Sunday, December 25, 2005

Life's ingredients circle Sun-like star

'The first evidence that some of the basic organic building blocks of life can exist in an Earth-like orbit around a young Sun-like star has been provided by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

Spitzer took infrared spectrograms of 100 very young stars in a nearby stellar nursery, a huge cloud of dust and gas 375 light years away in the constellation Ophiuchus. And one of those stars showed signs of the organic molecules, acetylene and hydrogen cyanide.

These gases, when combined with water, can form several different amino acids. These are needed to form proteins, as well as one of the four chemical letters, or bases, in DNA, called adenine.

The organic molecules were detected in a ring of dust and gas circling a young star called IRS 46. Such dust rings, found around all of the young stars that were examined by the Spitzer telescope, are believed to be the raw material for planetary systems.

The spectrographic data showed that the gases were so hot that they must be orbiting close to the star, approximately in its "habitable zone", the region where Earth orbits the Sun and where water is just at the borderline between liquid and gaseous states."
New Scientist


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Extremely Interesting I say....
It's about time we all magnify the skies, (maybe even the outer rings of saturn).. The future is closer than you think....

2:02 AM  

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