UCL Press Release: Organic 'building blocks' discovered in Titan's atmosphere
28 November 2007
Scientists analysing data gathered by the Cassini spacecraft have confirmed the presence of heavy negative ions in the upper regions of Titan's atmosphere.
Professor Andrew Coates, researcher at the UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory and lead author of the paper, says: "Cassini's electron spectrometer has enabled us to detect negative ions which have 10,000 times the mass of hydrogen. Additional rings of carbon can build up on these ions, forming molecules called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which may act as a basis for the earliest forms of life." …
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