Isotope signatures of Ryugu suggest it formed near comets with unique minerals

Isotope signatures of Ryugu suggest it formed near comets with unique minerals

Isotope signatures of Ryugu suggest it formed near comets with unique minerals

Occurrences of anhydrous primary minerals in the Ryugu sample. (A) BSE image of the mineral-rich primary clast. (B) Combined elementary X-ray map of (A) using Mg Kα, Ca Kα and Al Kα lines assigned for RGB color channels. (C) Combined elementary X-ray map of (A) using Fe Kα, S Kα and O Kα lines assigned for RGB color channels. BSE images of (D) and (E) olivine and (F) Mg-Al spinel. The olivine grains (D and E) are located in the clast shown in (A) to (C). Their isotopic compositions O (Δ17O) are (D) −24‰, (E) −4‰ and (F) −23‰, respectively. spinel Al-Sp, Mg-Al; Bru, breunnerite; Cal, calcite; Dol, dolomite; FeS, Fe-sulfide; Mag, magnetite; Ol, olivine; Po, pyrrhotite; Px, low Ca pyroxene. The credit: Scientists progress (2022). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.ade2067

An international team of researchers studying material from the asteroid Ryugu returned to Earth by Japan’s Hayabusa-2 space probe has found evidence that the asteroid formed in an outer part of the solar system, near where comets tend to form.

In their article published in the journal Scientists progressthey also note that some of the materials found at Ryugu seem to come from material mined from the inner parts of the solar system to the outer parts.

Two years ago, dust samples taken from the asteroid Ryugu were brought back to Earth by the Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa2. Since then, various research groups have studied the samples to learn more about asteroids and the formation of planetary bodies in the solar system.

In this new effort, the researchers focused their attention on the minerals found in the dust samples. They found evidence of amino acids as well as carbonate minerals, materials that tend to form in low temperature aqueous environments. Such evidence strongly suggests that the asteroid formed in an outer part of the solar system.

The researchers also found many similarities between Ryugu and Ivuna – a carbonaceous chondrite meteor found many years ago in Tanzania – copper and zinc isotopes looked very similar.

Some materials in the Ryugu dust could not have formed in the outer solar system – minerals such as spinel, olivine and perovskite, all of which form at high temperatures. The researchers found that the ratios of oxygen-16 isotopes were in some cases rich, but in other cases were poor. And they also found that some of the isotope ratios were similar to those found by researchers studying samples brought back from Comet Wild 2.

Taken together, the researchers suggest that the mineral evidence points to Ryugu forming in a part of the outer solar system near where most comets form. During its formation, some materials originating in the inner solar system made their way to the outer solar system and collided with the newly formed asteroid, adding to its composition.

More information:
Noriyuki Kawasaki et al, Oxygen Isotopes of Anhydrous Primary Minerals Show Relatedness Between Asteroid Ryugu and Comet 81P/Wild2, Scientists progress (2022). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.ade2067

© 2022 Science X Network

Quote: Isotope signatures of Ryugu suggest it formed near comets with some unique minerals (2022, Dec 19) Retrieved Dec 19, 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-12-isotopic- signatures-ryugu-comets-unique .html

This document is subject to copyright. Except for fair use for purposes of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without written permission. The content is provided for information only.


#Isotope #signatures #Ryugu #suggest #formed #comets #unique #minerals

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *