Researchers have discovered the origin of the Earth’s volatile chemicals came from the asteroids that are distant from the outer solar system.
Recently Japanese scientists found the RNA in the Ryugu asteroid. Astronomers are on a mission to find the origin of the elements that are part of the building blocks of life on earth and also look for the probability of life on another planet.
Imperial College London researchers discover that volatile chemicals that form the building block of life originated from distant asteroids that are not part of our Solar System.
Asteroids That Are Part of the Outer Solar System
In our solar system, asteroid belts are found between Mars and Jupiter. But there are many asteroids that are found outside the solar system.
These asteroids sometimes travel inside our solar system.
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Researchers Discover the origin of the Earth’s Volatile Chemicals Came from the Far Asteroids
Imperial College of London researchers found out that the origin of the earth’s volatile chemicals came from distant asteroids that are not part of our solar system, according to the analysis of meteorites.
According to the 50% of the Earth’s supply of the volatile element Zn came from the asteroids originating from the outer solar system, beyond the asteroid belt that encompasses planets such as Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus.
Imperial College of London Senior professor of the Department of Earth Science and Engineering Mark Rehkamper said-” Our data show that about half of Earth’s zinc inventory was delivered by material from the outer Solar System, beyond the orbit of Jupiter. Based on current models of early Solar System development, this was completely unexpected.”
He further added -: “This contribution of outer Solar System material played a vital role in establishing the Earth’s inventory of volatile chemicals. It looks as though without the contribution of outer Solar System material; the Earth would have a much lower amount of volatiles than we know it today – making it drier and potentially unable to nourish and sustain life.”
Previously research suggested that the origin of the earth’s volatile chemicals originated from the inner solar system materials or asteroids that are close to the earth.
But new findings reveal some exciting detail that the origin of the earth’s volatile chemicals came from the asteroids far from the earth.
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Experiment Analysis About Origin of Earth’s Volatile Chemicals
Researchers examined 18 meteorites of varying origins, eleven from the inner solar system, known as non-carbonaceous meteorites.
Seven from the outer solar system are known as carbonaceous meteorites.
In each meteorite, they measured the five different isotopes of Zn. Then they compared each Zn isotope with the earth’s sample of Zn.
And results finding suggest that half of the earth’s Zn supplied came from the outer solar system meteorites.
So these new findings suggest that the origin of earth’s volatile chemicals was not originated here, instead, they came from distant asteroids.
Their next research target will be Mars and Moon. Mars had water 4.1 to 3 billion years ago before it dried up. Professor Rehkamper said – “The widely held theory is that the Moon formed when a huge asteroid smashed into an embryonic Earth about 4.5 billion years ago. Analyzing zinc isotopes in moon rocks will help us to test this hypothesis and determine whether the colliding asteroid played an important part in delivering volatiles, including water, to the Earth.”
This research will change what we learn about the origin of the building blocks of life on earth. The basic molecules that build us and our planet actually come from asteroids far away from the earth.