Of the many ingredients from which all life on earth has been made of, two were found in the atmosphere of a Comet orbiting our sun.
While hints of both have been seen in comets before, this is the clearest evidence to date.
Amino acids are basic building blocks of proteins and they come in different varieties.
Glycine, the smallest of the 20 amino acids, was floating in the tenuous atmosphere of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, researchers report online May 27 in Science Advances.
Phosphorus, which is essential to DNA and RNA, was also found on this comet. Both detections support the idea that comets are at least partly responsible for seeding early Earth with material needed for life.
These along with some other organic molecules were detected by the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft, which has been in orbit around 67P since August 2014. Kathrin Altwegg, a planetary scientist at the University of Bern in Switzerland, led the study.
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