Artists illustration of early Earth, 4.5 billion years ago, about a year after a Mars-sized object hit Earth and formed the Earth-Moon system. The still molten moon with an impact in progress (upper left) is viewed from Earths volcanic surface. Meteorites and comets -- like the comet visible in the sky -- delivered materials needed for life on Earth. Rings remaining from the collision and other debris, including moonlets not yet swept up by the moon, are visible. An Orion-like nebula appears at upper right. (Painting copyrighted by artist James V. Scotti, UA Lunar & Planetary Lab)
University of Arizona scientists have discovered that meteorites, particularly iron meteorites, may have been critical to the evolution of life on Earth.
Their research shows that meteorites easily could have provided more phosphorus than naturally occurs on Earth -- enough phosphorus to give rise to biomolecules which eventually assembled into living, replicating organisms.
Phosphorus is central to life. It forms the backbone of DNA and RNA because it connects these molecules’ genetic bases into long chains. It is vital to metabolism because it is linked with life’s fundamental fuel, adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the energy that powers growth and movement. And phosphorus is part of living architecture – it is in the phospholipids that make up cell walls and in the bones of vertebrates.
Lori Stiles | EurekAlert!
Research spotlights a previously unknown microbial 'drama' playing in the Southern Ocean
31.07.2015 | National Science Foundation
Past and present sea levels in the Chesapeake Bay Region, USA
29.07.2015 | Geological Society of America
Using ultracold atoms trapped in light crystals, scientists from the MPQ, LMU, and the Weizmann Institute observe a novel state of matter that never thermalizes.
What happens if one mixes cold and hot water? After some initial dynamics, one is left with lukewarm water—the system has thermalized to a new thermal...
Physicists from Regensburg and Marburg, Germany have succeeded in taking a slow-motion movie of speeding electrons in a solid driven by a strong light wave. In the process, they have unraveled a novel quantum phenomenon, which will be reported in the forthcoming edition of Nature.
The advent of ever faster electronics featuring clock rates up to the multiple-gigahertz range has revolutionized our day-to-day life. Researchers and...
Researchers have developed an ultrafast light-emitting device that can flip on and off 90 billion times a second and could form the basis of optical computing.
Joint BioEnergy Institute study identifies bacterial protein that is key to protecting rice against bacterial blight
A bacterial signal that when recognized by rice plants enables the plants to resist a devastating blight disease has been identified by a multi-national team...
Researchers in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin are one step closer to delivering smart windows with a new level of energy efficiency, engineering materials that allow windows to reveal light without transferring heat and, conversely, to block light while allowing heat transmission, as described in two new research papers.
By allowing indoor occupants to more precisely control the energy and sunlight passing through a window, the new materials could significantly reduce costs for...
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