Science fiction writer Harlan Ellison once said that the most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.
While the verdict is still out on the volume of stupidity, scientists have long known that hydrogen is indeed by far the most abundant element in the universe. When they peer through their telescopes, they see hydrogen in the vast clouds of dust and gas between stars –- especially in the denser regions that are collapsing to form new stars and planets.
But one mystery has remained: why is much of that hydrogen in molecular form –- with two hydrogen atoms bonded together –- rather than its single atomic form? Where did all that molecular hydrogen come from? Ohio State University researchers recently decided to try to figure it out.
Eric Herbst | EurekAlert!
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