Astronomers have made a fascinating discovery regarding asteroids, and where they come from. While scientists had believed that asteroids form in place, they have found that they are more scattered, and specifically in a region between Mars and Jupiter. This space is known as the main asteroid belt. Francesca DeMeo, lead study author and an astronomer at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics said, “the asteroid belt is a melting pot of bodies that formed all over the solar system.”
The belt is a ring of rubble between the two planets. New research shows that this belt formed during an unruly later era, when planets were on the move, as reported by CNN.
“There have been some really large surveys over the past decade or so that have expanded our understanding from a couple thousand asteroids to hundreds of thousands of asteroids,” says , an astronomer at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.
On how the belt actually formed, new theories suggest that early on at the start of the solar system, 4.5 billion years ago, the nebula of dust and rock that formed the planets also pulled them around with gravity. The planets may have been sent off spinning in different directions.
Now the question is, where are these asteroids heading?