This one I read "only" about 10-15 years ago, and I think it was rather recently written at that time.
It begins with a weird, probably alien structure being spotted in the solar system, already on its way out. (And no, it is not “Rendezvous with Rama” nor any of its sequels). Some ship, the captain of which is a woman, seems the one with the best chance to catch up with it before it is out of reach. Which they do, but they are trapped in some accelerator that sends them away at near light-speed velocity. The captain has just time to send back a message with some information about what she found there.
The middle is quite fuzzy. I cannot remember any details.
The only other thing that I remember is almost at the end. Somehow the captain receives a telepathic message sent from Earth (that must have been travelling at light velocity to catch up, considering how fast she is receding away) telling her she is considered (or rather, was considered eons ago, when the message was sent) as a hero on Earth, because the information she sent back was instrumental in hugely improving scientific knowledge. I am not sure how much confort that was for her.