Phosphorus is key in forming DNA and giving rise to life on Earth, but the element is rare in the universe.
Scientists don’t know how Earth got its phosphorus, but scientists just found phosphorus-carrying molecules forming around newborn stars.
Researchers found the same molecules on a comet orbiting Jupiter.
A new study suggests that comets from newborn stars may have delivered the life-giving element to Earth in the form of phosphorus monoxide.
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Phosphorus, an element that’s key in forming DNA and fueling life on Earth, may have first arrived on the planet via comets from newborn stars.
Since the element is extremely rare in the universe, its presence on Earth has been a long-standing mystery. But scientists at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) now suggest that phosphorus may have first arrived on Earth in the molecule phosphorus monoxide – phosphorus bonded with one oxygen molecule.
Their research, published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society on Wednesday, reveals that phosphorus monoxide forms amid the birth of new stars. They also found the molecule in a comet circling Jupiter: a frozen ball of rock and ice called 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, or “67P” …read more
Source:: Businessinsider – Tech