A unique finding: the Inside fell to Earth meteorite fragments of comets

American scientists found traces of primary rocks which were formed the planets of the Solar system in a very unexpected place – inside one of the meteorites that fell on the South pole of the Earth in the recent past. Through analysis of the findings, the researchers put a slice of a meteorite under a microscope and found within it a miniature dark inclusions (0.1 mm) of unknown nature containing a record large amounts of organic and volatile substances, including ketones and sugars. It turned out that inside the space stone is the germ of the comet. About their unique discovery, researchers reported in the articlepublished by the journal Nature Astronomy.

According to the research group, under the leadership of Larry Nittler from the Carnegie institution for science in Washington (USA), the asteroid served as a kind of protective capsule, inside which is preserved the “germ” of comets and grains of primary matter of the Solar system. She helped them to survive the journey through the Earth’s atmosphere. Scientists are very happy with this choice because now they have a sample of matter, which would never get here by itself.

To make it clearer why the find is unique, a couple of things. Meteors are small celestial bodies that have already fallen on the surface of the Earth. Previously, they could be part of the asteroids other larger solid celestial bodies wandering around our Solar system since its formation and eventually become part of planets or comets – are they similar to asteroids, but contain volatile chemicals that when exposed to sunlight evaporate from the surface of a celestial body, creating so-called “coma” and a tail. On the Ground, these objects never fall off (thankfully). But scientists are very interested in what they consisted of.

By conducting isotopic analysis of the composition of the sample of the LAP 02342 meteorite, discovered in Antarctica, scientists have discovered unusual proportion of heavy oxygen, deuterium and nitrogen-15, does not coincide with any other small bodies of the Solar system with no Sun, no planets. As the researchers note, nothing like in meteorites, scientists had not found, however, faced with a similar composition of matter, exploring other celestial bodies directly in space. In particular, scientists say, the comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, as well as samples of matter trapped in the Solar system from the interstellar medium. A similar composition is believed to planetary scientists, had the protoplanetary nebula, the birthplace of the Sun, the Earth and all other planets.

According to the authors of the article in Nature Astronomy, the dust could get inside of an asteroid in the distant past, approximately 3 million years after the birth of our Sun. During this period, cosmic dust began to connect and form bigger stones, which later became the nuclei of comets and asteroids. Periodically, these objects faced each other, sometimes leading to their “merger”, and in other cases to mutual destruction. Nittler, with the team saying that the traces of one of the oldest clashes of this kind, which occurred at about 4.4 billion years ago, was discovered in samples of the meteorite LAP 02342.

Recall that currently some of the world’s space agencies conducting space missions to collect samples of the ancient Solar system matter. For example, using the spacecraft’s OSIRIS-REx space Agency NASA is trying to get the dust samples of asteroid Bennu. A Japanese spacecraft “Hayabusa-2” currently is collecting soil samples of an asteroid Ryugu. In both cases, the samples are scheduled to be delivered back to Earth for analysis, but the finding of scientists from the Carnegie institution for science in Washington allows you to do this today without waiting for the return of American and Japanese missions.

To discuss the opening in our Telegram chat.

0 Comments on “A unique finding: the Inside fell to Earth meteorite fragments of comets”

  1. Thats what an angel is Dust pressed into a diamond by the weight of this world #TheOA needs your help #SaveTheOA

  2. I’m asking you to imagine that reality is stranger and more complicated than you or I could possibly know And sometimes we get glimpses of it, in dreams or in déjà vu #TheOA needs your help #SaveTheOA

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *