Tags: solar system | formation | dust | discovered

Solar System Formation Dust Discovered

Solar System Formation Dust Discovered

(Nikki Zalewski/Dreamstime)

By    |   Wednesday, 13 June 2018 09:49 AM

Fragments of our solar system's formation have been found in the interstellar dust particles that helped build the planets and sun, a new study said.

Our solar system was formed 4.6 billion years ago, but until now there have been no known surviving remnants from the time of its birth.

However, researchers were recently able to collect from the Earth's upper atmosphere, the "surviving pre-solar interstellar dust that formed the very building blocks of planets and stars," said study lead author Hope Ishii of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, according to USA Today.

It is likely that the ancient dust was deposited by comets passing near the sun, which released the particles that reached Earth's orbit and settled into the atmosphere.

"These interplanetary dust particles survived from the time before formation of the planetary bodies in the solar system and provide insight into the chemistry of those ancient building blocks," said study co-author James Ciston of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California.

Ishii explained that the discovery could help scientists develop a greater understanding of how the solar system was formed and the processes that have altered planets since then.

Astrophysicist Ethan Siegel, who was not tied to the study, said the discovery was groundbreaking.

"Our naive picture of a disk that gets very hot, fragments, and cools to then form planets may be hopelessly oversimplified," he wrote for Forbes.

"Instead, we've learned that it may actually be cold, outer material that holds the key to our planetary backyard."

Siegel believes that, if the study stood the test of time, "we may have just revolutionized our understanding of how all planetary systems come into being."

Scientists have made other profound discoveries from stardust in the past, however nothing this profound.

In a separate study also led by Ishii, they found water contained in stardust, a discovery that suggests that life is prevalent across the universe and that at least some organic life on Earth could have stemmed from such celestial particles.

"The implications are potentially huge," Ishii said at the time. "It is a particularly thrilling possibility that this influx of dust on the surfaces of solar system bodies has acted as a continuous rainfall of little reaction vessels containing both the water and organics needed for the eventual origin of life."

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Scientists have just discovered remnants of the interstellar dust particles that helped build our planets and sun billions of years ago, a new study said.
solar system, formation, dust, discovered
Wednesday, 13 June 2018 09:49 AM
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