The mystery of the “disappeared” material from the Universe

How is it that in space it can happen that materials are “missing”? Well, it’s actually not that common, yet sometimes that’s just what happens. It certainly happened with protoplanetary disks.

Protoplanetary disks are those which allow the formation of planets, and which have rather rare chemical compositions. Not to mention unique. Well, recently scientists have noticed that the calculations were missing a lot, a lot of carbon monoxide.

There must have been a lot of carbon monoxide in the discs. But an important amount did not appear from the observations. How was that possible? Hence the dense mystery of the missing material.

But perhaps today the mystery has been solved. According to several teams of researchers, the missing material was hiding in ice formations within the disks themselves. Something completely unexpected.

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As told in a recent article appeared in the IndependentDiana Powell, a NASA researcher who works on observations made mainly with Hubble, said that the missing monoxide “could be one of the major unsolved problems in planet-forming discs.”

We have to imagine ice formations inside disks that are extremely difficult to study. Often they are so distant that only through light, which or does not reflect in so many different ways, is it possible to make assumptions about their composition.

We are talking about considerable quantities of monoxide missing; Powell herself said that “depending on the observed system, carbon monoxide is three to one hundred times less than it should be.”

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