look to tell. maybe they are Martian pyramids or something.
    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2001/ast24may_1/

    Scroll down to the bottom of the article and you will see the latest image.
  10. silicon valley
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    23 Jun '10 05:33
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2001/ast24may_1/

    Scroll down to the bottom of the article and you will see the latest image.
    i've seen it! it looks even more like a monument!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Masada_Roman_Ruins_by_David_Shankbone.jpg
  11. gumtree
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    24 Jun '10 11:23
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    if they backdated an artificial orbit assuming it was natural, i guess they WOULD get a date of millions of years!

    re the Face, don't know if they have made a close enough look to tell. maybe they are Martian pyramids or something.
    How would you know if an orbit was artificial?
  12. Cape Town
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    24 Jun '10 20:54
    Originally posted by Diophantus
    How would you know if an orbit was artificial?
    You cannot. What you can do, is check whether the current orbit is within reason for a non-powered object. Thats about it.
    If it was a space-craft that was not currently powering itself, then its orbit would be identical to that of an asteroid of the same mass.
    Even if it was powering itself, it might be quite difficult to determine and require more measurements than we have made so far.

    However, I still maintain that an asteroid that looks like a dinner plate, is no more likely to be an alien spacecraft than an asteroid that looks like a football.
    Now if it had writing round the rim, I might be persuaded to take an interest.
  13. gumtree
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    24 Jun '10 21:09
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    You cannot. What you can do, is check whether the current orbit is within reason for a non-powered object. Thats about it.
    If it was a space-craft that was not currently powering itself, then its orbit would be identical to that of an asteroid of the same mass.
    Even if it was powering itself, it might be quite difficult to determine and require more mea ...[text shortened]... like a football.
    Now if it had writing round the rim, I might be persuaded to take an interest.
    That's what I thought. Rational thought 1 Aliens 0
  14. silicon valley
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    24 Jun '10 21:58
    in the absence of evidence to the contrary, i would think there would be no way of distinguishing a millions-of-years-old orbit from an artificial orbit entered under commanded power.

    so someone saying they backtracked the orbit millions of years cannot be treated as evidence of the naturalness of the orbit.
  15. gumtree
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    24 Jun '10 22:40
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    in the absence of evidence to the contrary, i would think there would be no way of distinguishing a millions-of-years-old orbit from an artificial orbit entered under commanded power.

    so someone saying they backtracked the orbit millions of years cannot be treated as evidence of the naturalness of the orbit.
    Orbits can't be backtracked if there are no past observations to check for agreement. You could run the celestial mechanics calculations backwards but that wouldn't prove anything as we have no information on when the object entered that orbit, whether naturally or otherwise. Since discovery it hasn't diverged significantly from the predicted orbit so, if it is a ship, it is not correcting its orbit in any way.

    The mass of the thing is about 2 billion tonnes (easily computable from the orbit of the small satellite) so it would require a significant amount of energy to maneuver. If it were still active that energy should be detectable. Unless of course we assume that the aliens have been sitting there in the dark for the past 11 years. Any kind of fancy drive technology just increases the amount of energy being generated.

    If it is a ship it is doing nothing, has been doing nothing for at least 11 years and the observations suggest it has been busy getting battered by other space junk for a few billion years. A candidate for the scrap yard rather than a fancy alien ship. Or, we could just take the view that the simplest explanation is the best and that something that looks like a battered lump of space rock is a battered lump of space rock.
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