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Scientists Just Discovered Water in the Least Expected Place in the Universe – Teach Me About Science

Scientists Just Discovered Water in the Least Expected Place in the Universe – Teach Me About Science

A group of scientists have just made a unique discovery, the first of its kind that may change our understanding of the universe forever. They found water in an unexpected place, which has shocked the scientific community.

The article about this impressive discovery was recently published in the journal Planetary Science JournalHere we tell you everything you want to know about it. If you are interested in knowing what is behind this discovery, we invite you to continue reading this article, as we will tell you all the details below.

Two days ago, a group of scientists from Southwest Research Institute Published a unique astronomy discovery, the discovery of water in one of the least expected places in the universe with a high degree of confidence, on the surface of an asteroid, which has not been discovered yet and could change the world's understanding of the distribution of water in the solar system and how it can reach… the earth.

As specified in A Official letterTo make this discovery, scientists used data from the now-retired Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), which was a project between NASA and the German Space Agency, and set out to study four silicate-rich asteroids. Specifically, they used a tool called FORCAST that is capable of detecting and generating infrared spectra to identify chemicals.

In this way, when performing the analysis, FORCAST showed in two of these asteroids, Eris and Massalia, the detection of wavelengths that were unambiguously attributed to molecular water, As specified in the studyIt is the first discovery of water in these remains of the planet formation process in space.

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Image source: m-gucci from Getty Images.

Scientists explain how water exists on asteroids Indicates There are three possibilities in the study: that water molecules are adsorbed on silicate surfaces; That is trapped or dissolved in silicate glass, or chemically bound to a mineral, such as water on the Moon bound to minerals in lava deposits.

Finally, regarding the importance of this discovery for astronomy, we must take into account that water is essential for life, and since asteroids represent a challenge to the process of planet formation in space, following up on this discovery can give us light on understanding the distribution of water in the solar system since its formation, as well as How water reaches Earth, which can analyze how water might reach other potentially habitable planets and where the search for life is most feasible both in our solar system and beyond.

To learn more about the study see: Detection of molecular H2O on nominally anhydrous asteroids, Journal of Planetary Science.

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