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Natural Awakenings Westchester / Putnam / Dutchess New York

Other-Worldly Rock: Extraterrestrial Matter Found on Earth

Sep 30, 2019 09:30AM

Beate Wolter/Shutterstock.om

The Makhonjwa Mountains of South Africa harbor some of the planet’s oldest rocks, including meteorites that have been striking the Earth for eons. According to the peer-reviewed journal Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, researchers using electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy have discovered a 3.3 billion-year-old layer of rock that contains two types of insoluble organic matter, both of which suggest extraterrestrial origins, making it the oldest extraterrestrial organic matter ever identified.  Many scientists think the basic molecules of life may have originated in outer space.