Scientists have confirmed that life on Earth came from outer space citing that a collision between icy comets or meteorites may have created amino acids which are also called “building blocks of life.”
Origin of life had been a debatable issue among the scientists for long. Previous studies have suggested many theories that claim life on earth came from outer space. A study conducted in August, provided evidence that life on Earth came from Mars.
“Our work shows that the basic building blocks of life can be assembled anywhere in the Solar System and perhaps beyond,” Dr Zita Martins, co-author of the paper from the Department of Earth Science and Engineering at Imperial College London, said, while adding, “However, the catch is that these building blocks need the right conditions in order for life to flourish. Excitingly, our study widens the scope for where these important ingredients may be formed in the Solar System and adds another piece to the puzzle of how life on our planet took root,” said Martins.
Echoing similar views, Dr Mark Price, co-author from the University of Kent, said, “This process demonstrates a very simple mechanism whereby we can go from a mix of simple molecules, such as water and carbon-dioxide ice, to a more complicated molecule, such as an amino acid,”
The researchers said, “The abundance of ice on the surfaces of Enceladus and Europa, which are moons orbiting Saturn and Jupiter respectively, could provide a perfect environment for the production of amino acids, when meteorites crash into their surface.”
The team made their discovery by recreating the impact of a comet by firing projectiles through a large high speed gun. This gun, located at the University of Kent, uses compressed gas to propel projectiles at speeds of 7.15 kilometres per second into targets of ice mixtures, which have a similar composition to comets. The resulting impact created amino acids such as glycine and D-and L-alanine.
The study was published in the journal Nature Geoscience.