A Japanese study has identified more than 20 types of amino acids in sand samples collected from the asteroid Ryu. This discovery will help scientists better understand the origin of life because amino acids are one of its essential components.
More than twenty types of amino acids have been updated after exploring the sand from asteroid models called Ryu., In December 2020, Japanese explorer Hayabusa 2 collected sand and dust samples from the asteroid and carried them to Earth.
This is the first time in the past that amino acids have been discovered from meteorites that have fallen to Earth, from samples brought from outside the planet.
The asteroid Ryugu is located about 300 million km from Earth. In December 2014, the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA) launched the Hayabusa 2 spacecraft, which landed in September 2018 as a prototype on the asteroid. Two years later the study returned to Earth, giving scientists more confidence in finding new clues about the formation of the solar system and the origin of life.
There are two competing theories about the origin of amino acids on Earth. One claims to have come from Earth 4.6 billion years ago, and the other says it came to Earth by meteorites. Recent findings on the asteroid Ryugu seem to reinforce the second hypothesis.
(Originally published in Japanese Prime Online Email FNN on May 30, 2022. Translation from French. Translated and edited by Nippon.com)
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