September 29, 2020
Hello From the Universe
Originally published March 25, 2011
image by Jim Mack
Orbiting only 100 km above the lunar surface, the immense size of this mysterious vehicle can be estimated by comparison with Copernicus. The huge craft apparently approached the Earth-Moon system from the daylight side of Earth and wasn't detected until it went into lunar orbit and was revealed transiting the Moon. Neither the Hubble Space Telescope nor any terrestrial instrument can see it any better than this view, and its orbit changes so it is always out of view of the LRO. The elongated rectangles at either end may be solar panels, a remarkably antiquated technology for such a huge spacecraft that came out of nowhere. No communications have been received from the craft and listening with the Jodrell Bank radio telescope detected no radiation from it. Because it apparently travelled through space to here, placed itself in lunar orbit and avoids the LRO, it must have some intelligence controlling it. Speculations are rampant that it might be an autonomous vehicle under some sort of computer control. But why would it be tens of kilometers wide unless it carries a massive cargo or crew? The fact that no nation on Earth has the capability to launch a rocket to the Moon to investigate this stranger shows how unprepared we are as a civilized planet to protect ourselves if that should ever be necessary. Unless it opens communications with us we will have to find a way to investigate it. The existence of this vehicle seems to finally answer the question of whether there is other life than ours in the universe. Now we must find out more about it.
20 August 2010. Meade 12" LX200 with a f5 focal reducer + Canon EOS 500D at prime focus
on the HD video setting at 20 fps.
Yesterday's LPOD: Quick, Here is the Map
Tomorrow's LPOD: LRO Catches Up with Pau