From: Stig Agermose <stig.agermose.nul> Date: Sat, 5 Nov 2011 22:22:47 -0700 (PDT) Archived: Sun, 06 Nov 2011 19:04:53 -0500 Subject: Complex Organic Matter Identified In Space http://www.world-science.net/othernews/111027_organic.htm The original article was published online in 'Nature' of 26 October: http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v479/n7371/full/nature10542.html Best Stig Agermose *** Surprisingly Complex Organic Matter Identified In Space Oct. 27, 2011 Courtesy of The University of Hong Kong and World Science staff Organic molecules of unexpected complexity - similar to those that serve as the ingredients of life - exist throughout the universe, a study has found. The results suggest complex organic compounds can be made naturally by stars, and not just by living things, according to researchers, who reported their work in the Oct. 27 issue of the journal Nature. Sun Kwok and Yong Zhang of the University of Hong Kong found that an organic molecule commonly found throughout the universe contains a mixture of aromatic, or ring-like, and aliphatic, or chain-like, parts. These chemical structures resemble those of coal and petroleum, the researchers noted, types of organic material previously thought to arise only from living organisms. The researchers were investigating an unsolved puzzle: a set of infrared light emissions detected in stars and galaxies. For over two decades, it was widely thought that these "unidentified infrared emission features" come from simple organic molecules made of carbon and hydrogen atoms, called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. But using data from the European Space Agency's Infrared Space Observatory and NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, Kwok and Zhang concluded that the substances generating these emissions are much more complex. By analyzing the light of star dust formed in exploding stars called novae, they found that stars are making these complex organic compounds on extremely short time scales of weeks, and throwing them off into space. "Theoretically", it's "impossible" for stars to create these molecules, "but observationally we can see it happening", Kwok said. The organic star dust is similar in structure to complex organic compounds found in meteorites, Kwok and Zhang added. Since meteorites are remnants of the early Solar System, the findings raise the possibility that stars enriched the early Solar System with organic compounds. The early Earth was subjected to severe bombardments by comets and asteroids, which might have carried organic star dust, the researchers speculate. * * * Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast At: http://www.virtuallystrange.net/ufo/sdi/program/ These contents above are copyright of the author and UFO UpDates - Toronto. They may not be reproduced without the express permission of both parties and are intended for educational use only.
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