Rosetta Saw the Building Blocks of Life on Comet 67P

Comet 67P as seen by Rosetta on 7 July 2015. By ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM, CC BY-SA IGO 3.0, CC BY-SA 3.0-igo,

Why is there so little nitrogen in Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (67P)? That’s a question scientists asked themselves when they looked at the data from the ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft. In fact, it’s a question they ask themselves every time they measure the gases in a comet’s coma. When Rosetta visited the comet in 2014, it measured the gases and found that there was very little nitrogen.

In two new papers published in Nature Astronomy, researchers suggest that the nitrogen isn’t really missing at all, it’s just hidden in the building blocks of life.

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