Implications of Captured Interstellar Objects for Panspermia and Extraterrestrial Life

We estimate the capture rate of interstellar objects by means of three-body gravitational interactions. We apply this model to the Sun-Jupiter system and the Alpha Centauri A\B binary system, and find that the radius of the largest captured object is a few tens of km and Earth-sized respectively.

We explore the implications of our model for the transfer of life by means of rocky material. The interstellar comets captured by the “fishing net” of the Solar system can be potentially distinguished by their differing ratios of oxygen isotopes through high-resolution spectroscopy of water vapor in their tails.

Manasvi Lingam, Abraham Loeb
(Submitted on 30 Jan 2018)

Comments: 9 pages; 0 figures
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
Cite as: arXiv:1801.10254 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:1801.10254v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Manasvi Lingam
[v1] Tue, 30 Jan 2018 23:46:23 GMT (71kb)
https://arxiv.org/abs/1801.10254
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