ALMA detects methyl isocyanate around young Sun-like stars

ALMA has observed stars like the Sun at a very early stage in their formation and found traces of methyl isocyanate — a chemical building block of life. This is the first ever detection of this prebiotic molecule towards a solar-type protostar, the sort from which our Solar System evolved. The discovery could help astronomers understand how life arose on Earth.

This image shows the spectacular region of star formation where methyl isocyanate was found. The insert shows the molecular structure of this chemical.

Credit:

ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2/L. Calçada

About the Image

Id:eso1718a
Type:Artwork
Release date:8 June 2017, 12:00
Related releases:eso1718
Size:4500 x 4500 px

About the Object

Type:Milky Way : Nebula : Type : Star Formation
Category:Illustrations
Stars

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