Thirty years after scientists at the University of Missouri-Rolla and Grambling College discovered “strange” Xenon in meteorites, scientists from Japan and France are reporting the discovery of other strange elements left over from the birth of the solar system.
A 1976 study published in the journal Nature showed that strange Xenon, which is made in supernova explosions, is present within the composition of the Sun. Those findings by the UMR and Grambling team were largely dismissed. Now, in the March 31 issue of Nature, the Japanese and French team reports new evidence that the Sun has strange Oxygen, too.
“Elements are called ‘strange’ when the mix of atoms that comprise the element is unlike the mix of atoms that make up that element here on Earth,” explains UMR nuclear chemistry professor Dr. Oliver Manuel, who believes our solar system was created in a supernova blast. “Strange Xenon contains Xenon-136, which is made by rapid neutron capture in a supernova. Likewise, strange Oxygen has Oxygen-16, which is made by fusion inside a massive star.”
Mary Helen Stoltz | newswise
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