Rensselaer researchers propose new theory to explain seeds of life in asteroids

Today the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter is cold and dry, but scientists have long known that warm, wet conditions, suitable to formation of some biomolecules, the building blocks of life, once prevailed. One theory of the origin of life proposes that some of the biomolecules that formed on asteroids may have reached the surfaces of planets, and contributed to the origin of life as we know it. A new look at the early solar system introduces a new explanation of how biomolecules were once able to form inside asteroids. Researchers Wayne Roberge and Ray Menzel of the New York Center for Astrobiology propose a new theory — based on a realistic model to account for the effect of magnetic fields and solar winds in the early solar system — to explain the ancient heating of the asteroid belt. Click here for more…

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