An astrophysicist from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratorys Institute for Geophysics and Planetary Physics has found that some nanodiamonds, the most famous and exotic form of stardust, may instead have formed within the inner solar system. The findings argue with the wide held belief that nanodiamonds recovered from meteorites from the asteroid belt have been the most abundant type of presolar stardust grain.
IGPP Director John Bradley, in conjunction with scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Washington, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and the Natural History Museum in London, report their discovery in todays edition of Nature.
"We presumed that if we studied (micro) meteorites (also known as interplanetary dust particles) from comets further out in our solar system, we would find more nanodiamonds," Bradley said. "But were just not seeing them. One theory is that some, perhaps most, nanodiamonds formed within the inner solar system and are not presolar at all."
Interplanetary dust particles are collected in the stratosphere using NASA ER2 aircraft and they are made up of irregularly shaped grains of carbon and/or silicates.
One origin of stardust is from supernovae, the cataclysmic deaths of a star. For more than 30 years, astrophysicists have looked to stardust, a sort of remnant of stars, to tell the story of our solar systems origins.
But Bradley and the group of researchers report that at least some of the oldest cometary interplanetary dust particles contain little or no nanodiamond stardust at all.
"This raises all sorts of questions about the origins of our solar system," Bradley said. "Our findings are consistent with recent research that has detected nanodiamonds within the accretion discs of other young stars that are similar to our early solar system."
The group concludes that an alternative explanation for the lack of nanondiamonds in the early meteorites is that all meteoritic nanodiamonds are presolar, but that their abundance decreases the further they are from the sun. In that case, our understanding of large-scale transport and circulation within the early solar system is incomplete.
Anne Stark | EurekAlert
From the cosmos to fusion plasmas, PPPL presents findings at global APS gathering
13.11.2018 | DOE/Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
A two-atom quantum duet
12.11.2018 | Institute for Basic Science
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Awards Funding