[meteorite-list] Unlocking the Organic Composition of AncientAsteroids
From: K. Ohtsuka <ohtsuka_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Fri Oct 7 12:46:56 2005
Kat. O., TOKYO
----- Original Message -----
From: "Ron Baalke" <baalke_at_zagami.jpl.nasa.gov>
To: "Meteorite Mailing List" <meteorite-list_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Sent: Saturday, October 08, 2005 1:28 AM
Subject: [meteorite-list] Unlocking the Organic Composition of
> Unlocking the organic composition of ancient asteroids
> by Gina Buss
> October 07, 2005
> Meteorites contain fragments of asteroids brought about by collisions
> within the asteroid belt. These meteorites have not been exposed to
> geological processes experienced by planets and stars. Therefore, much
> of the matter in these meteorites originates from the formation of the
> Solar System some 4.5 billion years ago.
> Being the only record of the Solar System's pre-biotic chemical
> evolution, scientists have tried for years to extract and study this
> material. It is believed that discovering the composition of meteorites
> will reveal what the Solar System was made of at its birth and how those
> materials evolved into our current-day universe.
> Most of the methods used to extract this matter have failed leading to
> the destruction of the meteorite material or just the inability to
> extract any compounds.
> However, a recent study from the Planetary and Space Science Journal
> explains how scientists have developed a novel approach to extracting
> these meteoric materials. It's called hydropyrolysis.
> This new technology uses high hydrogen gas pressures, extreme
> temperature, and water as a non-destructive means for extracting organic
> and inorganic compounds from meteorites.
> This process has revealed high amounts of carbon and nitrogen- elements
> essential to life at the core of the meteorites. Also, this new
> technology revealed several never-before-seen organic molecules.
> The results of this study also contradict a common understanding to the
> origin of meteorites. It is thought that meteoric material originated
> from a molecular could that collapsed to form the Solar System.
> Scientists using hydropyrolysis believe this is a misconception and seek
> to use this technology to find the true origin of the organic matter in
> Scientists hope that the use of this new technology will offer even more
> clues into the composition of the Solar System when it was forming.
> Finally researchers have a way to trace the evolutionary path of organic
> compounds which will ultimately lead to knowledge of the evolution of
> our universe.
> Sephton M, Love G, Meredith W, Snape C, Sun C, and Watson J. 2005.
> Planetary and Space Science Journal. Article in Press.
> Meteorite-list mailing list
Received on Fri 07 Oct 2005 12:46:15 PM PDT