The Solar System’s Signs of Oldest Molecular Fluid was Found in an Unexpected Place

The Solar System’s Signs of Oldest Molecular Fluid was Found in an Unexpected Place

If you’re not yet convinced that our Solar System is unbelievably weird, you have countless aspects to consider. Some compelling examples are the rings of Saturn, the storms on Jupiter, the craters on the Moon, and most of all: the incredible diversity of complex life forms present on Earth.

But yet another discovery made by the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and co-authors from McMaster University and York University is stunning the scientific world. Their conclusion was that molecular fluids from within the solar system could have played a major role in the formation and evolution of the building blocks of life.

How they did it

The scientists involved used state-of-the-art procedures for mapping individual atoms in minerals formed in fluids. Atom-probe tomography was used to target molecules along boundaries and pores between magnetite grains. There’s no certainty of where those grains were formed, but the main suspicion is that they occurred on the asteroid’s crust. Water precipitates were found in the grain boundaries on which the scientists conducted their research.

Beth Lymer, who is a Ph.D. student Lassonde School of Engineering at York University and co-author of the study, declared:

Amino acids are essential building blocks of life on Earth, yet we still have a lot to learn about how they first formed in our solar system. The more variables that we can constrain, such as temperature and pH, allows us to understand better the synthesis and evolution of these essential molecules into what we now know as biotic life on Earth.

Thus, the first evidence arises for the sodium-rich (an antacid) fluids in which the magnetite framboids formed. These fluid conditions are playing a great role in the union of amino acids, and thus opening the door for microbial life to emerge. And microbes are believed to be the ancestors for all complex life, such as animals and humans.


Anna is an avid blogger with an educational background in medicine and mental health. She is a generalist with many other interests including nutrition, women's health, astronomy and photography. In her free time from work and writing, Anna enjoys nature walks, reading, and listening to jazz and classical music.

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