Scientists are closer to identifying a large mystery object that has attracted worldwide attention after it appeared on a Western Australian beach.
The Australian Space Agency has narrowed down on what the object is, determining that the object is “most likely a solid rocket motor casing”.
The piece of space debris was found on Sunday by beachgoers near Green Head, about 250km north of Perth.
This type of case would surround a solid-motor rocket and serves as both a propellant tanks and combustion chamber for the rocket.
“We’re continuing the process of identifying the type of rocket and its origin through ongoing engagement with our global counterparts,” the agency said on social media.
The 2m high metal cylinder was initially treated as hazardous by police as they and state and federal agencies raced to determine if it was a risk to the community.
However, analysis by the Department of Fire and Emergency Service and Chemistry Centre of Western Australia determined that the object was safe and there was no risk to the community because of it.
The ASA has urged anyone who finds further suspected debris to report it to local police and notify the agency.
“The object could be from a foreign space launch vehicle and we are liaising with global counterparts who may be able to provide more information,” a spokesman said.
WA Police have now removed the object and put it in storage but officers have been guarding it all week to ensure the safety of the public.
This comes three weeks after another mysterious device was found floating offshore close to North Beach in Perth.
According to The West Australian newspaper, Australian Defence Force personnel detonated the device that was later found to be a marker marine flare.